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The Optimistic Leftist

Author: Ruy Teixeira
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 1250089670
Size: 17.56 MB
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"Advances an analysis that should encourage progressives, be cautionary for conservatives, and engage and enlighten everyone who cares about America's political and economic future." —James Fallows, national correspondent, The Atlantic "A tonic—not because it will make you feel better, although it might, but because he makes a powerful, provocative and persuasive case that progressives are in a better position than they realize to make our world better." —E. J. Dionne Jr., author of Why the Right Went Wrong The words “optimism” and “the left” do not seem to go together very well these days. The dominant view on the left--reinforced by the election of Donald Trump--is as follows: (1) progress in today’s world has largely stopped and in many ways reversed; (2) the left is weak and at the mercy of a rapacious capitalism and a marauding right; and (3) the outlook for the future is bleak, with ordinary citizens suffering even more deprivation and the planet itself sliding inexorably toward catastrophe. But all these propositions are wrong. It is not the case that progress has stopped. Today, we live in a freer, more democratic, less violent and more prosperous world than we ever have before. It is not the case that the left is at the mercy of the right. The form of the left is changing but its numbers are strong and growing. It remains a vital force—the vital force--for reforming capitalism. And it is not the case that the future of humanity is bleak. The problems we face today are solvable and, moreover, are likely to be solved in the coming decades. Life for ordinary citizens should improve dramatically over the course of the 21st century. It is not just that these pessimistic propositions are wrong. They also do real harm to the left by undermining its appeal. Pessimism makes people less likely to believe in positive change, not more likely. It is time for the left to realize that their romance with pessimism is a bug not a feature of their current practice. There is no substitute for optimism and an economic climate that promotes optimism. The time has come, as Ruy Teixeira argues in this book, for the optimistic leftist.

The Optimistic Leftist

Author: Ruy Teixeira
Publisher:
ISBN: 1250089662
Size: 58.11 MB
Format: PDF
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The left is likely to dominate the 21st century, and there is little the right can do about this except adapt. This seems counter-intuitive in light of the modest success the left has enjoyed since the great financial crisis of 2008-09. Though Democrats have done well in recent presidential elections, progressives have found themselves unable to move their most important policies forward, suffering through an endless series of battles with a determined and extreme Republican party. This has only been exacerbated by stunning Republican gains in recent congressional elections. But this short-sighted perspective overemphasizes the role of crisis and underestimates the role of long-term fundamental change. Ruy Teixeira's The Optimistic Leftist takes a look at the structural and economic shifts remaking advanced societies and shows that the left is in a far better position to advance its agenda than the right. Eventually, the right will be forced to play on the left’s terms to be competitive. This is because only the left has growing, not declining, coalitional strength and only the left is willing to confront and solve capitalism’s “Piketty problem” (a vicious cycle of rising inequality, stagnating living standards and slowing economic growth) by building a new equitable-growth “opportunity state.”

Red Blue And Purple America

Author: Ruy A. Teixeira
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 9780815701842
Size: 80.46 MB
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As America rushes headlong into a dramatic campaign season, it is clear that these consequential contests—and the ones that follow—will be hugely influenced by recent changes in the nation's makeup. Red, Blue, and Purple America provides a clear and nuanced understanding of the geographic and demographic changes that are transforming the United States and how that transformation is reshaping politics, for the 2008 elections and beyond. The invaluable result is a detailed picture of current trends as well as a clear-eyed assessment of how they will shape American politics and policy during the next two decades. An elite group of demographers, geographers, and political scientists analyze rapidly changing patterns of immigration, settlement, demography, family structure, and religion. Each analysis describes one major trend and assesses its likely impact on politics, for the 2008 elections but for the long term as well. The authors then lay out the most likely implications for public policy. In doing so, they show how these trends have shaped the Red and Blue divisions we are familiar with today, and how the developments might break apart those blocs in new and surprising ways.

The Emerging Democratic Majority

Author: John B. Judis
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9780743254786
Size: 56.83 MB
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Builds on the tradition of Kevin Phillips's The Emerging Republican Majority, forecasting a progressive era as indicated by a rise of a diverse post-industrial society and current opinions on such topics as health care and the environment. Reprint.

The Economics Of Feasible Socialism

Author: Alec Nove
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136031049
Size: 65.39 MB
Format: PDF
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This is a path-breaking book. Characteristically readable, controversial and full of insights, Nove identifies a workable socialist programme, achievable in the lifetime of a child born today, that avoids far-fetched or utopian assumptions. This text has been immensely influential in the West, and is available in translation in China, Hungary and the Soviet Union. Alec Nove begins by demonstrating why Marx's theories provide a misleading guide to the issues facing economists under any realistically conceivable socialism. He goes on to discuss the problems experinced by communist-ruled countries, especially the Soviet Union, and to suggest possible remedies and solutions. Nove also examines problems of transition, in the context of Western industrialised countries and the Third World. He concludes by outlining a possible efficienct and human socialism, and examines objections to these ideas from the Left and the Right.

Enlightenment Now

Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0525427570
Size: 13.78 MB
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An assessment of the human condition in the twenty-first century presents data demonstrating that life quality, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise throughout the world because of the Enlightenment ideal of using reason and science.

Why Europe Will Run The 21st Century

Author: Mark Leonard
Publisher: HarperCollins UK
ISBN: 0007398395
Size: 10.92 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Those who believe Europe to be weak and ineffectual are wrong. Turning conventional wisdom on its head Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century sets out a vision for a century in which Europe will dominate, not America. This is the book that will make your mind up about Europe.

21 Lessons For The 21st Century

Author: Yuval Noah Harari
Publisher: Spiegel & Grau
ISBN: 0525512187
Size: 33.28 MB
Format: PDF
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In Sapiens, he explored our past. In Homo Deus, he looked to our future. Now, one of the most innovative thinkers on the planet turns to the present to make sense of today’s most pressing issues. How do computers and robots change the meaning of being human? How do we deal with the epidemic of fake news? Are nations and religions still relevant? What should we teach our children? Yuval Noah Harari’s 21 Lessons for the 21st Century is a probing and visionary investigation into today’s most urgent issues as we move into the uncharted territory of the future. As technology advances faster than our understanding of it, hacking becomes a tactic of war, and the world feels more polarized than ever, Harari addresses the challenge of navigating life in the face of constant and disorienting change and raises the important questions we need to ask ourselves in order to survive. In twenty-one accessible chapters that are both provocative and profound, Harari builds on the ideas explored in his previous books, untangling political, technological, social, and existential issues and offering advice on how to prepare for a very different future from the world we now live in: How can we retain freedom of choice when Big Data is watching us? What will the future workforce look like, and how should we ready ourselves for it? How should we deal with the threat of terrorism? Why is liberal democracy in crisis? Harari’s unique ability to make sense of where we have come from and where we are going has captured the imaginations of millions of readers. Here he invites us to consider values, meaning, and personal engagement in a world full of noise and uncertainty. When we are deluged with irrelevant information, clarity is power. Presenting complex contemporary challenges clearly and accessibly, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century is essential reading.

Achieving Our Country

Author: Richard Rorty
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780674003125
Size: 48.17 MB
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One of America's foremost philosophers challenges the lost generation of the American Left to understand the role it might play in the great tradition of democratic intellectual labor that started with writers such as Walt Whitman and John Dewey.

Evidence For Hope

Author: Kathryn Sikkink
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 1400888530
Size: 78.86 MB
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A history of the successes of the human rights movement and a case for why human rights work Evidence for Hope makes the case that, yes, human rights work. Critics may counter that the movement is in serious jeopardy or even a questionable byproduct of Western imperialism. They point out that Guantánamo is still open, the Arab Spring protests have been crushed, and governments are cracking down on NGOs everywhere. But respected human rights expert Kathryn Sikkink draws on decades of research and fieldwork to provide a rigorous rebuttal to pessimistic doubts about human rights laws and institutions. She demonstrates that change comes slowly and as the result of struggle, but in the long term, human rights movements have been vastly effective. Attacks on the human rights movement’s credibility are based on the faulty premise that human rights ideas emerged in North America and Europe and were imposed on developing southern nations. Starting in the 1940s, Latin American leaders and activists were actually early advocates for the international protection of human rights. Sikkink shows that activists and scholars disagree about the efficacy of human rights because they use different yardsticks to measure progress. Comparing the present to the past, she shows that genocide and violence against civilians have declined over time, while access to healthcare and education has increased dramatically. Cognitive and news biases contribute to pervasive cynicism, but Sikkink’s investigation into past and current trends indicates that human rights is not in its twilight. Instead, this is a period of vibrant activism that has made impressive improvements in human well-being. Exploring the strategies that have led to real humanitarian gains since the middle of the twentieth century, Evidence for Hope looks at how these essential advances can be supported and sustained for decades to come.