I have been following the commentary of Molly Ivins for several years now, and must say that this book is a must-read for anyone who follows American politics, Texas politics, and the changing social policy environment. Molly doesn't only write thoroughly enjoyable and readable essays, but she also does a consistently thorough job of collecting up data to back her views. This book, and many other writings by Ms. Ivins would also serve political science professors well in bringing a voice and views to discussion that is not only unaffected by the pulls of the corporate press, but unabashedly vocal about corruption and the controls of Big Money on our lives.
Molly Ivins has the unusual talent of being informative and hilarious at the same time. She loves to make laughingstocks of politicians who are stupid and/or crooked, and she does a beautiful job of it. This is a book like the TV show *MASH*: it ages well. You can read Molly's columns again every year or two, and enjoy them anew. I especially love the fib Ann Richards told to the judge from East Texas. That was absolutely beautiful. If you don't remember it, read the book again; you will crack up. Molly Ivins is, indeed, a national treasure.
I subscribe to The Progressive, so I read Ivins' current work monthly in that publication, as well as any time she appears in the paper. And actually, I have not been a huge fan. I have felt that she mainly repeats the center-left mantras of the day, and works somewhat over-hard to craft and maintain the image of folksy, curmudgeonly, old-guard Southern progressivism. But I found this collection of older columns for $1 in the clearance section of a used book store, and found it to exceed my expectations. These columns, mainly from the 70s and 80s, are rich in the kind of political commentary that is genuinely edifying. For me, they provide a window on a time that I am too young to remember well (or at all), and teach me about the continuity between the political climate of that time and today.
But more than that, Ivins knows Texas politics as intimately as anyone. If you are not from Texas, as I am not, you might think that you are not especially interested in the...
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