Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Book review "Independents Day, Awakening the American Spirit"

I recently blogged my review of John Avlon’s book Wingnuts. Though I may have come across as quite critical it was still a good book by a good author and a great independent. And, he has at least one more book published than I do. So be that as it may, on to the next book review.

I recently loaned from the library here in Syracuse (Utah) a copy of Lou Dobbs book INDEPENDENTS DAY. Dobbs and Avlon share a similar populist slant, and much of the underlying power to the people content is found in both books. At this point I have only finished the first four chapters of Independents Day, and I must say WOW! I don’t agree with every jot and tittle of what Dobbs is saying, but I do agree with most of it and it is well written. I’m sure he’s a perfectly capable writer, but I’m sure he has a darn good editor too. The book reads well and I really identify with the independent sentiments and concerns he has written about. He has also done something very helpful when referring to historical events and characters he provides a brief recap for those of us 'not in the know' (which all too often includes me).

I have 10 excerpts from the front flap, introduction and chapter 1 that I will post over the next couple of weeks. Tonight is just the inside flap.



"In his bestselling War on the Middle Class, Lou Dobbs reported from the front lines of a conflict that threatens to tear our country apart: the war that the government and big business have waged against working Americans. But in every war there comes a counteroffensive, when resistance arises, stirred by the fundamental human desire for dignity and self-determination. Independents Day is a rallying cry for a new vision of what the country could—and by all rights should—be in the twenty-first century.

...there are signs that the public has begun to reclaim its voice in the national dialogue

What has happened to America? Lou Dobbs opens Independents Day with a critical and sobering view of where we stand today, and how a century of misguided policy and misplaced values has brought us here. A government that was created to be of the people is now one dominated by elites; a government intended to be by the people has become one run by politicians who are unresponsive to the needs and will of the American citizens who voted for them; a government founded for the people has become instead a willing partner in serving the demands and interests of business. The casualty of this betrayal of our national legacy is nothing less than democracy, and Dobbs charts its tragic effects in every aspect of our society. From the expenditure of trillions of dollars to underwrite a war in Iraq that the great majority of voters does not support, to an administration that has brazenly done away with public accountability while amassing debt that will burden taxpayers for years to come, to a steady decline in jobs, education, and health care, we stand on the threshold of a future that only a generation ago would have seemed inconceivable.

What has happened to America?

But with the most important election in years facing us in 2008, there are signs that the public has begun to reclaim its voice in the national dialogue, asserting its right to be heard in a new, vitally engaged populism. Having been failed by Republicans and Democrats alike, the electorate is rejecting the pointless turf wars of partisan politics and confronting the genuine challenges that face us with a passionate commitment to the ideals of independence and equality and to the common good. Independents Day is a stirring celebration of the emergence of this populist spirit, and an inspiring vision for an America that will flourish by honoring the cherished principles on which it was founded."

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