Thank you to everyone who attended our third book group “meeting” and first virtual discussion of “The Fifth Risk” by Michael Lewis. That book is especially relevant now, given that it is about how the Trump administration has made our country and citizens more vulnerable to greater risk with government positions left empty, cronyism, and anti-government ideology. We all may be more alarmed, but we are definitely more informed! Highly recommend reading it. Our next discussion will be moderated again by IE Co-Leader Laura Tanner if we are able to meet in person at Page 1 or if we have another online Zoom discussion (TBD).
Our next book is “Unrigged” by David Daley. This book is an uplifting story of how grassroots political movements around the nation are forcing significant changes in how our government operates. . . . As Daley clearly shows throughout this inspiring text, it was always ‘ordinary’ citizens who led the way, often people who had never participated in politics. They took to the streets, circulated petitions, ran for office, and launched or joined organizations, and they did it while facing overwhelming odds and severe opposition from elected officials. But they never gave up, and they almost always won. A book for anyone who wants to effect major change but thinks they can’t.
Daley is also the author of “Ratf**ked: Why Your Vote Doesn’t Count,” which many of you have read and we encourage you to read as well, though our discussion will be focused on “Unrigged,” as it is the most up to date.
We recommend that you order the book online through Bookshop to support our local host bookstore Page 1 Books See links below to order and it will be shipped directly to you. You can also support Page 1 by ordering your audio version from Libro.fm instead of Audible. EPL is also offering cards online and this can be checked out as an ebook that way. Thank you!
About the Author: David Daley is the author of “Unrigged” and “Ratf**ked.” His journalism has appeared in the New Yorker, the Atlantic, Slate, the Washington Post, and New York magazine. He is a senior fellow at FairVote, the former editor of Salon, and lives in Massachusetts. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidDaley3
About the Book: Unrigged: How Americans Are Battling Back to Save Democracy
Rolling Stone Excerpt: “Kobach and Trump’s Spectacular Voter-Fraud Failure: As Trump makes new, unfounded claims about voter fraud and mail-in voting, it’s worth looking back on the colossal trainwreck of his administration’s first efforts to prove voter fraud.”
Reviews: The wildly undersold story of the beginning of the next American revolution: If you ever needed hope, it is here. If you need a cause, it is here. If you want to mark the beginning of whenever everything changed, it is in the passion and the truth of what is told here: Daley has given us a picture of what democracy looks like. Or will, when this revolution is complete.–Lawrence Lessig, Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership, Harvard Law School, and author of They Don’t Represent Us
David Daley’s work has fired up a generation of activists who are fighting to un-fuck it all up before time runs out. He is a must-read writer for this critical moment. –Amanda Litman, Run For Something co-founder and executive director
[A]n uplifting survey of grassroots efforts to make American democracy more inclusive. . . . Daley’s wit (the offices of the Election Protection hotline are filled with “enough Starbucks cups to caffeinate The Walking Dead”) and clear explanations of the electoral process make the book accessible to political neophytes as well as experts. This optimistic appraisal of the political scene will strike a chord with progressives gearing up for the 2020 elections. An inspirational polemic about political involvement from a plethora of people in different areas…. Its strength… is displayed through the examination of activist work that brings to light the common humanity of society’s marginalized populations….This account shows the significance of more people getting involved in public service after the 2016 election. Best suited for civically engaged readers interested in a populist vision for political activism. –Jesse A. Lambertson, Library Journal
Unrigged is largely a photograph of the national movement that his previous book helped spawn, and suggests the possibility of a nationwide grassroots voter rebellion. –Skip Johnson, Charleston Post Courier
Ratf**ked: Why Your Vote Doesn’t Count (2016) is the explosive account of how Republican legislators and political operatives fundamentally rigged our American democracy through redistricting. With Barack Obama’s historic election in 2008, pundits proclaimed the Republicans as dead as the Whigs of yesteryear. Yet even as Democrats swooned, a small cadre of Republican operatives, including Karl Rove, Ed Gillespie, and Chris Jankowski, began plotting their comeback with a simple yet ingenious plan. These men had devised a way to take a tradition of dirty tricks – known to political insiders as “ratf**king” – to a whole new unprecedented level. Flooding state races with a gold rush of dark money made possible by Citizens United, the Republicans reshaped state legislatures, where the power to redistrict is held. Reconstructing this never-told-before story, David Daley examines the far-reaching effects of this so-called REDMAP program, which has radically altered America’s electoral map and created a firewall in the House, insulating the party and its wealthy donors from popular democracy. Ratf**ked pulls back the curtain on one of the greatest heists in American political history.
Thanks for being part of the IE Book Group and we look forward to our next discussion!