A Quiet Word Book Summary - A Quiet Word Book explained in key points

A Quiet Word summary

Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell

Lobbying, Crony Capitalism and Broken Politics in Britain

15 mins

Brief summary

'A Quiet Word' by Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell is an investigation of the shadowy world of corporate lobbying and the powerful interests that influence political decision-making, revealing how democracy is threatened by unseen forces.

Table of Contents

    A Quiet Word
    Summary of 8 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 8

    Contrary to what you might think, lobbyism isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

    Generally speaking, the word “lobbyism” refers to any attempts of citizens and groups of citizens to influence the political process – for example, meeting with a senator to convince her to fund your social project. But for most people, lobbyism has a negative connotation: first and foremost it is associated with big business, corruption and secretive scandals.

    However, the issue is more complex.

    Some say that because most of the time lobbyists represent commercial interests, lobbyists shouldn’t be heard by the government at all.

    This suspicion follows from the fact that most lobbyists work for big companies like Nestlé or Google, and industries like the tobacco or the sugar industry. Seen in this way, lobbying seems to necessarily undermine good government, because most companies don’t care about the common good – the issues important to the society as a whole – they only care about profit. For example, tobacco industry lobbyists fight regulations that might prevent people from smoking, because this would reduce their profits.

    However, at least in theory, lobbyism can actually help governments do a good job.

    Despite its bad reputation, lobbyism can still bring about good governance by keeping politics and outside interests in touch. To make intelligent and informed decisions, politicians require insights from external actors such as businesses – and lobbyists can provide just those insights. For example, lobbyists can provide information about the current problems and threats companies face, and thus help the government adapt accordingly to support the economy. Furthermore, lobbyists are often experienced in legislation and politics themselves, which allows them to reduce the workload for politicians by helping them with tasks like drafting the paperwork for a new law.

    Want to see all full key ideas from A Quiet Word?

    Key ideas in A Quiet Word

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is A Quiet Word about?

    A Quiet Word explains what lobbyism is, how it works and why it can be dangerous for democracy. The authors reveal the extent of lobbying today, detail different strategies used by lobbyists to influence governments, and offer a solution to help defend democracy.

    A Quiet Word Review

    A Quiet Word (2015) offers a fascinating exploration of the secretive world of lobbying and the influence it has on politics and society. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • The book provides insider insights into the lobbying industry, shedding light on the hidden mechanisms that shape our democracy.
    • With rigorous research and compelling evidence, Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell expose the power dynamics between lobbyists, corporations, and politicians, making it a thought-provoking read.
    • By examining real-life examples and case studies, A Quiet Word demystifies the complex world of lobbying and shows the far-reaching consequences of its influence, ensuring an engaging reading experience.

    Best quote from A Quiet Word

    It is the effort put in to denying transparency that exposes dangerous truth.

    —Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell
    example alt text

    Who should read A Quiet Word?

    • Anyone who is interested in learning more about lobbyism
    • Anyone who is critical of big corporations’ influence on politics
    • Anyone who is losing faith in democracy

    About the Author

    Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell are directors of Spinwatch, a non-profit organization that raises public awareness about government and business propaganda, and the lack of transparency in the lobbying business.

    Categories with A Quiet Word

    Book summaries like A Quiet Word

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    30 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    A Quiet Word FAQs 

    What is the main message of A Quiet Word?

    The main message of A Quiet Word is the hidden influence of PR on democracy and public interest.

    How long does it take to read A Quiet Word?

    The reading time for A Quiet Word varies, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is A Quiet Word a good book? Is it worth reading?

    A Quiet Word is worth reading for its eye-opening insights into the PR industry's manipulation. A must-read for those interested in democracy and public interest.

    Who is the author of A Quiet Word?

    The authors of A Quiet Word are Tamasin Cave and Andy Rowell.