Barone, Michael 1944-
Barone, Michael 1944-
Born September 19, 1944, in Highland Park, MI; son of C. Gerald (a physician) and Alice Katherine (a teacher) Barone; married Joan Carroll Shorenstein (a producer), February 14, 1975; children: Sarah Phyllis. Education: Harvard University, A.B. (magna cum laude), 1966; Yale University, LL.B., 1969. Politics: Democrat.
Home—Washington, DC. Office—Peter D. Hart Research Associates, Inc., 1529 O St. NW, Washington, DC 20005. Agent—Lynn Chu and Glen Hartley, Writers' Representatives, 116 W. 14th St., 11th Fl., New York, NY 10011-7305.
Admitted to Bar, State of Michigan, 1970; U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, Detroit, MI, law clerk, 1969-71; Peter D. Hart Research Associates, Inc., Washington, DC, associate, 1974-75, vice president, beginning 1975; American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, Washington, DC, resident fellow, 2007—. McLaughlin Group, former group member; Columbia Broadcasting System, consultant to CBS News; US News & World Report, senior writer.
National Book Award nomination, 1972.
(With Grant Ujifusa and Douglas Matthews) The Almanac of American Politics 1972, Gambit (Boston, MA), 1971.
(With Grant Ujifusa and Douglas Matthews) The Almanac of American Politics 1974, Gambit (Boston, MA), 1973.
(With Grant Ujifusa and Douglas Matthews) The Almanac of American Politics 1976, Dutton (New York, NY), 1975.
(With Neal R. Pierce) The Middle Atlantic States of America, W.W. Norton (New York, NY), 1976.
(With Grant Ujifusa and Douglas Matthews) The Almanac of American Politics 1978, Dutton (New York, NY), 1977.
(With Grant Ujifusa) The Almanac of American Politics 1980, Dutton (New York, NY), 1979.
Political Coalitions and the Democratic Party: A World Turned Upside Down, National Policy Exchange (Washington, DC), 1981.
Our Country: The Shaping of America from Roosevelt to Reagan, Free Press (New York, NY), 1990.
(With William Lilley III and Laurence J. DeFranco) State Legislative Elections: Voting Patterns and Demographics, Congressional Quarterly (Washington, DC), 1998.
The New Americans: How the Melting Pot Can Work Again, Regnery Publishing (Washington, DC), 2001.
(With others) Securing Democracy: Why We Have an Electoral College, ISI Books (Wilmington, DE), 2001.
Hard America, Soft America: Competition vs. Coddling and the Battle for the Nation's Future, Crown Forum (New York, NY), 2004.
(With others) From Total War to Total Victory: How the War Was (Really) Won: March 1995 Conference Proceedings, Cantigny First Division Foundation (Wheaton, IL), 2005.
Our First Revolution: The Remarkable British Uprising That Inspired America's Founding Fathers, Crown Publishers (New York, NY), 2007.
Political columnist, U.S. News and World Report. Contributor of articles to numerous publications, including Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and New Republic.
Michael Barone is best known, according to an Economist reviewer, as "a chronicler and analyst, and a most eminent one, of the life of politics." Readers unfamiliar with his conservative columns in U.S. News and World Report may recognize him as the coauthor of the series "The Almanac of American Politics," a semiannual publication, or a former member of the McLaughlin Group. Barone is also the author of books on American social history and social policy. In Our Country: The Shaping of America from Roosevelt to Reagan, he analyzes American political history from 1932 through the 1980s, with particular praise for Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower. In The New Americans: How the Melting Pot Can Work Again, Barone covers a similar time span, comparing and contrasting the role of immigrants in American society from the Jews, Irish, and Italians of the early twentieth century to the African Americans, Latinos, and Asians who predominate today. Barone's position is that the assimilation of minorities today is nothing new, and it is as integral to the strengthening of American values as it was a century ago. Wilson Quarterly contributor Sanford J. Ungar pointed out some flaws in Barone's perspective, but also commented favorably on the "depth and flavor" of his writing. A reviewer in Publishers Weekly also noted flaws in the book, but described The New Americans as a "provocative read."
Barone's book Hard America, Soft America: Competition vs. Coddling and the Battle for the Nation's Future might be expected to generate controversy but, "despite his conservatism," observed a Publishers Weekly contributor, Barone "writes with moderation and insight." According to Barone, "Hard America" refers to the competitive, demanding, and academically rigorous cycles in American history, often identified with the ascendancy of right-leaning politics and the dominance of big business and corporate interests. "Soft America" conversely refers to historically less-competitive periods marked by an academic shift away from hard science and toward the social issues of the day, and an increase of government policies designed to protect the disadvantaged, often attributed to left-leaning politics and an elitist sentiment. In his book, Barone dates the cyclical shifts from soft to hard and back again throughout the twentieth century and discusses the elements that define them. Barone's position is that, although he himself prefers Hard America, both trends are necessary to provide the balance that will ensure America's stability in the future. Richard Lowry (a self-confessed supporter of Hard America), writing in the National Review, called Hard America, Soft America "a nifty sketch of the forces behind the struggle and of the stakes." The Publishers Weekly reviewer recommended the book, even to proponents of Soft America, as a "thought-provoking and perceptive analysis."
In Our First Revolution: The Remarkable British Uprising That Inspired America's Founding Fathers, Barone examines the circumstances of the Revolutionary War and determines how this revolution set the bar for all future uprisings in the fledging United States. He considers the revolution to be the first of many, and the one that inspired the Founding Fathers in their earliest tasks for the nation. Andrew Stuttaford, in a contribution for National Review, pointed out that this is less an actuality than a romantic idea, as in reality the revolution was primarily British in its nature and tone, particularly if one addresses the issues that were affecting those living on English soil. However, Stuttaford also went on to call the book "an excellent, well-researched overview of the prelude, consummation, and consequences of the revolution." A contributor for Kirkus Reviews found the book a "brisk, thoughtful assessment of the full significance and implications of an episode in British history underappreciated on this side of the Atlantic." Gertrude Himmelfarb, writing for the Weekly Standard, noted of the book: "It is an intriguing idea and has caught the fancy of reviewers and publicists who make it sound as if that is the dominant theme of the book. But it does an injustice to a book that is only peripherally about America and is rather a valuable and most readable contribution to English history."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Economist, June 23, 1990, review of Our Country: The Shaping of America from Roosevelt to Reagan, p. 92.
Kirkus Reviews, February 15, 2007, review of Our First Revolution: The Remarkable British Uprising That Inspired America's Founding Fathers.
National Review, August 9, 2004, Richard Lowry, review of Hard America, Soft America: Competition vs. Coddling and the Battle for the Nation's Future, p. 44; July 30, 2007, Andrew Stuttaford, "1688 and All That," p. 48.
Publishers Weekly, May 28, 2001, review of The New Americans: How the Melting Pot Can Work Again, p. 75; April 26, 2004, review of Hard America, Soft America, p. 53.
Weekly Standard, July 23, 2007, Gertrude Himmelfarb, "Glorious, Indeed; What the English Revolution of 1688 Meant."
Wilson Quarterly, autumn, 2001, Sanford J. Ungar, review of The New Americans, p. 152.