Tony Daniel’s Review of ‘Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall,’ by Tim Mohr Up at the ‘Federalist’

federalist4siteTony Daniel says that in his book Burning Down the Haus: Punk Rock, Revolution, and the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Tim Mohr has done yeoman historical service in collecting a slice of that history in anecdotal form from many of the punks and punk rockers who were involved in the cultural eruption during the era—and the regime’s sclerotic efforts to stamp it out. Yet, argues Tony, Mohr’s heartfelt argument for the primacy of punk in bringing down the DDR government is weakened by his political naïveté and heavily undercut by his rote display of strident and thoughtless anti-Americanism.

Read the review here.

Tony Daniel Article “6 Questions About The Huge CIA Blunder That Allowed Enemies To Kill 70 U.S. Spies” at the ‘Federalist’

federalist4siteMore than 70 foreign nationals working as spies for the CIA in Iran and China were systematically identified and slaughtered in the past decade, thanks to agency negligence, according to recent reports. “How and when is this catastrophic failure going to come back and haunt us?” Tony asks. “Because it will.”

Read the article here.

Tony Daniel Reviews ‘The Spy and the Traitor’ by Ben MacIntyre, a Thrilling Account of the Historically Important KBG-Agent-turned-British-spy Oleg Gordievsky at ‘The Federalist’

federalist4siteTony Daniel says historian Ben MacIntyre’s new book, The Spy and the Traitor, tells the thrilling story of how the KGB’s Oleg Gordievsky helped check the Soviet Union as Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan fought communism.  Gordievsky’s spying for the West had a definite impact on ending the Cold War and driving victory for freedom and democracy.

Read the review here.

Tony Daniel Reviews Reese Witherspoon’s Book-Cum-Coffee-Table-Fixture ‘Whiskey in a Teacup’ at the Federalist

federalist4siteTony Daniel says the book is mostly a product ad for her on-line brand, but also contains a short and charming memoir of Witherspoon’s grandmother. Tony writes: “Dorothea Draper was a good role model for all of us who believe that being a decent person is about far more than politics.”

Read the review here.

Tony Daniel Retrospective on the Astonishing Literary Legacy of James Michener at ‘The Federalist’

 

Michener-1024x766Tony Daniel says that the venerable best-selling author of historical fiction has gotten a bad rap in literary circles as Michener’s rejection of postmodernism has given rise to jaded and unfair judgments of his epic storytelling.

“Reconsidering The Astonishing Literary Legacy Of James Michener” is here.

 

Tony Daniel Reviews ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Movie and Book at ‘The Federalist’

federalist4siteIn his review here, Tony Daniel calls Crazy Rich Asians a fun American movie. He notes, tongue-in-cheek, that the cast is kind of like a Harvard freshman class in reverse (more on Harvard’s racist admittance policy here). He concludes that the film establishes no significant milestones whatsoever — other than being a much-needed island of semi-sophisticated entertainment for an adult audience in a sea of adolescent power fantasies and kitsch. But that is enough these days to make it worth seeing. Read the review here.

Retrospective on the Great V.S. Naipaul by Tony Daniel at the ‘Federalist’

naipaulTony Daniel says that with the death of the Nobel Prize winning author, we’ve lost a great writer who both valued civilization, and saw the world as it is, not how he wished it to be. Tony also examines in particular his favorite Naipaul novel, A House for Mr. Biswas.

Read the piece here.

Tony Daniel Reviews ‘Life After Google,’ by George Gilder at the ‘Federalist’

federalist4siteTony Daniel notes approvingly that George Gilder argues that centralized data behemoths like Google and Facebook are coming down, sooner rather than later, because the nature of the internet and the information economy is about to undergo a transformative change. The review is  here.

Tony Daniel Review of HBO Show ‘Barry’ at the ‘Federalist’

federalist4siteTony Daniel says HBO television show “Barry” is a mostly charming confection, even if it ultimately fails to be as funny as it thinks it is. The show is done by episode eight, the story told, the point hammered home. Season two of “Barry” feels like a gloomy prospect. Read the review here.

Tony Daniel Review of Thriller Novel ‘Spymaster,’ by Brad Thor at the ‘Federalist’

federalist4siteTony Daniel argues that, while Spymaster and the Harvath series may be fast food reading, you can think of Brad Thor books as the Chick-fil-A sandwiches of thrillers. Thor always turns out a nicely researched quality product with a hero who is not going to suddenly take a dark turn and start questioning whether a country like the United States deserves to exist—or especially whether it deserves him to defend it. If you root for the triumph of the West, Scot Harvath is a hero who is always going to have your back.

Read the review here.