Readers of my comments may remember that perennial troll (and, unbelievably, my cousin) Mike T. proposed a wager back in June regarding the results of the presidential election.
I'll call it now, McCain will win by a much larger margin than Bush did in the 2000 election.I have not forgotten about this.
...I propose the bet be who will win, instead of odds that one candidate will defeat another. Also, I think the stakes should be something more interesting than a money amount. I suggest that the loser must read a book of the winner's choosing.
The natural choice would seem to be Dreams from My Father, but I worry (a) it's too obvious (b) he's not in a place where he would get much out of it (c) I think he might have told me (unbelievably!) he's already read it.
At one point I was leaning towards Jared Diamond's Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, just because his nonsense assertions about ecology drive me completely up the wall. But again I wonder how much he would actually get out of reading it.
I sort of like the idea of picking A Theory of Justice, and not only because it's so long.
The absolute best thing, I think, would be something that would teach the concept of empathy to a person that doesn't have much. But I'm not sure what that book is.
Failing that, something really punishing.