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Power Trip: U.S. Unilateralism and Global Strategy After September 11

John Feffer, ed., Power Trip: U.S. Unilateralism and Global Strategy After September 11, Seven Stories Press, New York, 2002, 254 pp.

I really like this book. It is part of an encouraging, broader trend among American progressives to better present, market, and articulate their ideas and policies so that ordinary Americans might actually understand and appreciate them.  Power Trip is a collection of short essays by some of the best American writers and analysts on the left including Barbara Ehrenreich, Michael Klare, Bill Hartung and others who will be familiar to PSR members from conferences, coalitions, and the pages of journals like The Nation. In fact, the authors are affiliated with Foreign Policy in Focus (FPIF), a project of the Institute for Policy Studies.

Power Trip is edited by John Feffer, a former Scoville Peace Fellow and rising, prolific young progressive analyst. It is presumably his hand that has made a collection of essays seem as if it were written by a single, lucid, highly readable and jargon-free author.

That is what makes this small volume so ideal for busy people, policy makers, journalists, or young people new to left analysis and other moderns who want or need a coherent overview of the Bush Administration's ideology, grand strategy, and reckless tactics. For PSR members, there is not a lot new here, though sections on economics or Central Asia may be. Rather it is the comprehensive, coherent set of explanations for preemptive war, new nuclear weapons, rising military spending, attacks on the UN and other international institutions and treaties that makes Power Trip worth buying and giving out like candy to friends, relatives, and at least moderately persuadable policy makers.

I even love the cover, which features an attractive, close, full color photo of George W. Bush chopping wood in light snow fall. The President looks either handsome, virile, and All-American (the Marlboro Man sans cigarettes) or, depending on your visceral response to Bush, like an axe murderer. In either case, browsers lucky enough to find Power Trip in their local bookstore will stop, look and pick up the book. They won't be repulsed by 1930's style left graphics with woodcut workers and stenciled fists or by ecologically and politically correct covers designed to be eaten when finished and which appear to be made from oat bran.

So grab Power Trip. And if you can't find it and that smashing Bush photo, go to through our web site and we'll end up with a portion of proceeds. Enough said.

Buy Power Trip through and up to 10% of all sales made through this link will be donated to PSR!

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