Caught Reading

Remember when presidents actually got caught reading?

The New York Times snapped a presidential candidate in the act this week. Barack Obama is shown, carrying a copy of Fareed Zakaria’s The Post-American World, as he walks off a plane in Montana, forefinger clearly marking his place, the sign of a true reader.

Thanks to our friends over at Shelf Awareness for spotting it.

Zakaria, editor of Newsweek International, frequently appears on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and the book has been reviewed widely. It’s on all the national bestseller lists (at #5 on the New York Times hardcover nonfiction list and #7 on Amazon’s overall list).

Thomas Friedman features the book in his Op-Ed piece in today’s New York Times. He describes its central thesis;

…while the U.S. still has many unique assets, “the rise of the rest” — the Chinas, the Indias, the Brazils and even smaller nonstate actors — is creating a world where many other countries are slowly moving up to America’s level of economic clout and self-assertion, in every realm…If we don’t fix our political system and start thinking strategically about how to improve our competitiveness, [says Zakaria] “the U.S. risks having its unique and advantageous position in the world erode as other countries rise.”

Tellingly, Friedman adds,

The next president will have to manage these new rising states… while wearing the straightjacket left in the Oval Office by Mr. Bush.

Reserves are running high; as many as 25 to one in some places.

The Post-American World
Fareed Zakaria

  • Hardcover: $25.95
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton (May 5, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 039306235X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393062359
  • Audio CD: Unabridged, $39.95
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio; (May 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0743576853
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743576857

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