I’ve just finished “Armed Madhouse” by Greg Palast, Plume Press 2006,2007. This is by far the most interesting and informative book I have ever read in my entire 56 years. The publisher gave me a free copy if I agreed to review it. I was worried when I agreed to review it that they might have wasted their money and postage, but after lying around for a week in my office, I cracked it open and couldn’t put it down except when information overload forced me to take a break.
Just the first part of the book should have earned Palast a Pulitzer. He describes how Big Oil with the help of our government and the Saudi’s (who seem to be the world’s real superpower) keep the price of oil artificially high. Palast doesn’t just suppose, he backs up what he says with names and dates and documents. Venezuela is another issue he debunks. Hugo Chavez should give lessons on how to beat back imperialists and imperialism while uplifting the poorest of his countrymen. He shows how Chavez beat the United States at their own game. I came away with a much greater respect for Chavez than I had before reading the book.
Like I said, this wasn’t a book that for me, I could read in one night. As a journalist, I had to Google some of his claims and research some of the facts he gives. Everything he said that I checked out seemed to be authentic. The entire time I was reading I was astounded by how much information Palast managed to glean from people. He seems to have connections everywhere. Why, I asked myself, aren’t other journalists doing the same thing? Is this the only well-connected journalist with the courage to show us what is really going on in the world?
Palast exposes how Bush not only stole the 2000 election, but how he did it again in 2004! He not only tells us where he stole the votes, but who did it, and how. I kept thinking that he probably sleeps better at night now that the book is out and there are probably less people out to shut him up. Once you read this book, you will understand exactly what I’m saying.