Government's End: Why Washington Stopped Working

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9781891620492: Government's End: Why Washington Stopped Working

An earlier edition of this extraordinarily prescient, elegantly written book created a sensation among Washington media insiders when it was published more than five years ago under the title Demosclerosis. In it, Jonathan Rauch, a former correspondent for The Economist and a columnist for National Journal, showed with startling clarity the reasons why America's political system (and, in fact, other political systems as well) was becoming increasingly ineffective. Today, as Rauch's predictions continue to manifest themselves in a national politics of "sound and fury" and little effective legislation, and in increasing voter cynicism, this book has achieved renown as the classic and essential work on why politics and government don't work.In Government's End, Rauch has completely rewritten and updated his earlier work to reassess his theory, analyze the political stalemate of the last few years, and explain why sweeping reform efforts of the kind led by Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and Newt Gingrich aren't the answers. He also looks ahead at what is likely to happen—or not happen—next, and proposes ideas for what we must do to fix the system.For anyone who cares about the health of American democracy—and indeed of international security—Government's End is a fascinating, disturbing, and vitally important book.

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From the Author:

At a big press dinner one night in early 1985, when I was settling into my first job in Washington, I found myself sitting next to a man who was a lot more interesting than the official speaker at the rostrum. In person, David Stockman, the architect of the "Reagan Revolution," was as brilliant as his reputation, but what was most striking was his candid bitterness. Stockman had come to Washington, with Ronald Reagan, determined to change things. But he had failed, and he knew it. They had failed.

Over the next few years, I encountered a few other young reformers. One was the earnest and deeply knowledgeable governor of Arkansas. Bill Clinton's mastery of the inner workings of government policy was astonishing. Ask him about health or welfare or education, and his answers combined the savvy of a politician with the knowledge of a bureaucrat. Then there was an obscure but ambitious young Turk congressman by the name of Newt Gingrich. I'll never forget this starry-eyed back-bencher explaining to a gaggle of conservative activists how Washington could be changed--if only you'd think "outside the box."

Clinton and Gingrich, as I saw first-hand, had brains, talent, determination. They both attempted "revolutions" to rival Stockman's. And they both failed, each more spectacularly than the last. This book revisits the ideas that I first published in my book Demosclerosis, which suggested that Washington's disease is more complex and cunning than even a Clinton or a Gingrich realized. The new edition has a new title, because it is partly a new book. The earlier ideas are here, but I've also tried to account for the experiences of the 1990s--and to peer into the future, where a new relationship between the people and their government is taking shape.

About the Author:

Acclaimed as the smartest young political journalist in Washington, Jonathan Rauch writes a bi-weekly column for National Journal and contributes widely to other magazines and journals. A graduate of Yale University, he lives in Washington, D.C.

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Book Description The Perseus Books Group, United States, 1999. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Tuttle and Cont ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. An earlier edition of this extraordinarily prescient, elegantly written book created a sensation among Washington media insiders when it was published more than five years ago under the title Demosclerosis . In it, Jonathan Rauch, a former correspondent for The Economist and a columnist for National Journal , showed with startling clarity the reasons why America s political system (and, in fact, other political systems as well) was becoming increasingly ineffective. Today, as Rauch s predictions continue to manifest themselves in a national politics of sound and fury and little effective legislation, and in increasing voter cynicism, this book has achieved renown as the classic and essential work on why politics and government don t work.In Government s End , Rauch has completely rewritten and updated his earlier work to reassess his theory, analyze the political stalemate of the last few years, and explain why sweeping reform efforts of the kind led by Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and Newt Gingrich aren t the answers. He also looks ahead at what is likely to happen,or not happen,next, and proposes ideas for what we must do to fix the system.For anyone who cares about the health of American democracy,and indeed of international security, Government s End is a fascinating, disturbing, and vitally important book. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9781891620492

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