If undue attempts to smear a book by those it threatens to unmask are any indication of the power of said book’s arguments, then Nancy MacLean’s “Democracy in Chains” is indeed a juggernaut. In a work of rare historical insight and persuasion, MacLean lays bare the long legacy of right-wing ideologues and their schemes to deconstruct American democracy in the service of wealthy patrons. Hardly confining herself to the distant past, the author focuses on the work of modern-day economist James McGill Buchanan, whose “public choice” theory provides the intellectual underpinning for today’s alt-Right movement. Financed by notorious energy-industry magnate and pseudo-economist Charles Koch, Buchanan took his ideas well beyond the merely theoretical, promoting a scheme that called for prolonged, incremental changes to both state and federal laws, the combined effect of which has been to undermine long-established principles of majority rule. At a time when the White House is occupied by a Distractor-in-Chief whose daily antics provide cover for a widespread corporate takeover of our government, this book is truly indispensable. Read it and weep. Then write, call, march, kneel, whatever it takes to prevent our reliving the dark history of Chile under Pinochet.