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Inside the Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital [Paperback]

By John McCaslin (Author)
Our Price $ 13.59  
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Item Number 241340  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   272
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.8" Width: 5.9" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.9 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Sep 30, 2008
Publisher   Thomas Nelson
ISBN  1595552405  
EAN  9781595552402  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
For more than a decade, John McCaslin has covered the Beltway beat for the Washington Times, in his extremely popular, widely quoted, award-winning column. Now, in his new book, McCaslin explores a vast array of little-known political tidbits, using humor, touching stories, and exclusive inside details to show readers exactly how the political game is played, revealing the humanity (for better or worse) of today's biggest politicos. With his characteristic blend of humor and warmth, McCaslin relates exclusive stories that will make readers laugh, leave them outraged, and touch their hearts about politicians on both sides of party lines and both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.

Publishers Description

Award-winning columnist sheds light on people, places, and disorderly procedures in nation's capital.

John McCaslin's "Inside the Beltway" column has been a favorite of "Washington Times" readers for years. Now, in his first book ever, McCaslin applies his special brand of humor and warmth, recounting his remarkable journalistic journey from Whitefish, Montana (where he reported on grizzly attacks), to the White House (where he covers an even more ferocious beast . . . politicians) and sharing the funniest, saddest, and most offbeat stories along the way.

"Whether he's knee-deep in the bowels of Capitol Hill, or paying his final respects at an unkempt cemetery in Brazil (yes . . . Brazil), McCaslin digs deep for his one-of-a-kind collection of Washington tales. You can laugh, cry, and shout all in the same chapter. A fun and brisk read―and you'll know why I avoid Washington afterwards " ―Rush Limbaugh

"I read two things every day: the Bible and John McCaslin's column in "The Washington Times." That way I know what both sides are up to." ―Paul Begala, former counselor to President Bill Clinton and a cohost of CNN's "Crossfire"

"John McCaslin is a great storyteller. I love the way he writes―and he writes about all of the things I'm interested in. Whether you are a Democrat of a Republican, you will love this book." ―Sam Donaldson ABC News

"John McCaslin is one of those few people in Washington who deliver every day. His 'Inside the Beltway' anecdotes are an antidote to the foibles of the famous in our nation's capital. This book is a must for those who know how to smile " ―Oliver North host of "War Stories" on the FOX News Channel

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More About John McCaslin

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! John McCaslin is a columnist, anchor, talk show host, and storyteller. A former broadcast news anchor, and award-winning correspondent, John pens the popular "Inside the Beltway" column for the Washington Times and Los Angeles Times Syndicate.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Better Column than Book  Feb 21, 2010
For a number of years I made reading "Inside the Beltway" and
"Inside Politics" a regular part of my weekday morning routine. I read the on-line columns to find out the latest political gossip, zaney quotes, and other unusual happenings in the political world. The columnists generally saw the world through a conservative lens and that was fine with me. A few years back I noticed a change in "Inside the Beltway" and discovered the reason for it was because the column was no longer written and editted by John McCaslin. The column still had its' merits but there was more of a social profile to the subject matter and less to do with who said or did what in Washington current events. Alas, "Inside Politics" no longer appears on my on-line source either so I am missing a lot of political "inside baseball". I was pleased to come across this book, "Inside the Beltway" a few months ago and snatched it right up.

"Inside the Beltway" is a somewhat biographical account of John McCaslin's career as a journalist (a career, I believe, that is still in progress). He starts us out with a lot of grizzly bear stories from his apprenticeship in Montana. I like Montana. I live only 20 miles from its' border and the grizzlies live another 400 miles further. However, it was the book's title that got my attention and I was anxious to get down to business.

Most of "Inside the Beltway" does cover the interesting, absurd, and unusual in Washington DC but part of the problem is that McCaslin has a habit of getting in the way of his work. Although I thought it lessened as the book progressed, the author tends to oversell some of his anecdotes: "the funniest line I ever heard, the funniest comeback I ever heard" and set-ups like that. I seemed to always find myself less impressed because of McCaslin's sales pitches early in the book. I guess the biographical nature of the book requires his involvement in the stories but that's not to say his involvement helps any. Otherwise I found a fair amount to enjoy in "Inside the Beltway". I even laughed aloud a few times when I wasn't told what to expect next.

Watch Out...Here Comes The Right  Apr 24, 2005
After watching John McCaslin talk about his book "Inside The Beltway," on CSPAN, I picked it up and was very disappointed. Not a reader of his column, I had no idea it had such a rightward bent. Most of his supposed amusing stories are poisoned arrows aimed at the left. Conservatives are painted as patriots, liberals as the enemy. If you're looking for 242 pages of left-hating harangue, this book's for you. Be also warned that actual Beltway stories don't start until after page 30. Until then one is subjected to cutesy stuff about staying away from grizzly bears in Montana (or was it Wyoming?) where the author got his start. It's pretty boring stuff and about as far from the Beltway as borscht. Caveat emptor, dude.
Refreshing!  Mar 28, 2005
Completely genuine and fully humorous storytelling- A refreshing change from other DC writers who rant and smear. A delightful read from one of the DC areas favorite columnist.
Inside the Beltway  Sep 8, 2004
Inside the Beltway is extremely informative and greatly entertaining. John McCalsin writes eloquently and with great humor. Anyone who keeps up with the media or is interested in politics must read this book.
Cry, Laugh, and be enraged all in one book!  Aug 12, 2004

Inside The Beltway
Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital

By John McCaslin

Review by Joshua W. Delano

Paul Begala says that he "reads two things every day: the Bible and John McCaslin's column in the Washington Times. That way I know what both sides are up to." In his new book Inside the Beltway, John McCaslin takes readers on a tour of Americana and American politics, from the Grizzly country of Montana to the grisly deeds of the "Beltway Animals" in Washington, D.C.

In his Times column, which bears the same title as the book, McCaslin unearths demagoguery on a daily basis. Through his storytelling format, he reveals the humanity and compassion, as well as the deceptiveness and hypocrisy, of those who run in D.C.'s power circles.

Some of the narratives in McCaslin's book will make readers laugh, such as an account of a practical joke played on Oregon Rep. Mark O. Hatfield by former Louisiana Rep. Bob Livingston. Hatfield, a history buff who reveres Abraham Lincoln, was presented at a dinner with what he thought to be a priceless Lincoln document. While making a toast, Livingston spilled his drink all over the document and cried out, "What have I done?" Shortly after rushing over nearly in tears, Hatfield was let in on the prank. The whole presentation had been only a setup.

Other McCaslin accounts will cause readers' blood to boil. McCaslin digs up a 1974 Bill Clinton quote about then-President Richard Nixon:

I think it's plain that the president should resign and spare the country the agony of this impeachment and removal proceeding. I think the country could be spared a lot of agony, and the government could worry about inflation and a lot of other problems if he'd go on and resign.

McCaslin's focus is broader than politics, however, and he often reaches deep into the American heartland with interesting and ironic anecdotes. During the "Year of the Grizzlies," Texan Laurence Gordon clicked several photos as he approached his campsite at Glacier National Park. Gordon's camera was later found near a pile of his bones. The last photo on the camera revealed the outline of a Grizzly in the background with Gordon as the apple of its eye.

Readers of McCaslin's Times columns will not be surprised to find heartwarming reflections also included in his book. For instance, McCaslin includes a prayer delivered in the Kansas legislature by Joe Wright of Central Christian Church, repenting of many things, including the following:

We have ridiculed the absolute truth of God's word and called it pluralism.
We have worshipped false gods and called it multiculturalism.
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
We have censored God from our public life and called it religious freedom.
We have killed the pre-born and called it choice.

Inside the Beltway reads like a collection of tales told around a campfire. McCaslin compiles both the madness of American politicians and the chronicles of everyday Americans in a volume that will keep readers wanting more. Thankfully, we can always turn to the Washington Times to satiate our appetites.

Joshua W. Delano is a senior at Louisiana State University, where he is majoring in political science and journalism and minoring in Cajun-French Studies. He hopes to someday practice law and become Governor of Louisiana.


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