Beyond the Messy Truth by Van Jones
How We Came Apart, How We Come Together

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The author proposes common projects that may bring opposing sides together: fixing the justice system, ending the opioid addiction crisis, opening up the technology sector to all...Pragmatic, optimistic proposals for an informed and active electorate. Will anyone listen?
-Kirkus

Synopsis

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A passionate manifesto that exposes hypocrisy on both sides of the political divide and points a way out of the tribalism that is tearing America apart—by the CNN political contributor and host hailed as “a star of the 2016 campaign” (The New York Times) who coined the term “whitelash”

Van Jones burst into the American consciousness during the 2016 presidential campaign with an unscripted, truth-telling style and an already established history of bridge-building across party lines. His election night commentary became a viral sensation. A longtime progressive activist with deep roots in the conservative South, Jones has made it his mission to challenge voters and viewers to stand in one another’s shoes and disagree constructively.

Now, in Beyond the Messy Truth, Jones offers a blueprint for transforming our collective anxiety into meaningful change. Tough on Donald Trump but showing respect and empathy for his supporters, Jones takes aim at the failures of both parties before and after Trump’s victory. He urges both sides to abandon the politics of accusation and focus on real solutions. Calling us to a deeper patriotism, he shows us how to get down to the vital business of solving, together, some of our toughest problems.

“The entire national conversation today can be reduced to a simple statement—‘I’m right, and you’re wrong,’” Jones has said. But the truth is messier; both sides have flaws. Both parties have strayed from their highest principles and let down their core constituencies. Rejecting today’s political tribalism, Jones issues a stirring call for a new “bipartisanship from below.” Recognizing that tough challenges require the best wisdom from both liberals and conservatives, he points us toward practical answers to problems that affect us all regardless of region or ideology: rural and inner-city poverty, unemployment, addiction, unfair incarceration, and the devastating effects of the pollution-based economy on both coal country and our urban centers. 

In explaining how he arrived at his views, Jones shares behind-the-scenes memories from his decades spent marching and protesting on behalf of working people, inspiring stories of ordinary citizens who became champions of their communities, and little-known examples of cooperation that have risen from the fog of partisan conflict. In his quest for positive solutions, Van Jones encourages us to set fire to our old ways of thinking about politics and come together where the pain is greatest.

Praise for Beyond the Messy Truth

“Part manifesto, part manual for activism, [Beyond the Messy Truth] is enlivened by case histories and personal anecdotes that serve as support for the author’s assertions. . . . The author proposes common projects that may bring opposing sides together . . . [and] offers concrete suggestions to revive democracy, heal culture wars, and prevent a Trump victory in 2020.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Van Jones is a light in the darkness when we need it most. Beyond the Messy Truth breaks with the tribalism of today’s politics and offers us a way forward. In the tradition of the great bridge builders of our past, Van’s love for this country and all its people shines through.”—Cory Booker, U.S. senator, New Jersey

Includes an invaluable resource of contacts, books, media, and organizations for bipartisan bridge-building and problem solving.
 

About Van Jones

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Van Jones is the founder and former president of Green For All. In March of 2009, he became the special advisor for Green Jobs at the White House Council on Environmental Quality. Van Jones lives in the Washington D.C. area with his wife and two sons.
 
Published October 10, 2017 by Ballantine Books. 257 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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on Aug 29 2017

The author proposes common projects that may bring opposing sides together: fixing the justice system, ending the opioid addiction crisis, opening up the technology sector to all...Pragmatic, optimistic proposals for an informed and active electorate. Will anyone listen?

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