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The People Have Spoken (and They Are Wrong): The Case Against Democracy

Overview


Democracy may be one of the most admired ideas ever concocted, but what if it’s also one of the most harebrained? After many years of writing about democracy for a living, David Harsanyi has concluded that it’s the most overrated, overused, and misunderstood idea in political life. The less we have of it the better.

“Democracy” is not synonymous with “freedom.” It is not the opposite of tyranny. In fact, the Founding Fathers knew that democracy can lead to tyranny. That’s why they built so many safeguards ...

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The People Have Spoken (and They Are Wrong): The Case Against Democracy

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Overview


Democracy may be one of the most admired ideas ever concocted, but what if it’s also one of the most harebrained? After many years of writing about democracy for a living, David Harsanyi has concluded that it’s the most overrated, overused, and misunderstood idea in political life. The less we have of it the better.

“Democracy” is not synonymous with “freedom.” It is not the opposite of tyranny. In fact, the Founding Fathers knew that democracy can lead to tyranny. That’s why they built so many safeguards against it into the Constitution.

Democracy, Harsanyi argues, has made our government irrational, irresponsible, and invasive. It has left the American people with only two options—domination by the majority or a government that can’t possibly work.

The modern age has imbued democracy with the mystique of infallibility. But Harsanyi reminds us that the vast majority of political philosophers, including the founders, have thought that responsible, limited government based on direct majority rule over a large, let alone continental scale was a practical impossibility.

In The People Have Spoken, you’ll learn:

  • Why the Framers of our Constitution were intent on establishing a republic, not a “democracy”
  • How democracy undermines self-government
  • How shockingly out of touch with reality most voters really are
  • Why democracy is an economic wrecking ball—and an invitation to a politics of envy and corruption
  • How the great political philosophers from Plato and Aristotle to Burke and Tocqueville predicted with uncanny accuracy that democracy could lead to tyranny

Harsanyi warns that if we don’t recover the Founders’ republican vision, “democracy” might very well spell the end of American liberty and prosperity.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Everyone’s got a favorite scapegoat for America’s decline, but what if the problem turned out to be deeper than just dishonest politicians? What if democracy itself was making us mediocre? Could it be that voters have too much power? What if it’s our fault? Those are a few of the bracing questions David Harsanyi raises in this brilliant corrective to the mindless populism sweeping—and possibly destroying—our country. Buy three copies. It’ll be the smartest thing you read this year.”
—Tucker Carlson, co-host of FOX & Friends Weekend and editor-in-chief of The Daily Caller

“Our Founders thought that a pure democracy was ‘the greatest of evils,’ a destructive volcano, and liable to commit suicide. Unfortunately, modern Americans have come to believe the precise opposite. David Harsanyi takes on the difficult task of convincing readers that their preconceptions of democracy are wrong. Our Constitution gives us something even better than a pure democracy: we have a democratic republic, with many checks and balances that protect us from the tyranny of a bare majority. The foundations of our Constitution are badly misunderstood. Harsanyi’s work will help to restore an understanding of the Founders’ work.”
—Tara Ross, author of Enlightened Democracy: The Case for the Electoral College

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781621572022
  • Publisher: Regnery Publishing
  • Publication date: 3/10/2014
  • Pages: 230
  • Sales rank: 684,757
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

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