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ONE OF THE ECONOMIST'S BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR AND A WINNER OF THE WASHINGTON MONTHLY'S ANNUAL POLITICAL BOOK AWARD Political experts John B. Judis and Ruy Teixeira convincingly use hard data -- demographic, geographic, economic, and political -- to forecast the dawn of a new progressive era. In the 1960s, Kevin Phillips, battling conventional wisdom, correctly foretold the dawn of a new conservative era. His book, The Emerging Republican Majority, became an indispensable guide for all those attempting to understand political change through the 1970s and 1980s. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, with the country in Republican hands, The Emerging Democratic Majority is the indispensable guide to this era. In five well-researched chapters and a new afterword covering the 2002 elections, Judis and Teixeira show how the most dynamic and fastest-growing areas of the country are cultivating a new wave of Democratic voters who embrace what the authors call "progressive centrism" and take umbrage at Republican demands to privatize social security, ban abortion, and cut back environmental regulations. As the GOP continues to be dominated by neoconservatives, the religious right, and corporate influence, this is an essential volume for all those discontented with their narrow agenda -- and a clarion call for a new political order.
A century ago, the Theodore Roosevelt administration believed building an American empire was the only way the U. S. could ensure its role in the world, but came to see the occupation of the Philippines as America's "heel of Achilles." Woodrow Wilson, shocked by the failure of American intervention in Mexico and by the outbreak of World War I, came to see imperialism as the underlying cause of war and set about trying to create an international system to eliminate empires. But, the current Bush administration, despite the lessons of the past, has revived the older dreams of American empire--under the guise of democracy--even touting the American experience in the Philippines as a success upon which the United States could build in attempting to transform the Middle East. With The Folly of Empire, John B. Judis shows that history can teach us lessons and allow political leaders, if sensitive to history, to change their strategy in order to avoid past mistakes. Judis shows how presidents from Franklin Roosevelt to Bill Clinton drew upon what Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson learned about the pitfalls of using American power unilaterally to carve out a world in America's image. Exercising leadership through international institutions and alliances, the United States was able to win the Cold War and the first Gulf War. But by ignoring these lessons,the Bush administration has created a quagmire of terror and ethnic conflict. By examining America's role in the international community--then and now--The Folly of Empire is a sharp and compelling critique of America's current foreign policy and offers a direct challenge to neo-conservatives.
John B. Judis, one of our most insightful political commentators, most rational and careful thinkers, and most engaged witnesses in Washington, has taken on a challenge that even the most concerned American citizens shrink from: forecasting the American political climate at the turn of the century. The Paradox of American Democracy is a penetrating examination of our democracy that illuminates the forces and institutions that once enlivened it and now threaten to undermine it. It is the well-reasoned discussion we need in this era of unrestrained expert opinions and ideologically biased testimony.The disenchantment with our political system can be seen in decreasing voter turnout, political parties co-opted by consultants and large contributors, the corrupting influence of "soft money," and concern for national welfare subverted by lobbying organizations and special-interest groups. Judis revisits particular moments--the Progressive Era, the New Deal, the 1960s--to discover what makes democracy the most efficacious and, consequently, most inefficacious. What has worked in the past is a balancing act between groups of elites--trade commissions, labor relations boards, policy groups--whose mandates are to act in the national interest and whose actions are governed by a disinterested pursuit of the common good. Judis explains how the displacment of such elites by a new lobbying community in Whashington has given rise to the cynicism that corrodes the current political system.The Paradox of American Democracy goes straight to the heart of every political debate in this country.From the Hardcover edition.
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