Sore Winners by John Powers
(And the Rest of Us) in George Bush's America

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The dollars are green. The terror level is orange. And everybody’s seeing red. Welcome to Bush World.

Rich, scary, and insanely polarized, America is living through one of the wildest eras in its history. In this delicious hybrid of pop mythology and political commentary, John Powers offers an irreverent guided tour of what he dubs “Bush World”—with its terror attacks and obsession with Martha Stewart, its preemptive wars and celebrations of shopping. Sore Winners takes a fresh new look at the multiple personas of the Real Slim Shady, George W. Bush, the gloating Social Darwinism of shows like Survivor and The Apprentice, and the right-wing triumph of Fox News and the ranting “Id Conservatives.” Whether pondering our two greatest white rappers, Eminem and Donald Rumsfeld, or the amazing rise of Gubna Schwarzenegger, the book paints a freewheeling portrait of a society in which racial politics are symbolized by the “Colin and Condi Show,” gay-marriage opponents battle with Queer Eye’s Fab Five, and religious fundamentalism is everywhere—from Mel Gibson’s Passion to America’s bogeyman, Osama bin Laden. As he charts the sometimes comic tale of the left’s attempts to escape from Bush World—Michael Moore and Paul Krugman leading the charge—Powers explores the need for liberals to reclaim virtue from sanctimonious conservatives and take back the political agenda.

Witty and wide-ranging rather than narrowly political, Sore Winners is one of the smartest, most enjoyable books on American culture in years.


About John Powers

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JOHN POWERS is deputy editor of L.A. Weekly, where he writes a weekly media/culture column called "On." He is also critic-at-large for NPR's Fresh Air, and he has been the film critic for Vogue as well as international correspondent for Gourmet. He lives in Pasadena, CA.
Published July 27, 2004 by Doubleday & Company. 384 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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“If Bill Clinton was the classical analog president—eager to hug the whole world and make everyone love him—Bush is our first fully digital model.” So observes LA Weekly editor and media columnist Powers, who bravely admits that he reads books, doesn’t have anything in particular against the Fren...

Aug 03 2004 | Read Full Review of Sore Winners: (And the Rest o...

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While Sore Winners is no more likely to partisanize a swing voter than the endorsement of Bea Arthur, it serves as an intellectual scrapbook, a thoughtful and irreverent critique that holds a mirror to what American culture has become when ruled by a man who thought "Friends" was a movie yet stil...

Sep 02 2004 | Read Full Review of Sore Winners: (And the Rest o...

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