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The Assault on Reason

The Assault on Reason by Al Gore
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A visionary analysis of how the politics of fear, secrecy, cronyism, and blind faith has combined with the degration of the public sphere to create an environment dangerously hostile to reason

At the time George W. Bush ordered American forces to invade Iraq, 70 percent of Americans believed Saddam Hussein was linked to 9/11. Voters in Ohio, when asked by pollsters to list what stuck in their minds about the campaign, most frequently named two Bush television ads that played to fears of terrorism.

We live in an age when the thirty-second television spot is the most powerful force shaping the electorate's thinking, and America is in the hands of an administration less interested than any previous administration in sharing the truth with the citizenry. Related to this and of even greater concern is this administration's disinterest in the process by which the truth is ascertained, the tenets of fact-based reasoning-first among them an embrace of open inquiry in which unexpected and even inconvenient facts can lead to unexpected conclusions.

How did we get here? How much damage has been done to the functioning of our democracy and its role as steward of our security? Never has there been a worse time for us to lose the capacity to face the reality of our long-term challenges, from national security to the economy, from issues of health and social welfare to the environment. As The Assault on Reason shows us, we have precious little time to waste.

Gore's larger goal in this book is to explain how the public sphere itself has evolved into a place hospitable to reason's enemies, to make us more aware of the forces at work on our own minds, and to lead us to an understanding of what we can do, individually and collectively, to restore the rule of reason and safeguard our future. Drawing on a life's work in politics as well as on the work of experts across a broad range of disciplines, Al Gore has written a farsighted and powerful manifesto for clear thinking.
Penguin Publishing Group; May 2007
320 pages; ISBN 9781101202319
Read online, or download in secure EPUB
Title: The Assault on Reason
Author: Al Gore
  • News
Al Gore: Democracy hacked – and how we can save it - Rappler
Sat, 19 Mar 2016 21:31:16 -0700
RapplerAl Gore: Democracy hacked – and how we can save itRapplerIn the decade after, he became a best-selling author with books ...
Fear, not anger, is gripping voters around the world - The National
Wed, 30 Mar 2016 06:07:54 -0700
The NationalFear, not anger, is gripping voters around the worldThe NationalIt is an assault on reason, as former US vice ...
James Cannon Boyce - Daily Maverick
Tue, 03 May 2016 14:56:17 -0700
Daily MaverickJames Cannon BoyceDaily MaverickAbout a decade ago, I worked with Al Gore on his book Assault On Reason. For a ...