The Rise of the Counter Establishment: From Conservative Ideology to Political Power

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9780060971403: The Rise of the Counter Establishment: From Conservative Ideology to Political Power

A classic of American politics returns! How did the Republican Party build its infrastructure and arrive at the Reagan triumph in the years following Barry Goldwater’s defeat and Nixon’s cataclysmic resignation in 1974? The Rise of the Counter-Establishment, a now seminal study of contemporary politics, provides the answers. Based on hundreds of interviews with key policy makers, Sidney Blumenthal shows how the conservatives orchestrated their influence to change American politics. By charting the rise of a small group of ideologues who transformed their vision into Washington’s ruling orthodoxy, he brilliantly illuminates the important currents of conservative thought and action, as well as the mythology of Reaganism.
Although Blumenthal himself is unabashedly liberal, he is also frankly admiring of the organizational genius displayed by the right wing in finding donors and benefactors eager to fund the think tanks, institutes, magazines, and endowed academic chairs that made the Reagan Revolution and the George W. Bush presidency possible. He presents an indispensable object lesson for any out-of-office party determined to regain political power.

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From Library Journal:

In his influential earlier book, The Permanent Campaign , Blumenthal argued that, as a result of the decline of political parties, governance and campaigning were no longer distinguishable aspects of political life. Here he examines the consequences of this phenomenon, describing how various groups of conservative ideologues have assumed power under the Reagan Administration and established "a particular mode of ideological politics" as the salient feature of contemporary politics. Others have advanced similar arguments, and the question is whether this change is temporary (Richard Reeves, The Reagan Detour, LJ 10/15/85) or permanent (Thomas Fergusen and Joel Rogers, Right Turn , Hill & Wang, 1986). Whatever the answer, Blumenthal brings new insight to a fundamental transformation of American politics. Edward C. Dreyer, Political Science Dept., Univ. of Tulsa, Okla.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review:

"'Skillful, extensively researched and unfailingly interesting' Boston Sunday Globe"

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