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on September 29, 2007
This is a "persuasive" book, as opposed to narrative or expository writing. He uses descriptions to facilitate communications instead of trying to be complete. For example, he uses the term "radcons" - radical conservatives. You can get a flavor for this term at [...] One can go on about the different types of conservatives (libertarian, paleo...) but that would not be useful. The real power in recent years has been the radcon; an unholy alliance between religious/social and fiscal conservatives

Mr. Reich takes radcons to task, and rightly so. They complain about moral-bankruptcy, focusing almost completely on sex. Yet, they rarely if ever speak out against the greed and concentrated wealth that is destroying our country. How often do right-wing preachers castigate those that would layoff hard working Americans just to give the CEOs a raise, even when the stock is down! How often do they speak out against a system where CEOs are coddled because they hand pick the people on their board!

How many times did Jesus speak out against wealth and greed? How often did Jesus say we should help the poor and weak? How many times did Jesus speak out against homosexuality? Jesus never said we needed to get rid of the estate tax. Jesus never said capital gains tax cuts were immoral. Radcons focus on the wrong things.

Radcons have hurt this country. Their Greed Over People philosophy has led to many disasters, from Enron-like rip-offs to billions lost in Iraq. This corruption hurts families and small-investors alike.

The FDR quote about radicals, liberals, and conservatives is worth the price alone of this book. A real gem, it explains the reality that is only again coming to light: liberals are the practical politicians. Radicals on the left and right (communists, facists, radcons, libertarians) will bury the world trying to push their ideology. Liberals look at problems and use practical solutions, which may involve government, to solve them. Rural power, Social Security, food safety, civil rights, public transportation, public roads, libraries... all liberal traditions that are solving problems that the free market cannot.

It appears that Mr. Reich's thought parallels mine: history has shown that communism does not work; extreme capitalism does not work; the only way is the middle way, regulated capitalism.

Slightly dated, as it does not (or should say cannot as it was written before 2006) discuss the recent blow-back (i.e., lost elections) conservatives have received from the fiasco in Iraq and their disastrous economic policies, it is still a very worthy read.
10 helpful votes
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on August 17, 2004
"Reason" is Robert Reich's defense of liberalism, (and probably a play on the title of right-wing nut case Ann Coulter's book "Treason.") Reich criticizes the radical conservative movement--whom he calls "radcons"--for their attempts to redefine liberalism into an axis of evil. Reich points out the the radcons have been largely successful at this, and in this book lays out how and why liberals should defend themselves and stop being such wimps. The really delectible thing about this book is the way Reich analyzes the radcon agenda and shows many of the underpinnings to have "feet of clay" as my favorite History professor in college used to say. I must confess to having spent a lot of time over the past few years thinking about the issues Reich raises in this book, but his penetrating analysis left me wondering if my own head was indeed filled with cabbage as my friends and coworkers often suggest. Reich's analysis is crystal clear, and left me thinking I really hadn't seen the issues at all before. Robert Reich is a person with quite a sense of humor (often self-deprecating which you don't usually see in a former cabinet secretary) and uses that humor, and some touching examples from his own life, to bring his points within easy reach. Reich refrains from taking cheap shots at the radcons, and repeats several times his respect for their point of view. For example, Reich at one time worked for Robert Bork, and spends considerable time on Bork's views in this book. Reich could not disagree more with Bork, but he does so without taking potshots at him.

Finally, the quality of the audio book. Reich reads the book himself, and he does a superb job. Reich has a clear, well-modulated voice that is a joy to listen to. The book is broken into tracks so if you have a Paleozoic CD player without location memory you can easily find your way back to where you left off. I cannot recommend this book enough. If you are a liberal, it is a call to arms. If you are conservative, it will leave you with a much deeper understanding of why you hold your views. No matter who you are, it will help focus your thinking and entertain you at the same time.
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on February 2, 2010
Reich's book is very well written and provides excellent support for those who realize that the true believing, fundamentalist-thinking right wingers are completely opposed to the ideals upon which the USA has developed.
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on March 15, 2011
Robert Reich has written a credible evaluation of the state of our nation.
He gives hope that many issues will be resolved.
Very interesting documentation of the current situation.
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on July 19, 2004
Who wouldn't want our national and state political leaders to make decisions based on a carefull analysis of the real facts and not have it based on ideology? I would, and I think everyone else would also. Robert Reich has taken the political arguement to where it should be. About reasonable solutions based on facts and made incrementaly. With the radcons, his word, making large policy leaps of faith based on ideology instead of incremental changes based on the facts its no wonder that we have record deficits, a war against terrorism that does not appear to be going well and was seemingly based on deception versus reality, the middle class losing ground, and bedroom politics. Instead of catchwords and debate by yelling, Reich makes a well reasoned arguement about why the Liberals will ultimately win just as they have over and over again in the past, because we care about our fellow citizens and society as a whole, and not just ourselves. That Liberals want to see society flourish for everyone and not just a few. He argues that instead of focusing on bedroom politics in the so-called "Value Wars" that we should be focusing on the abuse of boardroom values and what corporations are doing to our environment, communities, workers, and customers ... all in the name of profit.
10 helpful votes
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on May 2, 2014
The only problem is that he seems to deny the evidence that reason plays a very small role in voting decisions and political thinking in general. Read "The Righteous Mind" by Haidt whether or not you read the Reich.
Karl
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on June 5, 2014
Whatever your political persuasion, Republican or Democrat, this man needs to be listened to...America's interests are being too polluted by the interests of the wealthy and corporations...
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on December 7, 2010
This is the best of all the books I have read from REICH. I am a fan of his, this one is outstanding. I only wish the government right now would use him and his skills to brake the terrifying situation we are in now. This was a new book purchased from Amazon, it arrived in 1 1/2 day free shipping, thanks Amazon. Birthe
4 helpful votes
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on December 4, 2015
everyone who cares about democracy should read this.
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on August 14, 2015
Good delivery great price.
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