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The Frontman: Bono (In the Name of Power) [Format Kindle]

Harry Browne
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)

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“I genuinely see myself as a traveling salesman. I think that’s what I do. I sell songs door-to-door on tour. I sell ideas like debt relief, and like all salesmen, I'm a bit of an opportunist and I see Africa as great opportunity.”—Bono

Présentation de l'éditeur

Scathing and hilarious takedown of a frontman for the rich and powerful.

Celebrity philanthropy comes in many guises, but no single figure better encapsulates its delusions, pretensions and wrongheadedness than U2’s iconic frontman, Bono—a fact neither sunglasses nor leather pants can hide. More than a mere philanthropist—indeed, he lags behind many of his peers when it comes to parting with his own money—Bono is better described as an advocate, one who has become an unwitting symbol of a complacent wealthy Western elite.

The Frontman reveals how Bono moved his investments to Amsterdam to avoid Irish taxes; his paternalistic and often bullying advocacy of neoliberal solutions in Africa; his multinational business interests; and his hobnobbing with Paul Wolfowitz and shock-doctrine economist Jeffrey Sachs. Carefully dissecting the rhetoric and actions of Bono the political operator, The Frontman shows him to be an ambassador for imperial exploitation, a man who has turned his attention to a world of savage injustice, inequality and exploitation—and helped make it worse.


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0 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Un pas de plus vers les révélations Apocalyptiques 27 octobre 2013
Par Metawill
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Enfin un journaliste avec assez de courage et ce qu'il faut dans le pantalon pour révéler la vérité !

Prenant sagement de la distance avec les théories conspirationnistes, Harry Browne fait toutefois le point avec précision sur l'engagement politico-économique de Bono, permettant à tous ceux qui se sentent concernés de réaliser que cet engagement se relie à un agenda néo-fasciste totalitaire.

Ce que manque l'auteur toutefois, comme malheureusement la plupart des intéressés, est de réaliser que U2 – dont le nom provient du premier avion espion issu de la fameuse Zone 51 – est relié au pouvoir occulte depuis le début, et fait partie d'une conspiration de dimension véritablement cosmique… Si vous croyez au monde spirituel, alors vous ne devez pas commodément faire abstraction des forces démoniaques, lesquelles se mêlent des affaires humaines à travers les intermédiaires qu'ils contrôlent.

Si vous ne les connaissez pas, reportez-vous aux textes Gnostiques Chrétiens (les Évangiles apocryphes censurés par le Vatican) et au Livre d'Hénoch pour trouver des références aux Archontes non humains contrôlant notre monde et aux Anges déchus semant le chaos sur la Terre, asservissant l'Humanité en les enfermant dans une prison démiurgique perverse, les gardant éloignés de la source divine.
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Amazon.com: 3.4 étoiles sur 5  18 commentaires
37 internautes sur 44 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Speaking Truth to Power: Powerful! 20 juin 2013
Par U2 Fan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
As someone who owns more than a few U2 records, I bought this book on Amazon, read and enjoyed it -- and so could not disagree more with Anthony and the couple other cranky critics here.

First off, I went back to the book: the very first chapter says that the kid-dying-when-Bono-claps story is an "apocryphal" one, which, uh, means that a dictionary -- rather than the internet -- tells you the story is NOT true. Just saw a piece in The Guardian that quotes the -same- untrue story, because it's a bit funny!

And so I think folks need to lighten up, recognize that good humor may be the best way to take in new and fair criticism of a man whose music you and I really love. Should that music really exempt Bono from criticism about anything else he does? I found a pretty even-handed and exceptionally researched review of Bono's politics and public statements, which for the first time that I have read anywhere, suggest that he has done more damage than good during his forays into economic and foreign policy. You may not agree with those arguments, but I found the evidence pretty striking -- and I had not read it brought together anywhere before.

As for being "anti-American," I don't get that at all: is that because of the cover photo? Hey, Bono was the one who posed with George W. Bush, offering him political cover on Africa and AIDS policy during the run-up to the Iraq War. And while calling attention to the fact that Bono may have been used by Bush and Co. for political cover, the book actually gives Bono a lot of fair credit for what he has actually done around AIDS in Africa.

I think anyone should have the right to publicly question the disastrous foreign policy decisions of the last decade, ones that Bono has implicitly and explicitly supported. It's an eye-opening book and I recommend my fellow fans doing more than a cursory read of the first chapter.
17 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 In-depth review: a provocative critique strives for fairness 13 juillet 2013
Par John L Murphy - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
When Bono sells charity, should we buy his good intentions? Without denying the practical good achieved by some of his projects, Harry Browne, a Dublin-based "activist and journalist", criticizes Bono's cozy neo-liberal, market-funded loyalties. Justice cannot be increased, Browne argues, without confronting this pampered elite. Browne denies that aid, debt relief, or even altered trade agreements will fundamentally alter global poverty for billions of its recipients. Bono makes peace with power.

Taking his subject "very" seriously but with a touch of Irish self-deprecation and "light relief" as Bono would himself his own self, Browne cautions us against any expectations of a hatchet job. Sure, many assure us that Bono means well. Browne, however, as one better placed than most of Paul Hewson's admirers, knows the reaction by fellow Dubliners to Ballymun's earnest lad turned icon. Irish begrudgery cuts down those judged to have climbed high.

Bono advanced by Browne's estimation to "true greatness" by his own sly but genuine merits, but does this success grant him a free pass to peddle the schemes of technocrats, bankers, and arms dealers? Browne says no. Rather than rehash U2's musical impact or Bono's lyrics (unless relevant), Browne's polemic analyzes Bono's political success. He shifts Bono from a "bleeding-heart" left-liberal to a "conservative, Western-centric, and pro-capitalist" allegiance.

Browne dispatches neatly the mythic origins assumed by gullible audiences of any street-smart cred, given U2's relatively posh origins despite their geographical residence as teens growing up on the purportedly working class northside of Dublin. U2's emotional justification, to use music as "self-expression" to reveal revelation, countered a comparative lack of early skill, in Browne's estimation. Schooled in stagecraft, passionate, charming and well-connected within the Dublin music scene and soon abroad, "Bono talked a great gig".

Ireland's generous incentives allowing the creative classes tax breaks on their published works fortuitously afforded U2 the opportunity to invest their quarter-century of profits in an opaque series of holding entities and start-ups, few of which flourished on paper. By 2006, the Irish government enacted a limit of 250,000 euro on untaxed earnings; U2 sent its money off to the Netherlands. Bono tried to argue that the band never broke any laws, but in trying to revamp the band's "tax avoidance" as "an act of patriotism" Browne blames Bono for his characteristic evasion. Promoting the "priorities of global capital" while attempting to represent himself as an "outspoken advocate of conventional wisdom," Bono from "Do They Know It's Christmas?" to Band Aid to Self Aid to Live Aid draws himself increasingly into the status quo even as he tries to stand out as a celebrity humanitarian.

"His capacity to speak the language of global justice while advancing policies that do little to advance it might be regarded as the central political fact of Bono's subsequent career." Browne in part two explains how African debt relief, albeit an admirable cause, when backed by global banks does not generate domestic infrastructures within poor nations, but eases entry for foreign investment by multinationals.

(RED) shares with U2 a consistent lack of transparency in tracing precisely where its funds go. (Browne pegs Bono's personal wealth at half a billion dollars.) "Charitainment" fuels First World consumption, often of high-end baubles, fashion, and gadgets by First World consumers. Nike, Amex, Converse, Apple sign on, under contracts that betray the restricted amounts dispensed. A small share may go to worthy causes, but what Browne labels as "pitching pennies" to the poor faraway adds up to comparatively little. The past six years show, as far as can be ascertained, $200 million raised by (RED). U2's latest two-year tour added $736 million to their Dutch accounts.

Part three shifts from Africa to the rest of the world, as in its enclaves Davos and Pebble Beach, or wherever the G8 summits or World Bank's tycoons convene. By now, Browne cleverly borrows another messiah's prediction: "Wherever two or three are gathered, there too shall you find Bono, telling them how good they are." What he advises appears to bolster more injustice rather than justice.

Browne never claims that Bono's endeavors do not pay off by creating some good. Bono for all his jibes at his own image relishes the chance to use his prominence as U2's frontman to improve the lives of others. But his critic insists, as fairly as he can, that Bono does so not with much of his own money, but by encouraging the powerful to distribute their own funds. True, these may alleviate suffering, and minimize hunger. These funds from the elite nations and the affluent, however, go far less often if at all to assisting those who would shout out hard questions about wealth inequality, lack of education, or capitalist fidelity to the economic disparities which most of humanity labors under.

Bono's appeal carried him far in the past thirty-odd years. Browne observes that "while mere photo-ops with Bush had earned Bono the anger of many US (and Irish) liberals, his lavish praise for Obama put him firmly in their company". Still, this journalist concedes that while his musical career may still hold surprises, his activism may find a less gullible hearing from those who connect Bono more closely with "Washington's powerful elite" over the past two decades, no matter which party.

This critique nears its conclusion, in what is a slightly wearying (Browne rarely questions the tropes of radical rhetoric--the one weaker point I can find, but then, would Verso have published this otherwise?) but often astute analysis, by reminding us of how a rock star's hubris may await Bono's next career move. It's a supposedly "post-recession" recovery, we are told by those with whom Bono partied and politicked. The best albums of U2 appeared quite a while back. Mephisto McFly buzzed away. Bono buys stock in Facebook.

"A decade ago, one might arguably have suggested that he stood outside the system, bringing some moral authority to bear on questions of global poverty and disease and what to do about them. Today, as a high-profile multimillionaire investor, as part of a band of notorious tax-avoiders who assured us that financial innovation was the route to success, as the man who dressed a bunch of multinational corporations in the favoured shade of (RED), as the Blairite who applauded when the world's war-mongers pretended to lavish some relief on a few poor countries while saddling them with more neoliberal conditions -- today, he is hard to see as anything other than one of Them, the elite 1 per cent of 1 per cent."

Browne's sharply drawn depiction of superstar humanitarianism and rock star philanthropy, personified in Paul David Hewson's rise to a status never attained by a previous member of a band, serves as a case study. Be careful what your heroes lead you into. Bono certainly has friends in high places who want no court jesters around. Taking care of business, indeed.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Who Bono really serves 18 décembre 2014
Par Argus Human Rights - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Another great book in what's turning out to be a great series. The truth isn't always popular but I applaud Harry Browne and Counterblasts for putting this out there. Bono's reputation as an advocate for the poor is undeserved to say the least and this book lays out why and reveals how Bono is actually advocate for the elite global power establishment. I suspect those who have given this book poor reviews are not people who have studied the problems of global poverty and don't understand that Bono's friends and allies are the very ones who maintain and profit off of poverty. Another great book in this series is Jeffrey Sachs: The Strange Case of Dr. Shock and Mr. Aid.
26 internautes sur 36 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Full of surprises 7 juin 2013
Par Rita Insojo - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Readers who don't like subtlety and shading in their exposes, or who can only react to the parts that fit their own expectations of what a takedown is supposed to sound like, beware. Browne's book is going to be full of surprises. Not only everything you didn't want to know about a musician-turned-philanthropist, a modestly accomplished artist who has burnished his legacy "doing well by doing good," but a lot that could almost make you feel sorry for him--for being sucked into the service of a manipulative world-corporate mafia infinitely smarter, more cynical and even more power-hungry than himself. Not that you should feel sorry! Bono's canny channeling of other people's money into his causes while carefully holding on to his own has made him a very rich man--a multimillionaire whose baked-in personal security will forever shield him from the Dublin scrunge he thinks he escaped from. The author's scrupulously-researched footnotes would be a shame to lose, but the dynamic pace and stinging insight of "The Frontman" would actually make great musical theater--a familiar kind of modern tragedy of those overblown dogooders who prove themselves in the end the dupes of history.
4 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This is a good book, but it's going to depend on what ... 1 décembre 2014
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
This is a good book, but it's going to depend on what you think is going on in the world as to whether or not you are going to like it. If you think that everything's ok, that the worlds rich know what's going on, and are doing their best for us all, and you like some U2 - then you will hate this book.

If however, regardless of what you may have once thought about Bono, you think that there might be some structural problems in our world thanks to the people at the top - then you will love this book, have a great laugh at Bono, but also be disappointed and confused as to how your teenage idle ended up on another planet.
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