The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech

The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech

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by Kimberley Strassel
     
 

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From Kim Strassel-one of the preeminent political columnists writing today and member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board-comes an insightful, alarming look at how the Left, once the champion of civil liberties, is today orchestrating a coordinated campaign to bully Americans out of free speech.

For nearly 40 years, Washington and much of the

Overview

From Kim Strassel-one of the preeminent political columnists writing today and member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board-comes an insightful, alarming look at how the Left, once the champion of civil liberties, is today orchestrating a coordinated campaign to bully Americans out of free speech.

For nearly 40 years, Washington and much of the American public have held up disclosure and campaign finance laws as ideals, and the path to cleaner and freer elections. This book will show, through first-hand accounts, how both have been hijacked by the Left as weapons against free speech and free association, becoming the most powerful tools of those intent on silencing their political opposition. THE INTIMIDATION GAME provides a chilling expose of political scare tactics and overreach, including:

  • How Citizens United set off a wave of liberal harassment against conservative politicians
  • The targeting of Tea Party groups by the IRS
  • How Wisconsin prosecutors, state AGs, and a Democratic Congress shut down political activists and businesses
  • The politicization by the Obama administration of a host of government agencies including the FEC, FCC and the SEC
Timed to arrive at the height of the 2016 presidential season, THE INTIMIDATION GAME will shine a much-needed light on how liberal governance and the Democratic machine bullies the political process.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
04/18/2016
According to Strassel, a Wall Street Journal columnist and member of the newspaper’s editorial board, the Democratic Party and liberals are increasingly focused on silencing political opposition. Strassel collects disturbing stories of right-of-center nonprofits, donors, and trade associations targeted for political reasons. Recounting what appears to be a shocking, concerted Internal Revenue Service drive against nonprofit conservative advocacy groups, Strassel concludes that IRS officials, zeroing in on the Tea Party insurgency, plotted to keep shady activities secret and then lied to Congress without penalty. She also documents tactics and strategies used to demonize Republican donors Charles and David Koch. Strassel seesaws confusingly between diverse political intimidation campaigns and specific election spending disputes around the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. She backs up her tales with high-minded election-finance reform proposals. Though often sidetracked by Washington-insider fine points, Strassel draws a timely, convincing, and alarming picture of liberal governance and a Democratic machine that’s eager to bully resistant citizens. Agent: Jay Mandel, William Morris Endeavor. (June)
From the Publisher
"Progressives' objective is to extend government's regulatory reach ever-deeper into society's dynamics. Strassel reveals how fast and how far this project has been expanded to include an especially sinister objective: Empowering government to control political campaign speech-speech about the government's composition and behavior. Her frightening reports come from many fronts in this war on America's open society. This book is a fire bell in a darkening night."—George F. Will"

There have been a lot of good books of late decrying the increasingly repressive climate towards free speech. But none have connected the dots between the Obama White House, Congressional Democrats, and the spider web of 'grassroots' organizations the way Kim Strassel does in THE INTIMIDATION GAME. It is required reading for those who want to know what's behind the supposedly spontaneous daily outrages we see every day."—Jonah Goldberg"

Public shaming encouraged by leading political figures. Pre-dawn police raids. Federal agencies targeting groups and individuals because of their political views. It's hard to believe these things are happening-and taking place with increasing frequency-in the United States. But they are. And in this searing indictment of the systematic attempt of the political left to shut down political debates they cannot win-Kimberly Strassel provides the often-horrifying details. THE INTIMIDATION GAME is a shocking and assiduously well-reported chronicle of the illiberal tactics of the new progressives-and a must-read for anyone who wants to understand American politics today."—Stephen Hayes"

Strassel draws a timely, convincing, and alarming picture of liberal governance and a

Democratic machine that's eager to bully resistant citizens."—Publishers Weekly"

An eye-opening lesson in the law of unintended consequences: where "a vast new disclosure regime" intended to curb corruption has spawned a corruption all its own."—Kirkus Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
2016-04-13
In her debut, a Wall Street Journal columnist and editorial board member excoriates the left's use of campaign finance laws to stifle free speech and free association.On First Amendment grounds, the 2010 Supreme Court's Citizens United decision overturned a number of federal campaign spending restrictions. Nevertheless, overlooking a noble American tradition of anonymous participation in politics stretching back to the Federalist Papers, the court left undisturbed a number of forced disclosure provisions seemingly at odds with a 1958 decision denying Alabama's attempt to require disclosure of the state NAACP's membership/donor list and another in 1995, striking down an Ohio statute prohibiting anonymous campaign literature. Citizens United fueled activists' outrage at the continued influence of "special interests" and the power of "dark money" in our politics. Under the banner of "transparency," "cleaner," "more open" elections, activists have used the forced disclosure provisions to harass, humiliate, and threaten critics and to discourage political participation and speech. These, writes the author, are the hallmarks of "the modern intimidation game." Her fiery, thoroughly reported, three-part story focuses on the IRS targeting and obstructing—under notorious apparatchik Lois Lerner—applications by tea party related groups for tax exempt status; the appalling tactics attending Wisconsin's gubernatorial 2012 recall election; and the widespread use of the proxy movement and boycotts to disrupt corporate governance and blackmail business. Running through each tale are common themes: government agencies who, either out of righteous institutional bias or ideological agreement, conspire with activists to advance their agendas; the supercharging effect of the Internet and social media that makes these modern retribution campaigns so much easier and effective; and the genuine damage done to individuals, groups, and businesses who never dreamed they would pay such a price for exercising their rights to speech and assembly. An eye-opening lesson in the law of unintended consequences: where "a vast new disclosure regime" intended to curb corruption has spawned a corruption all its own.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781455591886
Publisher:
Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
06/21/2016
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
12,569
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

Kimberley Strassel is a member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board, based in Washington. Since 2007 she has written the "Potomac Watch" column and has worked for the Wall Street Journal in Brussels, London, and New York. An Oregon native, Ms. Strassel is a graduate of Princeton University and lives in Virginia with her three children.

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The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech 2.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous 8 months ago
This may be biased because it's written from a Republican POV (duh), but it's look at the changing and negative perhaps hypocritical face of the Liberals
Anonymous 3 days ago
Alt-Right propaganda. Citizens United emboldened the far right by promulgation of their lies.
Anonymous 8 months ago
It leaves out the Republican scenario of the same if not more vehement effort to delete opposing actions