The Concise Princeton Encyclopedia of American Political History

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Michael Kazin, Rebecca Edwards, Adam Rothman
Princeton University Press, Aug 8, 2011 - History - 672 pages

An essential guide to U.S. politics, from the founding to today

With 150 accessible articles written by more than 130 leading experts, this essential reference provides authoritative introductions to some of the most important and talked-about topics in American history and politics, from the founding to today. Abridged from the acclaimed Princeton Encyclopedia of American Political History, this is the only single-volume encyclopedia that provides comprehensive coverage of both the traditional topics of U.S. political history and the broader forces that shape American politics--including economics, religion, social movements, race, class, and gender. Fully indexed and cross-referenced, each entry provides crucial context, expert analysis, informed perspectives, and suggestions for further reading.

Contributors include Dean Baker, Lewis Gould, Alex Keyssar, James Kloppenberg, Patricia Nelson Limerick, Lisa McGirr, Jack Rakove, Nick Salvatore, Stephen Skowronek, Jeremi Suri, Julian Zelizer, and many more.

Entries cover:

  • Key political periods, from the founding to today
  • Political institutions, major parties, and founding documents
  • The broader forces that shape U.S. politics, from economics, religion, and social movements to race, class, and gender
  • Ideas, philosophies, and movements
  • The political history and influence of geographic regions


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Each country should make all its own goods and there is no reason why they can't. Cultural diversity requires economic independence. France should consume products made in France, in order that its culture remain different from other countries.
Consider the following true definitions for globalization's terms, which this book ignores or dismisses:
The economy = the corporate global economy.
Industrialization = corporate usurpation of production and destruction of the independent craftsman.
Economic development = replacement of small businesses and self-sufficient local economies with the corporate global economy.
Job creation = 1. (Global South) sweatshops, plantations, child labor. 2. (Global North) paper-shufflers paid 20 times the hourly rate of Global South workers who do the real, productive work.
Economic freedom = working for the corporations and buying from the corporations.
Economic growth = ever-increasing profits for white collar parasites (e.g., Wall Street manipulators and big corporate and banking executives).
Global labor competition = economic growth by giving your job to a sweatshop worker in another continent.
Global labor market = no laws re environment, minimum wage, worker safety, or child labor.
Outplacement interview = You’re fired.
Globalization = imperialism.
Globalization = destruction of all cultures.
Mobility of capital = rootlessness, unaccountability.
Competitive production costs = revocation of centuries-old protective tariffs (trade barriers), which enables production to be moved to off-shore sweatshops.
Free trade = massive oil-burning transportation system that centralizes economic power in the corporations.
Privatization = corporate appropriation of public lands and resources which creates favored monopolies.
The poor = people who live sustainably in true communities and diverse cultures, crafting their own homes, clothing, and utensils, and growing their own organic food. These millions are termed “poor” because industrial capitalism places no value on communities, culture, and the goods and services people provide for themselves.
Stabilization = subjugation, as in "The US military presence has stabilized the region."
Shift to export economy = corporate agribusiness theft of peasants' land creating massive mono-crop plantations and forced migration into big city slums and sweatshops.
Business-friendly environment = corporate puppet regime installed by U.S. military, CIA, Mossad, MI6, etc., and controlled by detailed and conditional World Bank loans.
European Union = elimination of democracy and borders and the homogenization of Europe's diverse cultures.
Costs outsourcing = subsidies, bailouts, and tax breaks given to corporations in exchange for campaign contributions and cash payments.
Media = propaganda machine owned by corporations and funded by corporate advertising.
Industry consultant = corporate lobbyist.
Market creation = advertising and selling increasingly complex, costly, and unnecessary consumer products.
Automobile = an expensive, dangerous, and environmentally destructive personal isolation chamber and unpaid part-time job, which disrupts, disperses, and destroys compact pedestrian communities.
Infrastructure = subsidized freeway sprawl forcing reliance on the automobile.
Television = an addictive corporate advertising and “news” propaganda device, which wastes time formerly used for family, friends, community, and reading.
Military-industrial complex = $Trillions in obscene profits for the financial elite, made from the mass murder of millions of non-elites.
Peace-keeping forces = occupying army.
Terrorist = a person who counter-attacks the country that is invading or occupying his native land.
Private security contractors = US mercenaries who replace US soldiers in occupied countries to create the illusions of US departure and local rule.

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About the author (2011)

Michael Kazin is professor of history at Georgetown University. Rebecca Edwards is the Eloise Ellery Professor of History at Vassar College. Adam Rothman is associate professor of history at Georgetown University.

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