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Old 11-30-2007, 12:04 AM
pergesu pergesu is offline
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Default I don\'t know anything about politics

What are the first five books I should read?

I realize that we're supposed to keep one-line posts to a minimum, but as I said, I don't really know anything. I'd like to learn though.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:04 AM
ikestoys ikestoys is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

ron paul would fix it imo...

by the internetz
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:05 AM
iron81 iron81 is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

Are you interested in any aspect of politics? Current events? Philosophical?
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:13 AM
pergesu pergesu is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

[ QUOTE ]
Are you interested in any aspect of politics? Current events? Philosophical?

[/ QUOTE ]
I would like to develop a historical, theoretical, and philosophical understanding that would help me interpret current events.
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  #5  
Old 11-30-2007, 12:16 AM
iron81 iron81 is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

In that case, I would start with the Federalist Papers. I'm sure you can find a compendium somewhere.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:29 AM
Money2Burn Money2Burn is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

[ QUOTE ]
In that case, I would start with the Federalist Papers. I'm sure you can find a compendium somewhere.

[/ QUOTE ]

It would be cool if you started a "Recomended Reading" thread and stickied it. I think a lot of people would find it useful. I know I would. Unfortunately, I'm someone who's formed most of my political opinions by talking to others. I like to read and would definately like to read some good political books.
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Old 11-30-2007, 11:44 AM
Borodog Borodog is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

[ QUOTE ]
In that case, I would start with the Anti-Federalist Papers. I'm sure you can find a compendium somewhere.

[/ QUOTE ]

Also, whoever said Economics In One Lesson is correct.

Murray Rothbard's Power & Market.

Robert Higgs has a couple of excellent books on Leviathan.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:27 AM
lehighguy lehighguy is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

If you really want to understand the deep issues in politics, especially american politics, I'd start with things like the constitution and the federalist papers as iron said.

Nearly every major political idealogy has at least a few famous works that are considered guidebooks.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:12 AM
Scary_Tiger Scary_Tiger is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

I don't know about this reading books approach, do you have opinions on issues? There's a lot of information out there, in interesting videos and informative articles or blog posts.

I'm assuming you're American so I'd recommend reading the Constitution. Oh, but definitely read this quote:

[ QUOTE ]
The time will come when we entrust the conduct of our affairs to the men who understand that their first duty as public officials is to divest themselves of the power that they have been given. It will come when Americans, in hundreds of communities throughout the nation, decide to put the man in office who is pledged to enforce the Constitution and restore the Republic. Who will proclaim in a campaign speech: 'I have little interest in streamlining government or in making it more efficient, for I mean to reduce its size. I do not undertake to promote welfare, for I propose to extend freedom. My aim is not to pass laws, but to repeal them. It is not to inaugurate new programs, but to cancel the old ones that do violence to the Constitution, or that have failed in their purpose, or that impose on the people an unwarranted financial burden. I will not attempt to discover whether legislation is “needed” before I have first determined whether it is constitutionally permissible. And if I should later be attacked for neglecting my constituents’ “interests,” I shall reply that I was informed their main interest is liberty and that in that cause I am doing the very best I can. Barry Goldwater

[/ QUOTE ]
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Old 11-30-2007, 05:18 AM
ALawPoker ALawPoker is offline
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Default Re: I don\'t know anything about politics

[ QUOTE ]
What are the first five books I should read?

I realize that we're supposed to keep one-line posts to a minimum, but as I said, I don't really know anything. I'd like to learn though.

[/ QUOTE ]

You don't need to read books. You just need to take Ferris Bueller's advice, and stop and look around once in a while.

This is what's important to understand first:

-"Politics" is human behavior.

-Politicians have a lot to personally gain by winning elections.

-The strategy of a politician (or at least the ones who tend to win) is to do and say whatever is required to win. Politicians that do not have an effective strategy will tend to die out.

-The average Joe does not make expert decisions on difficult decision X, Y, and Z, because he A.) is not necessarily an expert on the matter and B.) does not necessarily have a vested interest in the result. His opinion on most things that the politician speaks of will be naturally haphazard.

-In democracy, the average Joe votes for people he thinks offer the best solution to problems.

-What each party stands for becomes a loose reflection of the Joes' collective ideas, in a strategic attempt to win more support than the other side.


The rest is just details. Before you learn too much, it's good to make sure you have a grasp of what drives the mechanism.
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