|aThe politics of American discontent :|bhow a new party can make democracy work again /|cby Gordon S. Black, Benjamin D. Black.
|aNew York :|bJohn Wiley & Sons,|cc1994.
|avii, 262 p. :|bill. ;|c25 cm.
|aIncludes bibliographical references (p. 243-255) and index.
|a1. The Seductive Illusion of Change -- 2. Democracy Dying: Not with a Bang, but a Whimper -- 3. A Process That Can't Say "No" -- 4. Understanding Perot -- 5. The American Two-Party System in Decline -- 6. The Potential for a New Party -- 7. The Agenda for Reform -- 8. Making the Choice.
|aDespite all the rhetoric during the 1992 presidential campaign about the "politics of change," dissatisfaction with government is at an all-time high. At no time in history have so many Americans felt so alienated from government or believed that votes counted for so little. Now, in a book of vital concern to all, Gordon and Benjamin Black propose a bold blueprint for fundamental reform. First they offer a masterful anatomy of the diseases of the political system - from the spendthrift bureaucracy to the career politicians and the PACs and special interest groups who finance their re-election campaigns. Drawing on years of analysis, the Blacks diagnose the primary problems: the lack of real competition for entrenched incumbents, and the power of special interest lobbies over both the democratic and Republican parties. They show how and why the average voter is locked out of the decision-making process at every level of government. With an abiding faith in the intelligence and commitment of the American voter, the Blacks put forward a solution: a new national political party - not a party of the far left or right, but a party of the middle, dedicated to breaking the power of special interests and legislating far-reaching reforms. Even with a limited number of seats in Congress, this new party could force reforms that the American public wants - from term limits, to education, to welfare reform - onto the national agenda. Can it happen? Based on the remarkable results of new studies of American opinion, the Blacks show that a large block of the voting public is ready. In the first detailed analysis of Perot supporters - showing exactly who voted for him and why - the authors identify a constituency of "radicalized moderates" and reveal the surprising results of special polls they conducted to test the "market" for a new party. The time is ripe for radical change. A passionate and persuasive call to action, The Politics of American Discontent challenges us to take back the reins of our government.