In a publishers weekly article printed on January 2nd announcing the book. Bowen Press, a HarperCollins publisher announced:
The book will consist of the President’s speech (adapted for young
readers—the entire speech will also be included, in the back matter),
biographical notes about Obama, as well as an overview of his first 100 days in
The article went on to cite the publisher Brenda Bowen:
Take away the broad sweep of history?
“It’s not about Tuesday the 20th of January, 2009. It is a visual parsing
of the President’s speech for children in the second and third
grade.” She adds that the book could show soldiers and
battlefields to accompany the speech’s references to Concord and Gettysburg, or
images of Americans at work, paired with the lines, “Starting today, we must
pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking
America. For everywhere we look, there is work to be done.”
“anything of import or moment that happens between now and the time we print the book...We wanted to take the time to make it a lasting book for kids. I want them to take away the broad sweep of history and literary and even musical allusions that Obama worked into his speech. I want them to understand the richness of it. Having a visual will really bring home the images for young children.”
Somehow, I highly doubt that this book will mention that in 8 months, President Obama has created a national deficit 3 times larger than that of any previous deficit. Nor will there be any mention intentions to nearly double the national debt within the next ten years.
Does the book include the rising global calls for the removal of the dollar as the global currency and the Presidents complacency on this issue which will irreparably damage the US economy?
Does the book mention that North Korea, Iran and Venezuela have ratcheted up there belligerence to never before seen levels?
Will the book mention the reality that after 8 months in office an indecisive President has decided that he needs one more week to consider the advice of his military commanders as Afghanistan falls apart?
Perhaps the book can relay the President's quest to save people such as his Illinois constituent who died after his health insurance company cancelled his coverage (which was reinstated 3 weeks later, with no delay in treatment, and he lived another 4 years).
Somehow, I have a feeling that we are about to encounter a children's version of 50 Ways You Can Help Obama Change America that will inevitably find its way onto the desks of some unfortunate children with over-zealous teachers.
According to a January posing on the illustrator, Greg Ruth's website:
"The idea is to adapt the speech so that we can get second and third graders to better make sense about what the speech promised, and what it all means- we'll include a full transcript of the speech in the rear of the book along with a listing of moments in the first 100 days as well. The idea is to create something that looks beyond celebrating his biography and makes a lasting document of this remarkable time."
and naturally, when Mr. Ruth ran across yesterday's article he had this to say...
"Well the first review just came in from a conservative website on our wee children's book. Did the blogger like it? Not one teeny bit. It's fun- read away!
The title of King of the Boards for an entire month goes to whomever can discern the fatal flaw in this logic behind this article... aside from the fact that's it's a review of a book he hasn't yet seen."
Well...Mr. Ruth, it wasn't a review and I can certainly guarantee that my two elementary aged children will not be reading it. This book has gone from a status of pure political propaganda to the depths of literary prose aimed to distort history that has not yet been written and overlooks the massive failures of a presidency that has proven an exercise in generational theft.
The good news however, is that the sales level of this book preying upon the most impressionable of our society is likely to achieve the same dismal level of success as the highly tauted 50 Ways You Can Help Obama Change America. As for President Obama and Mr. Ruth, the good news is that the 83 members of his forum, including the 17 that have actually posted will drive up those numbers. As for my 14,000 email subscribers, I'm pretty sure they won't be encouraging anybody to purchase a book that politically targets children.
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