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In the grand satirical tradition of Swift, Rabelais, and Twain comes... Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, and Other Observations ... a scathing--but uncompromisingly fair--look at America's largest talk show host and the rest of the Republican right. Penned by the Emmy award-winning Saturday Night Live writer whom John Podhoretz of the New York Post has called "the man res In the grand satirical tradition of Swift, Rabelais, and Twain comes... Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, and Other Observations ... a scathing--but uncompromisingly fair--look at America's largest talk show host and the rest of the Republican right. Penned by the Emmy award-winning Saturday Night Live writer whom John Podhoretz of the New York Post has called "the man responsible for some of the most brilliant political satire of our time," Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot tackles the issues--and the politicians--in ways few have dared... Exploding Medicare Costs: "Why not shoot the elderly into space? Stay with me. Because I'm not just thinking about the budget here. I'm talking about science. Just think how many more manned space operations NASA could undertake if they didn't have to worry about getting the astronauts back." Crime: "I have a radical gun-buyback idea that I guarantee would be a huge success. Here's how it works: hand in a gun, get a free vial of crack." Newt Gingrich: "Many of us, like Newt, have acknowledged smoking dope and reading Toffler in the early 70s. But after reading his book, I think Newt's dirty little secret is that he smoked dope and watched The Jetsons." Phil Gramm: "If you get beyond the fact the Gramm is ugly, mean, hypocritical, has a boob fetish, and drives his wife like a mule, he does have a certain folksy charm." On the subject of Rush Limbaugh, Franken lets the facts speak for themselves. Listen to Rush, the "rugged individualist" and enemy of government handouts, explain how his second wife made him stop sitting around the house eating just food and go file for unemployment insurance. And learn all of Rush's several explanations for how he avoided the draft. Of course, when it comes to draft-dodging Republicans, Rush isn't alone. Reading Al's Vietnam short story, "Operation Chickenhawk," you'll savor the exploits of Privates Limbaugh, Gramm, Quayle, Buchanan, Gingrich, and George Will as Lieutenant Oliver North leads them kicking and screaming into combat. And don't miss Al's informative discussion with the man who has "the easiest job in America": Rush Limbaugh's fact-checker. And much, much more.


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In the grand satirical tradition of Swift, Rabelais, and Twain comes... Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, and Other Observations ... a scathing--but uncompromisingly fair--look at America's largest talk show host and the rest of the Republican right. Penned by the Emmy award-winning Saturday Night Live writer whom John Podhoretz of the New York Post has called "the man res In the grand satirical tradition of Swift, Rabelais, and Twain comes... Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, and Other Observations ... a scathing--but uncompromisingly fair--look at America's largest talk show host and the rest of the Republican right. Penned by the Emmy award-winning Saturday Night Live writer whom John Podhoretz of the New York Post has called "the man responsible for some of the most brilliant political satire of our time," Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot tackles the issues--and the politicians--in ways few have dared... Exploding Medicare Costs: "Why not shoot the elderly into space? Stay with me. Because I'm not just thinking about the budget here. I'm talking about science. Just think how many more manned space operations NASA could undertake if they didn't have to worry about getting the astronauts back." Crime: "I have a radical gun-buyback idea that I guarantee would be a huge success. Here's how it works: hand in a gun, get a free vial of crack." Newt Gingrich: "Many of us, like Newt, have acknowledged smoking dope and reading Toffler in the early 70s. But after reading his book, I think Newt's dirty little secret is that he smoked dope and watched The Jetsons." Phil Gramm: "If you get beyond the fact the Gramm is ugly, mean, hypocritical, has a boob fetish, and drives his wife like a mule, he does have a certain folksy charm." On the subject of Rush Limbaugh, Franken lets the facts speak for themselves. Listen to Rush, the "rugged individualist" and enemy of government handouts, explain how his second wife made him stop sitting around the house eating just food and go file for unemployment insurance. And learn all of Rush's several explanations for how he avoided the draft. Of course, when it comes to draft-dodging Republicans, Rush isn't alone. Reading Al's Vietnam short story, "Operation Chickenhawk," you'll savor the exploits of Privates Limbaugh, Gramm, Quayle, Buchanan, Gingrich, and George Will as Lieutenant Oliver North leads them kicking and screaming into combat. And don't miss Al's informative discussion with the man who has "the easiest job in America": Rush Limbaugh's fact-checker. And much, much more.

30 review for Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot: And Other Observations

  1. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    I think that this was Al Franken's first political book, written before he turned into a politician himself. I remember reading it at the gym,on the stair machine and laughing so hard that I almost fell off ... How tragic is it that 14 years after this book was published Rush Limbaugh is still being a big fat idiot, and people still actually listen to him. I think that this was Al Franken's first political book, written before he turned into a politician himself. I remember reading it at the gym,on the stair machine and laughing so hard that I almost fell off ... How tragic is it that 14 years after this book was published Rush Limbaugh is still being a big fat idiot, and people still actually listen to him.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Paul Dinger

    Don't let the title fool you, this book is very short on personal insults. Rather, Franken the commedian introduces us to Al Franken the logician who demolishes all of Rush Limbaugh's prize arguments by going after his...math? By the time Franken is done, Limbaugh doesn't have a leg to stand on. Quite frankly, it is this part of Franken that is on display and makes reading this book quite a revealation. I was so rapped up in it's arguments and logic that I coudn't put it down. Don't let the title fool you, this book is very short on personal insults. Rather, Franken the commedian introduces us to Al Franken the logician who demolishes all of Rush Limbaugh's prize arguments by going after his...math? By the time Franken is done, Limbaugh doesn't have a leg to stand on. Quite frankly, it is this part of Franken that is on display and makes reading this book quite a revealation. I was so rapped up in it's arguments and logic that I coudn't put it down.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    0.5 stars. This is the book that made me wish you could give the 0 star rating. The worst part of this experience is my personal commitment that once I open a book to read it, I will see it through to the end (no matter how INCREDIBLY, INCREDIBLY PAINFUL that experience might be). Anyway, not much to say about the body of the book other than it is poorly written, disingenuous and....biggest crime of all...NOT FUNNY.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    Truly dreadful. Full of lies and half-truths, this book has been thoroughly debunked.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    Very distorted material and never made me laugh once. Even if you like Franken and hate Rush you'd think it would be revolting to make fun in the title of a book of anyone being overweight. The funny part is Franken is now fatter than Rush. Do you think a book called "Al Frankem is a big Fat Idiot.' would sell? Very distorted material and never made me laugh once. Even if you like Franken and hate Rush you'd think it would be revolting to make fun in the title of a book of anyone being overweight. The funny part is Franken is now fatter than Rush. Do you think a book called "Al Frankem is a big Fat Idiot.' would sell?

  6. 4 out of 5

    Belinda

    I read it the *day* it came out in hardback, and just LOVED it. Franken is brilliant, and has a crack team of ivy-league researchers to do his bidding, which doesn't hurt. I read it the *day* it came out in hardback, and just LOVED it. Franken is brilliant, and has a crack team of ivy-league researchers to do his bidding, which doesn't hurt.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Conor Ahern

    This had me guffawing on a flight from Copenhagen to New York. It's amazing how little things have changed since the time when John Kasich could be accurately described as "boyish" (*shudder*): people were still entertaining weird white nationalist populist fantasies, clamoring for a border fence, and hoping that wealth indicated some form of competence. Franken skewers them all, most notably: Rush, Newt, and ol' Ronnie. One issue I had with this: does Franken really think that Clinton was the g This had me guffawing on a flight from Copenhagen to New York. It's amazing how little things have changed since the time when John Kasich could be accurately described as "boyish" (*shudder*): people were still entertaining weird white nationalist populist fantasies, clamoring for a border fence, and hoping that wealth indicated some form of competence. Franken skewers them all, most notably: Rush, Newt, and ol' Ronnie. One issue I had with this: does Franken really think that Clinton was the greatest president of the 20th Century? God, I hope not.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Rick Wilson

    Pretty superficial, still good for a chuckle

  9. 4 out of 5

    Patrick

    I wasn't a huge Al Franken fan when this book first came out. I knew him from Saturday Night Live and I thought his Stuart Smalley stuff was worth a good chuckle. This book changed that for me. It revealed Franken's brilliance in all its glory. I am now a hardcore fan of his. I wasn't a huge Al Franken fan when this book first came out. I knew him from Saturday Night Live and I thought his Stuart Smalley stuff was worth a good chuckle. This book changed that for me. It revealed Franken's brilliance in all its glory. I am now a hardcore fan of his.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Josh

    I grew up with this man’s lunatic ravings constantly blaring from the family radio. For any recovering conservative turned progressive, this is a laugh-out-loud-must-read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Flan

    He used to be a funny guy. Now one would only find it funny if you have an anger management problem and love the polemics of Karl Rove.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kiri

    I picked up the audio to this book. I am disgusted to say that it starts out NOT with Al Franken's work but some right-wing reviewer named Jean Kirkpatrick who goes on about her own credentials (geo-political etc) and "why oh why!! *sob cry moan*" was she made to review this book instead of what was given to P.J. O'Rourke. My suggestion is that obviously she doesn't know anything at all (especially about political comedy - satirical or otherwise - or her professed area of expertise. WHICH IS th I picked up the audio to this book. I am disgusted to say that it starts out NOT with Al Franken's work but some right-wing reviewer named Jean Kirkpatrick who goes on about her own credentials (geo-political etc) and "why oh why!! *sob cry moan*" was she made to review this book instead of what was given to P.J. O'Rourke. My suggestion is that obviously she doesn't know anything at all (especially about political comedy - satirical or otherwise - or her professed area of expertise. WHICH IS the focus of this book.) and shouldn't be reviewing a work period. This is a diatribe praising Limbaugh (Who btw is a big fat idiot et al - that's an observational truth not an insult.*) and the conservative party line -- not a review of the actual work presented. Her voice is also extremely annoying. Further I am of the opinion that while your political, social, etc. opinions will inflect your reviews it should not ever be the basis or focal point for a professional literary review, if you cannot review it on its merits and THEN provide a personal opinion at the conclusion (and then only if absolutely needed) then you need to find a different line of work. I'd have been flunked for turning in such a review based upon personal opinion on a work in college. I'm giving this first section negative 37 stars and SHAME ON THE NEW YORK TIMES for hiring such an unqualified person. The second session begins with Al Franken reading his work. My sincere sympathies to him for having to plough through over 180 hours of that [censored] being. Apparently I cannot even hack someone really reviewing [Limbaugh] or commenting on the subject. I also freely admit that while I respect Al Franken's current actions as a Senator he isn't my favorite political satirist. So I'm only giving it 3 stars. I think if it wasn't this subject I'd have enjoyed it more. But Franken does point out some extremely valid counter-points to conservative double think or sheer "ignore the facts" aka "facts? we don't need no stinkin' facts!" attitude that is so pervasive these days. I do think it is worth a listen for that alone. I would venture to say that this isn't comedy, but illustrates Franken's shift into the political non-fiction sphere. *You do not want to know my real opinion about that sorry excuse for a human carcass named Rush Limbaugh. I've held this opinion for a few decades and it isn't politically based. It is based on having a brain that can think and sheer common sense.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Amy Wilder

    Read this in college at a time when I was trying to stay friends with someone who was listening to Rush Limbaugh and talking to me about it. It was really hard to have a conversation like that. When I sampled his radio program to see what I could say in answer to it, I noticed that Limbaugh would state some pretty obscure facts and to refute his arguments you would have to chase around figuring out if he made it up or just took it out of context or if he had a point - which like anyone, he somet Read this in college at a time when I was trying to stay friends with someone who was listening to Rush Limbaugh and talking to me about it. It was really hard to have a conversation like that. When I sampled his radio program to see what I could say in answer to it, I noticed that Limbaugh would state some pretty obscure facts and to refute his arguments you would have to chase around figuring out if he made it up or just took it out of context or if he had a point - which like anyone, he sometimes does have - just not as big a point as he manages to make out of it. I needed the internet to refute his arguments, but it was just getting borned (Netscape 2.0 came out this year, I believe) and so I had to read Al Franken instead. The problem was, Al made it clear to me that I just couldn't have a conversation about these things with someone who wanted to listen to Rush. To want to listen to Rush was to want to see the world in a certain way that I didn't choose to see the world. I don't think everyone should pull themselves up by their bootstraps or that the government is inherently evil, and I doubt I ever will. To want to read Al Franken was to want to laugh at the absurdity of someone presenting such an ideology as the only true way to look at things, instead of as an ideology. It was a funny book and it did well because, as I later learned, liberals don't just like to listen to themselves talk about how right they are (RIP AirAmerica), they like to be satirical, or ironic, or wry - or at least examine things rationally, maybe concede a point or two, lose the debate as far as the audience is concerned, and feel enlightened. Conservatives tend to like to win. They like being told by their polemicists to tell them that they are absolutely right and the other guy is unequivocally wrong, weak and stupid (thus, the title is not really meant as an insult, it's meant to be ironic, and appeal to liberals). Liberals like to believe that they are taking an open-minded and intelligent position that will be respected, even if you disagree. In this way I believe we really are like French people, as the conservatives like to insinuate. So of course at the time Al Franken was just a comedian from Saturday Night Live and now he is a United States Senator. A rare but interesting case of someone who stops heckling the players and jumps onto the field and scores a home run.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    Of the three Al Franken books I've read, this one is my least favorite. It's also one of his earlier books, before Lies and The Truth, so maybe he just hadn't hit his stride yet, politcal satire-wise. Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations has a great title, mostly because it's to TRUE. How it differs from his other books that I've read is that it is a series of independent essays compiled into a collection. And while I enjoy his sharp wit and scathing humor most of the time, som Of the three Al Franken books I've read, this one is my least favorite. It's also one of his earlier books, before Lies and The Truth, so maybe he just hadn't hit his stride yet, politcal satire-wise. Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations has a great title, mostly because it's to TRUE. How it differs from his other books that I've read is that it is a series of independent essays compiled into a collection. And while I enjoy his sharp wit and scathing humor most of the time, some of the stuff in this book seemed a little mean-spirited, even for Franken. He spends an inordinate amount of time on Limbaugh's weight, which doesn't seem fair. Of course, I could just be a little sensitive in this department myself. But where Franken really shines is in his analysis of all the crap that Limbaugh says. This is where Franken's talent truly lies: in exposing Limbaugh (and others) for the outright liars and dangers to society and free thought they are. The book doesn't focus strictly on Rush Limbaugh, though time and again throughout, Franken comes back to him. It also talks about some of his experiences participating in various political rallies and campaigns, which are fun to read. Franken really knows how to make an impression, I can assure you. There was one bit that made me snort. There's an essay titled, "Stop This Man Before He Kills Again," in which Franken address the absurd claims that the Clintons are murderers. Franken was at the White House Correspondents' Dinner and shook hands with President Clinton. He says, tongue firmly planted in his cheek, "Had I known at the time that the man was a murderer, I would never have shaken his hand. I have never knowingly shaken the hand of a killer. Once I did a fund-raiser for Pol Pot, but that was before I'd seen The Killing Fields." All in all, an okay book and another good example of Franken's sharp wit and ability to use humor to cut through all the crap. I must admit, however, that the book left me a little cold in the end and gave me the feeling of being a little too mean.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    Ironically, just as I was finishing Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot, I happened upon an essay by Limbaugh's niece, Julie Limbaugh, about the ups and downs of being second cousin to a man who makes a living by (in his own words) making half the people in America hate him. She calls her cousin's long-playing farce a "self-aware self-parody," a "caricature"--in other words, a phony act (which, not incidentally, has made him a millionaire many times over). In this book, Al Franken, who has no fear Ironically, just as I was finishing Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot, I happened upon an essay by Limbaugh's niece, Julie Limbaugh, about the ups and downs of being second cousin to a man who makes a living by (in his own words) making half the people in America hate him. She calls her cousin's long-playing farce a "self-aware self-parody," a "caricature"--in other words, a phony act (which, not incidentally, has made him a millionaire many times over). In this book, Al Franken, who has no fear about wading into shark-infested waters, pulls no punches in lampooning Rush and his cohorts on the lunatic fringe of Republican conservatism. Franken is a very smart guy, and if his prose is often bent, he shoots accurately and straight from the hip. After a poignant description about her conflict between love of a family member and discomfort at being judged by her name, Julie Limbaugh summarizes her current state of mind by saying, "it seems that Rush is no longer just playing the political game he plays so well. Rather, he has been attacking hope, and now it feels like there's little room for that." That's exactly why Franken's book (first published in 1996) is still relevant. As long as Rush Limbaugh continues to be a parody of a man, an ambassador of hate, and an assassin of hope, someone out there has to call him on it.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Johnsergeant

    Downloaded from Audible.com Narrator: Al Franken Length: 2 hours and 48 min. (abridged) Grammy Award Winner, Best Spoken Word Comedy Album, 1996 Publisher's Summary Fed up with the Republican Right? Then you'll love Al Franken's scathingly hilarious look at America's largest talk show host and his conservative cronies. Hear this Emmy-winning Saturday Night Live writer's thoughts on exploding Medicare costs ("Why not shoot the elderly into space?"), feminism ("Limbaugh was railing about how feminists Downloaded from Audible.com Narrator: Al Franken Length: 2 hours and 48 min. (abridged) Grammy Award Winner, Best Spoken Word Comedy Album, 1996 Publisher's Summary Fed up with the Republican Right? Then you'll love Al Franken's scathingly hilarious look at America's largest talk show host and his conservative cronies. Hear this Emmy-winning Saturday Night Live writer's thoughts on exploding Medicare costs ("Why not shoot the elderly into space?"), feminism ("Limbaugh was railing about how feminists believe that all heterosexual sex is rape. The thing is, though, I know a lot of women, almost all of whom consider themselves feminists, and I know of only one who holds this belief. And we've been married nearly twenty years"), and Rush Limbaugh's fact-checker, the man with "the easiest job in America." Funny yet uncompromisingly fair, Franken tackles the issues - and the politicians - in ways few have dared.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Travis

    Al Franken is sort of the anti-Ann Coulter. Only he does research and is actually funny. Yes, his need to name drop can wear a bit thin, except it usually happens in a very funny story and gives you some insight into how out of whack some pundits and political types are. And yes, he does take some easy potshots at Rush and company, but lets face it, most of those guys have said worse and they really do make it too easy. Plus, Rush is pretty darn fat. Love the bits featuring Al's assistant and Rush's Al Franken is sort of the anti-Ann Coulter. Only he does research and is actually funny. Yes, his need to name drop can wear a bit thin, except it usually happens in a very funny story and gives you some insight into how out of whack some pundits and political types are. And yes, he does take some easy potshots at Rush and company, but lets face it, most of those guys have said worse and they really do make it too easy. Plus, Rush is pretty darn fat. Love the bits featuring Al's assistant and Rush's fact checker. Thought those were the best parts of the book.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelli

    I started reading this book in April. Started reading it again in July. Then finally brought it back to the library, 3 months and $15 in library fines later. I really didn't think it was very funny. I picked it up because I thought I might learn something about Al Franken's political views, but I learned little except that he thinks Rush Limbaugh is the biggest piece of (insert your own noun here) in the country. Maybe Franken is meant to be a politician after all. I started reading this book in April. Started reading it again in July. Then finally brought it back to the library, 3 months and $15 in library fines later. I really didn't think it was very funny. I picked it up because I thought I might learn something about Al Franken's political views, but I learned little except that he thinks Rush Limbaugh is the biggest piece of (insert your own noun here) in the country. Maybe Franken is meant to be a politician after all.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Isman

    I need to say that I hadn't been exposed that much to Rush Limbaugh. I've only read about him. So I know why Al Franken wrote the way he did in his book. I just failed to understand. Lack of relevance. So instead of taking this book as a witty (or even satire?) comeback, I could only see plain rudeness. I need to say that I hadn't been exposed that much to Rush Limbaugh. I've only read about him. So I know why Al Franken wrote the way he did in his book. I just failed to understand. Lack of relevance. So instead of taking this book as a witty (or even satire?) comeback, I could only see plain rudeness.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    This was an ok book. I really enjoyed Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, so decided to read some of his earlier work. This book is not as well written or focused. It's also a lot more snarky. Not that most of Franken's targets didn't deserve it, but it got a bit much after awhile. This was an ok book. I really enjoyed Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, so decided to read some of his earlier work. This book is not as well written or focused. It's also a lot more snarky. Not that most of Franken's targets didn't deserve it, but it got a bit much after awhile.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Malcolm Frawley

    You know what you're getting with Al Franken - smartarse satire. But he's often funny as he exposes the lies & hypocrisy of right wing nut jobs across the America. Franken eventually made it to the U.S. Senate but his tenure was brought short when he resigned after a single, later discredited, accusation of sexual assault. Meanwhile, the President accused over 20 times of sexual assault, including rape, remains in the Oval Office. You know what you're getting with Al Franken - smartarse satire. But he's often funny as he exposes the lies & hypocrisy of right wing nut jobs across the America. Franken eventually made it to the U.S. Senate but his tenure was brought short when he resigned after a single, later discredited, accusation of sexual assault. Meanwhile, the President accused over 20 times of sexual assault, including rape, remains in the Oval Office.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Joshua Mirabella

    Witty, hilarious, overall fantastic. Read it in about three days. Rush Limbaugh is a big fat idiot.

  23. 5 out of 5

    ReadaBook

    Read this after Franken's Giant of the Senate, because I enjoyed that so much. Decided it would be fun to start at the beginning with Franken. Well actually, the beginning was when he was on Saturday Night Live, and I didn't think he was very funny. In fact, I cringed each time he was onscreen because I thought his humor was stupid and his voice annoying. Well, times have changed. It's kind of sad that 21 years after he wrote this book, much of what he says is still valid today. (Pat Buchanan wa Read this after Franken's Giant of the Senate, because I enjoyed that so much. Decided it would be fun to start at the beginning with Franken. Well actually, the beginning was when he was on Saturday Night Live, and I didn't think he was very funny. In fact, I cringed each time he was onscreen because I thought his humor was stupid and his voice annoying. Well, times have changed. It's kind of sad that 21 years after he wrote this book, much of what he says is still valid today. (Pat Buchanan was urging that the US build a border wall to keep out immigrants way back in the 1990's. Sigh. Some idiotic suggestions just never change.....) A lot of what he wrote in RLIABFI is laugh-out-loud funny So -- on to his next book!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    This is a brilliant book that is remarkably prescient, particularly given the current state of affairs in D.C. Some of the same players are still active, despite this book having been written back in the early '90s, before Franken became a senator from Minnesota, and a fine one at that. Please read and enjoy this wonderful book. This is a brilliant book that is remarkably prescient, particularly given the current state of affairs in D.C. Some of the same players are still active, despite this book having been written back in the early '90s, before Franken became a senator from Minnesota, and a fine one at that. Please read and enjoy this wonderful book.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Grant Cousineau

    While much of the book is as immature as the title would suggest, Franken's research and experience back up the logical arguments against many of the conservatives, which feel like a precursor to his 2003 book, "Lies and they Lying Liars Who Tell Them," which ends up being an examination of Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, and other Fox hosts and conservative icons. Here, though, he leans into the silly, even going so far as to create a comic strip of what these conservative spokespeople might have While much of the book is as immature as the title would suggest, Franken's research and experience back up the logical arguments against many of the conservatives, which feel like a precursor to his 2003 book, "Lies and they Lying Liars Who Tell Them," which ends up being an examination of Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, and other Fox hosts and conservative icons. Here, though, he leans into the silly, even going so far as to create a comic strip of what these conservative spokespeople might have looked like in an actual war, rather than the draft-dodgers they ended up being. From a comedic standpoint, the jokes run the gamut from childish but funny, to whip-smart, to those that didn't age so well. He even jabs at the oral sex Newt Gingrich received while having an affair with a married woman, while praising Bill Clinton in the same book. At the time of publication, the allegations from Paula Jones and others had already been made public, but it wouldn't be until 1998 that the Lewinsky scandal would come to light. While any moral person can put about the whataboutism enough to focus on the fact that Gingrich's scandals were a relatively mute moment in history, there is still a dulling of the argument in light of the 2017 Al Franken accusations. (Though, in my POV, while I agree that some of Franken's actions were disheartening, they were nowhere near on the level of an affair, and did not merit the criticism that Limbaugh's, Gingrich's, and Clinton's stories had.) All that said, it was an above average book for it's time, blending humor in politics for the Gen-Xers in a way that was informative, digestible, and at times, thought provoking. The most interesting aspect, I found, was the way it threw me into the politics of the mid-90s, an era when I was still in middle school and couldn't care less about politics. In actuality, it wasn't much different today (except for the exceptionally antagonistic president we currently have). Back in the 90's, things felt dangerously partisan. Lower and middle class people were struggling while the rich got richer and conservatives helped them claim tax cuts. The young adults of the era were dismissed as needlessly angry, ill-informed, and were always asking for more from the government while living in their parents' basements. It's almost as if that post-18th-birthday notion of sudden self-reliance hasn't existed for generations. As if the impossibility of finding a good career by your mid-20s hasn't been possible since at least the 1980s. As if this is just the way we've built our society to be--American Dreamers with high expectations, a lot of bills, a lack of quality education, too few jobs (or, those that are available don't afford nearly as much as they used to), and older generations will continue to blame the children they raised for the problems they created.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Robert

    Although written in the 90's many of people are still around like Limbaugh(still fat I believe), Newt Gingrich(ignorant and arrogant), Bill & Hillary Clinton, Pat Robertson(still a nutcase) and even himself(despite his recent Senate resignation). More voices like his are still needed. I found it kind of interesting that many of the same issues like immigration, taxes, health care were big issues. Even a "security fence" was mention by a certain presidential candidate so it kind of show's "The Do Although written in the 90's many of people are still around like Limbaugh(still fat I believe), Newt Gingrich(ignorant and arrogant), Bill & Hillary Clinton, Pat Robertson(still a nutcase) and even himself(despite his recent Senate resignation). More voices like his are still needed. I found it kind of interesting that many of the same issues like immigration, taxes, health care were big issues. Even a "security fence" was mention by a certain presidential candidate so it kind of show's "The Donald" wasn't the first to think of a border wall. I had read this because I had read his latest book "Giant of the Senate" and coupled ironically with his recent fall from grace I was inspired to look into his earlier books. Despite what happened I hope the good work he did do (and hopefully continue in some way) will not be overlooked. The book itself is of course satire which of course tries to use humor to make serious points which he does do well. It's a pleasant read if you're looking for something a little lighter tone than many political or current events type of books which tend to be overly dry and serious.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Art

    Wait. What’s this buried in a long-forgotten pile of marriage memories? My wife gave me this book, which she inscribed to me as part of that year’s Valentine's Day bounty, a few days after the book published. Finding this funny book brings to three the number of Al Franken books I read. But I found this one too late for him to inscribe when he appeared here early in the summer during his book tour for Al Franken: Giant of the Senate, published in May. On that fine and funny afternoon, Al also in Wait. What’s this buried in a long-forgotten pile of marriage memories? My wife gave me this book, which she inscribed to me as part of that year’s Valentine's Day bounty, a few days after the book published. Finding this funny book brings to three the number of Al Franken books I read. But I found this one too late for him to inscribe when he appeared here early in the summer during his book tour for Al Franken: Giant of the Senate, published in May. On that fine and funny afternoon, Al also inscribed my copy of his Lies & the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair & Balanced Look at the Right, published in 2003.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tlingit

    The book is a long running joke. I understand that. I just wonder if Al Franken was at first serious about proving how detrimental Limbaugh was to listen to but then got so disgusted with the people who listen to Rush who are too lazy to actually stop and think about and research Limbaugh's BS that he couldn't take the book seriously. I personally after reading the book was annoyed at the misfactoids that Rush spews out myself. Then again, am I just being force fed something without looking behi The book is a long running joke. I understand that. I just wonder if Al Franken was at first serious about proving how detrimental Limbaugh was to listen to but then got so disgusted with the people who listen to Rush who are too lazy to actually stop and think about and research Limbaugh's BS that he couldn't take the book seriously. I personally after reading the book was annoyed at the misfactoids that Rush spews out myself. Then again, am I just being force fed something without looking behind the scenes? Or am I just disgusted with talk show hosts who are in the limelight showing that they are amazing hypocrites yet getting too much of a share of serious political airtime?

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lynne

    I'm so glad I didn't know who Al Franken was when I first started reading this book. It might have dissuaded me from ever reading it! Franken's honest disdain for the ultra-right is refreshing, and just as timely now that the ultra-right is trampling all over women's rights as it was fifteen years ago when written. (Most of the liberal type jokes center around Clinton's presidency.) I very much enjoyed this one, and would recommend it to anyone who's disgusted with the far-right taking over and I'm so glad I didn't know who Al Franken was when I first started reading this book. It might have dissuaded me from ever reading it! Franken's honest disdain for the ultra-right is refreshing, and just as timely now that the ultra-right is trampling all over women's rights as it was fifteen years ago when written. (Most of the liberal type jokes center around Clinton's presidency.) I very much enjoyed this one, and would recommend it to anyone who's disgusted with the far-right taking over and stomping on people's rights.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Neil Schleifer

    As a dyed-in-the wool New York liberal, how could I NOT read this book and love it :-) Seriously, though, folks, Senator Franken is an astute observer of the hypocritical who maintains a terrific ability to make a valid point while couching it in humor. If O'Reilly or Limbaugh actually read that, no, I don't think he'd win over any converts, but I know he'd get Rush to laugh and get O'Reilly to at least chuckle until he started "spinning" like a top. As a dyed-in-the wool New York liberal, how could I NOT read this book and love it :-) Seriously, though, folks, Senator Franken is an astute observer of the hypocritical who maintains a terrific ability to make a valid point while couching it in humor. If O'Reilly or Limbaugh actually read that, no, I don't think he'd win over any converts, but I know he'd get Rush to laugh and get O'Reilly to at least chuckle until he started "spinning" like a top.

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