A REVELATORY AND DARKLY COMIC ADVENTURE THROUGH A NATION ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN—FROM THE HALLS OF CONGRESS TO THE BASES OF BAGHDAD TO THE APOCALYPTIC CHURCHES OF THE HEARTLAND
Rolling Stone ’s Matt Taibbi set out to describe the nature of George Bush’s America in the post-9/11 era and ended up vomiting demons in an evangelical church in Texas, riding the streets of Baghdad in an American convoy to nowhere, searching for phantom fighter jets in Congress, and falling into the rabbit hole of the 9/11 Truth Movement.
Matt discovered in his travels across the country that the resilient blue state/red state narrative of American politics had become irrelevant. A large and growing chunk of the American population was so turned off—or radicalized—by electoral chicanery, a spineless news media, and the increasingly blatant lies from our leaders (“they hate us for our freedom”) that they abandoned the political mainstream altogether. They joined what he calls The Great Derangement.
Taibbi tells the story of this new American madness by inserting himself into four defining American subcultures: The Military, where he finds himself mired in the grotesque black comedy of the American occupation of Iraq; The System, where he follows the money-slicked path of legislation in Congress; The Resistance, where he doubles as chief public antagonist and undercover member of the passionately bonkers 9/11 Truth Movement; and The Church, where he infiltrates a politically influential apocalyptic mega-ministry in Texas and enters the lives of its desperate congregants. Together these four interwoven adventures paint a portrait of a nation dangerously out of touch with reality and desperately searching for answers in all the wrong places.
Funny, smart, and a little bit heartbreaking, The Great Derangement is an audaciously reported, sobering, and illuminating portrait of America at the end of the Bush era.
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|Title of History eBook: The Great Derangement|
|Release Date: 05-06-2008|
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|Publisher: Random House Publishing Group|
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|Parent title||The Great Derangement|
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The Great Derangement
It's a Thursday afternoon in San Antonio and I'm in a rented room—creaky floorboards, peeling wallpaper, month to month, no lease, space heater only, the ultimate temporary lifestyle—and I can't find the right channel on the television. I rented this place, it seems, without making sure that it had ESPN. This realization throws the poverty of the room into relief for the first time.
Shit, it's cold in here, I think, aware of a draft all of a sudden. When I look back at the TV, it's on a gospel channel. A video preacher straight out of central casting is pointing a finger right at the screen—right at me—admonishing me to surrender to God. He's got swept-back white hair, gold wire-rimmed glasses, and a booming hellfire voice that makes the name "A-BRA-HAAM!" come spilling out of his mouth like a brand-new Mustang V-8 turning over for the first time.
"When you give up more than you deserve," he shouts, "God will give you more than you dreamed!" He pauses, letting the words settle in for effect. "I want you to write that down somewhere!"
I shrug and reach for a notebook.
"Write it down: When you give up more than you deserve," the preacher repeats, "God will give you more than you dreamed!"
I nod and write it down in block letters. Why not? I have no idea what the hell it means, but I didn't come to Texas to argue with people. But what exactly do I deserve?
The preacher continues on; his sermon is from Genesis 12, the story about Abraham coming to Egypt and instructing his beautiful wife, Sarah, to say that she's his sister, which in turn al