Democracy in Chains

Democracy in Chains

The Deep History of the Radical Right's Stealth Plan for America

Book - 2017
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"An explosive expose of the right's relentless campaign to eliminate unions, suppress voting, privatize public education, and change the Constitution. "Perhaps the best explanation to date of the roots of the political divide that threatens to irrevocably alter American government." --Booklist (starred review) Behind today's headlines of billionaires taking over our government is a secretive political establishment with long, deep, and troubling roots. The capitalist radical right has been working not simply to change who rules, but to fundamentally alter the rules of democratic governance. But billionaires did not launch this movement; a white intellectual in the embattled Jim Crow South did. Democracy in Chains names its true architect--the Nobel Prize-winning political economist James McGill Buchanan--and dissects the operation he and his colleagues designed over six decades to alter every branch of government to disempower the majority. In a brilliant and engrossing narrative, Nancy MacLean shows how Buchanan forged his ideas about government in a last gasp attempt to preserve the white elite's power in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education. In response to the widening of American democracy, he developed a brilliant, if diabolical, plan to undermine the ability of the majority to use its numbers to level the playing field between the rich and powerful and the rest of us. Corporate donors and their right-wing foundations were only too eager to support Buchanan's work in teaching others how to divide America into "makers" and "takers." And when a multibillionaire on a messianic mission to rewrite the social contract of the modern world, Charles Koch, discovered Buchanan, he created a vast, relentless, and multi-armed machine to carry out Buchanan's strategy. Without Buchanan's ideas and Koch's money, the libertarian right would not have succeeded in its stealth takeover of the Republican Party as a delivery mechanism. Now, with Mike Pence as Vice President, the cause has a longtime loyalist in the White House, not to mention a phalanx of Republicans in the House, the Senate, a majority of state governments, and the courts, all carrying out the plan. That plan includes harsher laws to undermine unions, privatizing everything from schools to health care and Social Security, and keeping as many of us as possible from voting. Based on ten years of unique research, Democracy in Chains tells a chilling story of right-wing academics and big money run amok. This revelatory work of scholarship is also a call to arms to protect the achievements of twentieth-century American self-government"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Viking, c2017
ISBN: 9781101980965
1101980966
Branch Call Number: 320.53097 M2238D 2017
Characteristics: xxxii, 334 pages ; 24 cm

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StarGladiator
Apr 15, 2018

[I'm afraid I find Prof. Maclean to be rather bipolar; I agree with her criticisms of the rightwinger types, but she embraces Bill Clinton and the other faux crats or D.I.N.O.s - - suffice it to say that it was Peter G. Peterson's Blackstone Group which gave office space to Clinton in his first presidential run and was a major donor to his campaign, and Peterson is the dude who wanted to do away with Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, offshore all American jobs and worship the WTO's Financial Services Agreement, et cetera - - if one is against the r-cons for this, one shouldn't embrace the dems who push the same thing - - remember, Clinton was all set to give a // privatize Social Security \\ speech and sign an executive order to that effect, but on the morning of that speech, the Monica Lewinski scandal broke!]
There are usually two routes taken when one presents a thesis: [1] all the available information is gathered, studied and hopefully comprehended, then a thesis is put forward accordingly; and, [2] one is enamored with a particular thesis, then cherry picks that information which they believe will support their cherished thesis.
Sadly, Prof. MacLean opts for the second way.

Yes, the University of Chicago boys founded the Mont Pelerin Society [a rather obscure outfit, I'd admit], but it is of some importance to understand the years of Rockefeller financing behind the University of Chicago, especially their economics, law and business faculties [both Scalia and Obama had positions there, did they not???].
The professor leaves some very important facts out, facts which might skew or alter her thesis. LBJ was in one hundred percent alignment with the bankers and provided them with the necessary tools for eventually establishing a global banking cartel; Jimmy Carter's overturning of federal anti-usury laws and regulations was equivalent to that magic phrase which opened Ali Babba's secret cave; although every president from Carter to the present has had a hand in the dismantling of the New Deal, her darling Bill Clinton did the most to destroy it!
Here in Washington state it is the democratic state legislators pushing for toll roads [privatization of roads - - part of A.L.E.C. and the Koch brothers' agenda] and it was the democratic governor, Jay Inslee, who allowed charter schools legislation to pass [again, part of the Koch brothers agenda].
Every administration from at least FDR to Obama, including all republican administrations, contained either a Rockefeller, or multiple Rockefeller family representatives. I believe it was President Truman's wife who was a Rockefeller family counsin? When so-called liberal appointee to that sequestration committee by President Obama [Erskine Bowles] rushed out to blame everything on Social Security [????] after we had just experienced the greatest wealth transfer in history from the global economic meltdown, I was not surprised, knowing that he made his big bucks in between political appointments thanks to Rockefeller family connections [Henry Kissinger]. MacLean claims that members of the liberal establishment founded the Trilateral Commission - - so she believes David Rockefeller to be a liberal?!?!?!?
George Gilder [trickle down economics], so famous and popular during the Reagan Administration, was the adopted son of David Rockefeller - - another of those pesky facts the PuppetMedia somehow neglected to mention all that time?!?!?
As the economist, E. Ray Canterbery said . . . it's all about inflating financial assets!

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