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Swim against the Current: Even a Dead Fish Can Go With the Flow Hardcover – March 1, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
In 'Swim Against the Current: Even a Dead Fish Can Go with the Flow', Hightower, with his life-partner Susan DeMarco, takes a look at and urges actions concerning corrupt big business practices, the tainted political process and even the conduct of our private lives. Much of what he says is disturbing but it is always lightened by his down-home Will Rogers-like humor. It's not often that a book can put your stomach in a knot at the same time that you are laughing until tears roll down your cheeks.
Still, there is much here that is preaching to the choir. I suspect that the people who ought to read the book won't. But among those who do, perhaps it will stimulate some to get off their duffs and get deeply involved in the affairs of their community, state and country. I happen to live in a state, Vermont, where this is the modus operandi of more than the ordinary percentage of the citizenry and I can attest that citizen involvement makes life a helluva lot better than when you 'let someone else do it.'
Beginning with a look at business in the first section, the dubious history of greed, fraud, and lack of ethics in big corporations is not lost on anyone. In a refreshing change for the better, numerous examples are detailed here of people and organizations that have defied the odds to create successful businesses that are untouched by questionable influences. Cooperation and teamwork are basic fundamentals that reach far and wide in accomplishing so much and their benefits are explored here also.
Turning next to politics, this sometimes repugnant subject really needs no formal introduction. Immoral and unethical behavior of lobbyists and elected officials are firmly etched in our thoughts. Citizens are fed up and valuable changes are in progress. Four impressive programs described in this book are 'Clean Elections', `Democracy School', `Camp Wellstone', and `ACORN` (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now). The impacts from these fine efforts have already had a positive political impact across the country. The underlying theme here is that the general public has the capacity to make these things happen. The process can be laborious at times with the gains coming slowly at first but the end results are positive and worth the efforts.
The last and probably most important focus is life itself.Read more ›
The theme of the book is that all of us, no matter who we are, can not only make a difference, but have an obligation to do so. We're treated to the stories of several citizen action groups and projects that were started by average people with no connections and not a clue how to begin. In spite ongoing challenges, these groups have made a difference in their own lives and the lives of those they touch.
The book is divided into three sections: Business, Politics and Life. In the Business section, we see workers overcome union-busting tactics in a Wisconsin cab company and a California strip club, both taken over and run successfully by their respective employees.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A wake-up to complacent Americans who still think we're number one. Jim tells it like it is in down to earth terms.Published on January 8, 2013 by Dave Cox Or Cox
Jim Hightower looks at successful businesses that work to adequately reward the producers in creating and selling quality products. Read morePublished on April 11, 2012 by D Paul
I've always admired Jim Hightower and his home-spun, old-fashioned populism. Unlike his fellow Texan Ross Perot, his rage against the machine rhetoric seems grounded in a sincere... Read morePublished on August 30, 2010 by Michael K. Beusch
Well, we can't all be an oil CEO making $28,000 and hour (p. 158). That is just as well. The world already has a plethora of Visigoths. Read morePublished on May 18, 2010 by C. Wagner
Considering the dysfunction in Washington these days and the pollution of our waterways it's not clear that there is a current that a dead fish could go with. Read morePublished on February 25, 2010 by Dennis Littrell
Love the book. Informative and easy to read. References and foot notes are provided. Great book for anyone interested in politics, economics.Published on January 17, 2010 by L. Rael