Tag Archives: Government

Secret Lives: What Your Teachers Never Told You

Read this series to discover the secrets behind some of the world’s best-known people, including authors, artists, politicians, and more!

 

Titles included:

The Smear

How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What You See, What You Think, and How You Vote

5114jqvksfl-_sx328_bo1204203200_By Sharyl Attkisson
Call Number: PN4888.C6 A85 2017
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Behind most major political stories there is an agenda: To destroy an idea or the people advancing it. Maybe you watched someone on the news report that Donald Trump is a racist misogynist, read that Hillary Clinton used a body double, or heard that Bernie Sanders cheated in the primary. Regardless of accuracy, the themes get repeated until they become accepted by many as the truth. It’s called “the smear.” Sophisticated operatives work behind the scenes to establish narratives, manipulate journalists, and shape the images you see every day. Nothing is by accident. Now investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson takes you behind the scenes of the modern smear machine, exploring how operatives from corporations and both sides of the political aisle have manipulated a complicit mainstream media to make disinformation, rumor, and dirty tricks defining traits of our democracy. Pulling back the curtain on the shady world of opposition research, she reveals how those in power create well-funded, organized attack campaigns to take down their enemies and influence your opinions, offering an examination of the think tanks, super PACS, LLCs, and nonprofits that have become the hidden backers of some of the biggest smears in American politics. And she doesn’t just tell stories — she names names, sharing her account of how smears take shape and who their perpetrators are — from Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal to liberal political operative David Brock, who, along with his expansive Media Matters for America empire, has been rewriting the rules of the smear game for decades while raking in millions of dollars in generous compensation. In addition, Attkisson reveals transactional journalism and exposes scandalous emails behind the smear industrial complex, showing how Campaign 2016 became the exclamation point on the thirty-year evolution of the smear machine. Dissecting the most divisive, partisan election in American history, she explores how both sides used every smear tactic as a political weapon, culminating in Donald Trump’s hard-fought victory, even as his detractors have continued their smears against him into the Oval Office. What emerges is an assault on the mainstream media’s willingness to sacrifice ethics for clicks, and the cynical politicians and high-paid consultants who exploit this reality. A critical discussion for this perilous moment, The Smear is a look at how the black market serving professional propagandists really works.

Unbelievable

My Front-Row Seat to the Craziest Campaign in American History

9780062684929By Katy Tur
Call Number: E911 .T87 2017
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Katy Tur lived out of a suitcase for a year and a half, following Trump around the country, powered by packets of peanut butter and kept clean with dry shampoo. She visited forty states with the candidate, made more than 3,800 live television reports, and tried to endure a gazillion loops of Elton John’s ‘Tiny Dancer’ — a Trump rally playlist staple. From day 1 to day 500, Tur documented Trump’s inconsistencies, fact-checked his falsities, and called him out on his lies. In return, Trump repeatedly singled Tur out. He tried to charm her, intimidate her, and shame her. At one point, he got a crowd so riled up against Tur, Secret Service agents had to walk her to her car. Through all the long nights, wild scoops, naked chauvinism, dodgy staffers, and fevered debates, no one had a better view than Tur. This is her darkly comic and often scary story of how America sent a former reality show host to the White House. It’s also the story of what it was like for Tur to be there as it happened, inside a no-rules world where reporters were spat on, demeaned, and discredited. Tur was a foreign correspondent who came home to her most foreign story of all. Unbelievable is for anyone who still wakes up and wonders, Is this real life?

The Art of Leading Collectively

Co-Creating a Sustainable, Socially Just Future

9781603586269By Petra Kuenkel
Call Number: HD2961 .K76 2016
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A guide to collaborative impact for leaders in industry, government, and social change networks

Our world is facing unsustainable global trends–from climate change and water scarcity to energy insecurity, unfair labor practices, and growing inequality. Tackling these crises effectively requires a new form of leadership–a collective one. But, in a world of many silos, how do we get people to work together toward a common goal? That is one of the most important questions facing sustainability and social-change professionals around the world, and it is a question that Petra Kuenkel answers in The Art of Leading Collectively.

Readers learn how to tackle system change for sustainable development, reimagine leadership as a collaborative endeavor, retrain leaders to work collectively, and manage diverse groups through a change process that has sustainability as a guiding focus. Drawing upon two decades of pioneering, internationally recognized work orchestrating multi-stakeholder initiatives, Kuenkel presents her chief tool, the Collective Leadership Compass, and shows others how to use it with large groups of diverse stakeholders to solve complex, urgent problems–particularly those that enmesh business activities, governance, human needs, and environmental impacts.

The book offers many examples of collective leadership efforts involving corporate, public, and nonprofit sectors around the world. Readers learn about the processes that led to a sustainable textile alliance and set standards for sustainable cocoa and coffee production and trade, as well as those that helped nations rebound from war, develop sustainable infrastructure, and tackle resource conflicts with global businesses, to name a few.

Kuenkel provides a clear roadmap for leaders from multinational companies involved in partnerships, international organizations engaged in cooperative development, public agencies, and interest groups–as well as for citizens seeking solutions to social and sustainability challenge

The Education Invasion

How Common Core Fights Parents for Control of American Kids

9781594038815__39887-1483735035-220-290By Joy Pullman
Call Number: LB3060.83 .P85 2017
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In 2009, a conglomerate of unelected, self-appointed officials met behind closed doors to create a set of rules that would outline what children must learn in every grade in core K-12 classes. In 2010, the Obama administration required states to use these rules for curriculum and tests to have a chance at extra federal money during the Great Recession. Three years later, most Americans told pollsters they had no idea what common Core was. Their children were beginning to find out, however. Pullmann tugs on a thread that leads to a big tangle of history, politics, and intrigue that together help explain why small children must sit and cry over math homework while their parents look on helplessly. Early test results suggest Common Core means American kids will learn less. Why, then, did we do it? Who made out like bandits while kids and self-governance suffered? And how can Americans ensure their children won’t be served the same rewarmed brain hash they have rejected time and time again?

Enough : our fight to keep America safe from gun violence / Gabrielle Giffords

Call number: HV7436 .G54 2014

Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, share their impassioned argument for responsible gun ownership. After the 2011 Tucson shooting that nearly took her life, basic questions consumed Gabby Giffords and her family: Would Gabby survive the bullet through her brain? Would she walk again? Speak? Her hard-won recovery, though far from complete, has now allowed her and Mark to ask larger questions that confront us as a nation: How can we address our nation’s epidemic of gun violence? How can we protect gun rights for law abiding citizens, while keeping firearms out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill? What can we do about gun trafficking and other threats to our communities?

Enough goes behind the scenes of Gabby and Mark’s creation of Americans for Responsible Solutions, an organization dedicated to promoting responsible gun ownership and encouraging lawmakers to find solutions to gun violence, despite their widespread fear of the gun lobby. As gun owners and strong supporters of the Second Amendment, Gabby and Mark offer a bold but sensible path forward, preserving the right to own guns for collection, recreation, and protection while taking common-sense actions to prevent the next Tucson, Aurora, or Newtown. Poll after poll shows that most Americans agree with Gabby and Mark’s reasonable proposals.

As the book follows Gabby and Mark from the halls of Congress to communities across the country, it provides an intimate window into the recovery of one of our nation’s most inspiring public figures and reveals how she and her husband have taken on the role of co-advocates for one of the defining issues of our time. (From Google Books)

What do peanuts, alcohol, and sugar cane have in common?


Did you know…following the arrival of the automobile, scientists immediately turned to biofuels? The German inventor Rudolf Diesel fueled his engine with peanut oil, while Henry Ford predicted that the fuel of choice would be alcohol-based. Now, all these years later, this interest in biofuels has been reawakened among the scientific community. Learn more about the options and our progress toward making them a reality in Achieving Sustainability, available on GVRL.Check it out!

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