3 out of 4 stars
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The Right to Nominate by Thomas E Peterson is a book about the power of the people over government and how the sovereignty of the people is under malicious threat. It is a work of nonfiction and examines the early days of the United States government and how the founding fathers intended for the country to be governed.
The author holds nothing back in his examination of the problems currently facing our modern world: “And are we today eating the same poisoned fruit of partisanship that sent republics of the past into writing death agonies, one after another?” He is at times brutal in his examination but always has evidence to support his position. Everything in the book is brought back to the ‘framers’ of the constitution, and the opening pages detail many Federalist conversations when writing the constitution and their enmity toward the idea of having political parties. Words such as ‘poison’, ‘malignity’, ‘prostitutes’, and ‘demon’ were used in the discourse of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, a fact which many people (including myself) probably do not know.
There were also many quotes scattered throughout this book from the founding fathers, and the author does a tremendous job of detailing out the history surrounding these quotes and the world in which they took place. There is careful examination of how these founders thought about the country they were building and the steps they took to ensure that partisanship didn’t take control over the common good. The author reiterates this point many times and considers the idea of a ‘rank spirit’ in the human psyche and how it relates to the factions that parties create. He goes as far as to compare this concept to the psyche of murderers.
The book is very well put together, but it does suffer from some flaws: for one thing, the formatting is poor in certain parts and the choice of alignment and paragraph handling feels a little bit off. For another thing, the author's opinions continually bleeds through into the text and it becomes clear how much he despises the idea of parties, and this detracts from the overall power of his message. He is an opinionated person with an agenda denouncing opinionated people with agendas.
That being said, I learned quite a bit from reading this book and would certainly recommend it to history enthusiasts or anyone who see our current political climate and wonders: “was this what the founding fathers intended? How did we get here?” I rate this book three out of four stars for the overall quality of the information being presented, though it loses one star for the problems mentioned above. The Right to Nominate by Thomas E Peterson is an interesting work of nonfiction with a lot of useful information that I believe many people would enjoy reading.
The Right to Nominate
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