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Twilight of the Elites Audiobook

Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy

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Publisher's Summary

A powerful and original argument that traces the roots of our present crisis of authority to an unlikely source: the meritocracy.

Over the past decade, Americans watched in bafflement and rage as one institution after another - from Wall Street to Congress, the Catholic Church to corporate America, even Major League Baseball - imploded under the weight of corruption and incompetence. In the wake of the Fail Decade, Americans have historically low levels of trust in their institutions; the social contract between ordinary citizens and elites lies in tatters.

How did we get here? With Twilight of the Elites, Christopher Hayes offers a radically novel answer. Since the 1960s, as the meritocracy elevated a more diverse group of men and women into power, they learned to embrace the accelerating inequality that had placed them near the very top. Their ascension heightened social distance and spawned a new American elite - one more prone to failure and corruption than any that came before it.

Mixing deft political analysis, timely social commentary, and deep historical understanding, Twilight of the Elites describes how the society we have come to inhabit - utterly forgiving at the top and relentlessly punitive at the bottom - produces leaders who are out of touch with the people they have been trusted to govern. Hayes argues that the public's failure to trust the federal government, corporate America, and the media has led to a crisis of authority that threatens to engulf not just our politics but our day-to-day lives.

Upending well-worn ideological and partisan categories, Hayes entirely reorients our perspective on our times. Twilight of the Elites is the defining work of social criticism for the post-bailout age.

©2012 Christopher Hayes (P)2012 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"[L]ively and well-informed.Offering feasible proposals for change, this cogent social commentary urges us to reconstruct our institutions so we can once again trust them." (Publishers Weekly)

"[A] forcefully written debut.... A provocative discussion of the deeper causes of our current discontent, written with verve and meriting wide interest." (Kirkus Reviews)

"This is the Next Big Thing that we have been waiting for. Twilight of the Elites is the fully reported, detailed, true story of a 21st century America beyond the reach of authority. It's new, and true, and beautifully told - Hayes is the young left's most erudite and urgent interpreter. Brilliant book." (Rachel Maddow, host of The Rachel Maddow Show and author of Drift)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (528 )
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Performance
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  •  
    John SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, CA, United States 12-05-12
    John SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, CA, United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Right on Chris"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I'm a liberal, so, I like him.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Reality


    Which character – as performed by Christopher Hayes – was your favorite?

    Obama


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, except I had to laugh at the stupid conservative Republicans.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    michael Newark, DE, United States 11-29-12
    michael Newark, DE, United States 11-29-12
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    "The Lost Decade"
    Where does Twilight of the Elites rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best books about what happened this last decade and how the elite have betrayed our confidence and set us adrift in an institutional black hole. The Church, Major-League baseball, the financial community and the political process are institutions that have failed us and left us looking for a new way to regain trust in anything in our lives. Chris carefully explains how our institutions have failed us and how we need to navigate in the world void of a trust in them.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Paducah, KY, United States 11-23-12
    Mark Paducah, KY, United States 11-23-12 Member Since 2012
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    "A wealth of Information"
    If you could sum up Twilight of the Elites in three words, what would they be?

    Understanding Why !!


    Any additional comments?

    getting a better view and understanding of why things happen and how they are influenced will help get things changed for the better if you choose to do something about it :-)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A 11-16-12
    A 11-16-12
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    "A cultural essay that America's been screaming for"
    Where does Twilight of the Elites rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the most informative, new thought, audiobooks I've listened to.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Hayes proves that the tea party and occupy wallstreet movement are one in the same.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    "The teaparty wants to live back in the 50's and occupy wallstreeters want to work in the 50's." Love it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William 10-30-12
    William 10-30-12

    gr8jibe

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    "Talk radio"
    Would you try another book from Christopher Hayes and/or Christopher Hayes?

    no


    What was most disappointing about Christopher Hayes’s story?

    It's liberal talk radio. I could get that on FM. I don't listen to talk radio, of any persuasion.


    What about Christopher Hayes’s performance did you like?

    baseball steroid analysis earned the two stars.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    yes


    Any additional comments?

    disclaimer: Those who like this book may attribute my review to being part of "a group of hypereducated, ambitious overachievers who enjoy tremendous monetary rewards as well as unparalleled political power and prestige, and yet who manage to insulate themselves from sanction, competition, and accountability ..." -- Chapter 2. For the record, I don't think so.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hilary Delafield, Wisconsin, United States 10-14-12
    Hilary Delafield, Wisconsin, United States 10-14-12
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    "Chris Hayes - freshest voice of his generation"
    Any additional comments?

    Chris Hayes is a skilled speaker and writer. He is unfailingly intelligent, critical and honest. His book is absolutely worth a read or a listen and will educate and interest a wide range of audiences.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Penfield, NY, United States 09-17-12
    Jason Penfield, NY, United States 09-17-12
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    "Good Listen"

    Found the book very engaging. If you like "Up" with Chris Hayes and weekend mornings then you'll also enjoy this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rocky P Owyhee, NV, United States 09-10-12
    Rocky P Owyhee, NV, United States 09-10-12
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    "Just freakin Brilliant!"
    What did you love best about Twilight of the Elites?

    So many real life examples and data & sarcatic humor by Chris Hayes


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Story bout Major league baseball gettin exposed wit steriod usage and how it plays into corruption among the elites


    Which character – as performed by Christopher Hayes – was your favorite?

    Every character Exposing Right Wing / Tea Party Leader


    If you could give Twilight of the Elites a new subtitle, what would it be?

    Toxic BS propaganda of the elites


    Any additional comments?

    Totally refreshing, Chris Hayes is a master of words. Never heard anyone explain and expose the Right wing elites so well, definately worth a read, you will not be dissappointed (1 of my all time favs)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthia LEESBURG, VIRGINIA, United States 08-28-12
    Cynthia LEESBURG, VIRGINIA, United States 08-28-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Revolutionary Read"
    Where does Twilight of the Elites rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best. Inspirational, a call to action and answers the question "why are things so messed up right now"?


    What about Christopher Hayes’s performance did you like?

    Emotional, read his own book so knew exactly what to emphasize.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    Meritocracy isn't perfect.


    Any additional comments?

    I think everyone should read this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christine 08-24-12
    Christine 08-24-12 Member Since 2014
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    "Not what I expected!"
    What did you love best about Twilight of the Elites?

    Chris Hayes was able to fill your mind full of useful facts while keeping you very entertained.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Twilight of the Elites?

    While I am a lifelong sports fan I learned several details that I had not known before.


    Have you listened to any of Christopher Hayes’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Most definitely.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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