P. J. O’Rourke in conversation with Adam Felber discussing his upcoming book, How the Hell Did This Happen? The Election of 2016
Ann and Jerry Moss Theatre /New Roads School/ Herb Alpert Educational Village- 3131 Olympic Boulevard Santa Monica, CA 90404
PURCHASE TICKETS : LiveTalksLA.org
An essential take on the stranger-than-fiction (and stranger-than-fact) 2016 presidential elections from a quintessential voice on American politics and culture P. J. O’Rourke has written eighteen books on subjects as diverse as politics and cars and etiquette and economics. Parliament of Whores and Give War a Chance both reached #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. He is a contributing editor at the Weekly Standard, H. L. Mencken Research Fellow at the Cato Institute, a regular panelist on NPR’s Wait Wait . . . Don’t Tell Me, and a columnist for The Stansberry Digest investment letter. This election cycle was so absurd that celebrated political satirist, journalist, and diehard Republican P. J. O’Rourke endorsed Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. As P.J. put it, “America is experiencing the most severe outbreak of mass psychosis since the Salem witch trials of 1692. So why not put Hillary on the dunking stool?”
In his latest book, P.J. brings his critical eye and inimitable voice to some seriously risky business. Starting in June 2015, he asks, “Who are these jacklegs, high-binders, wire-pullers, mountebanks, swellheads, buncombe spigots, four-flushers and animated spittoons offering themselves as worthy of America’s highest office?” and surveys the full cast of presidential candidates including everyone you’ve already forgotten and everyone you still wish you could forget. P.J. offers a brief history of how our insane process for picking who will run for president, concluding: “Consistency is not a hallmark of American politics, but exceptions are made when the constant is stupidity. Today’s primaries are as stupid as they’ve always been.” He takes us through the debates and key primaries and analyzes everything from the campaign platforms (or lack thereof) to presidential fashion sense, rising from the depths of despair to come up with a better way to choose a president (starting with a road trip). Following his come-to-Satan moment with Hillary and the Beginning of End Times in November, PJ reckons with a new age: “America is experiencing a change in the nature of leadership. We’re getting rid of our leaders. And we’re starting at the top.” How the Hell Did This Happen? answers the key questions of a presidential election where both candidates were running against the most formidable of opponents—themselves.
Adam Felber is an American political satirist, author, radio personality, actor, humorist, novelist, television writer, and comic book writer. Felber attended Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, and graduated as an English major in 1989. He has lived in Brooklyn, New York, and now lives in Los Angeles, California. He is a regular panel member (and occasional guest host) of the NPR radio quiz show, Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!. Felber is the author of the novel Schrödinger’s Ball, which uses as a conceit the concept of Schrödinger’s cat. He has also written for several television shows including Real Time with Bill Maher, Talkshow with Spike Feresten, Arthur, The Smoking Gun, and Wishbone. Felber also wrote the second Skrull Kill Krew limited series for Marvel Comics in 2009 as part of the Secret Invasion event. Felber’s mother is the late romance novelist, Edith Layton.