Cover: Constitutional Coup: Privatization’s Threat to the American Republic, from Harvard University PressCover: Constitutional Coup in HARDCOVER

Constitutional Coup

Privatization’s Threat to the American Republic

Add to Cart

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$36.00 • £28.95 • €32.50

ISBN 9780674737730

Publication Date: 10/23/2017

Text

320 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

World

Americans have a love-hate relationship with government. Rejecting bureaucracy—but not the goods and services the welfare state provides—Americans have demanded that government be made to run like a business. Hence today’s privatization revolution.

But as Jon D. Michaels shows, separating the state from its public servants, practices, and institutions does violence to our Constitution, and threatens the health and stability of the Republic. Constitutional Coup puts forward a legal theory that explains the modern welfare state as a worthy successor to the framers’ three-branch government.

What legitimates the welfare state is its recommitment to a rivalrous system of separation of powers, in which political agency heads, career civil servants, and the public writ large reprise and restage the same battles long fought among Congress, the president, and the courts. Privatization now proclaims itself as another worthy successor, this time to an administrative state that Americans have grown weary of. Yet it is a constitutional usurper. Privatization dismantles those commitments to separating and checking state power by sidelining rivalrous civil servants and public participants.

Constitutional Coup cements the constitutionality of the administrative state, recognizing civil servants and public participants as necessary—rather than disposable—components. Casting privatization as an existential constitutional threat, it underscores how the fusion of politics and profits commercializes government—and consolidates state power in ways both the framers and administrative lawyers endeavored to disaggregate. It urges—and sketches the outlines of—a twenty-first-century bureaucratic renaissance.

Recent News

From Our Blog

Jacket: The Number of the Heavens: A History of the Multiverse and the Quest to Understand the Cosmos, by Tom Siegfried, from Harvard University Press

Q&A with Tom Siegfried, author of The Number of the Heavens: A History of the Multiverse and the Quest to Understand the Cosmos

In The Number of the Heavens, Tom Siegfried, the award-winning former editor of Science News, shows that one of the most fascinating and controversial ideas in contemporary cosmology—the existence of multiple parallel universes—has a long and divisive history that continues to this day. We spoke to him about the possible existence of a multiverse and the co

‘manifold glories of classical Greek and Latin’

The digital Loeb Classical Library (loebclassics.com) extends the founding mission of James Loeb with an interconnected, fully searchable, perpetually growing virtual library of all that is important in Greek and Latin literature.