Mr. Speaker!: The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed The Man Who Broke the Filibuster
The last decades of the nineteenth century were ...more
Reed was born and raised in the state of Maine. He attended Bowdoin College, earned a law degree and served in the Navy during the Civil war. He was very bright with an incredible wi ...more
James Grant has written an entertaining biography of the Maine Republican who was Speaker of the U. S. House of Representatives for part of the 1890s and was elected to the House for about 20 years in the decades after the Civil War. The "filibuster" referred to was a different procedure than the Senate filibuster, but with the same object of obstructing legislative work. It required that the minority party in the house be sufficiently numerous so that without them the house did not have enough...more
Although I was excited about the author, I was disappointed in the book overall. It was not as engaging as I had hoped. There was not as much humor in the book as I'd anticipated based on Thomas Reed's renowned wit.
What the book did delve into quite a bit was procedure and the intricacies of floor debates and rules in the US House. Reed's claim to fame was breaking the filibuster through various maneuv ...more
James Grant, founder of Grant's Interest Rate Review, adds little to any in-depth understanding of one of our seminal Speakers of the House, Thomas B. "Czar" Reed.
He DOES, though, take the Panic of 1873 and the Panic of 1893 to repeatedly give discourses on monetarism, the gold standard, bimetallism, etc., almost as if he were a kinder, gentler, more academic Ron Paul speaking to ...more
The 'filibuster' of the title is not the one we are only too familiar with in the Senate - instead, it is a sneaky method of preventing a quorum from being reached in the House. Reed smashed that, as well as a famous 'do-nothing Congress', and made the government of his era one of the most active in history.
The details of political minutiae are a bit dull for the unequipped reader, but those who are ...more