Review (Guest): All the Presidents’ Bankers – The Hidden Alliances that Drive American Power

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Nomi Prins

Essential reading on the deep, dark history of crony capitalism in America

By John Butler on March 29, 2014

Nomi Prins has done it again. With All the Presidents’ Bankers, she shows in exhaustive detail how Wall Street has captured the US political and regulatory process: Left, Right, Up, Down, Sideways. Indeed, as she demonstrates convincingly in the book, the entire left-right paradigm of modern US politics is completely irrelevant to a proper understanding of what really goes on in the long, dark tunnels of power linking Wall Street in New York with K Street in Washington, and their deleterious impact on what some still purport to call ‘democracy’.

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Aug 13

Review: Democracy More or Less – America’s Political Reform Quandry

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Bruce Cain

4.0 out of 5 stars Academic Smoke — Disdain for the Public & Denial Over Two-Party Tyranny, May 24, 2015

I spent some time reviewing the author’s history (he’s been writing about electoral matters since the 1970’s) and what Amazon offers through its superb Inside the Book feature, as I am unemployed and between the book price and what Amazon charges for delivery today this would have been a $40 commitment. My call: not worth it for the electoral reform activist, but useful as the nay-sayer summary for graduate level courses in politics.

The book suffers three strikes:

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May 24

Review: Unstoppable – The Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State

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Ralph Nader

4.0 out of 5 stars Valentine for the Real Conservatives — Bland and Not Transformative, March 9, 2015

Positive up front: reading a book by another person is like getting a few hours of their time to yourself, so any book by Ralph Nader is a substantive value to anyone interested in ethics and governance. However, this is not the transformative book I was hoping for, and I even have to wonder if all the great minds providing blurbs even read the book. For the long critique of this book, which I totally embrace, see Herbert Calhoun’s 3-star review, This is Both an Accurate and a Useful Treatise, But …?, October 25, 2014. I’d like to see it voted up, Mr. Calhoun, whom I have had the privilege of meeting at Amphoras in Vienna, is one of the most intelligent and broadly read individuals I have ever encountered.

Second positive up front: in terms of inspiring generations of independent thinkers some of whom have become thought leaders in their own right, Ralph Nader is special. Jim Turner — co-author with Lawrence Chickering of Voice of the People: The Transpartisan Imperative in American Life and Theresa Amato, whose own book Grand Illusion: The Myth of Voter Choice in a Two-Party Tyranny contributed to my radicalization, stand out.

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Mar 12

Review (Guest): Unstoppable – The Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State

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Ralph Nader

3.0 out of 5 stars This is Both an Accurate and a Useful Treatise, But …?, October 25, 2014

By Herbert L Calhoun “paulocal”

… the accurate part is not very useful and the useful part is not very accurate. Allow me to explain by beginning with the accurate part of the book first.

Using his considerable experiences and his legal skills as an activist, the reader will discover here that Mr. Nader is a walking encyclopedia of details on the activist ways of organizing. Here, to our great benefit, he has shared with us his invaluable multi-talented and multilayered experiences, which arguably, as useful as they may be to a properly constructed theory, in practice, were largely failures during his generation (and spectacularly so in the case of his presidential runs).

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Mar 11