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John C. Calhoun

“This will sound nutty”: On conspiracy theory in Democracy in Chains

On July 7, 2017, a Facebook friend shared a message from fellow historian Nancy MacLean. “Friends,” it began, “I really, really NEED YOUR HELP.” Acknowledging that what followed might sound “nutty,” MacLean went on to allege that right-wing Koch brothers “operatives” and their hired hands in academia were trying to “kill” her new book, Democracy in Chains The Deep History of The Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America (2017). Through what she called an “interlinked set of calculated hit jobs,” the Koch “team of professors” were attacking her book in seemingly “respectable” venues and failing to disclose their Koch funding. Read more