MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW
It’s almost as if Darrell Cass climbed into a time machine to take a look at America’s immediate future, and found it frightening. Such is the feel from reading A Look in the Mirror: The Disintegration of Our Morals, Values, Ethics and Society, which is the most contemporary book on modern America precisely because it nailed many of the nation’s political undercurrents, manipulations, and trends even before the November 8th, 2016 election.
A Look in the Mirror chronicles the progressive, deliberate demise of America’s social structure begun by and influenced by corrupt business and political processes, follows their progression through over thirty years of political maneuvering and manipulative behaviors, and closely analyzes the root causes of these actions and how they’ve escalated to erode democratic processes and ideals over recent decades. As chapters reveal deliberate efforts by both individual and corporate entities to do the right thing, only to be thwarted by special interests, legal barriers, and a rising tide of warped priorities, A Look in the Mirror presents both admonitions and damning charges that pull no punches to either side.
From natural gas and auto racing to medical and insurance fraud, media snafus, monopolies, and bank meltdowns, chapters at first appear wide-ranging and disparate, but ultimately contribute to a frightening ‘bigger picture’. Several chapters have been updated to include the latest damning evidence about Trump’s special interests and the ironies involved in the fact that a man connected with federal fraud, money laundering, and billions in failed debt could rise in the system to become President: “As a reward, he is now president and we have the first “foreign born” First Lady.”
In Darrell Cass’s analysis, there is no ‘good side/bad side’, and nobody is immune from blame: men nor women, Republication, Democrat or ‘Other’, or business or political entities. Of special interest is specific documentation on the clever ways 99% of Americans and the world have been subjugated by special interests that employ clever methods of brainwashing and hypocrisy, spinning statistics, evidence and truth until the boundaries between myth and reality appear well blurred, to most Americans.
The question is: can America be ‘saved’ – and if so, how?
Darrell Cass may have written a new addendum note for his book and revised some sections to reflect the latest election results and what it portends for the future; but he didn’t have to write much, because basically his message had already been hammered home throughout his book. The latest election results were just a confirming endnote putting the icing on the cake of corrupted and co-opted democratic processes.
Any American concerned about the country’s social and political progress will find A Look in the Mirror draws important connections and makes some statements that may be hard to swallow; but which cannot be ignored.
It doesn’t just ask that every American take a hard look at both government and their own individual lives and values. It demands it.
Diane Donovan, Senior Reviewer Midwest Book Review
A debut political polemic bemoans the downfall of the United States.
Many in the commentariat have heaped blame on the 1 percent, who rig the system from their positions of power in Washington and on Wall Street, but the country’s problems go deeper than that. In his introduction, Cass writes: “I will, instead, share with you…experiences from family, friends, neighbors, and people like yourselves that typify our newfound greed, selfishness, and social problems.” According to the author, Wall Street’s greed is echoed in the unquestioning consumerism of average Americans, and the average person on Main Street is collaborating in the destruction of all that made the nation good. Chapter by chapter, Cass takes the reader through various segments of society, pointing out where and how they went wrong, from financial institutions (the first word of that chapter, tellingly, is “PIRATES!!!”) to immigrants (who “no longer have any intention of ever assimilating”) to sports (“All major sports have gone mad”) and religion (“It’s being used and abused as a tool for evil intent”). The author takes a particular interest in public education. His position on his district’s School Committee (“I was almost the first School Committee member to sue my own school district”) means that his critique of education is more minutiae-based than other topics. Cass has some faith that things could turn around, but the book’s qualified optimism is undercut by its inauspicious penultimate line—“can you imagine an all Republican government led by Donald Trump?” While many of the author’s criticisms of government and industry are on point, this mix of conservative and liberal positions means there are things to please and offend nearly every reader, though those oft-invoked voters who supported Bernie Sanders seem most likely to see themselves best reflected in Cass’ mirror.
A well written book, very informative. A must read for presidential candidates! – Peter
A fantastic, visionary interpretation of how the plutocrats “bullied and brainwashed” us 99% into playing our role in their diabolical plan to create an oligarchy at any cost. No other writers’ books from Jeff Madrick’s Age of Greed to Arianna Huffington’s Pigs at the Trough even considered the concept that it takes “two to tango.” While all others take the easy way by blaming politicians, the wealthy, and special interest for society’s problems, it’s an exhilarating (if not humbling) honest to goodness change of pace. There’s something for everyone in this book, so educate yourselves before it’s too late. Like Mr. Cass said: “The truth shall set you free.”- Dave Dumbroski