"The thing is, when you actually think about it, it's not funny. Given what's at stake, it's more like the opposite, like the first sign of the collapse of the United States as a global superpower. Twenty years from now, when we're all living like prehistory hominids and hunting rats with sticks, we'll probably look back at this moment as the beginning of the end."
In this groundbreaking collection of twenty-four articles from Rolling Stone – plus two original pieces – Matt Taibbi tells the full story of the Trump phenomenon, from its tragi-comic beginnings to the apocalyptic conclusion to the election, through sharp, on-the-ground reporting, and gallows humour. His incisive analysis goes beyond the bizarre and disturbing election to tell a wider story of the apparent collapse of American democracy. Taibbi saw the essential themes right from the start: the power of spectacle over truth; the end of a shared reality on the left and right; the nihilistic rebellion of the white working class; the death of the political establishment; and the emergence of a new, explicit form of white nationalism.
From the thwarted Bernie Sanders insurgency to the aimless Hillary Clinton campaign, across the wilting media coverage and the trampled legacy of Obama, this is the story of ordinary voters forced to bear witness to the whole charade as it unfolds. At the centre of it all, "a bumbling train wreck of a candidate who belched and preened his way past a historically weak field" who, improbably, has taken control of the world's most powerful nation.
This is essential and hilarious reading that explores how the new America understands itself, and where it points for the future the world.
Since 1970 seventy-three political leaders within the major parties have been forcibly removed from their leadership positions. And at the heart of the turmoil is the media, with its 24-hour news cycle making political leadership evermore precarious.
Disposable Leaders is an engaging and insightful analysis of the high-drama leadership challenge - a regular event that is now central to Australian politics. Not only does Rodney Tiffen explore some of the most intriguing federal leadership struggles that have dominated recent Australian politics in detail, he also examines all of the 73 successful leadership challenges that have occurred since 1970. In doing so Tiffen also shines a light on the central role the media plays in the revolving-door leadership that has become the new normal in modern Australian politics.
'Brilliant observations on the anthropology of power. You will laugh aloud and won't put it down' Daniel Kahneman In this eye-opening exploration of the human weaknesses for power, Daniel Levin takes us on a journey through the absurd world of our global elites, drawing unforgettable sketches of some of the puppets who stand guard, and the jugglers and conjurers employed within. Most spectacular of all, however, are the astonishing contortions performed by those closest to the top in order to maintain the illusion of integrity, decency, and public service. Based on the author's first hand experiences of dealing with governments and political institutions around the world, Nothing but a Circus offers a rare glimpse of the conversations that happen behind closed doors, observing the appalling lengths that people go to in order to justify their unscrupulous choices, from Dubai to Luanda, Moscow to Beijing, and at the heart of the UN and the US government.
New York, Washington, Madrid, London and now Paris D the list of Western cities targeted by radical Islamic terrorists waging global jihad continues to grow. Does this extreme violence committed in the name of Islam point to a fundamental enmity between the Muslim faith and the West? In this compelling essay, leading scholar of Islam Tamara Sonn argues that whilst the West has many enemies among Muslims, it is politics not religion that informs their grievances. The longer these demands remain frustrated, the more violence has escalated and recruitment to groups like Islamic State has increased. Far from quelling the spread of Islamic extremism, Western military intervention has helped to turn nationalist movements into radical terrorist groups with international agendas. Islam, Sonn concludes, is not the problem, just as war is not the solution.
When it comes to asylum-seekers on Nauru, we learn only what the government wants us to know. In the wake of The Nauru Files, see first-hand is happening inside the Nauru detention centre through Mark Isaacs' eyewitness account. Mark Isaacs worked for the Salvation Army inside the Nauru Detention Centre soon after it re-opened in 2012. He provided humanitarian aid to the men interned in the camp. What he saw there moved him to speak out. The Undesirables chronicles his time on Nauru, detailing daily life and the stories of the men held there; the self-harm, suicide attempts, and riots; the rare moments of joy; the moments of deep despair. He takes us behind the gates of Nauru and humanises a political debate usually ruled by misleading rhetoric. This revised edition of The Undesirables features an updated foreword from Julian Burnside and a new chapter by Mark that interrogates how little has changed inside the detention centre, despite documented human rights abuses, and why we need to close offshore detention centres.
One of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's 20 Books to Watch, fall 2016 A deeply reported book on the birth of the Black Lives Matter movement, offering unparalleled insight into the reality of police violence in America, and an intimate, moving portrait of those working to end it In over a year of on-the-ground reportage, Washington Post writer Wesley Lowery traveled across the US to uncover life inside the most heavily policed, if otherwise neglected, corners of America today.
In an effort to grasp the scale of the response to Michael Brown's death and understand the magnitude of the problem police violence represents, Lowery conducted hundreds of interviews with the families of victims of police brutality, as well as with local activists working to stop it. Lowery investigates the cumulative effect of decades of racially biased policing in segregated neighborhoods with constant discrimination, failing schools, crumbling infrastructure and too few jobs. Offering a historically informed look at the standoff between the police and those they are sworn to protect, They Can't Kill Us All demonstrates that civil unrest is just one tool of resistance in the broader struggle for justice.
And at the end of President Obama's tenure, it grapples with a worrying and largely unexamined aspect of his legacy: the failure to deliver tangible security and opportunity to the marginalised Americans most in need of it.
At a time when politics seems increasingly negative and our society increasingly divided, Still Lucky shows that we are more fortunate than we think, and have more in common than we know.
Rebecca Huntley, one of Australia’s most experienced and knowledgeable social researchers, wants to break through all the noise and make you feel better about this country and the people around you. Our politicians are becoming more conservative, both in their policies and their ambitions for the country, but the Australian people – almost all of us – want to see real social change. We are more generous and more progressive, and more alike, than we think we are – and we are better than our day-today political discourse would suggest.
Huntley has spent years travelling the country, getting to know what’s in our hearts and minds. Here she tackles the biggest social questions facing Australia now: Why do we fear asylum seekers? Why are women still underpaid and overworked? Why do we over-parent? Why do we worry even though we are lucky?
Still Lucky is a broad-ranging, wise and compelling look at who we are now and where we are heading in the future, from someone who knows what Australians are really thinking.
Peace, many would agree, is a goal that democratic nations should strive to achieve. Considering the question of whether democracy is dependent on war, two celebrated political scientists trace the ways in which governments have mobilised armies since antiquity. They find that our modern form of democracy not only evolved in a brutally competitive environment but also was quickly excised when the powerful no longer needed their citizenry to defend against existential threats. Bringing to life many of the battles that shaped our world, the authors show how centralised monarchies replaced feudalism, why dictatorships can mobilise large forces but often fail at long-term military campaigns and how drone warfare has weakened democracy. In the spirit of Francis Fukuyama and Niall Ferguson, Forged Through Fire has far-reaching implications and will become the centrepiece of the democratic debate.
On September 11, 2001, Osama bin Laden declared global jihad on the West. In response to the day's attacks, the United States has waged its own global war on terrorism, which the Pentagon has described as a generational conflict similar to the Cold War.
In The Islamic Challenge and the United States, Ehsan Ahrari takes a close look at this ideological conflict, focusing on the Middle East, Africa, and South and Central Asia. Arguing that the war on terrorism is founded on secular fundamentalism (an ideology that envisions Islam as dangerous and volatile because it mixes religion and politics) and the Enlightenment narrative, Ahrari suggests that the US sees global jihadists as absolutist, irrational, obscurantist, and anti-modern. While violence on behalf of the Muslim community - ummah - is thus framed as reprehensible, violence on behalf of the Western nation-state is seen as sometimes necessary and often praiseworthy. Unsettlingly, this framework does not encourage careful scrutiny of the US's historical dealings with the Muslim world. The belief that religion causes violence, Ahrari argues, may blind the West to its own forms of fanaticism.
A timely analysis of one of the most contested issues of our times, The Islamic Challenge and the United States is a must-read for global security practitioners, policymakers, and general readers.
With a new preface by the authorSince its original publication in 1976, Perception and Misperception in International Politics has become a landmark book in its field, hailed by the New York Times as the seminal statement of principles underlying political psychology. This new edition includes an extensive preface by the author reflecting on the book's lasting impact and legacy, particularly in the application of cognitive psychology to political decision making, and brings that analysis up to date by discussing the relevant psychological research over the past forty years. Jervis describes the process of perception (for example, how decision makers learn from history) and then explores common forms of misperception (such as overestimating one's influence). He then tests his ideas through a number of important events in international relations from nineteenth- and twentieth-century European history. Perception and Misperception in International Politics is essential for understanding international relations today.
In the absence of noble public goals, admired leaders, and compelling issues, many warn of a dangerous erosion of civil society, which includes families, religious organizations, and all other NGOs. Are they right? What are the roots and implications of their insistent alarm? How can public life be enriched in a period marked by fraying communities, widespread apathy, and unprecedented levels of contempt for politics? How should we be thinking about civil society?
Civil Society: The Critical History of an Idea provides a comprehensive discussion and analysis of two and a half millennia of Western political theory, as well as how civil society might be understood in the future. John Ehrenberg analyzes both the usefulness and the limitations of civil society and maps the political and theoretical evolution of the concept and its employment in academic and public discourse. From Aristotle and the Enlightenment philosophers to Black Lives Matter and the Occupy movement, Ehrenberg provides an indispensable analysis of the possibilities of what this increasingly important idea can, and cannot, offer to contemporary political affairs.
In this new, second edition Ehrenberg brings the historical overview up to present day, specifically considering how major events such as 9/11, the global financial crisis, economic inequality, and rapidly advancing technologies alter and shape our relationship to contemporary civil society. Civic engagement, political participation, and volunteerism in contemporary life has faded, he argues, and in order to bring civil society?and all its virtues?back to the fore, we need to counter the suffocating inequality that has taken hold in recent years. Thorough and accessible, Civil Society gives a sweeping overview of a foundational part of political life.
In 1883, Francis Galton, a cousin of Charles Darwin, coined the word "eugenics" to express his dream of perfecting the human race by applying the laws of genetic heredity. Adapting Darwin's theory of evolution to human society, eugenics soon became a powerful, international movement, committed to using the principles of heredity and statistics to encourage healthy and discourage unhealthy reproduction. Early in the twentieth century and across the world, doctors, social reformers, and politicians turned to the new science of eugenics as a means to improve and strengthen their populations. Eugenics advocates claimed their methods would result in healthier, fitter babies and would dramatically limit human suffering.
The reality was a different story. In the name of scientific progress and of human improvement, eugenicists targeted the weak and the sick, triggering coercive legislation on issues as disparate as race, gender, immigration, euthanasia, abortion, sterilization, intelligence, mental illness, and disease control. Nationalists eagerly embraced eugenics as a means to legitimize their countries' superiority and racialized assumptions, and the Nazis notoriously used eugenics to shape their "final solution."
In this lucid volume, Philippa Levine tackles the intricate and controversial history of eugenics, masterfully synthesizing the enormous range of policies and experiments carried out in the name of eugenics around the world throughout the twentieth century. She questions the widespread belief that eugenics disappeared after World War II and evaluates the impact of eugenics on current reproductive and genetic sciences. Charting the development of such controversial practices as artificial insemination, sperm donation, and population control, this book offers a powerful, extraordinarily timely reflection on the frequent interplay between genetics and ethics. Eugenics may no longer be a household word, but we feel its effects even today.