Democracy In Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America (A Viking Hardcover; On Sale June 13, 2017) blows open the doors to the unknown history of the relentless campaign by the radical rich to eliminate unions, suppress voting, privatize everything from schools to Medicare and Social Security, and change the Constitution. MacLean traces this game plan back to one man, the Nobel Prize-winning political economist James McGill Buchanan, who forged his ideas in an attempt to preserve the white elite’s power in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education.
Painstakingly researched over ten years with unprecedented access to Buchanan’s personal files, Democracy in Chains explores the genesis of this new radical right, from its beginnings in academia to the eventual embrace and financial backing of the billionaire Charles Koch. From his research centers, first at the University of Virginia and later at George Mason University, Buchanan developed a long-term strategy to prevent those of us without great property or power from using the democratic process to enact meaningful change.
Nancy MacLean is the award-winning author of Behind the Mask of Chivalry (a New York Times ‘noteworthy’ book of the year) and Freedom is Not Enough, which was called by the Chicago Tribune ‘contemporary history at its best.’ The William Chafe Professor of History and Public Policy at Duke University, she lives in Durham, North Carolina.