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The President of Good and Evil: Taking George W. Bush Seriously Paperback – 17 Apr 2004
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Peter Singer's The President of Good and Evil is vital reading for anyone concerned with honesty and probity in Bush's Whitehouse, and in political life generally. Most famous for his challenging views (espoused in books such as Animal Liberation and Rethinking Life and Death) on when and where sentience begins and ends, and hence when and where the rights associated with it should be granted, Singer is a forthright, profound thinker.
Astonishingly clear in its line of argumentation, Singer here has decided to take George Dubya at his word and then investigate whether his words and actions unite in any kind of a coherent viewpoint. Singer does not do much to define ethics (an increasingly important aspect of modern philosophical debate: Simon Blackburn's Ethics: A Very Short Introduction is useful; Alain Badiou's Ethics an interesting contribution) but rather rests the majority of his case on Bush's own lack of consistency and logic. Singer clearly addresses the cynical view that Bush's proclamations need not ever be interrogated as he is merely, inevitably, spinning a politician's line. But Singer believes--line or not--that whether what is presented is logical, or right, is hugely important.
Singer has produced an excellent book. Plenty of facts and figures back up his case that "sincerely held or not, Bush's ethic is woefully inadequate" but this is never merely an empirical argument. Singer agrees with Dubya that ethics can be taught and that they can be evaluated. Bush, in Singer's well-documented evaluation, needs to get learning. --Mark Thwaite
...a fascinating book that is sure to garner the debate and reviews it deserves -- The Bookseller
Highly recommended reading for anyone capable of critical thought -- Irish Times
Singer may be the most controversial philosopher alive. He is certainly the most influential -- The New Yorker
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The results are damning.
Peter Singer writes clearly and retains the reader's attention. He references well and overall produces an excellent work. Whatever your opinion on his animal rights work, this is excellent and deserves to be studied by anyone who feels they are affected in any way by Bush.