Lying in State: Why Presidents Lie -- And Why Trump Is Worse

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$30.00  $27.90
Basic Books
Publish Date
6.5 X 9.9 X 1.3 inches | 1.4 pounds

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About the Author
Eric Alterman is a distinguished professor of English at CUNY Brooklyn College and holds a PhD in history from Stanford University. A columnist for the Nation, he is the author of ten previous titles, including the New York Times bestseller What Liberal Media? The Truth About Bias and the News. He lives in New York.
"In highly engaging prose, Eric Alterman shows how the power of the presidency corrupts both those with the best of intentions, and those with the worst. No one reading this provocative work of history will ever think of our mightiest heroes of state the same way again."--Jane Mayer, author of Dark Money
"An astounding and methodical inventory of presidential lying from George Washington to Donald Trump. Alterman shows how the strategic lying of past presidents about specific episodes of war, corruption and injustice has given way in the Trump administration to indiscriminate lying about everything. This is a cogently written, timely and profoundly troubling book for the new age of conspiracy theory, fake news and online disinformation. Democracy is in peril-and that's no lie."--Congressman Jamie Raskin (MD-8)
"A colorful history. Alterman seduces his readers into an intelligent conversation about all the lies-the necessary lies, the white lies, the pathetic lies and the quite consequential lies. And by the end of the story he explains the media's culpability in the rise of Trump and why this president's lies are so very different from all the others. An absolutely compelling book for our troubled times."--Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of American Prometheus
"Eric Alterman's superb book, Lying in State, is full of direly needed insights. First, he offers an account of how Trump's constant lying to undergird his failed policies compares with the falsehoods of past presidents. Alterman rightly concludes that Trump is far worse than any other. When his supporters say that 'Everyone has done it, ' Alterman can rightly label that another lie. Second, Alterman -- by virtue of his in-depth research -- enables us to deal with an all-important question: Why so many Trump followers have become addicted to what Republican Senator Jeff Flake termed the 'sugar high of populism, nativism, and demagoguery.'"--Walter LaFeber, The Andrew Tisch and James Tisch Distinguished University Professor Emeritus, Cornell University
"Nation columnist Alterman delivers an administration-by-administration analysis of presidential deception from FDR to Donald Trump in this vigorously argued account...Alterman makes a strong case for the links between presidential dishonesty and the expansion of executive powers since WWII . . . and for the media's culpability in failing to hold presidents to account."--Publishers Weekly