2004 Book of the Year Publishers Weekly
Why do we love America
so much? For the much-celebrated naked pictures of Supreme Court justices? The flashbacks to those stultifyingly dull high school textbooks? Or can it be that seeing the polished irreverence of the Daily Show
writers in book form highlights how ineffectual so much of what passes for literary humor really is? Whatever the case, Jon Stewart and his co-conspirators have crafted a genuinely hilarious satire that manages to sneak in a little bit of actual history now and again. (Don't worry you'll hardly feel it.) And, of course, there are the naked Supreme Court justices.... Bolton, Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Jon Stewart, host of the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning The Daily Show
, and his coterie of patriots deliver a hilarious look at American government...
Termed a "political king-maker" by Newsweek, and "the Dan Rather of infotainment" by Vanity Fair, Jon Stewart, along with the writers of The Daily Show, combines his riotous wit and razor-sharp insight in this hilarious book.
American-style democracy is the world's most beloved form of government, which explains why so many other nations are eager for us to impose it on them. But what is American democracy?
In America (The Book), Jon Stewart and the Daily Show writing staff offer their insights into our unique system of government, dissecting its institutions, explaining its history and processes, and exploring the reasons why concepts like "One man, one vote," "Government by the people," and "Every vote counts" have become such popular urban myths.
Among the topics:
- Ancient Rome: The First Republicans
- The Founding Fathers: Young, Gifted, and White
- The President: King of Democracy
- The Supreme Court: 18 Legs, Four Tits, One Mission
- Running for Office: What Are You Thinking?
- The Media: Can It Be Stopped?
- The Future of Democracy: The Constitutional Robocracy and You!
"Cheeky, irreverent and playfully ingenuous, this abbreviated history of democracy is everything one would expect from the writers of Comedy Central's fake news program, which recently (and somewhat scandalously) won the Television Critics Association's award for outstanding news and public affairs series. The book is laid out like a textbook, with 'Discussion Questions' ('Why do you think the Framers made the Constitution so soul-crushingly boring?'), 'Classroom Activities' ('Using felt and yarn, make a hand puppet of Clarence Thomas. Ta-da! You're Antonin Scalia!') and plenty of amusing graphics, including a board game that resembles the game Life but which follows a presidential term: 'Optimistic press release on economy ineffective. Spin again.' No one evades the authors' scrutiny, not even the Pilgrims, who came to America 'to escape religious persecution...create a society where they could worship as they pleased and one day, God willing, even do some persecuting of their own.' The media fares the worst, however. An entire chapter is devoted to telling the 'inspirational' story of how the media 'transformed itself from a mere public necessity into an entertaining profit center for ever-expanding corporate empires.' But if this and other criticisms kindle a few unpatriotic feelings, a section describing how worse off the rest of the world is should buoy spirits. From its dedication ('To the huddled masses Keep yearnin'!') to its final chapter, which lampoons the 2004 presidential candidates, this humorous sendup of American politics never fails to entertain, poke fun and provoke thought. Agent, Dan Strone at Trident Media. (Sept. 20)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"[T]he devil's own comedic handiwork, a side-splitting guide to the abuses and absurdities built into our political processes and institutions." Janet Maslin, The New York Times
"[T]he most ecumenical, evenhanded, and hilarious political satire since...Our Dumb Century. I'd recommend it be taught in schools, even though some teachers may feel uncomfortable contextualizing the photo of a presidential candidate tea-bagging a hooker." Entertainment Weekly
"[I]nspired parody....[T]he book's ultimate joke...is that it's not only more informative about how American government and culture work than the textbooks it burlesques, but gives us a keener sense of having a stake in both." Tom Carson, The New York Times Book Review
Jon Stewart and the writing staff from the Emmy-winning Daily Show
offer their insights into America's unique system of government, dissecting its institutions, explaining its history and processes, and investigating such popular urban myths as "one man, one vote" and "every vote counts."
Timed to coincide with the height of the 2004 presidential election campaign, this book offers insights into America's unique system of government, dissecting its institutions, explaining its history and processes, and exploring modern urban myths. Full-color illustrations, photos, & charts.
About the Author
Jon Stewart was born in New York and lives with his wife in New York City.
The Daily Show is the top-rated news program in its time-slot in the younger demographics and its fan base among all ages continues to grow.