An Unauthorized Tour of the Populist Revolt Scaring Wall Street and Washington
Three Rivers Press (CA), Paperback, 9780307395641, 385pp.
Publication Date: April 28, 2009
Job outsourcing. Slashed paychecks. A war without end, fatally mismanaged. Americans on both the Right and Left are tired of being disenfranchised by corrupt politicians and are organizing to change the status quo. In his invigorating new book, David Sirota investigates this uprising, taking us into the trenches where real change is happening in the headquarters of the most powerful third party in America, at an ExxonMobil shareholder meeting, and on the quasi-military staging area of a vigilante force on the Mexican border.
The Uprising is essential reading for anyone who wants to look beyond presidential politics at the new populism that is reshaping the American political landscape.
"Sirota reports cleverly and in pleasing detail about a complex world of political conflict"
“Audacious. . . . Sirota has a true gift for phrase-making and the pithy comment.”
"Sirota (Hostile Takeover ) chronicles how ordinary citizens on the right and the left are marshaling their frustrations with the government into uprisings across the country and analyzes the effectiveness and longevity of their efforts. Citing developments as disparate as progressive political victories in the Montana state senate and the rise of the California Minutemen militia, the author weaves entertaining case studies, keeping his tone conversational, the narrative fast-paced and the content accessible. Sirota hits numerous high notes, including a fine elucidation of continuing Democratic support for the Iraq War, a breakdown of the "echo chamber" qualities of beltway television shows like Hardball and salient observations of how and why the Democratic Party severed ties with the liberal uprising of the '60s era. According to Sirota, "The activism and energy frothing today is disconnected and atomized. The only commonality between it all is rage." It remains to be seen whether this rage will snowball into something large enough to upset entrenched political systems, but for the time being, this book presents a rousing account of the local uprisings already in effect."
"After so many decades of fake populism--of revolts by the wealthy, red-state fantasies, and stock-picking grandmas--could we finally be looking at the real thing? In this compelling book, rooted in history but as contemporary as this morning's newspaper, David Sirota gives us reason to hope."
—Thomas Frank, author of What's the Matter with Kansas? and The Wrecking Crew
"David Sirota is honest, uncompromising, passionate, and a brilliant communicator. He is the most important progressive voice we have in this country. The Uprising should be read by anyone who wants to understand exactly how the ordinary person has been sold out by the political system."
—Matt Taibbi, national political correspondent for Rolling Stone and author of The Great Derangement
"This book engages in the nearly lost art of reporting to tell us what's going on in the many places that the elite media can't be bothered to look. It chronicles just how fed up Americans have become, and nominates a few heroes for them to turn to: that great senator Bernie Sanders, or the activist nun Pat Daly, for instance. It cheered me a good deal to read how many Americans are finally starting to fight back against the rule of greed that has been our lot for too many years."
—Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy and The Bill McKibben Reader
"With a historian’s and a journalist’s storytelling gifts, David Sirota describes the populist tide that so many elites fear and ignore at all our peril: multinational corporations that rip off local communities as if they were resource colonies, a national security state that manipulates our young to bleed for that same empire, and a political elite more concerned with preserving its power than empowering citizens to become self-governing. Since leaving the Beltway behind, David Sirota has become a must-read chronicler in the populist tradition."
—Tom Hayden, author of The Tom Hayden Reader and Ending the War in Iraq
"David Sirota details with clarity the sharp knife of corporate greed pointed at the throat of our democracy--and the populist uprising that may thwart the threat if enough Americans heed his call. If you love your country, buy The Uprising, read it, and act."
—Joe Trippi, chief presidential campaign strategist for Howard Dean and John Edwards and author of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
"David Sirota is a clear-headed and principled hell-raiser for economic justice. More like him and we'll have a real uprising on our hands. "
—Naomi Klein, author of No Logo and The Shock Doctrine