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Ginsberg (political science, Johns Hopkins Univ.; The Fatal Embrace: Jews and the State) here revisits a topic echoed in his previous work: the myriad forces, both public and private, that shape the U.S. government and political process. The result is an easy-to-read and well-cited book seeking to explode the myths of political participation. His bleak view of U.S. politics focuses on the wholesale misleading of citizens by corporations, bureaucrats, legislative officials, presidents, political parties, and anyone with a financial or strategic stake in government. The author enumerates historical and modern evidence of how the selfish motives of the elite and not selfless regard for the electorate decide the course of the country. He concludes that individual participation in the political process is moot when compared with the forces within, pulling the strings. "When in doubt, vote them out" becomes the prescribed motto. Little is offered, however, to guide the reader in reforming the wrongs so engagingly revealed. This fact, and the author's propensity to insult the citizens who would find this book enlightening, diminishes its overall impact. Recommended for large public and academic libraries.