Pluto Press Logo

Independent Radical Publishing




On the Blog

Day of Reckoning

Day of Reckoning

How the Far Right Declared War on Democracy

by Mike Wendling

Will American democracy survive the 2024 presidential election?

The United States has become an almost unrecognisable country – with millions in thrall to conspiracy theories, toxic populism and the far right edging closer to total power – a dire threat to civil society and democratic institutions. While the MAGA movement was in remission due to Donald Trump's defeat in 2020, the fascist fringes have not just survived but have continued to thrive and burrow into the mainstream. The January 6th Capitol Riot prosecutions have done little to curb their enthusiasm for mayhem.

Trump's base in the Republican Party is committed to their candidate like never before. The institutionalisation of racist voting suppression and the outdated logic behind the Electoral College means he could take back the White House. Apocalyptic messaging ensures the alt-right, anti-government, anti-LGBT, and white nationalist groups see the next election as a life or death struggle and are uniting to back the one person they can all agree on – guaranteeing another chaotic election.

In this chilling exposé, Mike Wendling encounters Capital rioters, Covid deniers, QAnon supporters and Proud Boys, and uncovers the roots of a movement that threatens to shatter the foundations of democracy.

Mike Wendling is US National Digital Reporter for the BBC, based in Chicago. He is the co-founder of the BBC's disinformation unit and was editor and presenter of BBC Trending. He has decades of experience covering extremism, the American far right, social media and disinformation, and is the author of Alt-Right: From 4chan to the White House.

'Mike Wendling reaches parts of the rabbit hole few other reporters venture down. He is an invaluable guide to the forces of American conspiracy theory that are currently bending our world out of shape.'

- Gabriel Gatehouse, presenter of The Coming Storm on BBC Radio 4

'A vivid and sobering look of the web of connections that link the furthest reaches of the far right to the presumptive Republican presidential nominee. Day of Reckoning is a stark warning about extremists on the march, seeking to consolidate their power, and how far they have already advanced.'

- J.M. Berger, author of Extremism

'An excellent piece of frontline reporting that gives its readers goosebumps. Mike Wendling powerfully exposes the drivers behind today's most dangerous anti-democracy movements. An essential read for those who value liberal democracy as we know it.'

- Julia Ebner, author of 'Going Mainstream: How Extremists Are Taking Over'

1. An Encounter at the End of the World
2. 2000 Mules and the Long “Big Lie”
3. The Murder Excuse Ballads
4. QAnon Lives On and On
5. Proud Boys and “Groomers”
6. Anti-Vaccine Derangement Syndrome
7. No Political Solution
8. Christian Nationalists and Radical Moms
9. The Perpetual Influencer Machine
10. Revenge of the Normies
Conclusion: Day of Reckoning
Further Reading

Published by Pluto Press in May 2024
Paperback ISBN: 9780745349718
eBook ISBN: 9780745349725

129mm x 198mm