Heroes, Hacks, and Fools
Memoirs from the Political Inside
In the late 1960s, Van Dyk moved to Columbia University as vice president to help quell campus disorders which threatened the university. Over a period of 35 years he was a senior advisor to presidential candidates Humphrey, McGovern, Carter, Ted Kennedy, Mondale, Hart, and Tsongas; contributed regular essays to the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Fortune, and other national publications; and led two national think tanks. In 2001 the Bellingham, Washington, native returned to the Northwest to write a regular editorial-page column for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Van Dyk’s memoirs contain many previously untold stories from an historic period of national politics, portray brilliant and not-so-brilliant leaders and ideas, and also illuminate politics’ darker side. They bring to life the flawed realities and enduring opportunities of public policymaking in our time.
"Van Dyk's book is a helpful primer on what goes on behind the scenes and a reminder that it's important to pick presidents with character as well as competence."—Bellingham Herald
"Ted Van Dyk is telling us exactly what happened and what he honestly thought about it. It's as pure a political memoir as we're ever likely to see. . . . [with] the kind of filthy detail that most political memoirs are too polite, and too deadly boring, to share."—The Stranger
"Heroes, Hacks, and Fools is about Democrats. It is a well-written and detailed autobiography..His story, particularly of the Humphrey-McGovern years, is one of the best accounts of that era in a long time."—Seattle Times
"It is precisely [Van Dyk's] willingness to stick his neck out, to study and opine and participate, that makes his arguments so compelling."—Bookmonger: Kitsap Sun
"Van Dyk provides valuable insights into, and newsworthy revelations about, the many important events he’s been involved in and the many public figures he has been associated with, and their role in shaping the public policies of the late twentieth century."—Albert Eisele, Editor at Large, The Hill, and press secretary to former Vice President Walter Mondale
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