The Bob Edwards Show, December 5-9, 2011
Monday, December 5, 2011: Michael Ondaatje is the author of five novels, including The English Patient and Anil’s Ghost. He joins Bob in studio to discuss his most recent, The Cat’s Table, the tale of an eleven-year-old boy aboard a ship in the 1950s traveling from Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) to London – a trip Ondaatje also made as a young boy. Then, Charles Bracelen Flood tells the story of Ulysses S. Grant’s last year alive. Facing financial ruin and terminal illness, Grant overcame incredible pain to write his memoirs. Grant’s memoirs became an instant bestseller, saved his family from destitution, and helped cure the nation of bitter discord. Flood’s account is called Grant’s Final Victory.
Tuesday, December 6, 2011: In a new book, House of Cash: The Life, Legacy and Archives of The Man in Black, the only son of Johnny Cash and June Carter tells the family story as only he knows it. John Carter Cash discusses his memoir which also features a large number of unpublished photographs, poetry, sketches, songs from master tapes dating back to the mid-50s and much more.
Wednesday, December 7, 2011: Director Tomas Alfredson’s film Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy takes audiences into the heart of the Cold War intrigue and hypocrisy that dominated Britain’s intelligence world in the 1970s. Based on the novel by John le Carre, actor Gary Oldman plays MI6 officer George Smiley as he struggles to identify the enemy in the murky landscape of double crossings.
Thursday, December 8, 2011: Peter Van Buren has written a decidedly undiplomatic account of the year he spent as a diplomat in Iraq. His book is titled We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. Van Buren describes his project as “career suicide” and indeed some of his former colleagues have skewered the book. Said one, “If you felt that strongly about policies you feel are misguided and harmful, you do the honorable thing and resign before tearing your colleagues apart in public.” Then, Dan Gediman discusses the essays in the new book, This I Believe: Life Lessons.
Friday, December 9, 2011: Doyle McManus, Washington columnist for the Los Angeles Times joins Bob to discuss the latest political news. Next, last year, the conservative talk show host Glenn Beck regularly singled out an obscure academic calling her an enemy of the Constitution. Frances Fox Piven, Beck warned, was after a progressive take-down of America and was responsible for a plan to “intentionally collapse our economic system.” The newfound attention from Beck sent Piven’s books to bestseller lists, but she also received hundreds of death threats from Beck listeners. The interest in Piven was rooted in an article she wrote with her husband, Richard Cloward, in 1966, “The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty.” Now her research and writings have been collected in an updated book, Who’s Afraid of Frances Fox Piven? The Essential Writings of the Professor Glenn Beck Loves to Hate. Then, in this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, we hear the essay of Sudie Bond Noland. When Noland was a teenager, the car she was riding in was hit by a drunk driver. He was sentenced to prison and she was left with chronic, painful injuries. More than that, Noland realized that the prison sentence did not bring her closure. That only came later, when she was able to find compassion for the drunk driver and forgive him for his actions.