Book Review: ‘An Army Of Davids,’ ‘Crashing The Gate’

Originally published at
By K. Daniel Glover

In the days of Julius Caesar (as imagined by William Shakespeare), a soothsayer warned the Roman emperor to “beware the ides of March.” Caesar dismissed that “dreamer,” but his warning proved prophetic: Caesar was assassinated in 44 B.C. on March 15 — the ides of March.

In the days of Instapundit, the Blog Father and Kos, the leaders of the American republic have something else to beware: the blog books of March. There are two of them on the shelves now, and both paint scenarios that are unfriendly, if not downright hostile, toward the folks who run the government, the media and more.

Instapundit Glenn Reynolds got his book, “An Army of Davids: How Markets and Technology Empower Ordinary People to Beat Big Media, Big Government and Other Goliaths,” on store shelves first. He was in Washington, D.C., earlier this month to promote it.

This week, “Crashing The Gate: Netroots, Grassroots, and the Rise of People-Powered Politics” is officially released, and it is openly billed as a “shot across the bow at the political establishment in Washington.” The authors – Markos Moulitsas Zuniga of Daily Kos and his blog father, Jerome Armstrong of MyDD – are in the capital city today to start a promotional tour.

Both books are about an ongoing information revolution that is being driven in part by bloggers, but each takes a different approach.

“An Army of Davids” is the more sweeping of the two. Reynolds covers everything from home-brewed beer and blogging (always a volatile mix) to nanotechnology and human settlement of Mars (the things you think about after consuming too many home-brewed beers).

His book also is both less political and defiant than “Crashing The Gate.” Reynolds is not so much fomenting rebellion as he is reporting on the technologically enhanced changes well under way across society.