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Adrift: Charting Our Course Back to a Great Nation Hardcover – August 23, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"Compared with the rest of the world's, America's fundamental problems are small and should be easy to solve. But compared with other times in our history, there is now more reason to wonder whether America can take the steps that would lead it back toward a path of innovation, opportunity, solvency, and promise. William Harris and Steven Beschloss do a systematic and convincing job of showing how Americans can make these changes—and what will happen if we don't." --James Fallows, national correspondent for The Atlantic

"A brilliant and insightful analysis of America's troubles and how to get the US back on course." --Greg Mortenson, author of Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools

"ADRIFT is a wake-up call for Congress and President Obama." --Sen. Ernest (Fritz) Hollings, former U.S. Senator for South Carolina

"A tour-de-force of the economic and social changes the U.S. is facing and a call to action." --Erich Bloch, Member, The Advisory Group at Huron, former Director of the National Science Foundation, and former Vice President of IBM

"ADRIFT is a most compelling read of how and why the USA is slipping from the top, and one that offers a comprehensive national formula to change course. A must read for everyone who wants the best future for their children and grandchildren." --Lt. General John F. Regni, USAF (retired), former Superintendent, U.S. Air Force Academy

"Through some fortuitous confluence of circumstances and productive collaboration between academia, business, industry, and government, the United States has led the world in discovery and innovation to produce a standard of living and quality of life unmatched in scale. Emerging economic powers have studied the model while we have grown complacent. Bill Harris and Steve Beschloss describe our predicament and offer solutions. Recommended reading for policymakers and concerned Americans alike." --Michael M. Crow, president, Arizona State University

"Today's national security threats are fast, flexible, and technologically adept. Staying ahead of these adversaries requires strategic management, wise investment, and public-private partnerships that involve a mosaic of disciplines. Adrift is an astute, well-reasoned look at how America went off course and provides the thoughtful, keen road map the national security establishment needs to assure the nation's safety and prosperity." --Cody Monk, professor of strategic intelligence and cyber affairs, National Defense Intelligence College.

"This is a book that is just right for this time. William Harris and Steven Beschloss have given the clarion call for urgency in beginning the national conversation. They convinced me that our nation's survival—as we know it—is imminently at stake. They lay out the case for the critical four 'C's'—communication, collaboration, cooperation, and, above all else, commitment to moving our country forward. Now." --Sue Clark-Johnson, Executive Director, Morrison Institute for Public Policy/ASU, and former President, Gannett Co. Inc., US Publishing Division

"Adrift's immigration chapter should be required reading for all the Democrats and Republicans in Congress who think that preventing the world's smartest people from coming to America is somehow a good idea." ----Neil Patel, former Chief Policy Advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney and Publisher an co-founder, The Daily Caller

"Harris and Beschloss provide a readable and comprehensive overview of the political and economic threats to U.S. competitiveness along with a menu of policy prescriptions. Their examples of what's worked and what hasn't give a clear sense of what's at stake and what might be done about it." --David Goldston, former Chief of Staff, U.S. House Committee on Science

About the Author

William C. Harris (Phoenix, AZ) is the president and CEO of Science Foundation Arizona. He is the former founding Director General of Science Foundation Ireland, president and executive director of the Columbia University Biosphere 2 Center in Arizona, and the head of the Mathematical and Physical Sciences Directorate of the National Science Foundation, among other executive, research, and academic positions.

Steven Beschloss (Scottsdale, AZ) is an award-winning journalist who has written about business, economics, urban affairs, and international affairs for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New Republic, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle, Parade Magazine, and many other media outlets. Chosen Journalist of the Year in Virginia and honored for his writing by the American Society of Journalists and Authors, he was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his seven-part series in the Virginian Pilot examining boom and bust in the southern United States.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books (August 23, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616144033
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616144036
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,034,783 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lincoln on July 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
ADRIFT is essential reading for anyone concerned about the challenges facing America today. It provides a clear analysis of many of our most pressing problems and offers pragmatic solutions drawn from real world experience. The authors draw equally on ideas from the left and the right, making recommendations based on what works, not ideology. It's a refreshingly adult approach that we see far too little of these days. In addition, although the book deals with complex issues, the clear writing style and lack of jargon make it an easy read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Frank Berger on June 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this short, but important, book to be one of the most compelling reads I have had in a long time. I picked it up and opened it just to get an inkling of what was inside, only to find myself unable to put it down. The authors have done a superb job of encapsulating in a balanced manner the marked decline this country has experienced over the past decades within the political, intellectual, social, and educational spheres. Rather than being a whiny polemic, ADRIFT reviews the issues, and offers real and implementable solutions. The writing is engaging--like good music! While some will argue about particular points here and there, none can deny the primary theme: this nation has lost ground and runs the risk of becoming second-rate, unless fundamental change is instituted.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C Wren on July 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An easy to read, insightful, informative, and balanced look at issues that need to be addressed. A must read for all members of Congress.
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