Most of the article is about the details of the processes that were set in motion by the events described in the following quote:
"To understand why, we have to go back to the 70s, when conservatives and oligarchs launched a de facto coup that ultimately ushered in a New Dark Ages. Conservatives like Lewis Powell and Milton Friedman were mounting a counterattack on the progressive policies of the New Deal, in an attempt to make America more ‘business friendly.’”
The infamous “Powell Memo,” that few of us had even heard of until a decade or so ago, was the key that unlocked the floodgates, loosing the deluge described in the rest of the article. Anyone who has not read it in its entirety (about 30 badly typed pages, as I recall) should do so, as a fascist coup against this country and against democracy is precisely what it describes and urges. It was written by one of Nixon’s appointees to the Supreme Court, a wealthy corporate attorney who initially turned Nixon down and reconsidered only after providing said memo to the chair of the “education committee” of the US Chamber of Commerce, who had requested it.
One more key figure who must be included in that rogues’ gallery: A relatively obscure economist named James McGill Buchanan, whose story was detailed last year in Historian Nancy MacLean’s book titled Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Plan For America. Buchanan, like Friedman a product of the University of Chicago Economics Department, began his crusade in the 1950s in response to Brown v Board of Education, and by the 70s he was well along in providing theoretical underpinning (bogus, of course) from the byzantine arcana of neoclassical economics, for all the five steps described in the article.