Robert McChesney and John Nichols will deliver a talk on their new books, Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex is Destroying America, and Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy. In Dollarocracy, McChesney and Nichols reveal how big spending in recent elections has come to delude the democratic system. As the money gets bigger—especially after the Citizens United ruling—and journalism, a core check and balance on the government, declines, American citizens are in danger of becoming less informed and more open to manipulation. With new research and reporting on "the money power," Dollarocracy argues that the money-and-media election complex does not just endanger electoral politics; it poses a challenge to the DNA of American democracy itself. Digital Disconnect examines the relationship between economic power and the digital world. Capitalism’s colonization of the Internet has had unforeseen effects on the integrity of journalism and privacy rights. McChesney and Nichols provide the tools and urge readers to reclaim the digital revolution while it is still possible. Robert McChesney is Gutgsell Endowed Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Trained at the University of Washington (Ph.D, 1989), McChesney hosts the program Media Matters on WILL-AM every Sunday afternoon from 1-2pm central time. He has written seventeen books and his work has been translated into fifteen languages. John Nichols is a political journalist for The Nation magazine and the associate editor of the Capital Times. He has written The Beat since 1999. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress. He is a contributing writer for The Progressive and In These Times. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Chicago Tribune and dozens of other newspapers. McChesney and Nichols are the founders of Free Press, a national media reform organization, and have authored books together including: Tragedy and Farce: How the American Media Sell Wars, Spin Elections, Destroy Democracy (New Press) and The Death and Life of American Journalism (Nation Books).
Ted Glasser, Professor of Communication at Stanford University, will offer introductory remarks.