How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What to Do About It
Author: Richard V. Reeves
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
Category: Political Science
Dream Hoarders sparked a national conversation on the dangerous separation between the upper middle class and everyone else. Now in paperback and newly updated for the age of Trump, Brookings Institution senior fellow Richard Reeves is continuing to challenge the class system in America. In America, everyone knows that the top 1 percent are the villains. The rest of us, the 99 percent—we are the good guys. Not so, argues Reeves. The real class divide is not between the upper class and the upper middle class: it is between the upper middle class and everyone else. The separation of the upper middle class from everyone else is both economic and social, and the practice of “opportunity hoarding”—gaining exclusive access to scarce resources—is especially prevalent among parents who want to perpetuate privilege to the benefit of their children. While many families believe this is just good parenting, it is actually hurting others by reducing their chances of securing these opportunities. There is a glass floor created for each affluent child helped by his or her wealthy, stable family. That glass floor is a glass ceiling for another child. Throughout Dream Hoarders, Reeves explores the creation and perpetuation of opportunity hoarding, and what should be done to stop it, including controversial solutions such as ending legacy admissions to school. He offers specific steps toward reducing inequality and asks the upper middle class to pay for it. Convinced of their merit, members of the upper middle class believes they are entitled to those tax breaks and hoarded opportunities. After all, they aren’t the 1 percent. The national obsession with the super rich allows the upper middle class to convince themselves that they are just like the rest of America. In Dream Hoarders, Reeves argues that in many ways, they are worse, and that changes in policy and social conscience are the only way to fix the broken system.
Identity Politics, Inequality, and Community on Today’s College Campuses
Author: William Egginton
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
A timely, provocative, necessary look at how identity politics has come to dominate college campuses and higher education in America at the expense of a more essential commitment to equality. Thirty years after the culture wars, identity politics is now the norm on college campuses-and it hasn't been an unalloyed good for our education system or the country. Though the civil rights movement, feminism, and gay pride led to profoundly positive social changes, William Egginton argues that our culture's increasingly narrow focus on individual rights puts us in a dangerous place. The goal of our education system, and particularly the liberal arts, was originally to strengthen community; but the exclusive focus on individualism has led to a new kind of intolerance, degrades our civic discourse, and fatally distracts progressive politics from its commitment to equality. Egginton argues that our colleges and universities have become exclusive, expensive clubs for the cultural and economic elite instead of a national, publicly funded project for the betterment of the country. Only a return to the goals of community, and the egalitarian values underlying a liberal arts education, can head off the further fracturing of the body politic and the splintering of the American mind. With lively, on-the-ground reporting and trenchant analysis, The Splintering of the American Mind is a powerful book that is guaranteed to be controversial within academia and beyond. At this critical juncture, the book challenges higher education and every American to reengage with our history and its contexts, and to imagine our nation in new and more inclusive ways.
This book addresses what is perhaps the most salient issue in American politics today: the decline of the middle class. It is this single issue that drove the outlier presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump to national prominence, and undergirded the electoral victory of Donald Trump. While there are other longer studies exploring in detail the structural forces, most prominently the loss of manufacturing in the US, that have caused the contraction of the middle class, none offer in shorter form practical policy solutions directly geared towards practitioners in government and the private sector. This work focuses specifically on combining both an academic analysis of the subject combined with detailed policy recommendations. These recommendations are designed to be implemented; they take into account the latest set of real world political variables such as actual current legislative and institutional agendas currently in play on the federal and local levels.--
How Markets and the State Leave the Community Behind
Author: Raghuram Rajan
Category: Business & Economics
From one of the most important economic thinkers of our time, a brilliant and far-seeing analysis of the current populist backlash against globalization. Raghuram Rajan, distinguished University of Chicago professor, former IMF chief economist, head of India's central bank, and author of the 2010 FT-Goldman-Sachs Book of the Year Fault Lines, has an unparalleled vantage point onto the social and economic consequences of globalization and their ultimate effect on our politics. In The Third Pillar he offers up a magnificent big-picture framework for understanding how these three forces--the state, markets, and our communities--interact, why things begin to break down, and how we can find our way back to a more secure and stable plane. The "third pillar" of the title is the community we live in. Economists all too often understand their field as the relationship between markets and the state, and they leave squishy social issues for other people. That's not just myopic, Rajan argues; it's dangerous. All economics is actually socioeconomics - all markets are embedded in a web of human relations, values and norms. As he shows, throughout history, technological phase shifts have ripped the market out of those old webs and led to violent backlashes, and to what we now call populism. Eventually, a new equilibrium is reached, but it can be ugly and messy, especially if done wrong. Right now, we're doing it wrong. As markets scale up, the state scales up with it, concentrating economic and political power in flourishing central hubs and leaving the periphery to decompose, figuratively and even literally. Instead, Rajan offers a way to rethink the relationship between the market and civil society and argues for a return to strengthening and empowering local communities as an antidote to growing despair and unrest. Rajan is not a doctrinaire conservative, so his ultimate argument that decision-making has to be devolved to the grass roots or our democracy will continue to wither, is sure to be provocative. But even setting aside its solutions, The Third Pillar is a masterpiece of explication, a book that will be a classic of its kind for its offering of a wise, authoritative and humane explanation of the forces that have wrought such a sea change in our lives.
A young activist and highly-educated Cambridge Union debater, Mill would become in time the highest-ranked English thinker of the nineteenth century, the author of the landmark essay On Liberty and one of the most passionate reformers and advocates of his revolutionary, opinionated age. As a journalist he fired off a weekly article on Irish land reform as the people of that nation starved, as an MP he introduced the first vote on women's suffrage, fought to preserve free-speech and opposed slavery, and, in his private life, pursued for two decades a love affair with another man's wife. To understand Mill and his contribution, Richard Reeves explores his life and work in tandem. His book is a riveting and authoritative biography of a man raised to promote happiness, whose life was spent in the pursuit of truth and liberty for all.
The culture of twenty-first century America revolves around narcissistic death, violence, and visions of doom. Foster explores this culture of the apocalypse, from hoarding and gluttony to visions of the post-apocalyptic world.
On the front lines with extreme hoarders The Secret Lives of Hoarders is much more than harrowing tales of attacking the ugliest, dirtiest, and most shocking hoarding cases in the country. It is a behind-the-scenes look at this hidden epidemic- what it means, how to recognize it before it gets out of hand, and how to deal with it. Through his work with hundreds of clients in the worst circumstances- from the giant "rat's nest" that hid more than $13,000 in cash to a vast cache of cartoon pornography to twenty-five years' worth of unopened mail-Matt Paxton has learned to understand this disorder and his clients' impulses to collect, to speak the hoarders' language, and to reach out to them with compassion and concern while avoiding criticism and judgment. Most important, he guides compulsive hoarders successfully through every step of the clean-up and healing process. The Secret Lives of Hoarders is an engrossing and sometimes unsettling look at extreme clutter but one that helps hoarders, their families, and their friends to find meaning in the chaos.
A wife hurts. Her husband and her children will not respond to her concerns. What has gone wrong? A husband fears his wife's growing aloofness. A single person loves someone deeply, but the risk is high for a commitment. "What shall I do?" These and many other real life situations convinced Richard Dortch of the need for practical, basic help for hurting individuals and families. There are solutions for hurting people. Richard Dortch, who has been through the fire of defeat and crippling stress, brings healing to those frantic to help the ones they love. In Caring Enough to Help the One You Love, Dortch gets down into the arena with those who are hurting, offering his wealth of personal experience and wisdom to all in need of help. Do you love and care enough to help? Richard Dortch is host of the late-night nationally syndicated TV program "Americas Prayer Meeting." He is also president and founder of Life Challenge, Inc., and agency caring for people in crisis.
The Organized Approach to Lose Weight by Decluttering Your Life
Author: Dorothy Breininger
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
While organizing the lives of her many clients, Emmy-nominated organizing expert Dorothy Breininger learned to face her own stuff, and lost seventy-five pounds in the process. In this one-of-a-kind book she addresses weight loss from the much-needed perspective of what lies underneath our clutter—metaphorically, physically, and emotionally. Whether you're a packrat or a calorie-counter, a neat freak or a binge eater, Breininger reveals why, to be successful on the scale, you must first master the clutter within you and around you. With the same no-holds barred candor that resonates with TV viewers, she offers prescient advice to help anyone face their stuff, with an organized, step-by-step approach to either toss it, tame it, or tailor it to fit their lives. Filled with personal stories from clients, her own success story, and tips from fitness coaches and organizing experts, this imminently practical book gives everyone the tools to declutter their way to their dream size.