A Fabulous Synthesis of The Breakdown Between Economics and Governance
Capitalism is the economic model that drives how a majority of the people in the world earn their livelihoods. Democracy is how that same majority govern themselves. These two systems are deeply intertwined and deeply interdependent. Over the last several decades the elites who drive — and thrive in — capitalism have distorted our system of governance to their advantage.
The stillness of living things A notch above hibernation The deeper rhythms of the northern seasons.
People say be present, to live in the moment.
Thanks, but I want to live in the future.
In the moment, I want the second half of that pastrami sandwich.
Two hours into the future, with my belly feeling beyond full, I can’t figure out what the hell I was thinking.
There is something deeply weird about humanity. … This phrase does not refer to our skills with language or our use of tools or ability to change our environment, remarkable though these are. It refers to our astonishing degree of altruism: our kindness towards other members of our species. We possess an unparalleled sensitivity to the needs of others, a unique level of concern about their welfare, and a peerless ability to create moral norms that generalise and enforce these tendencies.
— George Monbiot. Out of the Wreckage: A New Politics for an Age of Crisis
Democracy is under siege. Authoritarianism is on the rise. This is true, not only in America, but in the UK and other parts of Europe as well. Bills in the US Congress that are highly unpopular are passed by politicians who are equally so. The elected officials at the local and federal levels work for their donors, not for the people who elected them. How can this be happening? In the developed world? In the 21st century?
Dark Money is the inside story of how 400 of the richest people in America are putting their money to work to bend academia, the media, churches, and the courts to their self-interest. If you want to understand what is happening at the political — and to some degree, cultural — level in America today, you must read this book.
Jane Mayer’s deep research and lucid writing is the perfect companion to Nancy MacLean’s brilliant work, Democracy in Chains. While Democracy in Chains is about the philosophy and ideology that underlies the thinking of those on the far right, Dark Money is about the players, their money, and how they are propagating their narcissistic values and beliefs to change the face of America.
As it subtitle states, Democracy in Chains is a deep history of the radical right’s stealth plan for America. It is the utterly chilling story of the ideological origins of the single most powerful and least understood threat to democracy today: the attempt by the billionaire-backed radical right to undo democratic governance. … [they are on] a stealth bid to reverse-engineer all of America, at both the state and the national levels, back to the political economy and oligarchic governance of midcentury Virginia, minus the segregation.
Read this book if you want to understand what is happening in America today.