10 Steps to Repair American Democracy: A More Perfect Union-2012 Election Edition

Book Info

  • Length: 240 pages
  • Trim size: 6" x 9"

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Paperback

  • ISBN: 978-1-61205-192-5
  • Publish date: January 2012
  • List Price: $34.95
  • Your Price: $29.71

Hardcover

  • ISBN: 978-1-61205-191-8
  • Publish date: January 2012
  • List Price: $150.00
  • Your Price: $127.50

Description

Following an economic tsunami of historic proportions, American democracy finds itself plagued by partisan polarization, a rigidly divided Congress, superficial political debate, and political paralysis. Even before the economic crisis, the United States was beleaguered by choiceless elections, out-of-control campaign spending, suspicious voting equipment, partisan election officials, even a partisan U.S. Supreme Court. Americans are growing increasingly frustrated and tuned out, as the middle collapses and the partisans take over. Just in time for the 2012 elections, 10 Steps to Repair American Democracy: A More Perfect Union addresses head-on the mine field built into our political system. In a brand new edition, political critic Steven Hill expands on his ten-step program to improve American democracy. He proposes specific reforms to give voters more choices at the ballot box, boost voter turnout, calm the Senate’s “filibuster gone wild” ways, modernize our media institutions, turn off the spigot of corporate donations, and bring the U.S. government back to the mainstream. In the face of mounting cynicism about the American political system, 10 Steps to Repair American Democracy is a refreshing blueprint for how to resurrect our Founders' democratic vision. It will change the way you think about American politics.

"...as practical as it is insightful..." —Arianna Huffington

“We are fortunate to have 10 Steps to Repair American Democracy, to help us find our political compass." —Hendrik Hertzberg, Senior Editor, The New Yorker

Features of this New Edition:

  • A completely new opening chapter re-casts the arguments for reforming American government in the context of the economic crisis and the upcoming 2012 elections.
  • Reforms proposed include dissolving the Electoral College, eradicating the filibuster from the Senate process, getting politics out of the Supreme Court, overhauling campaign finance regulations, and several measures devoted to increasing voter participation.
  • The author writes and practices the politics he preaches—he has been a campaign manager, a reform program director, and has addressed his proposals in all major media outlets including The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, C-SPAN, Fox News, NPR, and many more.
  • Take a look at Steven's op-ed in the Sacramento Bee!

Author Info

Steven Hill is the former Director of the Political Reform Program of the New America Foundation and co-founder of the Center for Voting and Democracy. His articles and commentaries have appeared in dozens of newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times,Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, The Nation, Ms., Salon.com, and American Prospect.

His previous book, Fixing Elections: The Failure of America’s Winner Take All Politics, has been called by author Michael Lind “the most important book on American democracy that has come out in many years.” He has lectured widely in the United States and Europe, and has appeared on C-SPAN, Fox News, National Public Radio, and numerous radio and television programs across the nation and in Europe.

In 2004, he managed the successful campaign to pass instant runoff voting for Board of Supervisors elections in San Francisco. “More recently, he also helped organize the successful effort to establish public financing for the city’s mayoral campaigns.

fairvote.org
newamerica.net

Reviews

Praise for the New Edition:

“I have used Hill’s book from the day it was published. Given the time constraints in an introductory U.S. government course, I cannot imagine doing justice to the topic of repairing our ailing democracy without Hill’s masterful, clearly explained summary of the American political system and what we as a polity need to do to bring it back to health. The revised introduction in the new edition is alone worth the price of the book. Hill tackles in a systematic way the entire range of ills afflicting our political process and how to fix them.”
—Elena V. Dorabji, San Jose State University

Praise for the Original Edition:

“We are fortunate to have 10 Steps to Repair American Democracy, to help us find our political compass. He identifies ten critical problems with our democracy and offers concrete solutions to each one. 10 Steps is a blueprint for a reinvigoration of our republic.”
—Hendrik Hertzberg, Senior Editor, The New Yorker, from the Foreword

“We know that American democracy is being run over a cliff—choiceless elections, screwy voting machines, brain-dead political debate, unresponsive government, etc. What’s a citizen to do? Here, finally, is the plan.”
—Jim Hightower, columnist and author of Swim against the Current

“Steven Hill’s new book is as practical as it is insightful, offering innovative ways to fix our broken political system. It’s an inspiring blueprint for reclaiming America. Read it, roll up your sleeves, and get to work.”
—Arianna Huffington, columnist and bestselling author of Third World America

10 Steps to Repair American Democracy is a terrific book, a much-needed owner’s manual for the citizen-owners of government in the United States.”
—Michael Lind, author of The Next American Nation

Steven Hill on Pacifica's KPFK in Los Angeles

Contents

Foreword by Hendrik Hertzberg

Introduction
Double Trouble: The Political Collapse That Preceded the Economic Collapse

One
Secure the Vote

Two
Expand Voter Participation

Three
Increase Voter Choice with Instant Runoff Voting

Four
Scrap Winner-Take-All Elections

Five
Direct Election of the President

Six
Overhaul the US Senate

Seven
Reclaim the Airwaves

Eight
Minimize Money's Role

Nine
Reform the Supreme Court

Ten
Restore Faith in Government: "Government Is Good for You"

Conclusion
Renewing the American Republic

Notes
Acknowedgments
Index
About the Author

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