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Restoration; Congress, Term Limits and the Recovery of Deliberative Democracy

Will, George F.

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ISBN 10: 0029344379 / ISBN 13: 9780029344378
Published by The Free Press, New York, 1992
Condition: Very good Hardcover
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About this Item

x, 260, [2] pages. Notes. Index. Signed by the author. George Frederick Will (born May 4, 1941) is an American conservative political commentator. Will writes regular columns for The Washington Post and provides commentary for NBC News and MSNBC. In 1986, The Wall Street Journal called him "perhaps the most powerful journalist in America", in a league with Walter Lippmann (1889-1974). His numerous awards include the Pulitzer Prize for commentary in 1977. Will has also written two bestselling books on baseball, three books on political philosophy, and has published eleven compilations of his columns for The Washington Post and Newsweek. From 2013 to 2017, Will was a contributor for Fox News. Prior to joining Fox News, Will was a news analyst for ABC News since the early 1980s and was a founding member on the panel of ABC's This Week with David Brinkley in 1981, now titled This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Will was a panelist on This Week until his departure from ABC News. On May 8, 2017, Will was announced as an MSNBC and NBC News political contributor. The author argues that term limits would restore the healthy distance between the electors and the elected that is necessary for genuine deliberation about the public interest. Derived from a Kirkus review: Will weighs in for term limits as the answer to congressional careerism and public disgust. The author holds up deliberative democracy as the ideal to which Congress must return. He details ridiculous pork-barrel projects sponsored by top senators, and points to ``the culture of spending'' as contributing to public outrage and congressional inefficiency. Will gives the issue historical perspective, decrying the present emphasis on executive power. He traces the rise of the ``rhetorical presidency'' from the administrations of Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, and points out how TV and the cold war contributed to our ``unhealthy obsession with the presidency.'' Will also notes that the careers of two of America's greatest congressional statesmen, Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun, would not have been affected by term limits. Awash with lengthy digressions, but Will's argument is clear and persuasive nonetheless. Bookseller Inventory # 48144

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Restoration; Congress, Term Limits and the ...

Publisher: The Free Press, New York

Publication Date: 1992

Binding: Hardcover

Illustrator: Sigrid Estrada (Jacket Photograph)

Book Condition: Very good

Dust Jacket Condition: very good

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: First Edition. First Printing.

About this title

Synopsis:

The world's oldest democracy - ours - has an old tradition of skepticism about government. However, the degree of dismay about government today is perhaps unprecedented in our history. Americans are particularly convinced that Congress has become irresponsible, either unwilling or incapable of addressing the nation's problems - while it spends its time and our money on extending its members' careers. Many Americans have come to believe fundamental reform is needed, specifically limits on the number of terms legislators can serve.
In Restoration, George Will makes a compelling case, drawn from our history and his close observance of Congress, that term limits are now necessary to revive the traditional values of classical republican government, to achieve the Founders' goal of deliberative democracy, and to restore Congress to competence and its rightful dignity as the First Branch of government. At stake, Will says, is the vitality of America's great promise self-government under representative institutions. At issue is the meaning of representation. The morality of representative government, Will argues, does not merely permit, it requires representatives to exercise independent judgment rather than merely execute instructions given by constituents. However, careerism, which is a consequence of the professionalization of politics, has made legislators servile and has made the national legislature incapable of rational, responsible behavior. Term limits would restore the constitutional space intended by the Founders, the healthy distance between the electors and the elected that is necessary for genuine deliberation about the public interest.
Blending the political philosophy of the Founders with alarming facts about the behavior of legislative careerists, Restoration demonstrates how term limits, by altering the motives of legislators, can narrow the gap between the theory and the practice of American democracy.

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