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Authors: Jim Geraghty

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BOOK: The Weed Agency
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Lisa greeted the question with laughter.

“I’ve been here a long time,” she said. “I’ve heard that talk a lot of times before. We’ll see if this time is any different.”


Dana Perino and Sean Desmond, both formerly of Crown Forum, got the ball rolling on this book, and I can’t thank them enough. The ball was handed to Stephanie Knapp, without a fumble or wobble, in a manner so smooth and streamlined I’m still in disbelief. Campbell Wharton and the rest of the crew at Crown Forum are fantastic, and I am indebted to their efforts.

Whenever I mention that my agent is Mel Berger, eyebrows get raised, and I get the occasional, “Wait, why would he represent somebody like
?” I don’t know why, but I’m very lucky to have him. On all the little details, I rest assured knowing Mel and his team have got things covered.

Way back in late 2011, Thomas Schatz and Leslie Page of Citizens Against Government Waste were kind enough to share their time and confirm all of my worst suspicions and fears about how the federal bureaucracy works and doesn’t work. David Edwards, former executive director of the Joint National Committee for Languages, is an old Washington hand who knows where all the bodies were buried, and helped flesh out the portrait of the nation’s capital in past decades.

I am very lucky to write for
National Review
, and bosses who will let you spread your wings, take risks, stumble, develop your voice, and pay you to do what you love, writing about politics. Thank you, Rich Lowry and Jack Fowler. My colleagues at
are wonderful, brilliant, inspired people who are kind and warm enough to dispel my simmering jealousy of their talents.

Various friends read early drafts and saved me from my
worst instincts. Cam Edwards, Rachel Hanig Grunspan, Shannon Lane, Flint Dille, Amanda Seewald, thank you. Readers, if you encounter anything in these pages that stinks, it’s because I ignored their advice in that spot.

As you read through this, you’ll encounter happy-hour hangouts from 1990s-era Washington, and many, sadly, shut their doors years ago, but the memories of “the clique” and life as a low-level drone in the nation’s capital will live forever. Okay, to be honest, some of those memories are a little fuzzy.

That illustration of Stalin with weeds in chapter one? That’s the illustrative work of my brother Paul Geraghty, immensely talented. If you are holding this book right now, there is about a fifty percent chance my dad twisted your arm into buying it. He and my mom are gifts I don’t deserve; the greatest unfair advantage any man ever had is parents who love him and provide role models.

Speaking of parenthood, my boys have been very patient. My older son, now six, can actually accurately describe the plot. Stay tuned for
The Weed Agency: The Animated Series!

Finally, my wife, Allison, is the best, and she said she likes this book more than anything else I’ve ever written.

That isn’t that high a bar to clear.


Jim Geraghty has been a contributing editor at
National Review
since 2004.

Previously a reporter at States News Service, Jim has written for the
Washington Post
Boston Globe
Denver Post
Detroit Free Press
Bergen Record
, and scores of other papers. Earlier in his career, he reported for the
Dallas Morning News
, Congressional Quarterly, and the now-departed websites and Intellectual

Kerry Spot
blog was awarded “Best Political Dirt” by in 2004, and the
of London praised his “killer insight” in that election cycle.

Jim’s first book,
Voting to Kill
, a look at how the 9/11 attacks affected American voters, was published by Simon and Schuster in August 2006.
called the book “insightful and comprehensive,” and David Reinhard’s review in the
declared, “The reporting is fresh, the analysis rigorous and the writing snappy.”

Jim spent two years in Ankara, Turkey, working as a foreign correspondent and studying anti-Americanism, democratization, Islam, Middle East politics, and U.S. diplomacy efforts, appearing in the
Philadelphia Inquirer
New York Sun
Washington Times
, and
Washington Examiner
. He covered violent protests over the Muhammad cartoons, avian flu outbreaks, and Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Ankara. He also covered national elections in Great Britain and Germany, and has reported from Egypt, Italy, Israel, Spain, and Jordan in his career.

In 2008,
Best Life
magazine called Jim one of “the 10 most important voices to listen to in this election cycle.”

In addition to reporting and blogging, Jim regularly appears on
On the Record with Greta Van Susteren
Media Buzz with Howard Kurtz
on Fox News, Chuck Todd’s
The Daily Rundown
on MSNBC, and
The Lead
with Jake Tapper on CNN.

BOOK: The Weed Agency
13.87Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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