Don't Start the Revolution Without Me!,
by Jesse Ventura & Dick Russell
(Click for Amazon book review)
Click here for 74 full quotes from Jesse Ventura in the book Don't Start the Revolution Without Me!, by Jesse Ventura.
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BOOK REVIEW by OnTheIssues.org:
We love this book. If every politician wrote a book like this, and if the mainstream press actually read them, then there would be no need for OnTheIssues.org to exist. But in fact it is rare to see a politician who openly lays out his policy stances and the reasoning behind them -- and we greatly admire Ventura for doing so. It permanently qualifies Ventura as a "straight talker" -- even more so than his previous books, Ain't Got Time To Bleed and Do I Stand Alone.
Jesse Ventura was elected Governor of Minnesota as an independent running against a strong Republican and a strong Democrat. The mainstream press ridiculed his campaign as a joke perpetrated on the people by a former professional wrestler and movie actor. But the public knew better than the pundits, and elected Ventura, who served competently, if imperfectly, for a single term.
The big question today is, "Will Ventura run for Senate?" We write this review on July 11, a week before the filing deadline for the Minnesota Senate race, and we read this book as an excellent campaign book. Ventura's many opponents in the punditocracy and the mainstream parties criticize Ventura for using this book, and the resulting nationwide book tour, as free publicity for a son-to-be-announced campaign. We believe those opponents make their comments from the framework of incumbency protection -- that they support the status quo that Ventura threatens. OnTheIssues feels that independent candidacies are so limited by campaign rules -- everything from ballot access to inclusion in the debates and press coverage -- that anything is ok to get publicity for independent candidates.
The Minnesota Senate race includes a Republican incumbent -- the same Norm Coleman whom Ventura beat in the governor's race -- and a strong Democrat -- the nationally-known Al Franken. Sen. Coleman is considered one of the most vulnerable incumbents because he got elected only because his opponent, Sen. Paul Wellstone tragically died in a plane crash just before the 2002 election.
We at OnTheIssues support independent candidates; we feel that a serious three-way race is better for the voters and better for the country than the standard two-way race. One of our major missions is to treat third-party candidates equal to major-party candidates, since the mainstream media covers third-party candidates so poorly. Win or lose, we hope that Ventura's candidacy helps the public and the press accept that independents CAN run seriously and should be included in the political process.
This book encapsulates Ventura's views on all the major issues of the day. If Franken or Coleman wrote similar books, we would be similarly effusive about their candidacies and their books. But they don't write such books, like almost all major-party candidates don't. The voting public should ask the major-party why they DON'T lay out their issue stances, rather than letting the mainstream media harass third-party candidates with meaningless questions about why they are running. Ventura is running to change America, like every candidate we've ever covered. We hope he can, and we hope he sparks a change in the view of independent candidacies.
-- Jesse Gordon, jesse@OnTheIssues.org, July 2008
| OnTheIssues.org excerpts: (click on issues for details)
Illegalizing abortions won't stop abortions.
Vetoed 4-hour waiting period for abortions.
Budget & Economy|
Entered governor race when legislature spent $4B surplus.
We're losing our rights to the so-called War on Terror.
Don't amend Constitution to outlaw flag-burning.
Only governor of 50 to not declare National Prayer Day.
Equal state benefits for gay employees and partners.
Civil unions for gays AND hetero couples.
I'd rather face the terrorists than lose my civil liberties.
The Patriot Act guts the Fourth Amendment.
Media today: controlled by corporations & all about ratings.
We embraced China but not Cuba because Castro nationalized.
Treat Indian gambling monopoly same as MLB baseball monopoly.
Opposes death penalty because DNA proves too many mistakes.
Let states decide medical marijuana laws.
Treat marijuana like we treat alcohol and tobacco.
Evolution for science teachers & Creation for Sunday school.
Requiring the Pledge of Allegiance brainwashes students.
Driven off his family farm due to development.
Entered mayoral race because of water drainage issues.
Pushed for light rail in Twin Cities.
Families & Children|
Hypocrisy to tell kids to abstain from sex.
Questions why we still need Cuban embargo.
NAFTA reservations: Mexican labor conditions & US job loss.
Active role in bringing China into WTO.
Oswald did not act alone in JFK assassination.
2004 class: Warren Commission was wrong on JFK.
Democracy cannot survive while hiding secrets.
CIA plants operatives in state government positions.
Bingo Saga: allow Bingo from somewhere in 1,000 law volumes.
Unicameral state legislature would be more democratic.
Term limits in Congress would limit lobbyist power.
States should not be in business of building sports stadiums.
Term limits for politicians AND for political press.
Get rid of elitist, bankrupt Electoral College.
ATMs offer receipts and so should electronic voting machines.
Limit campaign money to one publicly-funded source.
Get presidential debates out of the hands of the two parties.
1996: Dole & Clinton conspired to limit presidential debates.
Muhammad Ali sacrificed for his convictions on Vietnam.
CIA should not operate within the US, but they do.
Bush administration knew 9/11 was coming.
Official story of 9/11 WTC collapse just doesn't add up.
Wartime draft would stop Iraq War and prevent future wars.
Require Congressional family members to go to war.
Starting war under false premises should be impeachable.
Great Wall of China failed; so will the Great Wall of the US.
Principles & Values|
Enlisted in Navy SEALs during Vietnam.
Met wife Terry while working as a bouncer in a bar.
Taught "Wrestling Then Politics: The Perfect Preparation".
Chose stage name after Jesse James and California town.
Grew with sport of wrestling as "bad guy" character.
Personal hero is Muhammad Ali, who also shocked the world.
2000: Offered to run as John McCain's independent VP.
Co-starred with Gov. Schwarzenegger in two action films.
Taught a semester at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
Supports libertarianism with a small "l".
Cut fees on only some watercraft, as unconstitutional.
Remove "license tab fees": a hidden sales tax.
Base property tax on services needed, not on value of home.
Replace property-tax-funded schooling with general funds.
1998 "Geek Squad" pioneered political use of Internet.
TV news stations are really entertainment stations.
Unplugging TVs when off would save 3800 gigawatt-hours.
FCC indecency fines are an unelected dictatorship.
War & Peace|
FDR needed catalyst for WWII; maybe Bush wanted catalyst too.
Opposed Iraq War from the beginning and on the air.
200,000 contractors: Iraq is most privatized war in history.
Iraq war drains resources from social programs.
Bush has no Iraq exit strategy; he plans on never leaving.
Bush violated Constitution by misleading US into Iraq War.
Withdrawal from Iraq should start on first day of presidency.
The above quotations are from Don't Start the Revolution Without Me!,
by Jesse Ventura & Dick Russell.