Islamic terrorists abroad, financial meltdowns at home–American is certainly being challenged. Yet the greatest dangers threatening the country are for the most part going unnoticed. People seek hope and want change. Obama in his inaugural address promised to “remake America.” Remake it into what?
All the major thinkers of history, from Plato and Aristotle forward saw democracy as an unworkable system of government that is doomed to fail, dissolving into tyranny. The founding fathers understood these criticisms very well when developing the system of checks and balances that became the American Republic.
Since then we have made repeated changes to government, some minor, some major, even before Obama promised to remake the country. As we make changes how many of us really understand the key weaknesses of democracy, weakness our Founding Fathers understood? Are these changes simply removing deadwood no longer needed in the 21st century, or are we removing key foundational supports, key checks and balances that keep the system functioning? How would we know the difference?
This is the central question of Preserving Democracy: What Our Founding Fathers Knew, What We Have Forgotten, & How It Threatens Democracy. Rather than just an abstract discussion of political philosophy, Preserving Democracy looks at this subject by focusing on a number of key issues of importance today such as Taxes, the Welfare State, The Rule of Law, and Voting to name just a few. Each chapter looks at current long term trends that if left unchanged will cause the American democracy to fail just as all the earlier attempts at democracy have failed.
For example, in the last century, some key changes to how government works resulted in a steady growth of government over the last 100 years that simply cannot be sustained. Yet despite the coming disaster, there seems to be no sign of a slow down. To the contrary we are speeding up the growth of government. In area after area, the checks and balances carefully crafted by the Founding Fathers are being discarded with little or no consideration of the results.
Preserving Democracy details these looming problems, not with partisan finger pointing, but with a clear description of the problems and the dangers we face, along with how they can be avoided.