The Democracy Owners' Manual

Avoiding the hype (chapter 12) and the lies (chapter 15) though, Ziauddin Sardar is quite engaging company and his critique of such topics as Americana (chapter 2), Terrorism (chapter 26) and Lists (chapter 16) is both perceptive and politically acute. The question he poses at the outset is surely one we have all asked ourselves recently: ‘Is it just me… or are the times we live in out of joint?’

Subtitled ‘a practical guide to changing the world’, Jim Shultz (better-known to *NI* readers in recent months for his dispatches from Cochabamba, Bolivia) has created here the nearest thing there is to a true democrat’s riposte to, say, Mao’s _Little Red Book_. Well, it’s a bit bigger and more green, as you’d expect. And a good deal more uplifting than your average manual from, say, Microsoft, Sony or Readers’ Digest. No self-professed democrat should be caught without it.