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Download The Dictator's Handbook: Why Bad Behavior Is Almost Always Good Politics Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Dictators Handbook: Why Bad Behavior Is Almost Always Good Politics (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Bruce Bueno de Mesquita
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (227 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Bruce Bueno de Mesquita Narrator: Johnny Heller Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2012 ISBN:
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For 18 years, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and Alastair Smith have been revolutionizing the study of politics by turning conventional wisdom on its head. They start from a single assertion: Leaders do whatever keeps them in power. They don't care about the national interest - or even their subjects - unless they have to.

This clever and accessible book shows that the difference between tyrants and democrats is just a convenient fiction. Governments do not differ in kind but only in the number of essential supporters, or backs that need scratching. The size of this group determines almost everything about politics: what leaders can get away with, and the quality of life or misery under them. The picture the authors paint is not pretty. But it just may be the truth, which is a good starting point for anyone seeking to improve human governance.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sebastian | 2/16/2014

    " I was initially skeptical, but it turned out to be a good read. Only at the end I found out that this is the narration of an academic paper - which explains some of the slights in style. Highly recommended. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jake | 2/12/2014

    " Five pages of content in 280 pages of fluff. Disappointing. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sean | 1/27/2014

    " A thought-provoking analysis of why leaders do what they do. The authors provide a number of valuable insights, but at times rely too heavily on simplifications (reliance on a monetization of the leader/supporter dynamic) and absolutes. Though the overall gist of the idea they put forward is persuasive to me, these faults reinforce that their "selectorate theory" ought be used as an additional frame of reference rather than an entirely-reliable guide for how policy comes to be. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jim Mullen | 1/26/2014

    " This is a clever title slapped onto a serious academic work about how easy it is become a power in local, state and national governments. The truly scary thing is that the process it describes is almost a cheat sheet on how to become the CEO of one of the multi-national conglomerates fixated on ruining the world. Nothing is run more like a dictatorship than our to-big-to-fail banks and corporations. This is not a fun read, but a necessary one. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ronald | 1/13/2014

    " Eye opening insight on how power is attained and retained at all levels of government be it corperate, democratic, monarchy, or dictatorship. Apologies for the grammar I read great authors I am not even a good writer. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Geert Vansintjan | 1/6/2014

    " A must read for everybody who is confronted with politics of power, as well on the political level as in the local chess club. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alias Pending | 1/4/2014

    " Shortest review ever: I'm not doing a 5 star endorsement of the material contained in this book, processing those ideas will take time, but I can definitely recommend this to anyone who has an interest in political science or the desire to be free from tyranny. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marc Mims | 12/15/2013

    " Extremely insightful with some fascinating examples drawn from historical and current contexts. I felt like I learned more about politics from this one book than everything else I've read before it, combined. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melissa | 10/4/2013

    " This should be required reading for students of politics, or anyone interested in international affairs or power in general. A fascinating new theory about how dictator's stay in power, with plenty of case studies and research to back it up. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dmmd | 9/25/2013

    " It gets a little repetitive and redundant as it progresses but there are portions that are quite interesting. The historical references kept it interesting enough to finish. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marc | 9/3/2013

    " Pulls back the curtains, and reveals how power really works (in democracies, dictatorships, and all the rest). "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Nitin | 5/13/2013

    " While this book is easy to read and never gets boring, its authors oversimplify a number of issues and don't seem to realize when they have contradicted themselves. More often than not, I could come up with a counterexample to whatever idea they were pushing. Save your time and pick a better book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike Stolfi | 11/19/2012

    " If you're looking for a "Grand Unified Theory" of political behavior without the ideological commitments that so many theorists have, this is pretty much it. Enjoy. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Greg Staddon | 10/20/2012

    " A really quite remarkable book that convincingly illustrates the real forces behind politics. A mind-expanding read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Asns | 8/9/2012

    " A great book as an introduction to understanding politics. East to read and enjoyable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alexander Lennartz | 7/1/2012

    " For anyone that wants to make a positive change in this world, this is a must-read. This should be taught in policy schools around the world. If anyone at MIIS sees this, ask for this book to be added to the curriculum! "

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About the Author

Bruce Bueno de Mesquita is the Julius Silver Professor of Politics and director of the Alexander Hamilton Center for Political Economy at New York University, as well as a senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is the author of several books, including The Predictioneer’s Game; Principles of International Politics; Predicting Politics; Strategy, Risk and Personality in Coalition Politics; and the coauthor of many others. Bruce received his doctorate in political science from the University of Michigan in 1971 and a doctorate from the University of Groningen in 1999. He is the 2007 recipient of South Korea’s DMZ Peace Prize, and the recipient of many other academic honors for his teaching and research. Bruce lives with his wife, Arlene, in San Francisco and New York.

About the Narrator

Johnny Heller, a two-time winner of the prestigious Audie Award, was named a top voice of 2008 and 2009 and selected as one of the Top 50 Narrators of the Twentieth Century by AudioFile magazine. His adult and children’s book narrations have earned him multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards.