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The United States Constitution promised a More Perfect Union. It’s a shame no one bothered to write a more perfect Constitution—one that didn’t trigger more than two centuries of arguments about what the darn thing actually says. Until now. Perfection is at hand. A new, improved Constitution is here. And you are holding it. But first, some historical context: In the eighteen The United States Constitution promised a More Perfect Union. It’s a shame no one bothered to write a more perfect Constitution—one that didn’t trigger more than two centuries of arguments about what the darn thing actually says. Until now. Perfection is at hand. A new, improved Constitution is here. And you are holding it. But first, some historical context: In the eighteenth century, a lawyer named James Madison gathered his friends in Philadelphia and, over four long months, wrote four short pages: the Constitution of the United States of America. Not bad. In the nineteenth century, a president named Abraham Lincoln freed an entire people from the flaws in that Constitution by signing the Emancipation Proclamation.  Pretty impressive. And in the twentieth century, a doctor at the Bethesda Naval Hospital delivered a baby—but not just any baby. Because in the twenty-first century, that baby would become a man, that man would become a patriot, and that patriot would rescue a country . . . by single-handedly rewriting that Constitution. Why? We think of our Constitution as the painstakingly designed blueprint drawn up by, in Thomas Jefferson’s words, an “assembly of demigods” who laid the foundation for the sturdiest republic ever created. The truth is, it was no blueprint at all but an Etch A Sketch, a haphazard series of blunders, shaken clean and redrawn countless times during a summer of petty debates, drunken ramblings, and desperate compromise—as much the product of an “assembly of demigods” as a confederacy of dunces. No wonder George Washington wished it “had been made more perfect.” No wonder Benjamin Franklin stomached it only “with all its faults.” The Constitution they wrote is a hot mess. For starters, it doesn’t mention slavery, or democracy, or even Facebook; it plays favorites among the states; it has typos, smudges, and misspellings; and its Preamble, its most famous passage, was written by a man with a peg leg. Which, if you think about it, gives our Constitution hardly a leg to stand on. [Pause for laughter.] Now stop laughing. Because you hold in your hands no mere book, but the most important document of our time. Its creator, Daily Show writer Kevin Bleyer, paid every price, bore every burden, and saved every receipt in his quest to assure the salvation of our nation’s founding charter. He flew to Greece, the birthplace of democracy. He bused to Philly, the home of independence. He went toe-to-toe (face-to-face) with Scalia. He added nightly confabs with James Madison to his daily consultations with Jon Stewart. He tracked down not one but two John Hancocks—to make his version twice as official. He even read the Constitution of the United States. So prepare yourselves, fellow patriots, for the most significant literary event of the twenty-first, twentieth, nineteenth, and latter part of the eighteenth centuries. Me the People won’t just form a More Perfect Union. It will save America.


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The United States Constitution promised a More Perfect Union. It’s a shame no one bothered to write a more perfect Constitution—one that didn’t trigger more than two centuries of arguments about what the darn thing actually says. Until now. Perfection is at hand. A new, improved Constitution is here. And you are holding it. But first, some historical context: In the eighteen The United States Constitution promised a More Perfect Union. It’s a shame no one bothered to write a more perfect Constitution—one that didn’t trigger more than two centuries of arguments about what the darn thing actually says. Until now. Perfection is at hand. A new, improved Constitution is here. And you are holding it. But first, some historical context: In the eighteenth century, a lawyer named James Madison gathered his friends in Philadelphia and, over four long months, wrote four short pages: the Constitution of the United States of America. Not bad. In the nineteenth century, a president named Abraham Lincoln freed an entire people from the flaws in that Constitution by signing the Emancipation Proclamation.  Pretty impressive. And in the twentieth century, a doctor at the Bethesda Naval Hospital delivered a baby—but not just any baby. Because in the twenty-first century, that baby would become a man, that man would become a patriot, and that patriot would rescue a country . . . by single-handedly rewriting that Constitution. Why? We think of our Constitution as the painstakingly designed blueprint drawn up by, in Thomas Jefferson’s words, an “assembly of demigods” who laid the foundation for the sturdiest republic ever created. The truth is, it was no blueprint at all but an Etch A Sketch, a haphazard series of blunders, shaken clean and redrawn countless times during a summer of petty debates, drunken ramblings, and desperate compromise—as much the product of an “assembly of demigods” as a confederacy of dunces. No wonder George Washington wished it “had been made more perfect.” No wonder Benjamin Franklin stomached it only “with all its faults.” The Constitution they wrote is a hot mess. For starters, it doesn’t mention slavery, or democracy, or even Facebook; it plays favorites among the states; it has typos, smudges, and misspellings; and its Preamble, its most famous passage, was written by a man with a peg leg. Which, if you think about it, gives our Constitution hardly a leg to stand on. [Pause for laughter.] Now stop laughing. Because you hold in your hands no mere book, but the most important document of our time. Its creator, Daily Show writer Kevin Bleyer, paid every price, bore every burden, and saved every receipt in his quest to assure the salvation of our nation’s founding charter. He flew to Greece, the birthplace of democracy. He bused to Philly, the home of independence. He went toe-to-toe (face-to-face) with Scalia. He added nightly confabs with James Madison to his daily consultations with Jon Stewart. He tracked down not one but two John Hancocks—to make his version twice as official. He even read the Constitution of the United States. So prepare yourselves, fellow patriots, for the most significant literary event of the twenty-first, twentieth, nineteenth, and latter part of the eighteenth centuries. Me the People won’t just form a More Perfect Union. It will save America.

30 review for Me the People: One Man's Selfless Quest to Rewrite the Constitution of the United States of America

  1. 4 out of 5

    Grant

    I was pleasantly surprised by this book because my attitude going in was clouded by my dislike of the Daily Show (the smirking "we know better than you" really drives me nuts.) But, Kevin Bleyer has done a great service here in marching through the creation of the Constitution and the debates/discussion/drunken tirades that accompanied the different articles or amendments. My only complaint is that he comes with an "of course" point of view that the States are fully subservient to the Federal go I was pleasantly surprised by this book because my attitude going in was clouded by my dislike of the Daily Show (the smirking "we know better than you" really drives me nuts.) But, Kevin Bleyer has done a great service here in marching through the creation of the Constitution and the debates/discussion/drunken tirades that accompanied the different articles or amendments. My only complaint is that he comes with an "of course" point of view that the States are fully subservient to the Federal government when he has ample data and anecdotes to question this (especially regarding the "Great Compromise"). But it is obviously well researched and learned in many aspects and funny most of the time. I would recommend (especially as a pre-July 4th read as I was able to do.)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Sedinger

    Bleyer, a onetime writer for THE DAILY SHOW among other things, delves deep into the history and lore of the United States Constitution, taking what I consider to be a much-needed irreverent look at our nation's highest law. I'm generally of the view that we have elevated the Constitution and the men who wrote it to holy status, and I consider it deeply odd that to this day we try to operate our government according to the thoughts of a bunch of very flawed rich white dudes who lived closer to S Bleyer, a onetime writer for THE DAILY SHOW among other things, delves deep into the history and lore of the United States Constitution, taking what I consider to be a much-needed irreverent look at our nation's highest law. I'm generally of the view that we have elevated the Constitution and the men who wrote it to holy status, and I consider it deeply odd that to this day we try to operate our government according to the thoughts of a bunch of very flawed rich white dudes who lived closer to Shakespeare's time than to ours. In a lot of ways this book preached to my choir. Constitutional idolators might find it less satisfying.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Meganm922

    I won this book via Goodreads First Reads giveaway program. When I first saw this book listed on Goodreads, I was curious. After all, most Americans love the Constitution (well the ones who know what it says, anyway). It’s the oldest constitution around, which is something to be proud of. So how can there be room for improvement? What I didn’t know until receiving this in the mail was that Bleyer is a writer for The Daily Show. With that being said, this book was fun, funny, educational, and ente I won this book via Goodreads First Reads giveaway program. When I first saw this book listed on Goodreads, I was curious. After all, most Americans love the Constitution (well the ones who know what it says, anyway). It’s the oldest constitution around, which is something to be proud of. So how can there be room for improvement? What I didn’t know until receiving this in the mail was that Bleyer is a writer for The Daily Show. With that being said, this book was fun, funny, educational, and entertaining, so it does not disappoint. It wasn’t really scholarly or critical (which is the fun part). Bleyer didn’t necessarily rewrite the Constitution. He just kind of used the foundation and remodeled it, like you would with a house. When you’re done, it’s still the same house, only better. He didn’t knock it down and build a new one. I suppose Rewrite should be changed to Edit in the title. I loved the backstory about the Founding Fathers and their quest to write our Constitution. I loved the insight into their characters and motives (and drinking habits). Instead of being a boring swipe with red ink on the document, this book was interesting and written in a way that makes history fun. My advice to other readers is NOT to skip parts. Because you’ll be off telling your buddy some story about George Washington being a British spy without realizing in the next paragraph, Bleyer sets the record straight. He introduces outrageous rumors only to knock them down after we’re thoroughly shocked and entertained by them. How clever. So if anyone you know comes at your with hysterical stories about the Founding Fathers, you can deduce quickly that they are skimmers and not readers. =) This book satisfied my curiosity and was enjoyable and I’d certainly recommend it to others looking for a fun, but still thought provoking book. However, I would not recommend this to scholarly people looking for a truly deep analysis of what may be wrong with the Constitution. Because of this, my rating was reduced to a 3. It’s fun, sure, and it’s even educational. But I can’t take it seriously and the nerd in me wanted a book that was a bit more serious. If there are indeed problems, it’s a serious matter to both address and fix them. Some of Bleyer’s changes were serious, others… not so much. If you are curious about what one man, especially a humorous one, might do to improve our Constitution, definitely read this book. You’ll enjoy this. Well, unless you love Rhode Island or Nebraska. In that case, you may be offended! Overall, this book is a fun way to think about our system of government and learn a little something about the people that created it. http://meganm922.blogspot.com/2012/04...

  4. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    There is little debate that the U.S. Constitution is the foundational document of our nation, establishing the structure of our government and dictating how it should function. However, many have come to view the Constitution as somehow sacred, imbued with timeless wisdom, the ultimate authority on how we are to govern ourselves. It hasn’t always been thus. Thomas Jefferson believed that every generation should start over, throwing away the previous work and starting over to create a new constit There is little debate that the U.S. Constitution is the foundational document of our nation, establishing the structure of our government and dictating how it should function. However, many have come to view the Constitution as somehow sacred, imbued with timeless wisdom, the ultimate authority on how we are to govern ourselves. It hasn’t always been thus. Thomas Jefferson believed that every generation should start over, throwing away the previous work and starting over to create a new constitution adapted to the current needs of the nation. That is the basic premise of this book, which is a facetious attempt to re-write the constitution in the manner suggested by Jefferson. Make no mistake, this book is a work of comedy, with truly comical moments and a LOT of sarcasm. However, like most good satire, this book does raise valid points that deserve consideration. Among these are the recognition that the U.S. Constitution, far from being a work of perfection, was the product of hard fought compromise. Many of those who collaborated on it considered it to be deeply flawed and expected that it would be heavily revised and modified over time, if not outright replaced. This should give us pause before we place too much emphasis on trying to divine the “original intent” of the document. While Bleyer clearly has liberal sympathies, he does manage to give voice to the positions on the other side, including a rather lengthy description of a conversation with Justice Scalia and a surprisingly respectful discussion of the issues related to the Second Amendment. While I can’t say that I find his “rewritten constitution” particularly promising, I do appreciate his intent. Whether he can provoke a meaningful conversation about a true revision and updating of the Constitution remains to be seen. But this book will certainly give a thoughtful reader plenty of points to ponder, while still being an entertaining read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    First, the good: The idea behind this book, that the Constitution needs revisiting is one with merit. As Bleyer points out, many of the Founders (notably Jefferson) thought it should be done with regularity (and throughout US history, people such as Lysander Spooner have pointed out the wisdom of that idea). Bleyer also includes lots of great anecdotes - many about the Founders that aren't usually known outside history-geek circles as well as some about living people that are highly entertaining First, the good: The idea behind this book, that the Constitution needs revisiting is one with merit. As Bleyer points out, many of the Founders (notably Jefferson) thought it should be done with regularity (and throughout US history, people such as Lysander Spooner have pointed out the wisdom of that idea). Bleyer also includes lots of great anecdotes - many about the Founders that aren't usually known outside history-geek circles as well as some about living people that are highly entertaining. I personally loved his lunch with Justice Scalia - wish I could do the same! Also, in the beginning of the book, Bleyer is remarkably even handed politically - something quite rare these days! However, as the book goes on, Bleyer's politics become increasingly apparent - by the amendments, there is no longer any attempt at even-handedness. Throughout the book, what is constant is an "I'm better and smarter than you" attitude that is exactly why I can't stand many contemporary comedians and pundits. By the end of the first chapter, I as a reader felt alienated by the author's attitude - and though the ego was presented as a source of humor, it wasn't amusing and by the end of the book, felt increasingly less satiric.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Janice

    The author belabored the beginning a bit too much, and it took me until after the first 20 pages to get the rhythm of his humor and the intent of the book, but once those points settled out I loved the book. It's about the writing of the constitution, and the amendments, etc. The authors of the constitution never intended it to be permanent, as they had no road map to writing one, they fully intended to make improvements. And yet, here it is 200+ years later and we're still abiding by it. The hu The author belabored the beginning a bit too much, and it took me until after the first 20 pages to get the rhythm of his humor and the intent of the book, but once those points settled out I loved the book. It's about the writing of the constitution, and the amendments, etc. The authors of the constitution never intended it to be permanent, as they had no road map to writing one, they fully intended to make improvements. And yet, here it is 200+ years later and we're still abiding by it. The humor brings a welcome relief to what could be rather tedious reading. As luck would have it, there was a PBS show on this same subject with actors playing the roles, that I discovered about 3/4 of the way throught the book, and it helped bring "faces" and some aditional facts to the historical story. Nice dovetailing. I believe we should all be much better informed about how and why this country was created. I'd recommend this book as a start.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tom

    This book is basically a one-joke premise. The joke is the Constitution is a flawed document not worth keeping so the wise, patriotic, supersmart author will now fix everything that's wrong and make it perfect. Unfortunately, I found the joke more obnoxious than anything else. One chapter, on the judiciary, where the author had a lunch and conversation with Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, and learns that not only is Scalia really well-versed in the subject but also a rather funny man, work This book is basically a one-joke premise. The joke is the Constitution is a flawed document not worth keeping so the wise, patriotic, supersmart author will now fix everything that's wrong and make it perfect. Unfortunately, I found the joke more obnoxious than anything else. One chapter, on the judiciary, where the author had a lunch and conversation with Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, and learns that not only is Scalia really well-versed in the subject but also a rather funny man, works fine, perhaps because Scalia actually comes across as smarter than the know-it-all tone Bleyer adopts for the book and makes for a more charming read. Overall, I didn't enjoy it all that much, though much of the history inside was somewhat interesting and showed the author did his homework if nothing else.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Edward

    If you like your well researched history written with caustic wit and some satire, this is the book for you. Mr Bleyer has researched the writing of the Constitution thoroughly and has written a book that makes clear some of the foibles of the men writing that document. He rips off the dressing on some of the "wounds" exposing the underlying lesions. This can be invaluable in understanding how the Constitution got to be the way it is and how it has evolved over the ensuing two and a quarter cent If you like your well researched history written with caustic wit and some satire, this is the book for you. Mr Bleyer has researched the writing of the Constitution thoroughly and has written a book that makes clear some of the foibles of the men writing that document. He rips off the dressing on some of the "wounds" exposing the underlying lesions. This can be invaluable in understanding how the Constitution got to be the way it is and how it has evolved over the ensuing two and a quarter centuries.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    This book was a hilarious discussion of all of the silly things about the Constitution, and also the silly things about our history as a country. There are quite a few running jokes throughout the book, which makes it even more enjoyable. The whole book was a lot of fun.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Francie J

    Prime Reading For lovers of history, the Constitution, or plain ol' great satire this is the book for you! Not only is it historically accurate (as far as I can tell), but it is loaded with fascinating anecdotes. Plus, it's satire at its finest. Let the rewrite begin!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tony Laplume

    Hey, pop quiz: Was 2012 an election year? And, uh, did Betsy Ross sew the first American flag? You will find an answer to at least one of these seemingly irrelevant questions within this book. And it will be pretty much all you need to know. I bought Me the People because I thought it would be funny, a funny look at the Constitution, a funny exploration of The Constitution. I was pretty much snookered. Kevin Bleyer, as it turns out, is another spinoff from The Daily Show, the news satire program t Hey, pop quiz: Was 2012 an election year? And, uh, did Betsy Ross sew the first American flag? You will find an answer to at least one of these seemingly irrelevant questions within this book. And it will be pretty much all you need to know. I bought Me the People because I thought it would be funny, a funny look at the Constitution, a funny exploration of The Constitution. I was pretty much snookered. Kevin Bleyer, as it turns out, is another spinoff from The Daily Show, the news satire program that, not for nothing, gained its reputation from another election year. And whether intentionally or not, became hopelessly partisan thereafter, thereby helping to chip away at useful public discourse in the process, so that today we...have none. A comedy show. That became known for partisanship. Bleyer is not a household name in 2018, not like other Daily Show alum, such as Steve Carrell (movie star) or Stephen Colbert (late night talk show host). He was one of its writers. Not for nothing, but he also wrote a few speeches for President Obama. He also, inexplicably, begins indirectly talking about Sarah Palin about halfway through this book. He never mentions her by name. But, y’know. Or maybe you don’t. At any rate, there’s no reason not to just name her, already, except it reveals the partisan nature, all over again, of Bleyer’s instincts. As I said, this was supposed to be a funny book. Most of the first half is actually Bleyer detailing the Constitutional Convention. In painstaking detail. More or less. Except his version is mostly a farce in which he “forgets” that there were different standards, different times, in the, y’know, past. By the time he’s talking about the Third Amendment and professing sheer amazement that it even exists, it becomes painfully clear how shallow his understanding of history really is. It’s nothing, however, compared to his frequent jokes about small states having no real basis to compete with large states. The old California (“we could be our own country! with a huge economy!”) argument, that’s become relevant again, thanks to another election. He pretends Rhode Island is the only state with a longer name than people generally use, just one of his less insipid attempts at humor. He doesn’t seem to realize his elitism isn’t a joke so much as part of the, y’know, problem... And all this would be fine if it weren’t so relevant to how far off the track we’ve gotten. In just the past five years. If you take a book like this at face value, like The Daily Show, as just political satire, you miss the whole point. It’s an attempt to define civil discourse as comedy, as thinly-veiled partisan comedy. And there’s certainly room for that. But not comedy that claims it isn’t partisan. Or politics, in general, that claims the other guy is horrible but we’re awesome and definitely am much more prepared to have a fair look at the landscape. This is Bleyer stretching a weak joke (he punts on just about every attempt to “rewrite” the Constitution, despite that being ostensibly being the whole point) too far, just so he can screw around as an “expert” and also get a few jabs in politically. While not comprehending for a second his comedy is, well, paper thin. It sells better when you only deal with people who already agree with you. But that’s the whole point. And exactly why we’re in the mess we’re in. Not because of those daft Founders, who even if they were even more human than Bleyer gleefully explores here, were to a man still far less asinine. But as a lesson in how a social quagmire happens, consider this a powerful, ah, Constitution...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    This book is a mess. It can’t really decide what it wants to be - a jokey book about mostly boastful humor, a book about eccentric trivia, a travel book about searching for pieces of the Constitution, or a book about how stupid conservatives are especially when it comes to the Constitution. The combination of the most former and the most latter make it feel the most confused - going from “ha I’m joking” to “I’m going to be sarcastic about how dumb conservatives are and how slackjawed Midwesterne This book is a mess. It can’t really decide what it wants to be - a jokey book about mostly boastful humor, a book about eccentric trivia, a travel book about searching for pieces of the Constitution, or a book about how stupid conservatives are especially when it comes to the Constitution. The combination of the most former and the most latter make it feel the most confused - going from “ha I’m joking” to “I’m going to be sarcastic about how dumb conservatives are and how slackjawed Midwesterners are” feels bizarrely toned. Ultimately Breyer fails at the tasks he tried to do: this book isn’t really funny, the eccentric trivia is clearly done by someone without a very good understanding of history - there’s no sense of moral or cognitive relativism in his understanding of history and how people have changed, or of how to interpret his historical findings - the travel book is pretty uninspired, and Bleyer’s book is already showing its age. Making fun of conservatives is an old concept; it’s clear that rich saltwater types like the author don’t understand them well and most haven’t tried. (Which is another failing - the author attempts to lay this book out as if it were for a high school student, explaining things in excruciating detail like that George Washington didn’t really chop down the cherry tree, as if this was something amazing.) Breyer misunderstands IMO if he thinks the better world he seeks is going to come this way - through a joking, condescending style in which one begins to think the jokes don’t feel like jokes at all.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Andrew

    "Me the People" is an interesting read about the American Constitution. Bleyer borders on real historical messages and a sharp satire about the entire process. The book really does not have a political message or leaning. Bleyer is more interested in why things were written and possible improvements to the document. Bleyer does not claim to be historical accurate in his account but he does want to provoke discussion. Bleyer speaks with many important people in Constitutional politics and several "Me the People" is an interesting read about the American Constitution. Bleyer borders on real historical messages and a sharp satire about the entire process. The book really does not have a political message or leaning. Bleyer is more interested in why things were written and possible improvements to the document. Bleyer does not claim to be historical accurate in his account but he does want to provoke discussion. Bleyer speaks with many important people in Constitutional politics and several archivists in buildings that house replicas of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution. Bleyer's meeting with Justice Antonin Scalia is one of the more interesting interviews.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Evan

    Not knowing much about the author, I was coming down from self driven study of the constitution.. looking for a good laugh. I got that laugh. Then a tear of boredom. Then I had to skim the rest of the book to finish. I kept thinking “this is like a bad Daily Show sketch” only to find out the author is a late night tv writer.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Morrison

    Engaging read for the basics of The US Constitution

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alisa Buchanan

    Humorous take on current political climate.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Currie

    Very funny, light read and as timely today as when it was written.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    I can't understand the low Goodreads rating. This book was so thoroughly amusing and informative that I hated putting it down, and that's saying something for a book about the U.S. Constitution.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Carol Wakefield

    Moderately interesting tongue in cheek look at the constitution. Enjoyed some historical tidbits but tired of authors personal experiences.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Vache

    The Constitution of the United States of America is the greatest document ever written. But despite all the beauty which lies within, it also possesses some flaws. In Me The People, Kevin Bleyer embraces these flaws head-on. I chose this book because I am a constitutionalist myself, and I really wanted to know what this guy had to say about the constitution. I actually had a lot of doubts about this book before I started it. Who does this guy think he is, rewriting the greatest document in the w The Constitution of the United States of America is the greatest document ever written. But despite all the beauty which lies within, it also possesses some flaws. In Me The People, Kevin Bleyer embraces these flaws head-on. I chose this book because I am a constitutionalist myself, and I really wanted to know what this guy had to say about the constitution. I actually had a lot of doubts about this book before I started it. Who does this guy think he is, rewriting the greatest document in the world? Whoever he is, he didn't do a bad job. The plot of the book is to prove to the American world that although the founding fathers wrote such an important document, there were a lot of mistakes. Kevin Bleyer tackles these mistakes and attempts to fix them. My favorite quote from this book is "We have made a terrible mistake. And by we, I mean you. You have made a terrible mistake. As a citizen of the United States of America, you have put your faith in a four-page document written by farmers, scrawled on animal skin, disseminated more than two centuries ago, conceived in desperation in the aftermath of war, composed in the language of the country it was intended to spurn, and, not for nothing, scribbled by hand with the quill of a goose." This whole quote kind of sums up what the whole book is about. Kevin Bleyer is just a guy who is tired of complying with something he finds wrong. Any person who cared about his country would try to fix something that they thought was wrong. I respect Bleyer for bravely going out and doing such an important task. The writing style of the author is very captivating. Kevin Bleyer manages to write in such a way where even if I disagreed with what he said, I would still agree with the point that it all led to. He knows what he's saying and he knows how to say it. At times his writing was very one-sided. That's okay because the point of the book is to very clearly state the mistakes which lie in the constitution. It's difficult to change such an important part of our history. Many people are too one-sided to accept the fact maybe there are actually problems in our constitution. I would recommend this book to anyone who reads to gain the knowledge within. I read not to enjoy the book, but to acquire the knowledge which lies within. And this book was as perfect example of that case. I didn't like many parts of the book, but I continued on, just so I could at the end of the book be able to say that I now know more than I did before I read it. So if you are a person like me, who is just trying to find some uncensored knowledge in books, I would recommend reading Me The People.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Camille

    I would give some parts of this book a five, while other sections (while still great), I'd only give a four. This book is very funny--laugh out loud funny--and I, being a lover of Stephen Colbert, thoroughly enjoyed the humor in this book. I strongly appreciate the history that is woven into the book. It is very informational, and while I was already aware of much of the history presented (thank you, college American Heritage class), I still learned a ton about our country's founding. Bleyer def I would give some parts of this book a five, while other sections (while still great), I'd only give a four. This book is very funny--laugh out loud funny--and I, being a lover of Stephen Colbert, thoroughly enjoyed the humor in this book. I strongly appreciate the history that is woven into the book. It is very informational, and while I was already aware of much of the history presented (thank you, college American Heritage class), I still learned a ton about our country's founding. Bleyer definitely did his research, which I appreciate. I also LOVED that Bleyer used the middle English and early modern English spellings for words all over the place--too funny. I love how Bleyer debunks the myth of the constitution, a document believed by some to be equal with the Bible. With a dash of history and a tablespoon of wit, Bleyer points out how the creation of the constitution and the founding of our country was nothing like the mythical, blissful portrait that is often taught--an inspired group of Christian men getting together to happily and quickly write the God-inspired piece of perfection we call a constitution--a myth that frankly does not historically hold its own, considering, for one, that many of the more notable founding fathers were deists. The founding was basically just a big compromise made among bickering men that looked at the world in fundamentally different ways. And upon this premise, Bleyer poses the question, "Why not rewrite the constitution?" A question I've had for years. The reason I don't give this book a five is because I feel like in many of the chapters (although not all), the conclusions were cop-outs and I felt myself wanting even more discussion. In these chapters, Bleyer gives us the problem, the context, and the history, but many of Bleyer's solutions I felt did not address the very problems he wanted to solve. Many of the chapters, IMO, deserved much more analysis and focus than was given. That being said, in the chapters where Bleyer did give adequate analysis and conclusion, wow. It was great. Unfortunately, those chapters set quite a high standard for the other chapters. I wanted all the chapters to be "wow" great. Overall, I would definitely recommend this book, if only for the historical perspective it gives (not to mention the humor). **I received this book through Goodreads giveaways

  22. 5 out of 5

    Angie Kregg

    I received my copy of the book through the Firstreads program. Not being an aficionado of politics in the slightest, I was unsure as to what my initial reaction would be after finishing this book. I had never read the Constitution, nor did I care to. I had never even considered voting, and was never interested on the impact our founding documents had on our modern day government. This book completely changed all of that. I have not laughed so hard, yet learned so much in such a short amount of tim I received my copy of the book through the Firstreads program. Not being an aficionado of politics in the slightest, I was unsure as to what my initial reaction would be after finishing this book. I had never read the Constitution, nor did I care to. I had never even considered voting, and was never interested on the impact our founding documents had on our modern day government. This book completely changed all of that. I have not laughed so hard, yet learned so much in such a short amount of time. It was an informative work, yet read like a comedy sketch. I found myself asking questions while laughing at the absurdity and chaos that is the American government. This is not the kind of political history that you find in textbooks, ladies and gentlemen. This is one of the books that revels in the hidden gems in history. Bleyer attacks each of the amendments with both wit and purpose, informing the reader of the true story of the history of American politics while retaining a biting and sarcastic sense of humor that left me in giggles, something I never thought a political book would be able to do. All the while, he raises thought-provoking questions about how our government is run, what needs to be changed, and, of course, how he would run things. While I do not necessarily agree with everything the author says, his words are food for thought. Because of this book, I am more intrigued by politics than I ever considered myself able to be. I wish more books on the government and politics were written in this style. They would be a lot more fun. In short, not only do I recommend this book for those readers who share a vested interest in politics, but I would even recommend it to those who don't have a clue and for those who thought they couldn't care less. As one of the readers who consider themselves to be of the second and third groups, I say that Mr. Bleyer's book is worth the consideration.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Drew Danko

    This is a strange book written by a strange man. Bleyer was a writer for the Daily Show and Bill Maher's show which might give you a clue as to the kind of mind this guy possesses. He writes about his attempt to rewrite the U.S. Constitution with tongue in cheek(I hope)in order to correct all its flaws. Humor is spread throughout the book, somtimes very witty and funny and at other times kind of juvenile. I enjoyed reading about the backstory to the writing of the constitution, but was somewhat This is a strange book written by a strange man. Bleyer was a writer for the Daily Show and Bill Maher's show which might give you a clue as to the kind of mind this guy possesses. He writes about his attempt to rewrite the U.S. Constitution with tongue in cheek(I hope)in order to correct all its flaws. Humor is spread throughout the book, somtimes very witty and funny and at other times kind of juvenile. I enjoyed reading about the backstory to the writing of the constitution, but was somewhat frustrated because I could not be sure if I was reading historical fact or Bleyer's attempt at revisionism. As he never used any citations I have to doubt what I was reading was factual although it read like the truth. You have to give him credit for even daring to attempt this project and then write about it. So I did gain some benefit from his audacious, irreverant work. First, it was fascinating to read about Justice Scalia's views on the immutability of the constitution. I'm at the other end of that debate because I could not imagine the framers being so wise and foresightful as to write a document that would be capable of dealing with all the complex issues facing us today and even more into the future. His rewrite idea also made me think how much fun it would be to have a mock (and maybe not so mock) constitutional convention ala Philadelphia, 1787. It's kind of fun to fantasize about what you would change and what you would leave alone. So if you would enoy a satirical look at our constitution this book is for you. It was done in good taste with the intent of being an entertaining and helpful look at our most foundational document.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Joe

    Amusing discussion about problems with the constitution but not super clever.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Marty

    I didn't read this thoroughly, just kind of skimmed and read here and there. It's very funny but also very informative. The author is a writer for a comedy commentator (Bill Maher?). He made suggestions for how to modernize the constitution, and he made a lot of points about how the constitution really isn't clear as to what the founders meant or how the founders didn't really agree and this was the best they could come up with. The House of Representatives originally had one representative for I didn't read this thoroughly, just kind of skimmed and read here and there. It's very funny but also very informative. The author is a writer for a comedy commentator (Bill Maher?). He made suggestions for how to modernize the constitution, and he made a lot of points about how the constitution really isn't clear as to what the founders meant or how the founders didn't really agree and this was the best they could come up with. The House of Representatives originally had one representative for 40,000 people (but George Washington wanted it to be 30,000 for some reason- it would hardly make a difference, would it?). But now each House Representative represents over 600,000 people. No wonder people don't feel like they are represented any more. I think it was early 1900s when the current number of Representatives was established. They felt that the House couldn't get any bigger or it would be completely unwieldy. He had a chapter on 2nd amendment rights - is it the right to have a well-armed mititia or the right of individuals to bear arms. I can't remember what his conclusion was, so I guess I'll have to reread it.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Cary Hillebrand

    The U.S. Constitution is really a remarkable document that most of us take for granted, with many innovations that are now standard in most western democracies such as division of powers (it is a sad commentary of our times when more teenagers can name the Three Stooges than the three branches of government), freedom of speech and of the press, and separation of church and state. The Constitution has survived over two hundred years through wars and depressions with only 27 ammendments (2 of whic The U.S. Constitution is really a remarkable document that most of us take for granted, with many innovations that are now standard in most western democracies such as division of powers (it is a sad commentary of our times when more teenagers can name the Three Stooges than the three branches of government), freedom of speech and of the press, and separation of church and state. The Constitution has survived over two hundred years through wars and depressions with only 27 ammendments (2 of which cancel out each other). The Founding Fathers would have been amazed at the durability of their handiwork, crafted in Philadelphia in the sweltering summer of 1787. Even Thomas Jefferson believed that the Constitution would have to be rewritten every 19 years. In this book, Kevin Bleyer, with tounge firmly in cheek, attempts to do just that! Regrettably, by a third of the way through the book, the humor becomes tedious and wears thin and overshadows the otherwise superb and thought provoking research. At some point I put the boook down. Hardy soul that I am, I picked it up again and stubbornly finished it so you gentle readers won't have to.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Pauline

    So...what to say about this book? Everyone has taken a U.S history course at some point in his or her life. Some of us have maybe wondered about how legitimate all these ancient documents are in relation to the world that we live in today. That is basically what this book asks and attempts to answer. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights are what our entire legal system is based off of. What happens when the documents were supposed to be rewritten every decade or so to fit the times? Yeah. Tha So...what to say about this book? Everyone has taken a U.S history course at some point in his or her life. Some of us have maybe wondered about how legitimate all these ancient documents are in relation to the world that we live in today. That is basically what this book asks and attempts to answer. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights are what our entire legal system is based off of. What happens when the documents were supposed to be rewritten every decade or so to fit the times? Yeah. That is one of the things they forgot to tell us in history class. The also forgot to mention it to the people running this country. So, this book is a lovely journey into the different sections of our governing body while relating it to moments in history. It is humorous and informative at the same time and points out quite a few flaws in these great documents that have become law in this country. Disclaimer: I won this in a Goodreads Firstreads giveaway.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tracey

    Heard about this book on the Diane Rehm Show 11 Jun 2012 in an interview with Bleyer. The concept intrigued me, and the author (a writer on the Daily Show) came across well enough on the radio. Bleyer is a bit more smug in print; trying too hard at times to be clever in the process of both recounting the Founding Fathers' struggle to write the Constitution as well as his own travails in re-writing it. I have a feeling the modern-day elements/humour are not going to age well at all; but I did app Heard about this book on the Diane Rehm Show 11 Jun 2012 in an interview with Bleyer. The concept intrigued me, and the author (a writer on the Daily Show) came across well enough on the radio. Bleyer is a bit more smug in print; trying too hard at times to be clever in the process of both recounting the Founding Fathers' struggle to write the Constitution as well as his own travails in re-writing it. I have a feeling the modern-day elements/humour are not going to age well at all; but I did appreciate Bleyer's research and in-depth descriptions of the Constitutional Convention. Bleyer put some decent effort into putting this book together and I think I've come away with a little better understanding of & appreciation for this document. I probably won't revisit this book, but would more-or-less recommend it to history geeks who have already read thru all of Sarah Vowell's books and enjoyed the Daily Show publications.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Rich

    This book is a bit of a mess. There are several parts that are insightful, entertaining, and sometimes brilliantly written. These are unfortunately, overwhelmed by numerous passages that ooze a bit too much snark, juvenile humor, or sometimes pointless additions. It's okay for the first hundred pages or so, but it gets monotonous after a while. I would have liked to have seen the author focus more on the history of the Constitution and the various debates that have arisen about it and the variou This book is a bit of a mess. There are several parts that are insightful, entertaining, and sometimes brilliantly written. These are unfortunately, overwhelmed by numerous passages that ooze a bit too much snark, juvenile humor, or sometimes pointless additions. It's okay for the first hundred pages or so, but it gets monotonous after a while. I would have liked to have seen the author focus more on the history of the Constitution and the various debates that have arisen about it and the various amendments instead of droning on about pointless attempts at humor when they weren't really necessary. There's enough humor in the debates to simply point it out, we don't need facile commentary that doesn't really contribute to the book's (admittedly veiled) focus. Recommended with reservations.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Edie

    Wow, who knew that reading about the Constitution could be so much fun and so interesting too. Kevin Bleyer is not the first to take on this dauntless task as he states in his Foreword, so you're already more knowledgeable than most of your friends after reading only 2 1/2 pages....what a deal. And in taking on this subject that most of us have carefully avoided even when we were supposed to be studying about it, or grown weary of hearing simple minded interpretations by people who think they "own Wow, who knew that reading about the Constitution could be so much fun and so interesting too. Kevin Bleyer is not the first to take on this dauntless task as he states in his Foreword, so you're already more knowledgeable than most of your friends after reading only 2 1/2 pages....what a deal. And in taking on this subject that most of us have carefully avoided even when we were supposed to be studying about it, or grown weary of hearing simple minded interpretations by people who think they "own" it, Kevin has funny new insights that also bear more than just a belly laugh or two (and there are lots of them in his book). His appreciation for and understanding of his subject is evident and is why the book is so successful. It is not just one long joke, it is the basis for discussion and thought, but with a smile on your face. Read it and see for yourself.

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