Good writeup, thank you!
It strikes me that the populist claim (”...that democracy has been stolen by elites, and that the people need to claim it back”) is plainly true in the US. I guess my quibble would be that there has never really been true democracy in the US; for most of our history, large groups have been excluded from democratic processes. While almost everyone can vote now, there are still large barriers to voting (e.g. it’s not a national holiday, you often have to register in advance, non-citizens can’t vote, etc.). Voting also has a lot less impact than campaign contributions and other political spending, which are obviously a factor of wealth. There was a Princeton paper that found the wealthy are many times more likely to achieve their desired policy goals (https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-echochambers-27074746). Michael Bloomberg is now trying to openly buy the presidency and might succeed.
Does the author engage substantively with this point? I’ve seen establishment academics poopoo populism, lumping together the right and left-wing versions of it.