Summary of The Case Against Democracy

If most voters are uninformed, who should make decisions about the public’s welfare?

The New Yorker,

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The Case Against Democracy summary
Should only the educated vote?

Rating

7 Overall

8 Importance

7 Innovation

7 Style

Recommendation

If Americans don’t know what’s in their Constitution, how can they pick leaders who will uphold its principles? Since the days of Plato in ancient Greece, intellectuals have fretted about ignorant voters and argued for a system run by educated people instead. Political scientist Jason Brennan is one such intellectual. Literary critic and journalist Caleb Crain dissects Brennan’s new book Against Democracy, offering historical insights and a fresh voice. While always politically neutral, getAbstract recommends Crain’s sharp analysis, which doesn’t lose faith in democracy.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How an “epistrocracy” differs from a democracy
  • How one political scientist envisions educated voters as benefiting the public good
  • What problems his model overlooks
 

Summary

Roughly one-third of Americans can’t name a single branch of the US government; less than a quarter can name their own states’ senators. Ignorant voters have worried elites since the days of Plato in ancient Greece. The US government required literacy tests for more than a century, blocking poor immigrants...
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About the Author

Caleb Crain is a literary critic, journalist and author of the award-winning novel Necessary Errors.


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