Overcoming Democracy

The Age of Betrayal
The Triumph of Money in America 1865–1900
Jack Beatty
Alfred A. Knopf, $30, 512 pp.

A recent political cartoon by the Chicago Tribune’s Dick Locher featured two well-dressed lobbyists walking in front of the United States Capitol. “I spend a lot of time in Washington,” one says to the other. “I think I’ll buy a house.” To which his companion responds, “Yeah. I’m buying the Senate.”

A joke, one might say, worthy of Thomas Nast, the Victorian patriarch of American political cartoonists. Certainly, Jack Beatty would...

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About the Author

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<p class="spip" dir="ltr">Robert Westbrook is the author, most recently, of Democratic Hope: Pragmatism and the Politics of Truth (Cornell).</p>

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