Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72
Hilarious, terrifying, insightful, and compulsively readable, these are the articles that Hunter S. Thompson wrote for Rolling Stone magazine while covering the 1972 election campaign of President Richard M. Nixon and his unsuccessful opponent, Senator George S. McGovern. Hunter focuses largely on the Democratic Party's primaries and the breakdown of the national party as...more
As Thompson's reputation precedes him, I had no clue what to expect from this book. The drug-addled ramblings of a drunken madman, perhaps? Imagine my surprise to find his writing to be sharp, clear, keenly observant, and funny as hell.
Oh, the madman pops up now and then with lines like - ...I was bored from bad noise on the radio and half-drunk from doing off a quart of Wild Turkey between the Chicago and Alt ...more
Campaign Trail... is a scathing account of American politics and presidential campaigns. Thompson's journey centers on the McGovern-Nixon '72 election. Like a massive drug trip, the book gradual ...more
There's no way of truly pinning down what makes this such a great read, although if you are familiar with Thompson you know you will enjoy his seethin ...more
The first time Hunter S. Thompson met Richard Nixon, they talked about football. American football, that is. This was during Nixon’s 1968 presidential campaign, and the prerequisite of Nixon’s handlers; the boss is stressed out from running around the country, they told Thompson, and he doesn’t need someone yelling at him about Vietnam or civil rights. You can ride in the back of the car with him for an hour or so in New Hampshire, they told him, but you have to promise to keep the conversation ...more
Dr. Thompson was a little weird. He knew it, embraced it, ran with it, wrote with it. His style fits perfectly with the characters (the candidates) that I wish more journalists would adopt his style. "Gonzo" journalism they would eventually call it, and H ...more
Any author can look back at a campaign, but Thompson, despite being drunk or high or hung over for the duration of the election, predicted the future. He f ...more
It's rather fitting that this is the 40th anniversary edition, re-released in one of the most spectacular train wrecks in years. One wonders, if HST lived, what he would have had to say about this pack of loonies.
HST, as cynical as he wants to be, still has a bit of idealism buried in him somewhere, that a Democrat lesser evil will prevail over the tyranny of Nixon. ...more
Reading Fear and Loathing on The Campaign Trail seems like more of an insight into what it must have been like to prize work out of Hunter S Thompson than anything else. I didn't really learn anything about American Politics ...more
That public men publish falsehoods
Is nothing new. That America must accept
Like the historical republics corruption and empire
Has been known for years.
Be angry at the sun for setting
If these things anger you.
Reading Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72 during the 2016 primary season really drives home the point that the cynical view of politics is in fact the most accurate. The inner workings and machinations of a well-run campaign have so little to do with what the averag ...more
The best part of the book is either the ending - which ...more
This is not Thompson's best book. Hell's Angels and Fear and Loathing in LasVegas are both better. Indeed, it is pretty clear that this was a h ...more
The most surprising thing about this book wasn't that Thompson's out-of-control style had aged well (for the most part), but that he really was a very incisive political reporter. I always liked Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas but a lot of his political writing (for ESPN and other outlets) I saw in the decade before he died sounded like the rehashing of an once important counter-culture icon. ...more
What makes this book excellent is how intimate it is despite taking o ...more