DIGGING DEEPER meets every Monday from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Mandolin Café, 3923 S. 12th St., Tacoma, WA.[1] ...


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November 1 & 8, 2010: DIGGING DEEPER CXLI: Woodward on Obama as commander in chief

Bob Woodward, Obama's Wars (Random House, 2010). — "The most intimate and sweeping portrait yet of the young president as commander in chief.  Drawing on internal memos, classified documents, meeting notes, and hundreds of hours of interviews with most of the key players, including the president, Woodward tells the inside story of Obama making the critical decisions on the Afghanistan War, the secret campaign in Pakistan and the worldwide fight against terrorism."  —Book description.

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November 15, 2010: DIGGING DEEPER CXLII: Standing up for justice for Palestinians is not anti-Semitic

Mark Braverman, Fatal Embrace: Christians, Jews, and the Search for Peace in the Holy Land (Synergy Books, 2010). — "Explains how the Jewish yearning for safety and self-determination and the Christian effort to atone for centuries of anti-Jewish persecution have combined to suppress the conversations urgently needed to bring about peace in historic Palestine.  The book charts Braverman's journey as an American Jew struggling with the difficult realities of modern Israel.  Braverman offers bold, fresh insights on the realities of the conflict from his unique Jewish perspective, offering up the controversial opinion that standing up for justice for the Palestinian people is not anti-Semitic."  —Book description.

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November 22 & 29, 2010: DIGGING DEEPER CXLIII: Statistical perspectives on reality

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbably, 2nd ed. (Random House, 2010; original edition 2007). — "Taleb . . . thrash[es] MBA- and Nobel Prize-credentialed experts who make their living from economic forecasting.  A financial trader and current rebel with a cause, Taleb is mathematically oriented and alludes to statistical concepts that underlie models of prediction, while his expressive energy is expended on roller-coaster passages, bordering on gleeful diatribes, on why experts are wrong. . . . taking pit stops with philosophers who have addressed the meaning of the unexpected and confounding."  —Booklist.

Hans Christian von Baeyer, Maxwell's Demon: Why Warmth Disperses and Time Passes (Random House, 1997; Modern Library paperback, 1999). — "Von Baeyer, a physicist at the College of William and Mary, invites the reader to travel with the illuminati of thermodynamics along their zig-zag path to an understanding of heat, energy, and entropy. . . . Von Baeyer's writing style is so compelling that it would induce even the most scientifically naive reader to care about the laws of thermodynamics."  —Publishers Weekly.


Since July 2004, United for Peace of Pierce County’s “Digging Deeper,” a Monday-evening book discussion group, has examined more than 300 books. (Summaries of about 200 of them have been posted online on the website Scribd.) Topics discussed have included the Iraq war, Peak Oil, climate change, torture, the corporation, Islam, Iran, U.S.-Iran relations, Barack Obama and the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr., the writings of Robert Baer, parallels between the U.S. and ancient Rome, Israel/Palestine, sustainability, war and human nature, the nature of money, September 11, energy geopolitics, the debt crisis, American immigration policy, the 2000, 2004, and 2008 presidential elections, financial crisis, the politics of assassination, and Saul Alinsky’s life and writings, as well as abiding themes of war, peace, and social change. Occasionally the group has spent several weeks reading longer works, like Daniel Yergin’s The Prize or Robert Fisk’s The Great War for Civilisation — Participation is free and open; anyone interested is welcome. Try King’s Books (218 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma) or other local bookstores for copies of books. More information: contact Mark Jensen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or see