How did liberals get to be the way they are today? Donald T. Critchlow (and his co-author, W.J. Rorabaugh) supply the answer in their new book, Takeover. They argue that it is a mistake to see the Obama Administration’s agenda as a single man’s vision. Equally flawed, they posit, is the now-common argument that today’s liberalism is simply a continuation of early-twentieth-century progressivism. Today’s Left has embraced a vision for transformative change: to remake all aspects of American life.
Takeover delineates the sharp break in the history of modern liberalism that began in the 1960s. The authors show how leftists in pursuit of “social justice” went from protest rallies to the halls of power by rewriting the Democratic Party’s presidential nominating rules for their own benefit and using the courts to advance their radical agenda. They also connect the dots in America’s recent history, showing the close links among such seemingly unrelated causes as radical environmentalism, nationalized health care, class warfare, abortion rights, feminism, regulating the free market, assisted suicide, sex education, and energy policies to reduce consumption. In Takeover, Critchlow and Rorabaugh reshape our understanding of the current political crisis.
Donald T. Critchlow, the Barry Goldwater Chair of American Institutions at Arizona State University, is the author or editor of many books on American political history, including The Conservative Ascendancy. [His co-author, W.J. Rorabaugh, teaches American history at the University of Washington and penned The Alcoholic Republic, The Real Making of the President, and several other books.]
More About the Speakers
Lee Edwards, Ph.D.
Distinguished Fellow in Conservative Thought, B. Kenneth Simon Center for Principles and Politics