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In this elegantly written, provocative, and sometimes just plain provoking book, punctuated by bits of anguish and rather more pique, Richard Ellis worries that the American Left has been so passionate about equality that it has run roughshod over liberty. So put, the thesis is not exactly news. It has been the recurrent lament of conservative indictments- Tocqueville's is the canonical statement, but he has plenty of precursors and followers. And it has its scholarly variations, too, such as Arthur Lipow, Authoritarian Socialism in America: Edward Bellamy and the Nationalist Movement (1982). No profound surprises are on offer here.