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The Battle: How the Fight between Free Enterprise and Big Government Will Shape Americas Future Hardcover – May 25, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
According to Gingrich, this slim volume will be judged in the future as "one of the pivotal books around which American history turned." Citing a 2009 poll, Brooks (Gross National Happiness), president of the American Enterprise Institute, examines the 30% of Americans who don't support Free Enterprise, calling them an "intellectual upper class" composed of "statist politicians, socialist college professors, left-leaning journalists, America-bashing entertainers..." His claim that this "30 percent coalition" has taken over the country is based on answers to two questions: should government promote policies to narrow the gap between rich and poor? Or should it foster job growth and allow "people to keep more of what they earn?" Nearly two to one opt for the latter. While the economy and Obama's appeal to minorities and young people swept Democrats to victory in 2008, "Statism had effectively taken hold in Washington" long before, in Brooks's view. Not above red-baiting (linking calls for "economic justice" to the "leftist philosophy" of Karl Marx, for instance), Brooks's main target is the "unprincipled Republican party" which has "strayed too far from its free-enterprise values," and needs new leadership.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Arthur C. Brooks has written a book which will take its place with Charles Murray’s Losing Ground as one of the pivotal books around which American history turned.
From his very first sentences Brooks is outlining a stark and compelling analysis of the crisis of contemporary America.
Brooks begins: “America faces a new culture war. I know this language is jarring, and many people are unwilling to accept it. But it’s true.”
The Battle then outlines three big facts:
First, there is a fundamental disagreement about America’s future between a socialist, redistributionist minority (the 30% coalition) and a massive free enterprise, work ethic, opportunity oriented majority (the 70% majority). For years I have spoken and written that “we are the majority”. It is a concept I learned from Ronald Reagan in the 1970s. Now Brooks provides the ammunition to factually explain why the 70% should govern America as a reflection of our legitimate majority status.
Second, there is an elite system of power which enables the 30% coalition to dominate the 70% majority. There are the seeds of an extraordinary history book buried in a few paragraphs of The Battle. How did the coalition of word users come to so thoroughly dominate the coalition of workers and doers? How did the elites on academic campuses come to define legitimacy for the news media, the Hollywood system, the Courts, and the bureaucracy? Brooks makes clear that the dominance of the hard left in these worlds is a fact. He sets the stage for someone (maybe another AEI scholar) to develop the historic explanation of how this usurpation of the people by the elite came to be.
Third, this is a conflict over values in which those who represent redistributionist, left wing materialism have stolen the language of morality while those who favor freedom, individual opportunity, the right to pursue happiness and personal liberty have been maneuvered into a series of banal and ultimately unattractive positions in the public debate. Brooks’ outline of a morally dominant culture of freedom shaming the materialistic, statist, coercive culture of redistribution is as important for our generation as Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom was for the Reagan-Thatcher generation.
What makes The Battle so important is its unique combination of intellectual clarity and the best succinct analysis of the values of the American people I have ever read.
Brooks argues that conservatism in its market oriented, individual liberty, equality of opportunity, right to pursue happiness, work ethic form is both popular and historically the most positive way for people to live.
After you have read this book and committed its arguments and its salient facts to memory, you will be able to debate any elitist redistributionist leftist and win the day in both moral rhetoric and factual analysis.
Every American about their country’s future and worried by the radicalism of the Obama-Pelosi-Reid machine should read The Battle. It is the ammunition with which to save our country and change our history for the better.
“This is the playbook for the resurgence of the conservative movement.”
William J. Bennett
"Arthur Brooks is one of America's most astute, bold, and iconoclastic thinkers. The Battle provides yet more evidence of that fact. Loaded with fresh data and common sense, The Battle uncovers liberalism's true grand agenda—to change America's culture and the American way—and explains how these same Americans can fight back and ultimately win."
Top customer reviews
Brooks' main point is that we should stop harping on the economics and the money, and make our stand on principles: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. Every increase in the size of government, every tax hike, and every new regulation impinges on the freedom of free American citizens. We have even reached the point where the nanny-mayor of New York is forbidding his fellow citizens to eat stuff that he doesn't like!
The only quibble I have, at this point, is that during the elections of 2010 (coming right up) it would be idiotic to completely ignore the economic mess created by Team Obama. That's the number one issue for most voters, and we need to be very clear that conservative, Constitution-based government will not only increase all of our hopes for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness --- it will also end the Endless Recession caused by the idiots in the White House. (Imagine being "anti-business" when business signs your bleeping paycheck! Yes, they are just as dumb as that, and even dumber.)
So, read this book, and avoid being sent to one of Sibelius's "re-education camps." You might even avoid the "death panels," too! :-)
The right argument is the battle of socialism (Obama) vs free market capitlalism (anyone opposed to Obama). This is how the election must be defined.
The Battle logicaly and clearly lays out how Obama is on a mission to make the USA a socialist country like Greece and France, 2 failed economies. While Obama insists he is not a socialist, he persues socialist policies, appoints socialists to key positions in government, and sets up program after program to redistribute wealth from producers to non-producers and The Battle sheds light on all these actions.
The Battle clearly lays out the arguments why Obama's socialist policies MUST be defeted and how to defeat them. This is a must read for anyonce concerned about the future of our great country.
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