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Losing Our Democracy: How Bush, the Far Right and Big Business Are Betraying Americans For Power and Profit Hardcover – August 7, 2006

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Green (The Book on Bush), president of the New Democracy Project and currently a candidate for New York State attorney general, delivers a "Democracy Audit" that takes to task the Bush administration and the right wing of the Republican Party, and though well-documented, his case suffers from staleness. As readers might already suspect, the state of American democracy is grim: the 43rd president has undermined the rule of law and ushered in a "new authoritarianism" characterized by corporate malfeasance, religious intolerance, voter intimidation and media "self censorship." Politicians, meanwhile, conduct business "Tony Soprano-style" and bully lobbyists into hosting fundraisers and hiring staffers. He bolsters his analysis with copious, albeit well-trod, evidence, culminating in 27 examples of Bush's "deceptions," most of them concerning Iraq and domestic anti-terrorism tactics. But Green's remedies to "save democracy" aren't new or innovative, and range from the practical (elections should be held on Saturday) to the obvious ("Presidents should obey the law"). Green mostly spares his audience the gutter-sniping that sometimes passes for political analysis, but while Bush detractors will relish this well-crafted indictment, others may find their attention wandering mid-way through these familiar charges.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"A must-read for anyone who cares about America finding its true self again." -- Arianna Huffington, nationally syndicaed columnist, author, and co-founder and editor of the Huffington Post

"Mark Green's Losing Our Democracy is a must-read book." -- Senator John Kerry
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.; 1 edition (August 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1402207018
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402207013
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,386,237 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Loyd Eskildson HALL OF FAME on August 26, 2006
Format: Hardcover
"Losing Our Democracy" begins with a wry observation: "Much has been written about Bush's war for democracy abroad, but what about his war on democracy at home?" Green goes on to observe that while Bushites may question evolutionary Darwinism, they love Social Darwinism. But because of imperfect information, oligopoly power, corruption, deception, laissez isn't always fair.

Republicans have been brilliant in marketing their brand. Per Thomas Frank: "Vote to stop abortion; receive a rollback in capital gains taxes. Vote to make our country strong again; receive deindustrialization. Vote to stand tall against terrorists; receive Social Security privatization." How do the Republicans do it? Serial manipulation of information has confused and misled millions of Americans. Then there's the disproportionate influence of corporate dollars (1% give move campaign dollars than the other 99% and receive 40% of all recent tax cuts). Another distortion is created by the fact that 45% of Americans (eg. low population Red states such as Wyoming) elect 55% of our Senators.

Gerrymandering (plus enhanced fundraising ability) results in 98% of House members being re-elected. Other abuses include the Republicans running Congress basically without Democrat input, threatening Republican members with primary opposition and lack of funding if they vote against the President (House members do so 84% of the time), holding votes without allowing members time to read the proposed bill, and totally rewriting bills in conference committee with little member input.

Green then goes on to list abuses in other areas. The 2005 "Consume Fairness Act" moved class actions from state to federal courts, resulting in them being much more likely to be thrown out as "unmanageable." Then there is corporate accounting fraud (Enron), grossly biased stock evaluators (Henry Blodget)
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Format: Hardcover
Mark Green touches upon how Bush is condemning the true notion of democracy in its birthplace while hypocritically proclaiming of his efforts to spread democracy to the rest of the world. The book is eloquently written and allows the readers to logically follow through Mark Green's reasoning of how Bush had sabotaged people's freedom in the US. Losing our democracy must be read if you want to know the current situation of our government and how it had led to the prevalence of cronyism in our country.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Green neatly encapsulates the essential struggle we face as Americans, and sets a clear direction for what we need to do if America is to remain truly free. Many of his points will resonate with those made by authors like Thom Hartmann, and Green's perspective both pragmatic and compelling.

Reading this book I found it both frustrating and frightening how accepting greedy corporations have made us to the precursors of the destruction of our democracy. We are now a country that has been conditioned to accept with a disinterested shrug the change from representative democracy (one person, one vote) to "corporatocracy" (one dollar, one vote). We have co-mingled democracy (a political system) with capitalism (a form of economic organization). As citizens we've been weaned away from having a "say" to merely having a "voice" and are now, thanks to the power of corporate "free speech" well on the path to not being heard at all.

Read Green's book. He brings forth the simple truth that core American values (honesty, fairness, faith in facts and reason, tolerance, belief in the commons and the common good, preservation of nature and preserving for the future, and shared sacrifice for the well being of our fellow man (or woman)) are all being displaced by the one value that out of control global corporations and crony government can understand -- the dollar value.

If you're at all curious as to why after 9/11,the best presidential advice we received was that that we all "keep shopping" lest the terrorists win, this book is for you! Bravo, Mark Green.
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