Bovard Book Title Contest

I am finishing up a new book and am seeking suggestions for a snappy title.

The book’s essays deal with the political sanction for mass killing, the fraud of idealism, how truth is perverted in Washington, why power corrupts, Leviathan-loving intellectuals, the fatal myths of democracy, and other cheery topics. My tentative title is “Principles & Paradigms: How Politicians Con Citizens Into Submission.” But my hunch is that the title could be better.

Ideally, the title would be both hard hitting and zippety. In the past, I’ve been a pushover for alliteration (Fair Trade Fraud, Farm Fiasco, Bush Betrayal, Terrorism & Tyranny). Alternatively, the title would be a phrase that sticks in people’s memories – such as Lost Rights, Freedom in Chains, or Attention Deficit Democracy.

The person who suggests the winning title will receive $100 and will be mentioned in the book’s acknowledgments. (Second prize is two mentions in the acknowledgments).

Send suggestions to

Thanks for the help!
Jim Bovard
UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who is suggesting titles. I really appreciate the time and thought that folks are putting into their title proposals. Some fine zesty stuff here! 2/16

64 thoughts on “Bovard Book Title Contest”

  1. “Utopian Criminal Genocide: How the Elite Pull the Strings of Democracy.”

    “The Democracy Mask of the Plutocracy.”

  2. How about, “The illusion of democracy. The freedom that never was”. Whatever you decide stay away from alliterations. Just too worn out.

    1. Andy, come on now your free, free to elect your next God, King, and Ruler.

      Seriously though, good title.


  3. Andy, you’re right when you say “illusion of democracy”.
    It’s one thing to have dictatorship or monarchy where you’re told to shut the F-up or else, where you know who your enemy is. But in our so called “democracy” people don’t even realize that they are told to shut the F-up.

    1. One of the ways people are told to shut up is when we’re told we’re slandering the US by criticizing our government’s policies.

  4. I think that the illusion resides not so much in the practice of democracy as in the expectations for the outcomes of the practice. In short, with larceny in his heart, your average McCitizen sees democracy as the means whereby he will get something for nothing and live happily ever after at the expense of someone else.

    So like the lab cocaine monkey, he is addicted to pulling the lever come every election. But of late nothing much happens. It seems that others bigger, stronger and meaner – professional lobbyists – also with larceny in their hearts, have run off with Mr. McCitizen’s booty leaving him empty handed but nevertheless filled with hope that next time he will get his.

    1. Right on. I love the analogy, it’s perfect. No one seems to want to take care of themselves anymore. One side is pissed that they didn’t get their share of my labor, then the other side is equally mad. I am far from rich (materialy) but I would get by much better without the state picking my pocket. I’m wondering what will happen when it becomes clear that the big cities are no longer sustainable, will they run back to the country, will we take them in if they try?


      1. Brad: With so much justifiable rage focused on the criminal antics of the federal government, not much is said about the democracy fueled predations of state and local governments. I live in Illinois, and I recall when the state financed its activities with a 4% sales tax and no income tax. Today we are burdened with a 10% sales tax, a 3% income tax, and countless fees and fines, yet state officials are still crying poverty and are now talking about raising the income tax. Every program funded by taxes, fees and fines has a voting constituency eager to preserve “its” share.

        I am within sight of retirement but I must continue working until I drop dead because $6,000 of my crippling annual property tax goes to “educate” other people’s children. I never had children, but those in my community and in every community in America think nothing of voting to steal from others to finance the dubious honor of turning their children over to the public school indoctrination camps and then feel good about participating in democracy. Only a psychopath would take a gun and rob his neighbors, yet normal and decent Americans are urged to vote to rob their neighbors and then feel proud and superior because they live in a democracy!

        Perhaps it’s always been so, but theft through voting is now so hardwired in people’s DNA that not even most victims are troubled by this morally odious dimension of democracy. Having been desensitized to government sanctioned domestic larceny on such a grand scale, it’s no wonder that most Americans are indifferent to the theft and carnage perpetrated overseas in their name.

        Democracy is not an illusion. It’s a living nightmare.

        1. I can’t stand our government indoctrination centers for children either. My state cut funding for the after school program recently and I voluteered to fundraise. I understand that the program helps and as parents are forced to send their children I wanted to help. I am a musician and play and sell guitars for a living. I played last weekend for 250 women at a ladies night out and we brought in over $8,000 federal reserve dollars. It was fun and for a good cause. However, what drove me insane was listening to everyone complain about the cut in funding. I was asked over and over why I wasn’t mad about it and in fact happy that the funding was cut. I simply said that why should we be forcing people to pay for a program when we can do it ourselves. Why should my childless freinds be forced to pay for mostly single mothers. My childless friend were responsible with thier bodies and chose not to have children they could not afford, so why should the state force them at gunpoint to give up the fruits of their labor. I am glad they cut the funding and I was glad that as a community we came together to help. This is the way we should pay for the entire school system and if people are not willing to come together and support it I guess they don’t think it’s all that important. Also if we funded it ourselves we could set the adjenda and not some jackass in Washington. It’s also incredibly inneficiant. For every dollar we send to Washington or Lansing we are lucky if we get back 50 cents. What do we get in return? A cop in the school and forced indoctrination. I’m just sooo glad that the government helps with every little thing in our lives. What would we ever do without them?


        2. First, democracy is just a certain METHOD of achieving certain goals. The only meaningful goal would be to have a Govt. that acts in a way that is not making people so unhappy that they end up revolting, getting into a civil war and then after killing millions getting the Govt. that would be overthrown again.

          Now, with a longer horizon, of 500 to 1000 years there is no way to avoid this. Some countries manage to do that 2-3 times in a century (Russia), that is bad.

          So, the goal is to have not a “democracy”, but an arrangement, where people do affect the Govt, where there is working feedback loop.

          Govt. is bad by definition, we can only achieve having Govt. that is tolerable. And of course the weaker the Govt., the better, but it tends to get stronger and bigger with time. Look what happened in the US in just 225 years. From Constitution that prohibits income taxes and Army for the purpose of aggression – to mass killing it’s own citizens in order to start couple/three wars the other side of the Globe. In just 225 years….

    2. A government big enough to give you everything you want is going to be big enough to take everything you’ve got.

    1. Final answer – “Pledging Allegiance to Bullshit – How Honest Patriotism gets Perverted into Support for Kleptocracy”.

  5. Funny. I’m having the same problem with my book. Here are some suggestions for your title:

    Democon: How Democracy Failed
    Guns and Gays: Culture Wars at Home and Abroad
    Fools and Liars: The men, the myths, and the masses
    Now Fear This: How Americans are ruled by fear

    Personally I like the last one. In the spirit of Karma, please help me with the title for my book, it exposes a financial services industry myth and rescues the retirement dreams for millions of Americans – Green Retirement

    1. This is from the Green Retiremtnt link.

      IMPORTANT: The Free Retirement Analysis, although more accurate than a retirement calculator, is still not as accurate as a comprehensive retirement plan. Green Retirement Planning offers comprehensive retirement planning services, along with individualized retirement planning software, for the affordable price of $395 – Traditional retirement planners charge up to $1,500 per innaccurte retirement plan.

        1. Brad wasn’t being cynical. This website doesn’t need anybody trying to freeload on its traffic for somebody’s private benefit.

  6. How about, Stop spamming this site: why you shouldn’t self promote on anti-war.

    Seriously, this is a place to share ideas not promote your money making business. If you truly wanted advice for your title just ask. I would have tried to come up with something, as it is your Karma line is not going to play with me. Say your sorry and try again, mabey I’ll think it over. I wasted my time clicking on your link thinking I would get some information and not just another advertisement. You may very well have something great to say, well just say it already! I’m not against profits but this is the wrong place to ask for free advertisements.



      You need to join us at Antiwar Radio hosted by Scott Horton tuesday thru friday from 2-4pm EST. You would really enjoy it as it is interactive and lots of good information. Best talk show on the radio in my opinion.

      Here is the link for the Stress Blog.

      Follow the instructions and go to the Kaos Radio website and log on where it says listen now:

      You can also simutaneously chat during the show. You can log in at the Stress site.

      Certain days there is live call in opportunities with the smartest audience in talk radio land. You would fit in very well.

      Peace be with you,


  7. Jim
    How about “Home of the Damned: How the Powers-that-be Have Corrupted Democracy”…. Seems fitting!

  8. I would recommend that you avoid using “Paradigm”. I don’t really know what it means, and I don’t really want to. Seems like the kind of word consultants use to bullshit clients. No Sir, I don’t like it! Unless, maybe… “Buddy, Can You Paradigm? How to Prosper in a Post-Capitalist Economy”. With a cartoon of Pearl, Wolfowitz and Kristol to look like the Pep Boys , except they’re holding bags of money instead of tyres and batteries.

    1. …and i gots to admit that the situation’s getting so desperate that i’m thinking about riding my bike through the snow and dark to albertson’s to buy beer.

        1. I think the war in Iraq was all for helping Israel more than it was about oil. Over 4500 of our young soldiers died for Israel. Under the neocons, our military has become a proxy for Israel.

        2. Of course the invasion of Iraq was all about what Israel wanted and nothing to do with “liberation” or any other almighty bullshit. Even the oil is curiously ignored anymore. It was slaughter of Arabs for the sake of slaughter of Arabs. (Iraqis, Syrians, Lebanese, Palestinians – who cares?) Arabs of every nationality are fungible objects of Israeli hatred; the category even includes Iranians.
          Right after 9-11, I inquired of the Ruffin Flag Company (in Georgia) if they could sew me an American flag, 3’x5′ with 6 pointed stars instead of 5 pointed stars. Now that would be a flag suitable for what this country has become. I would fly it high, every day.

  9. from your description i suggest “The Liberal Defense of Murder” (with apologies to richard seymour’s “The Liberal DefenCe of Murder”)

  10. “Why the US is Rightly Despised”

    “Congress: A Shower of C***s”

    “Evil Is As Evil Does: A Study of US Policy”

    “Further Impotent Liberal Polemics To Inform and Depress You”

    “Revolt Now, You Shamed And Cowardly Vermin”

  11. How about: “Obama 911 or the Audacity of Warocracy” and get Michael Moore to make the movie.

  12. This is book is quite timely. Here is a suggestion for the title
    “The Lethal Faces of Democracy”

    Good luck

  13. So, here is the old Soviet joke, but since late US reminds me the USSR too much, you will enjoy it :-)

    Lenin, Stalin and Brezhnev are riding in a train. Suddenly it stops. They check and find out that railroad is under construction.

    So, Lenin suggests to get out and to make a speech to railroad construction workers, so that they build railroad quicker. Stalin, apparently, suggests to find those guilty of being slow and lazy and execute them, so that remaining would work quicker. Brezhnev though suggests to drape the windows and assign some people to rock the train car, so that it would FEEL as if the train is riding.

    That is it. End of road.

    1. Is it just me or is the U.S. beginning to resemble the USSR in its last days? We are stuck in Afghanistan for several years, are spending massive amounts on the military, running the economy into the ground and have lost any sense of moral or ideological direction.

    2. Nice joke Vassili. I remember one from the Reagan era. A man was sitting on the corner in New York and complaining about Reagan. He looks over at a Russian man and says I’ll bet you can’t do that at home. The Russian man says “sure I can, I can complain about Reagan all I want”.


      1. For some reason 10s of Americans have told me this joke. Of course I don’t like it. Well – maybe I liked it before 1985, I don’t remember, but then Reagan was the President since 1981 – so, probably, during the years of 1981 to 1984 that joke was of merit to me.
        Then, collective “complaining” of all Soviet people brought Gorbachev to power in 1985.

        Since then – that joke does not reflect anything, but firm American belief that they have more freedom that anybody on this planet. This is not true.

        1. Actually I was thinking that it may apply more towards the US media than it does to modern Russia. It seems to be the direction we are headed in and you are headed away from. It won’t get you thrown in prison for making fun of the president of the US but you can definately loose your job if your working for FOX or any number of other media outlets. Critisizing the US government get’s you labeled as either unpatrioitic or as a consiracy nut. I’m glad to see your country becoming more free every day. However, it’s very disheartening to see mine slipping into fascism. Socialist democrats and Fascist Republicans fighting it out to see who gets to destroy our freedoms the fastest.


      2. Yes, sorry for my reaction – but I’ve mostly heard that joke in response to saying any (ANY) critique about something in the US, while I lived there. In fact though – back in the USSR that I remember, nobody got prosecuted for being critical about Brezhnev in private setting. But of course doing that in mass media would cost that person a job. Now, I remember another joke, that seems very appropriate now – when all of a sudden Bush was not so good, but Obama is just The One.

        Kid talks with his grandmother.
        – Grandma, was Lenin good?
        – Yes, my dear grandson.
        – Grandma, was Stalin bad?
        – Bad, my dear.
        – Grandma, was Khrushev bad?
        – He was, my dear.
        – Grandma, is Brezhnev good or bad?
        – It’s not known yet. We’ll know after he is dead.

        So, in a similar way, we’ll know about Obama some day :-)

  14. Lost in America: Limited Government Disappears in the Land of the Free


    Democracy in AmeriKa: Why De Tocqueville wouldn’t recognize us

  15. How about this title: ‘Principles & Power: How Politics Corrupts and Kills’

    By the way, I’m a big fan. I think a read about half dozen of your books.

  16. Can foreigners play too? If so I suggest:

    Guns, Bumbs and Political karaoke.
    Washington. Power and the American polity.

    Luck with the book James,

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