From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. L.A. Times economics correspondent Gosselin outlines the current economic situation of American families in light of specific policies initiated since the stalled economy of the 1970s. Today, Gosselin finds, fewer households are likely to fall into financial ruin, but those who do experience layoffs, expensive medical problems, foreclosure or other financial strain have a much harder time bouncing back, as old social safety nets have been systematically unraveled. Gosselin argues that in today's economy, families and individuals are assuming an unprecedented amount of financial risk; another aspect of the new economy is that upper-middle class families are at just as much risk as the less well-off. Each chapter takes an in-depth look at a different facet of the economy, healthcare, retirement, education and rebuilding New Orleans among them. Gosselin also discusses "unjobs," short-term and freelance gigs secured by an increasingly desperate labor force, and the new indispensability of two-income households. Though scholarly, Gosselin's writing is effortlessly readable, bolstered by anecdotes from real people facing financial adversity. Packed with insight and understanding, this no-nonsense look at the present and future of the American Dream should be of interest to any wage-earner or salary-man.
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"Meticulously researched and written with verve, "High Wire" is a rare masterpiece of chilling logic about mounting economic risks in our families, our homes, and our jobs. All Americans should read this book."--Peter Bernstein, economic consultant and author of "Against The Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk"
"Nothing I've read better explains these fundamental contemporary American anxieties than 'High Wire.'"--"St. Louis Post Dispatch"
"Voters will face a choice between a Democrat who talks about alleviating the risks bearing down on lower- and middle-income Americans and a Republican who, in effect, promises to continue the Bush administration's economic policies. Voters confused about how this choice affects their daily lives should read Gosselin's book from cover to cover."--"New York Times Book Review"
"Gosselin weaves economic research, intimate portraits of average Americans, and the products of some old-fashioned digging into a compelling narrative. Like Jacob Hacker's 2006 "The Great Risk Shift," Gosselin's book is an investigation into the gradual tearing of America's social safety net, from inadequate health insurance to pension plans with holes."--"Business Week"
"Peter Gosselin writes movingly of the personal wreckage endured by many Americans in today's volatile economy."--"Los Angeles Times"
"A rigorously researched and well-written analysis of the economic challenges facing many Americans."--"Boston Globe"
"[Gosselin's] writing is made more meaningful by use of real personalities to illustrate problems, putting a human face to the new reality of financial upheaval. His book should be imperativereading for anyone concerned about financial woes and their causes.--"Oklahoman
.,."excellent and thoughtful..."--"New York Review of Books"