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"It Can Happen Here: America on the Brink"

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Author Topic: "It Can Happen Here: America on the Brink"  (Read 42 times)
Garrell Hughes
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« on: March 01, 2010, 08:48:43 am »

Thom Hartmann's February Book Review, Exclusively for "It Can Happen Here: America on the Brink"
By Bruce Judson's Review (excerpt)
February, 2010

Each month or so, BuzzFlash is privileged to have nationally syndicated progressive talk show host Thom Hartmann review a progressive book or DVD exclusively for BuzzFlash. See other progressive premiums at The BuzzFlash Progressive Marketplace. See all of Thom's reviews for BuzzFlash at "Independent Thinker"

Thom Hartmann's Review -- Exclusively for BuzzFlash -- for February 2010:

It Can Happen Here: America on the Brink
By Bruce Judson

Reviewed by Thom Hartmann

In some important ways, Judsons book follows perfectly on a line of thought presented in three of my previous Buzzflash book reviews:

In Reinventing Collapse, Dmitry Orlov talked about his experience as a teenager in Russia when the USSR collapsed and how now, as an American resident, he sees the same dynamics at play here  only were less well prepared than was the former Soviet state.
In The Great Crash of 1929, John Kenneth Galbraith laid out how Republican/conservative economic policies played out through three successive Republican presidencies led directly to the Great Depression in 1929, and implicitly how thirty years of Reaganomics/Clintonomics is leading us in the same direction now.
And in The Impact of Inequality Richard Wilkinson shows how the more unequal a society is, the more sick and unstable it becomes  and documents how the United States is now the most unequal industrial society in the world.

In It Can Happen Here, Bruce Judson walks us right up to the edge of a total political collapse in the United States  a revolution is the word he uses  and points out that were a country that has often experienced both revolutions and violence in response to economic crises.

The United States is not immune from history, Judson says, and lays out the factors that he believes could well lead us to a collapse/revolution that would permanently alter the landscape of this nation. The most important of these factors, he suggests, is that revolutions are likely to happen not when people experience the most privation (which is what conventional wisdom suggests) but, instead, when peoples expectations for the quality of their lives are dashed quickly, unfairly, and without recourse.

The American Dream is, for most Americans, no longer viable, as Judson documents in frightening detail in this book. Its been replaced by underwater home values, massive credit card debt, the most rigid economic/social order in the industrialized world (for the first time in two centuries, in America today the most reliable predictor of a childs economic future is his parents economic status), and a growing certainty that the political game has been rigged by big wealthy interests at the expense of average working people.

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Other Reviews
"Bruce Judson's It Could Happen Here highlights a crucial issue for the future of our nation: How unequal can America get before we snap?" (Robert Reich, author of SUPERCAPITALISM and Fmr. Secretary of Labor )

"It Could Happen Here arrives at a critical time, as we face economic inequality that could threaten the vitality of our middle class. Judson's provocative thesis will cause you think about the risks for a nation divided between have's and have not's." (Walter Isaacson, author of EINSTEIN and BENJAMIN FRANKLIN )

"The middle class is scared and it should be. In effect, we are conducting an enormous social and political experiment-something like putting a pressure cooker on the stove over a full flame and waiting to see how long it takes to explode." (Lester C. Thurow, author of THE FUTURE OF CAPITALISM and THE ZERO-SUM SOCIETY )


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