What are the consequences if the people given control over our government have no idea how it works? Stay tuned.
"The election happened," remembers Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, then deputy secretary of the Department of Energy. "And then there was radio silence." Across all departments, similar stories were playing out: Trump appointees were few and far between; those that did show up were shockingly uninformed about the functions of their new workplace. Some even threw away the briefing books that had been prepared for them.
Michael Lewis's brilliant narrative takes us into the engine rooms of a government under attack by its own leaders. In Agriculture, the funding of vital programs like food stamps and school lunches is being slashed. Commerce may not have enough staff to conduct the 2020 Census properly. Over at Energy, where international nuclear risk is managed, it's not clear there will be enough inspectors to track and locate black market uranium before terrorists do.
Lewis finds the linchpins of the system-those public servants whose knowledge, dedication, and proactivity keep the machinery running. And he asks them what keeps them up at night.
The man lives, quite literally, in a building serviced by a golden elevator. Somehow, he presented himself as the scourge of the elites. For decades, he built a persona based on the most conspicuous consumption and the crassest of excess - and then he won the presidency on an antiestablishment ticket. The unlikely rise of Donald J Trump exemplifies the political paradox of the twenty-first century.
In this new Gilded Age, the contrast between the haves and the have-nots could not be starker. The world?s eight richest billionaires control as much wealth as the poorest half of the planet - a disparity of wealth and political power unknown in any previous period. Yet not only have progressives failed to make gains in circumstances that should, on paper, favour egalitarianism and social justice, the angry populism that?s prospered explicitly targets ideas associated with the left - and none more so than so-called 'political correctness?.
If Trump - and others like Trump - can turn hostility to PC into a winning slogan, how should the left respond? In the face of a vicious new bigotry, should progressives double-down on identity politics and gender theory? Must they abandon political correctness and everything associated with it to re-connect with a working class they?ve alienated? Or is there, perhaps, another way entirely?
In Trigger Warnings, Jeff Sparrow excavates the development of a powerful new vocabulary against progressive causes. From the Days of Rage to Gamergate, from the New Left to the alt-right, he traces changing attitudes to democracy and trauma, symbolism and liberation, in an exhilarating history of ideas and movements. Challenging progressive and conservative orthodoxies alike, Trigger Warnings is a bracing polemic and a persuasive case for a new kind of politics.
The bestselling author of The Origins of Political Order and The End of History offers a provocative examination of modern identity politics and their effect on domestic and international affairs of state.
In 2014, Francis Fukuyama wrote that American and global institutions were in a state of decay, as the state was captured by powerful interest groups. Two years later, his predictions were borne out by the rise to power of a series of political outsiders whose economic nationalism and authoritarian tendencies threatens to destabilise the entire international order. These populist nationalists seek direct charismatic connection to 'the people', who are usually defined in narrow identity terms that offer an irresistible call to an in-group and exclude large parts of the population as a whole.
The demands of identity direct much of what is going on in world politics today. The universal recognition on which liberal democracy is based has been increasingly challenged by restrictive forms of recognition based on nation, religion, sect, race, ethnicity, or gender, which have resulted in anti-immigrant populism, the upsurge of politicised Islam, the fractious environment of many college campuses, and the hideous emergence of white nationalism.
Identity is an urgent and necessary book: a sharp warning that unless we forge a universal understanding of human dignity, we will doom ourselves to continual conflict.
Take Back Australia is a thoughtfully curated collection of Mark Latham's previously published articles about the ideals that ooze through our culture and our country. Ideals that are under threat from a post-modernist collective with an anti-enlightenment objective.
Latham argues that there's a cultural invasion running through Australia, with the rise of mutant strains of political correctness, identity politics and social engineering in our major institutions, including schools and universities.
Following the style of his best selling Outsiders (2017), Take Back Australia is another thought provoking, conversation-starting collection of Latham's musings that will be a call to arms for all who agree that our country, our culture and our civilisation need to be saved.
`John Ruddick is performing a signal service in informing the public of the opportunities possible in the democratisation of the Liberal Party of Australia.' David Flint A manifesto for Liberal Party supporters around Australia.
In this timely book, John Ruddick calls for the Liberal Party of Australia to be brought not so much into the 21st century but rather into the latter part of the 20th century. The principal parties in almost all comparative democracies have in the last century become significantly more open, transparent and democratic than either of Australia's principal parties.
Ruddick has been at the forefront of democratic reform within the Liberal Party for three decades. Make the Liberal Party Great Again is the culmination of his efforts and a call to arms. The book argues the Liberal Party should abandon the confl icted party room ballot to select the Liberal Party candidate for prime minister and introduce historic democratic reform that will invite all paid up Liberal Party members to have a vote on the most consequential decision the party makes. It's far from radical ... its actually the Westminster norm in the 21st century.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR John Ruddick has been an advocate of democratic reform within the NSW Liberal Party since the mid-1990s and on two occasions his efforts have almost had him expelled from the party. He has written opinion pieces about politics and history for The Australian, Sydney Morning Herald, The Spectator, Quadrant, The Drum and The Guardian and occasionally appears on Sky News. When not advocating political reform he has run a North Sydney based mortgage broking business since 2002.
Walls are going up. Nationalism and identity politics are on the rise once more. Thousands of miles of fences and barriers have been erected since the turn of the century, and they are redefining our political landscape.
There are many reasons why walls go up, because we are divided in many ways: wealth, race, religion, politics. In Europe the divisions of the past decade threaten not only European unity, but in some countries liberal democracy itself. In China, the Party's need to contain the divisions wrought by capitalism will define the nation's future. In the USA the rationale for the Mexican border wall runs deeper than the need to control illegal immigration; it taps into the fear that the USA will no longer be a white majority country during the course of this century.
Understanding what has divided us, past and present, is essential to understanding much of what's going on in the world today. In eight chapters covering China; the USA; Israel; the Middle East; India and Bangladesh; Africa; Europe and the UK, bestselling author Tim Marshall presents an unflinching and essential overview of the fault lines that will shape our world for years to come.
"Accomplished, well researched and pacey ... for anyone who wants to look beyond the headlines and explore the context of some of the biggest challenges facing the world today, it is fascinating" - City AM
"One of the best books about geopolitics you could imagine" - Nicholas Lezard, Evening Standard, on Prisoners of Geography
This bitterly ironic study of the imperialist messaging of Disney cartoons is a classic of cultural studies, with new relevance to our ever-more-globalized popular culture.
Daisy: If you teach me how to skate this afternoon I'll give you what you have always wanted.
Donald: Do you mean...?
Daisy: Yes... my 1872 coin.
First published in 1971 in Chile, where the entire third edition was dumped into the ocean by the Chilean navy and bonfires were held to destroy earlier editions, How to Read Donald Duck reveals the imperialist, capitalist ideology at work in our most beloved cartoons. Focusing on the hapless mice and ducks of Disney - curiously parentless, marginalized, always short of cash - Ariel Dorfman and Armand Mattelart dissect the narratives of dependency and social aspiration that define the Disney corpus. Disney recognized the challenge, and when the book was translated and imported into the U.S. in 1975, all 4,000 copies were impounded by U.S. Customs. Ultimately, 1,500 copies of the book were allowed into the country, the rest of the shipment was blocked, and until now no American publisher has re-released the book, which has sold over a million copies worldwide. (The original English-language edition is now a collector's item, selling for up to $500 on Amazon.)
A devastating indictment of a media giant, a document of twentieth-century political upheaval, and a reminder of the dark potentiality of pop culture, How to Read Donald Duck published in seventeen languages - is now once again available, together with a new introduction by Ariel Dorfman.
Future Politics confronts one of the most important questions of our time: how will digital technology transform politics and society? The great political debate of the last century was about how much of our collective life should be determined by the state and what should be left to the market and civil society. In the future, the question will be how far our lives should be directed and controlled by powerful digital systems - and on what terms?
Jamie Susskind argues that rapid and relentless innovation in a range of technologies - from artificial intelligence to virtual reality - will transform the way we live together. Calling for a fundamental change in the way we think about politics, he describes a world in which certain technologies and platforms, and those who control them, come to hold great power over us. Some will gather data about our lives, causing us to avoid conduct perceived as shameful, sinful, or wrong. Others will filter our perception of the world, choosing what we know, shaping what we think, affecting how we feel, and guiding how we act. Still others will force us to behave certain ways, like self-driving cars that refuse to drive over the speed limit.
Those who control these technologies - usually big tech firms and the state - will increasingly control us. They will set the limits of our liberty, decreeing what we may do and what is forbidden. Their algorithms will resolve vital questions of social justice, allocating social goods and sorting us into hierarchies of status and esteem. They will decide the future of democracy, causing it to flourish or decay.
A groundbreaking work of political analysis, Future Politics challenges readers to rethink what it means to be free or equal, what it means to have power or property, what it means for a political system to be just or democratic, and proposes ways in which we can - and must - regain control.
To what extent was Machiavelli a "Machiavellian"? Was he an amoral adviser of tyranny or a stalwart partisan of liberty? A neutral technician of power politics or a devout Italian patriot? A reviver of pagan virtue or initiator of modern nihilism? Reading Machiavelli answers these questions through original interpretations of Niccol Machiavelli's three major political works - The Prince, Discourses, and Florentine Histories - and demonstrates that a radically democratic populism seeded the Florentine's scandalous writings. John McCormick challenges the misguided understandings of Machiavelli set forth by prominent thinkers, including Jean-Jacques Rousseau and representatives of the Straussian and Cambridge schools.
McCormick emphasizes the fundamental, often unacknowledged elements of a vibrant Machiavellian politics: the utility of vigorous class conflict between elites and common citizens for virtuous democratic republics, the necessity of political and economic equality for genuine civic liberty, and the indispensability of religious tropes for the exercise of effective popular judgment. Interrogating the established reception of Machiavelli's work by such readers as Rousseau, Leo Strauss, Quentin Skinner, and J.G.A. Pocock, McCormick exposes what was effectively an elite conspiracy to suppress the Florentine's contentious, egalitarian politics. In recovering the too-long-concealed quality of Machiavelli's populism, this book acts as a Machiavellian critique of Machiavelli scholarship.
Advancing fresh renderings of works by Machiavelli while demonstrating how they have been misread previously, Reading Machiavelli presents a new outlook for how politics should be conceptualized and practiced.
From the moment Jeremy Corbyn was elected Labour leader, Corbynism has been dismissed, derided or romanticised - but rarely taken seriously as a set of ideas on its own terms. From a left perspective, this book critically outlines the shared understanding of capitalism and its alternatives that unites the component parts of the Corbyn movement. Bypassing arguments over electability undermined by the 2017 election, Corbynism: A Critical Approach decodes the central tenets of the Corbynist worldview, showing their coherence with contemporary political-economic shifts. Corbyn's platform of protectionism at home and isolationism abroad, it contends, chimes with conspiratorial understandings of global capitalism as a 'rigged system' common to populist nativism in an age of Trump and Brexit.
An empowering and highly visual reminder that action can lead to change by featuring protests that have changed the world.
Throughout history, times of great change have been initiated by protest and persistence. Today, our world is undergoing an era of political divide and activism that is shaping all aspects of daily life. While some may feel lost, afraid, or discouraged, The Power of Protest proves that we can look to the past and rise up for our own causes.
This beautiful, inspiring book contains photographs and timelines chronicling the movements that changed the world, from women's rights to racial equality and beyond. Protest changes the world like nothing else has to date. What change do you want to fight for?
The Class Strikes Back examines a number of radical, twenty-first-century workers' struggles. These struggles are characterised by a different kind of unionism and solidarity, arising out of new kinds of labour conditions and responsive to new kinds of social and economic marginalisation. The essays in the collection demonstrate the dramatic growth of syndicalist and autonomist formations and argue for their historical necessity. They show how workers seek to form and join democratic and independent unions that are fundamentally opposed to bureaucratic leadership, compromise, and concessions