Billionaire Democracy: The Hijacking of the American Political System

Billionaire Democracy: The Hijacking of the American Political System

by George R. Tyler

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781538407240
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Publication date: 11/01/2017
Edition description: Unabridged
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 5.70(h) x (d)

About the Author

George Tyler is an economist who has extensive private- and public-sector exposure to international issues and foreign economics and political systems. Author of What Went Wrong he worked in the United States Senate for 18 years. Tyler served as senior economist to former Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey and to Sen. Lloyd M. Bentsen (D-TX). Appointed by President Clinton as a Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury, Tyler has worked closely with top policymakers like Lawrence Summers and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. His international exposure was intensified when working at the World Bank in Washington.

Drawing on his international experience and contacts, Tyler co-authored the creation of the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) in 1999. He envisioned DNDi as a non-profit NGO conducting research on medicines for the neglected diseases of the developing world. The international aid group Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontiéres or MSF) endorsed the concept and provided critical seed funding to the Geneva-based NGO. MSF continues to support the $19 million budget in conjunction with the U.S. National Institutes of Health and private donors like the Gates Foundation. As a member of the DNDi audit committee, Tyler gained extensive exposure to Europe and economic systems across the globe. Coupled with his time in the U.S. Senate and Treasury, this experience gives Tyler an expansive perspective on the many variations of capitalism and democracy across the globe. Tyler is also treasurer of the international aid group Bikes for the World, which recycles American bicycles to Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America.

Table of Contents


Introduction: Removing the Dead Hand of Pay-to-Play

Section 1

America is a Low-Quality Democracy

Chapter 1: Faux Democracy: America’s Decline to History’s Dismal Default Setting

Chapter 2: Documenting Low-Quality American Democracy: The Income Bias and International Evidence

Chapter 3: The Buckley Era: Constitutionally Shielding Vote Buying

Chapter 4: The Donor Class Buys Itself a Political Party

Section 2

Reducing the Role of Money to Improve the Quality of American Democracy

Chapter 5: The Roberts Republicans: A Partisan Court of Sumner Darwinians

Chapter 6: Rejection of Political Equality by the Constitution

Chapter 7: Political Bribery Decriminalized: Vote Buying as “Free Speech”

Chapter 8: The Buckley Era: Cynicism and Diminished Faith in Democracy

Chapter 9: International Dismay with the Variant of Capitalism Produced by Low-Quality American Democracy

Section 3

Achieving Political Equality

Chapter 10: Other Wealthy Democracies Corral Oligarchs

Chapter 11: Recriminalizing Vote Buying

Chapter 12: Rehabilitating America’s Flawed Democracy: A Framework for Ending Vote Buying

Section 4

Original Intent to Prevent Fake News

Chapter 13: Original Intent: A Fact-Based Media

Chapter 14: Fake News Exacerbates Political Polarization, Tribalism, and the Income Bias

Chapter 15: Closing the “Hate Factories”: Avoiding the Farce Feared by Madison

Chapter 16: Epilogue




What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“The economic inequalities of our era are bad enough in themselves. Far worse is their distorting effect on America's political processes. Everyone knows about these problems. George Tyler offers clear, original, and inventive solutions.”

James Fallows, The Atlantic

“George Tyler’s Billionaire Democracy is a profound, clearly and provocatively written indictment of the American political system by an insider who has seen up close how it works. This book is a must-read for all sentient American citizens.”

—Clyde Prestowitz, author of The Betrayal of American Prosperity and president of the Economic Strategy Institute

“A powerful critique of America’s dysfunctional democracy. Tyler vividly illustrates how government policy is bent to serve the needs of the wealthy few and shows that only fundamental political reforms can make America truly democratic.”

—Martin Gilens, author of Affluence & Influence: Economic Inequality and Political Power in America

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