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Books by and about 2012 presidential nominees
Do Not Ask What Good We Do
about Rep. Paul Ryan (2012)
The Path to Prosperity
by Rep. Paul Ryan (2012)
Ten Letters
about Pres. Barack Obama (2011)
A Life of Trial and Redemption
about V.P. Joe Biden (2010)
No Apology
by Gov. Mitt Romney (2010)
Young Guns
by Rep. Paul Ryan et al (2010)
The Path to Prosperity
by Rep. Paul Ryan (2012)
Promises to Keep
by Vice Pres. Joe Biden (2007)
The Audacity of Hope
by Pres. Barack Obama (2006)
by Gov. Mitt Romney (2004)
Dreams from My Father
by Pres. Barack Obama (1996)

Book Reviews

(from Amazon.com)

(click a book cover for a review or other books by or about the presidency from Amazon.com)

Be the Change!
Change the World. Change Yourself

by Hundreds of Heads & Michelle Nunn

(Click for Amazon book review)

    Click on a participant to pop-up their full list of quotations
    from Be the Change, by Michelle Nunn (number of quotes indicated):
  • Bill Frist (2) Republican
  • Elizabeth Dole (2) North Carolina Former Cabinet Member (Labor Sec'y) and Senator
  • Jimmy Carter (1)
  • John Lewis (2) Democrat U.S. Rep Georgia-5
  • Michelle Nunn (10) Democratic Challenger Georgia
  • Sam Nunn (3) Democratic Senator (Former) Georgia
  • Sandra Day O`Connor (2) Republican Appointee to Supreme Court (retired 2005)
    OR click on an issue category below for a subset.

OnTheIssues.org BOOK REVIEW:

This book "portrays...the gratification, fun, and humor to be found on the journey of service" (Introduction, p. x). The author, Michelle Nunn, is running for Senate on Georgia, where her father served as Senator for 24 years. We hope this book inspires some people, but for us, it only inspired distastefulness.

I'm not sure what is the most distasteful in this book -- perhaps because it feels like Nunn is proposing an expansion of national service, like AmeriCorps for all, which I would call a "civilian draft." While that's better than a military draft, it's still a draft. To be sure, Nunn does not propose making any service mandatory -- it's all described as "voluntary." But those who propose that everyone volunteer, as a duty of citizenship, are just one step away from proposing a law that everyone volunteer.

I don't have anything against volunteering -- OnTheIssues.org is run by volunteers, and I have volunteered for the types of organizations described in Nunn's book. We hope our OnTheIssues volunteers get some benefit from volunteering, as do the many testimonials in this book. But there are just so many testimonials -- happy volunteer after happy volunteer -- that it feels... forced? Overdone? Too much? I don't know the right term, so I'll make one up: I felt "smugged upon." All of the wide-eyed do-gooders line up in this book, and it all feels very smug, and the reader gets smugged upon.

Bill Clinton wrote a book similar to this book, called Giving. Clinton's book also includes descriptions of dozens upon dozens of worthwhile organizations. But at the end of Clinton's book, one feels inspired. At the end of Nunn's book, one feels relieved that one can stop reading. Michelle Nunn is undoubtedly a good person, and would make a good Senator if she wins. But I don't want to read any more of it!

-- Jesse Gordon, OnTheIssues editor-in-chief, December 2013

 OnTheIssues.org excerpts:  (click on issues for details)
Civil Rights
    John Lewis: Got in the way of 1950s discrimination.
Foreign Policy
    Sandra Day O`Connor: Lived in Germany for 3 years; discussed staying in Europe.
Government Reform
    John Lewis: 1977: Oversaw 250,000 volunteers at ACTION agency.
    Michelle Nunn: The biggest obstacle of all is apathy.
    Michelle Nunn: Change only becomes enduring when we ask & enlist others.
    Michelle Nunn: Drop in civic participation enfeebles our democracy.
Health Care
    Bill Frist: Frequent medical mission trips to Africa.
Homeland Security
    Sam Nunn: 1970s: Trained terrorists could gain control of our nukes.
    Sam Nunn: Nunn-Lugar: funded Russia to destroy 6,670 nuclear warheads.
Principles & Values
    Bill Frist: Doctoring improves a life; public service improves many.
    Elizabeth Dole: Character provides sense of direction & means to fulfillment.
    Jimmy Carter: My faith goes beyond religion and requires work.
    Michelle Nunn: Leaders of all great faith traditions lived lives of service.
    Michelle Nunn: Those whom we revere give of themselves.
    Michelle Nunn: Don't let petty frustrations get in the way of commitment.
    Michelle Nunn: Built "Hands On Atlanta" over 17 years to 100,000 volunteers.
    Michelle Nunn: Everyone has the power to make a difference in the world.
    Sandra Day O`Connor: Served in Arizona as State Senator and trial judge.
War & Peace
    Sam Nunn: 2001: Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize for reducing WMDs.
Welfare & Poverty
    Elizabeth Dole: Red Cross volunteers taught me about hope amid suffering.
    Michelle Nunn: Hands On Network: help people begin their service journey.
    Michelle Nunn: When you serve others, you get more than you give.

The above quotations are from Be the Change!
Change the World. Change Yourself

by Hundreds of Heads & Michelle Nunn.

All material copyright 1999-2015
by OnTheIssues.org
Reprinting by permission only.

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Page last edited: Jan 09, 2014