Kennon, Patrick E.
Kennon, Patrick E.
ADDRESSES: Agent—c/o Author Mail, Doubleday, 1540 Broadway, New York, NY 10036.
CAREER: Worked as an analyst with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for twenty-five years.
The Twilight of Democracy, Doubleday (New York, NY), 1995.
SIDELIGHTS: Patrick E. Kennon brings twenty-five years of experience to his analytical The Twilight of Democracy, called "an ambitious overview of how politicians, bureaucrats, and business have manipulated populations throughout history" by Aaron Cohen in Booklist. Kennon projects a world in which nonelected experts will be responsible for the efficiency of governments and uses the role of the Federal Reserve in the United States as an example. He notes that in newly industrialized countries (NICs) like Singapore and Taiwan, bureaucrats create economic policy, and he foresees that their motives and interests will be increasingly global rather than nationalistic, subordinating individual rights for the good of prosperity. Kennon argues that progress through democratic process is not possible in Third World countries which must rely on economic internationalism to advance.
A Publishers Weekly contributor called many of Kennon's points "challenging," but added that "his thesis that representative politics will be vitiated in the First world is speculative and highly arguable." A Kirkus Reviews contributor felt that Kennon "ignores the fact that the authoritarian NICs, far from providing order, can unleash chaos through sheer megalomania (e.g., the Shah of Iran, to bolster his military forces, was instrumental in raising oil prices in the 1970s)." Library Journal critic Ed Goedeken called Kennon's views "interesting." "It's an ambitious work," wrote David Greenberg in a review of The Twilight of Democracy for the Washington Post Book World.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, December 15, 1994, Aaron Cohen, review of The Twilight of Democracy, p. 720.
Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 1994, review of The Twilight of Democracy, p. 1460.
Library Journal, November 15, 1994, Ed Goedeken, review of The Twilight of Democracy, p. 79.
Publishers Weekly, November 28, 1994, review of The Twilight of Democracy, p. 52.
Washington Post Book World, September 24, 1995, David Greenberg, review of The Twilight of Democracy, p. 4.