Democracy In America?: What Has Gone Wrong And What We Can Do About It by Benjamin I. PageDemocracy In America?: What Has Gone Wrong And What We Can Do About It by Benjamin I. Page

Democracy In America?: What Has Gone Wrong And What We Can Do About It

byBenjamin I. Page, Martin Gilens

Hardcover | November 22, 2017

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America faces daunting problems—stagnant wages, high health care costs, neglected schools, deteriorating public services. Yet the government consistently ignores the needs of its citizens, paying attention instead to donors and organized interests. Real issues are held hostage to demagoguery, partisanship beats practicality, and trust in government withers along with the social safety net.
 
How did we get here? Through decades of dysfunctional government. In Democracy in America? veteran political observers Benjamin I. Page and Martin Gilens marshal an unprecedented array of evidence to show that while other countries have responded to a rapidly changing economy by helping people who’ve been left behind, the United States has failed to do so.  Instead, we have actually exacerbated inequality, enriching corporations and the wealthy while leaving ordinary citizens to fend for themselves.
 
What’s the solution? More democracy. More opportunity for citizens to shape what their government does. To repair our democracy, Page and Gilens argue, we must change the way we choose candidates and conduct our elections, reform our governing institutions, and curb the power of money in politics. By doing so, we can reduce polarization and gridlock, address pressing challenges, and enact policies that truly reflect the interests of average Americans.
 
This book presents a damning indictment. But the situation is far from hopeless. With increased democratic participation as their guide, Page and Gilens lay out a set of proposals that would boost citizen participation, curb the power of money, and democratize the House and Senate. The only certainty is that inaction is not an option. Now is the time to act to restore and extend American democracy.
 
Benjamin I. Page, Gordon Scott Fulcher Professor of Decision Making at Northwestern University, is the author of several books, including Class War? Martin Gilens is professor of politics at Princeton University. He is the author of Why Americans Hate Welfare and Affluence and Influence.  
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Title:Democracy In America?: What Has Gone Wrong And What We Can Do About ItFormat:HardcoverDimensions:352 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.98 inPublished:November 22, 2017Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022650896X

ISBN - 13:9780226508962

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations    

Part One: Introduction

One     More Democracy
Two     Unequal Wealth Distorts Politics       

Part Two: What Has Gone Wrong

Three   Thwarting the Will of the People       
Four     The Political Clout of Wealthy Americans    
Five     Corporations and Interest Groups     
Six       Polarized Parties and Gridlock          

Part Three: What Can Be Done

Seven  Equal Voice for All Citizens  
Eight   Overcoming Gridlock and Democratizing Institutions         

Part Four: How to Do It

Nine    A Social Movement for Democracy  
Ten      Signs of Progress       

Acknowledgments     
Appendix: Interest Groups Studied  
Notes  
References     
Index

Editorial Reviews

"Our democracy is in crisis. This clear-eyed, thoughtful, and accessible book offers a roadmap for challenging the political power of the wealthiest Americans and corporate interests. Only a broad and persistent social movement, it argues, can make our government responsive to average Americans. A welcome and important work."