October 23, 2006


Finished the book tonight. Will have to think about it a little more. Melissa Rogers has a nice post on the numerous problems with the Bush White House use of Faith Based Programs in political terms, and the sheer political cynicism of such use. I agree with her that this is a deeply troubling program.

For me, I think that there is much about this book that bothers me. I still find Kuo rather naive about people. He still talks about Bush's great faith and dedication after describing a situation where Bush himself decided to lie about how much new money was spent on faith programs. Kuo also speaks highly of Karl Rove even though when Kuo wrote his first public criticism of the administration, his supposed former friend from the White House sent a veiled threat mentioning that he knew about Kuo's wife sending out a prayer request to a small group. I don't know about you, but I would find that troubling and very hard to justify with a supposed friend. Likewise, he is far too kind to James Dobson even though he exposes much of Dobson's political machinations and self-agrandizing attitude.

The one guy he seems to truly dislike is Jerry Falwell. Kuo relates that during the post 9-11 service at the National Cathedral--that's right the service at the National Cathedral, Falwell was cracking jokes about Barbara Bush. Evidently, Jerry heard that Kuo was fond of comparing him to the stately and serious Bill Graham, and sent an angry fax to Rove demanding an apology. Kuo was forced to apologize, as Falwell told him it never happened. Too bad Kuo isn't as clear-eyed about the rest of this crew.

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