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1960

LBJ vs. JFK vs. Nixon--The Epic Campaign That Forged Three Presidencies
Narrated by: Jeff Cummings
Length: 18 hrs and 40 mins
Categories: History, 20th Century
4.5 out of 5 stars (5 ratings)

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Summary

"1960 aims to take us deeper into the campaign than Theodore White's famous The Making of the President, 1960. And it does." -Chicago Sun-Times

Award-winning historian David Pietrusza's hard-edged account of the 1960 Presidential Campaign - the bare-knuckle politics of the primaries, the party conventions' backroom dealings, the unprecedented television debates, along with hot-button issues of race, religion, and foreign policy. And, at the center of it all, three future presidents - LBJ, JFK, and Nixon.

"Terrific!" -Robert A. Caro, winner of two Pulitzer Prizes and the National Book Award

It was the election that would ultimately give America "Camelot" and its tragic aftermath. 1960 is a stunning recreation of the bare-knuckle politics of the primaries, the party conventions' backroom dealings, the unprecedented television debates, along with hot-button issues of race, religion, and foreign policy. And, at the center of it all, three future presidents - Lyndon Johnson, John F. Kennedy, and Richard Nixon.

In this essential work of history, David Pietrusza chronicles 1960's struggle for power by bringing to life its towering events and personalities, unlocking its secrets, and turning expert scholarship into rich, human storytelling.

"A stirring, hard-edged political saga… An outstanding reexamination." -Booklist

"1960 provides new insights into that year's hard-fought, pivotal election, but, more than that, 1960 is great storytelling - a fascinating, can't-put-it-down account of how American politics really works." -Former United States Attorney General Richard Thornburgh

"Pietrusza's 1960 is essential for understanding the political forces that in many ways shaped the world we live in today." -David Mark, journalist, political analyst, and author of Going Dirty: The Art of Negative Campaigning

©2008 David Pietrusza (P)2018 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

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Was 1960 the most corrupt US election ever?

A fascinating insight into American politics from the early fifties, culminating and majoring on the US 1960 election. By necessity the background period covered is from 1952 to 1960 and this well read and in depth history makes a great listen and features all the main personalities from Harry Truman, Dwight D Eisenhower, Joe Kennedy snr, LBJ and Richard Nixon among many others and right up to the main man JFK. The author does not shy away from detailing the corruption rampant in the election and I learnt so much about the political history of the US for those years and could not put this audible book down! I can highly recommend this book.

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  • Stephen
  • 30-05-19

Great Story Told by a Shoddy Narrator

The narration is shoddy. The narrator is careless with some words like "presemptive" instead of "presumptive," and also used "Todd Sorensen" in one instance instead of "Ted Sorensen," JFK's speechwriter. The narration is also irritating because the narrator's tone is smart-alecky and lacks seriousness and credibility.

What I appreciate about the story though is how the author presented a pre-Camelot version of John F. Kennedy. It is without the hagiography that is part of our current revisionist history of that period. I also appreciate his balanced and objective presentation of future President Richard Nixon.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Roman
  • 31-05-19

Entertaining and Revealing

As noted by other reviewers, there is not much new information here other than some gossipy tidbits---at least for those who have read other accounts of the 1960 election and events leading up to it. Nonetheless the book is engaging and well written. My only criticism is the egregious and inexcusable mispronunciations throughout. As annoying as this is, I frequently cut some slack on mispronouncing proper nouns and especially unfamiliar names BUT NOT when these names are some of the primary characters in the book.

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  • Rev. "Duke" Wayne
  • 11-04-19

WELL DONE...

Well-written, though it's unfortunate to be reminded of JFK's lack of morals around women not his wife. Good narration and story!

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  • Porter
  • 04-12-18

No F words, but the N-word is allowed

I listened to the AudioBooks version of this book and I have to comment on that before I discuss the merits of the book itself.

The book talks about a very contentious period in our nation’s history. It was the age of civil rights movement and the transition from WWII to the Cold War. Language was much less restrictive then. By this I mean sexist language, racist language, and ‘colorful’ language that is no longer tolerated was the norm. The author of the book correctly incorporated this language in the book. He quoted people who used terms unacceptable today. As a historical work, this is important, it helps to understand the people involved and the culture of the times. To white wash this history does not serve us well.

Like I said, there is some sexist language in there and an occasional n-word. What you will not find, however, are any F-Bombs. The reason you will not hear any F-Bombs is because the producers deemed that word so offensive that they literally beeped it out. You can hear the narrator saying “F---beeep-ing” or “F-beep-er” so you know exactly what was said, but the language is heightened because of the annoying beep the producers had to insert into the audio version. Other arguably more offensive words/phrases such as “God Damn” or “Nigger” were left in the audio unaltered.

Like I said, I do not mind the language in the book, it helps to set the tone, what I did mind is the producer (audible?) accentuating a word by literally beeping it out. For this reason, I cannot recommend the audio version of this book.

As for the book itself?

Fascinating subject! It contains 4 extremely colorful personalities.

Lynden B Johnson---a Southern Texas Democrat who literally took pride in the fact that he was known to cheat in elections. He did what it took to get elected and did what was necessary to get ahead. A politician who earned the nickname “Landslide” because he arranged to have one county turn in their ballots late and he won that county by a “Landslide” which put him over the top.

Richard Nixon --- a Californian who was known for bending/breaking the rules to get elected---who early in his career earned the nickname “Tricky Dick” for election shenanigans. He later had to resign from the White House due to the Watergate scandal.

John F Kennedy --- a Massachusetts millionaire whose father would stop at nothing to get one of his kids into the white house. Whose father arranged to have a janitor run against his son because the Janitor had the same name as JFK’s primary opponent, thus creating confusion inside the ballot box.

Robert Kennedy – JFK’s brother who is known to be a colorful person and was a ruthless campaign advisor.

With these four individuals involved in the 1960 election what could go wrong? What bending of the rules might occur? What made the 1960 election monumental?

This book covers those questions.

The book was well written and enjoyable, I only wish that the author provided novel insight into the primaries--specifically the LBJ/JFK/Hubert Humphries primary. After the primaries it seemed a little rushed and , if you’ve read biographies on Kennedy/Nixon, rehashed. There was not much new to the JFK/Nixon campaign that isn't covered in every other book.

Still I rather enjoyed this book.

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  • Victoria Talbot
  • 30-11-18

Historical

The great thing about this book is that it gives in the Historical perspective about the 1960 election. It is interesting to see all the cast of characters and who they were, with their personalities were, and where everybody fit in the hierarchy leading up to the events that followed. In addition, I found it fascinating that so much of what is considered normal today started during that election. The Roll of TV in this election, and the candidates spin we’re obviously for the first time, more important then the substance of the issues. It is the legacy I hope one day live down.

For those of us Who are politicos in the modern world, it is fascinating to see that we have no new ideas under the sun.

The relationship between JFK and LBJ is ever fascinating, and this gives historical perspective.

It is also fascinating to see the relationship between Nixon and JFK, and to see the fading light of so many historic people including Henry Cabot Lodge, Nixon’s running mate.

I also found it interesting to see the chase after the nascent my Nordie votes and The relationship that developed with black voters.

Another aspect that I found truly breathtaking was the fear surrounding civil rights, and their relationship with MLK.

All in all, this is a great historical perspective on American politics.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful