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Archive: Other Books > Master of Persuasion: Brian Mulroney's Global Legacy - 3 stars

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message 1: by Gerry (last edited Jun 18, 2018 06:26PM) (new)

Gerry If you are interested in Canadian politics or history, this is worth a read. Brian Mulroney was Prime Minister of Canada from 1984 to 1993. Canadians largely remember him for the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement, which later become NAFTA, for attempting to bring Quebec into the Constitution, and for bringing in the hated Goods and Services Tax.

I was not a fan of Mulroney when he was in power, but I took a certain pride in his efforts to end Apartheid in South Africa and for pushing the United States to do something about acid rain. History has been quite kind to him in some respects, and this book adds to recent efforts to rehabilitate his image. This book also harkens back to a time when we could disagreee civilly and did not paint our political opponents as the Anti-Christ. Conservative Mulroney counted on an advisor from the Liberal party (Simon Reisman) to be the lead negotiator for the Free Trade Agreement, and he has graciously agreed to help current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in his efforts to navigate the current trade difficulties with the US.

This book talks about Mulroney's little-known legacy on the global scene, rallying support to fight famine in Ethiopia, end Apartheid in South Africa, reach agreement on environmental issues (in those days climate change was not a partisan issue), and shepherd the world into the post-Cold War age.

A lot of this I was not really aware of at the time, and this book is very thorough in documenting Mulroney's time on the world stage. It discusses how he cultivate personal relationships with world leaders to encourage them to see the other side of various issues.

After a while it started to feel more like an extended fan letter than I was comfortable with, and due to its narrow focus, does not discuss his domestic policies or post-politics life.

I gave it three stars because its too-earnest efforts to elevate Mulroney became tiresome after a while, but I enjoyed reading it and would recommend for history and political watchers of Canada.


message 2: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 6406 comments Great review, Gerry.


message 3: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Lin | 49 comments Great review. I always enjoy reading to know more about a country. This will be on my TBR list.


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