When the Founding Fathers were searching for the best and fairest form of government, they studied the models of Athenian democracy, the Roman republic, and the Iroquois Confederacy and created what is now called a modern liberal democracy. Today, 81 nations can be described as fully democratic. Yet in numerous countries around the world democracy has failed or is tottering, and in the United States its principles are increasingly under siege from corporate and other forces. Americans pride themselves on their democracy, but today's legislative process often no longer reflects the vision of the Founders.
In What Would Jefferson Do? Thom Hartmann shows why democracy is not an aberration in human history but the oldest, most resilient, and most universal form of government, with roots in nature itself. He traces in particular the history of democracy in the United States, identifies the most prevalent myths about it, and offers an inspiring yet realistic plan for transforming the political landscape and reviving Jefferson's dream before it is too late.
"Hartmann has done it again. Passionately written and filled with original historical research, What Would Jefferson Do? offers important insights into the meaning and nature of democracy and what we must do to counter the warlords, theocrats, and corporate aristocrats who now place it at risk." (David C. Korten, author of When Corporations Rule the World and The Post-Corporate World)
"A riveting and absolutely essential book for anyone who wishes to reflect upon and awaken to the real meaning of America and the hope it still offers to the world." (Jacob Needleman, author of The American Soul:Rediscovering the Wisdom of the Founders)
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Hartmann had many interesting, thoughtful insights about the revolutionary war and Thomas Jefferson in particular. He clearly has done some homework on the subject and produced a fresh take on both Jefferson and the war. If only his hatred of modern-day republicans was as three-dimensional as his take on history, it would have been a very good book. As is, it is merely "OK".One should take into consideration, however, that I am more libertarian than democrat or republican--a philosophy for which he spares a few pot shots but little other comment. I have never listened to his radio program or even heard of him before listening to this book. Perhaps he expected that you already be familiar with his work and beliefs before listening.
The book was very well read. Coming from me, that's quite a compliment, given that skip many otherwise interesting audiobooks precisely because I can't stand most readers. I demand that a reader sound not just as though he is reading, but that he is reading to me.
It wasn't the book I expected. I wasn't prepared for the diatribe against corporations (some I agreed with, some not) or the abuse of conservatives. However, if you ARE conservative, it certainly does no permanent injury to listen to opposing points of view. However, if you are looking for thoughtful criticism of modern conservative or libertarian thought, you may wish to look elsewhere.
The writer is a very poor historian. Compared corporatism to Mussolini because Mussolini used the same word, but in a very different context. Incompetently fetishizes Native American tribes (pre 1492) as utopian and peaceful democracies. Also claims England pre 1066 was a democracy.
These claims (among many others) don't pass the laugh test, but I fact checked them all. Worst history book I have ever read.