[UCP Books]: White-Collar Government: The Hidden Role of Class in Economic Policy Making
|Publication date: December 1, 2013||Paper $16.00 • £11.00|
|UK publication date: December 9, 2013||ISBN-13: 978-0-226-08714-6|
“Elections are supposed to give us choices. We can reward incumbents or throw out the bums. We can choose Republicans or Democrats, conservative policies or progressive ones. In most elections, however, we don’t get a say in something important: whether we’re governed by the rich.”
So writes Nicholas Carnes in a recent opinion piece for the New York Times. Does it matter that most politicians in the United States are considerably better off than the people who elect them? Political commentators have long debated this question, but White-Collar Government provides the first hard look at the evidence.
Drawing on comprehensive data on the class backgrounds of legislators, Carnes shows how the shortage of people from the working class in positions of political power skews the policymaking process toward outcomes that favor upper-class economic interests. Challenging long-held notions about the causes of political inequality in the United States, White-Collar Government highlights a serious sense in which our policymaking process is broken and suggests a new way forward for citizens who care about fixing it.