• Chaotic Neutral

  • How the Democrats Lost Their Soul in the Center
  • By: Ed Burmila
  • Narrated by: Mikael Naramore
  • Length: 13 hrs and 4 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (16 ratings)

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Chaotic Neutral

By: Ed Burmila
Narrated by: Mikael Naramore
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Publisher's Summary

A recent history of the Democratic Party that identifies its chronic errors—the “pathologies” of the New Democratic mindset—and argues urgently against a return to the status quo

Why did the Democrats initially abandon their principles, and why haven’t they been able to grasp that they need a new strategy in the face of decades of diminishing returns? In Chaotic Neutral, political scientist Ed Burmila breaks it to us, tracing the party’s metamorphosis from bold defender of labor rights, civil rights, and a robust social safety net to a timorous, ideology-free, regulation-averse lifestyle brand.

Chaotic Neutral tracks the evolution (or devolution) of the Democratic Party from the New Deal era to Biden’s status-quo candidacy and the pandemic, when, even in the midst of a national crisis, the Democrats could not manage to pass sweeping progressive legislation. It is a timely analysis and, simultaneously, a timeless one that pinpoints why Dem politicians act like also-rans even when they’re in power.

Burmila doesn’t pull any punches as he describes the Democrats’ brand of futility politics, but he also doesn’t claim that all is futile, instead laying out a potent strategy for how the party might abandon its lesser-of-two-evils strategy and shift back into drive.   

©2022 Ed Burmila (P)2022 Bold Type Books

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  • Overall
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Great to READ, not listen

Definitely READ this book. Listening to it is damn near impossible as the performer also reads the footnotes in real time. It makes for a very disjointed listening experience. I own the physical book as well. Went between reading chapters and listening to others. Reading is the only way to enjoy this book.

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Can I get an "Amen?"

I'm just old enough to remember the Democratic Party before the New Democrats/Third Way/neo liberalism took over. This was a breath of fresh air. The hidebound GOP-lite thinking of Dems in leadership is killing us as surely as the GOP at this point.

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Let this book motivate you to create change

I enjoyed listening to and reading this, laughing through furrowed brows. Several times I had to pause to guffaw or curse. I cursed a lot. Burmila articulates the malaise I've had about Democrats for as long as I've been politically aware in ways.

This book has stirred a lot of energy inside me, and it makes me want to do something about it.

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Needs to be required reading for Dem leadership

The worst part about this book is the fact that none of the people who desperately need to read and understand this material will ever do so.