Book Review : Fire & Fury by Michael Wolff

Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A ringing indictment of both a man who’s totally unsuited to such a high office as well as the liberal elite that spawned the reaction in the American people that led to his election victory.
It should also be noted that this book is as much about Trump as it is about the perfidious Steve Bannon – his political advisor up until his demise in August 2017.

Wolff interviewed over 200 people over 6 months, people in and around the primaries and those who were subsequently catapulted into the corridors of power. His record of many of these conversations (apparently) forms the basis of this book. Although it should be noted that it also contains a fair bit of “tittle tattle” and hearsay. In places the author seems to claim he knows what the inner workings of a person’s mind was, what they were thinking and exactly what their motivations were – which one needs to question as to how he can really know that.

If like me you’ve been glued to the news unable to look away as you watch with fascinated horror the car crash that is the Trump presidency, then you’ll find this book illuminating for 2 reasons :

1. It gives some extra insight, background and context to both the people in the Trump White House and to the events we’ve seen in the media last year (2017).
2. Incredible as it may seem, it does appear to validate most of what has been reported in the media (although I guess if you view Michael Wolff as part of the Liberal Media that’s been crucifying Trump for the last year, you might regard this last point as simple self-referencial validation by the so called Liberal media classes)

This book is no doubt a “hatchet-job” on Trump – but it also brings into sharp focus his “opponents” – the Liberal Elite. Although there is some argument that Trump ISN’T the opposite of a Liberal ie that he’s NOT a conservative/alt-right … or whatever right wing monikor you choose … but just a convenient standard bearer of a more popular backlash.

Either way this book does also, to my mind, force the Liberal Media & Establishment out into the light for proper scrutiny.

Indeed this argument is made in the book when it comes to Steve Bannon. The author asserts it was Bannon’s aim to enrage the media, bring out people in angry protest so that he (& Trump) could then define what they stood for. Wolff asserts that Trump et al had no expectation of winning and so were profoundly shocked when they actually won. As such they had no real cogent policies or any idea of what they politically stood for – so by forcing protests they could then work out what it was they stood for. Basically, create a reaction then say “there – what they don’t want that’s what we stand for”.

In summary this book produced a reaction in me of disgust for both sides in the ridiculous circus that is US politics.

Trump el al …
The cynical manipulation of people and his breathtaking incompetence. The influence of big money and rich billionaire classes on US politics is deeply disturbing.
Trump, it turns out is not a political genius, or even a personification of today’s Zeitgeist but a tawdry member of the Billionaires Club who are only in it for themselves.

The Liberal Elite
The staggering arrogance, self-aggrandisement of the Liberal Media, Liberal political establishment and Liberal “Intelligentsia”.
In modern PC culture we seem to have a kind of “Liberal Fascism” where you are expected to think in a certain way, refrain from expressing any view that ‘might upset someone’ and if you don’t accept the Liberal orthodoxy you are instantly tried, judged and sentenced by having a suitable perjorative label applied to you : racist; sexist; homophobic; …. the list goes on.

Trump is clearly incompetent and undeserving of the high office of President of the United States – but sometimes the pathetic depths the Liberal Elite/Media stoop too, to make every little thing “something”, is equally nauseating.

View all my reviews

Book Synopsis

‘Official’ Book Description

Based on more than 200 interviews and unprecedented access to the White House, Fire and Fury tells the inside story of the most controversial presidency of our time. The first nine months of Donald Trump’s term were stormy, outrageous – and absolutely mesmerising. Now, thanks to his deep access to the West Wing, bestselling author Michael Wolff tells the riveting story of how Trump launched a tenure as volatile and fiery as the man himself. In this explosive book, Wolff provides a wealth of new details about the chaos in the Oval Office. Among the revelations: – What President Trump’s staff really thinks of him – What inspired Trump to claim he was wire-tapped by President Obama – Why FBI director James Comey was really fired – Why chief strategist Steve Bannon and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner couldn’t be in the same room – Who is really directing the Trump administration’s strategy in the wake of Bannon’s firing – What the secret to communicating with Trump is – What the Trump administration has in common with the movie The Producers Never before has a presidency so divided the American people. Brilliantly reported and astoundingly fresh, Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury shows us how and why Donald Trump has become the king of discord and disunion.