Synopses & Reviews
John Edwards puts a seminal issue back on the map, presenting blueprints for ending poverty in America.
"This is one of the great moral issues of our time. The day after Katrina hit, new government statistics showed that 37 million Americans live in poverty, up for the fourth year in a row."Senator John Edwards
Is poverty a fact of life? Can the wealthiest nation in the world do nothing to combat the steadily rising numbers of Americans living in povertyor the 50 million Americans living in "near poverty"? Senator John Edwards and some of the country's most prominent scholars, businesspeople, and community activists say otherwise.
Published in conjunction with one of the country's leading anti-poverty centers, Ending Poverty in America brings together some of America's most respected social scientists, including William Julius Wilson, Katherine S. Newman, and Richard B. Freeman, alongside journalists, neighborhood organizers, and business leaders. The voices heard here are both liberal and conservative, and tackle hot-button issues such as job creation, schools, housing, and family-friendly social policy.
The contributors explain why poverty is growing and outline concrete steps that can be taken now to start turning the tide. In a political landscape seemingly bereft of daring and forward-thinking ideas, this new book lays out a path toward eliminating poverty in Americaa template for a renewed public debate for an issue of intense urgency.
Contributors include: Jared Bernstein, Anita Brown-Graham, Carol Mendez Cassell, Richard Freeman, Angela Glover-Blackwell, Jacob Hacker, Harry Holzer, Jack Kemp, Glenn Loury, Ron Mincy, Katherine S. Newman, Melvin Oliver, Dennis Orthner, David Shipler, Beth Shulman, Michael Stegman, Elizabeth Warren, William Julius Wilson.
"At a time when U.S. income inequality has reached levels not seen since 1928, Senator (and presidential candidate) Edwards and company turn their attention to that near-forgotten project, the War on Poverty, declared by FDR, revived by LBJ and lately eclipsed by Wars on Drugs and Terror. In this engrossing collection of rigorously researched articles, more than two dozen contributors examine the state of poverty, hammering home two War on Poverty standards: the rich are getting richer while the 37 million living in poverty get nothing, while a third argument bolsters those standbys: the middle class is getting poorer. Elizabeth Warren's troubling article shows how, in the 2000s, two-income families are far more vulnerable to economic crises than their single-income counterparts, and in fact have less disposable real income (by about $1,500) than single-income families did in the 1970s. Contributors, including Edwards himself, propose some sensible policy solutions, and frequently without raising taxes: raising the minimum wage, creating a Financial Product Safety Commission (to end usurious consumer credit practices), developing programs to increase asset ownership (e.g., homes) and offering tax advantages for employers who provide education, child care and a living wage. Responsible and intelligent, this dispatch makes an urgent case for redeployment in the battle for America's impoverished." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
andldquo;Yet another progressive agenda, you might well say. But this one is different. It is so sensible and straightforward that it actually dispels the cloudy and complicated debates that confuse us about our policy options.andrdquo;
and#8220;Babonesand#8217;s new book provides useful insights on many of the most important issues facing the country. The political picture will be far brighter if his list of priorities were at the top of the national agenda.and#8221;
andldquo;This book brilliantly critiques and offers concrete practices and policy suggestions about how to move from calls for empty reform to real change. A must read.andrdquo;
andldquo;For a country regularly generating deadly crises for itself and the globe, savvy sociologist Salvatore Babones demonstrates the urgent necessity of sixteen progressive social reforms. Arguing from scientific evidence, he proffers an essential list of restructuring issues for this failed democracy.andrdquo;
andldquo;Babones has distilled the ocean of progressive policy ideas into specific proposals for a progressive agenda in the 2016 elections and beyond. Each essay highlights an area in which current policies are not working, girded by facts, footnotes, and surveys, then lays out a common-sense solution that has proven popular support. Topics range from the obvious: fund Social Security for all time by raising the cap on income taxed for this program to the heartbreaking: Americaandrsquo;s shameful treatment of child refugees from Central America sent north to escape the dictatorships and drug lords created by American foreign policy. All of Babonesandrsquo;s essays offer proven results that are already popular, but such policies are very unlikely to be enacted by politicians beholden to large corporations and conservative billionaires. . . . Uplifting.andrdquo;
andquot;If you canand#39;t bear the thought of still another Presidential election campaign that offers no real answers to the problems we face, read this bookandmdash;and share it with your friendsandmdash;and with your favorite Presidential candidate.andquot;
andldquo;Babones powerfullyand#160;illustrates how quality data fuelsand#160;aand#160;progressive political agenda; an agenda insistentlyand#160;democratic and sociological in nature.and#160;Any of these sixteen initiatives would helpand#160;the United States fulfilland#160;the dream ofand#160;equality for all, by creating policies that maximize the best of collective human agency. andlsquo;Government is not the problem,andrsquo; Babones observes. andlsquo;We are the problem.and#160;Government is the solution.andrsquo;and#160;Direct. Insightful.and#160;Energizing.andrdquo;
andldquo;So how to close the chasm between what the US corporatocracy has grabbed and what the majority of Americansandmdash;the so-called 99 percentandmdash;need and want? Enter Babones, whose agenda for progressive policy shifts offers a clear-eyed agenda for domestic policy reform. . . . What Babones has given us, in lieu of a comprehensive wish list, is a concise and heavily footnotedandmdash;270 end notes in 134 pagesandmdash;roster of priorities that will, quite simply, make the world a better place, not just for us, but for the generations that follow. . . . The question, of courseandmdash;not just for education but for all of the recommendations positedandmdash;is how best to push candidates to support the progressive agendas that Babones has put forward. There are no formulas. And as tempting as it is to completely avoid the morass of electoral politics, the bottom line is that elections matter. Whether we like it or not, itandrsquo;s our job as voters to push for bigger, bolder, and better. After all, the clock is ticking; November 2016 is just 20 months away.andrdquo;
andldquo;Babonesandrsquo;s book reminds us that hope and achievement sometimes overcome fear and failure. Sixteen for andrsquo;16 is an uplifting book stressing common-sense policy instead of candidate personality. Its proposals arenandrsquo;t just no-nonsense, theyandrsquo;re no-brainersandmdash;and popular with most Americans, polls show.andrdquo;
andldquo;At The Real News . . . weandrsquo;re particularly interested in solutions, not just critiquing what there is, but what should people demand, and if you actually had a progressive government, if you actually had a government that was interested in governing in the interests of the majority of people, well, what would it actually do? Well, thereandrsquo;s a new book out which tries to deal with all of this. Itandrsquo;s called Sixteen for andrsquo;16, that is, 16 proposals: if someone running for president in the 2016 election actually wanted to solve the problems with effective public policy in the interest of the majority of people, well, hereandrsquo;s 16 things they could actually run on and maybe do.andrdquo;
andldquo;A strong, well-sourced little book with a lot of information in it laying out a common-sense, progressive platform that any candidate could run on and more than likely win with. Public polling consistently shows that strong majorities are in favor of the policies Babones details in this book.andrdquo;
Is poverty a fact of life? Can the wealthiest nation in the world do nothing to combat the steadily rising numbers of Americans living in poverty-or the 50 million Americans living in near poverty? Senator John Edwards and some of the country's most prominent scholars, businesspeople, and community activists say otherwise. Published in conjunction with one of the country's leading anti-poverty centers, Ending Poverty in America brings together some of America's most respected social scientists, including William Julius Wilson, Katherine S. Newman, and Richard B. Freeman, alongside journalists, neighborhood organizers, and business leaders. The voices heard here are both liberal and conservative, and tackle hot-button issues such as job creation, schools, housing, and family-friendly social policy. The contributors explain why poverty is growing and outline concrete steps that be taken now to start turning the tide. In a political landscape seemingly bereft of daring and forward-thinking ideas, this new book lays out a path toward eliminating poverty in America-a template for a renewed public debate for an issue of intense urgency.
In a political landscape seemingly bereft of daring and forward-thinking ideas, this new book lays out a path toward eliminating poverty in America--a template for a renewed public debate for an issue of intense urgency.
The election of the next US president is upon us, and with established politicians such as Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush poised to be key players, the campaigns seem destined to be as contentious, as ugly, and as seemingly removed from the reality of American lives as ever. In Sixteen for andrsquo;16
, Salvatore Babones takes the politics out of policy, bringing the debate back to the issues that matter in a new, unified agenda for the 2016 elections.
Decades of destructive social and economic policies have devastated poor, working, and middle-class American communities. It is now clear that harsh austerity does not bring prosperity, that the wealthy have no intention of seeing their wealth trickle down, and that each generation is no longer better off than the ones that came before. But what to do? In this progressive election field manual, Babones outlines sixteen core principles to combat these entrenched problems: America needs jobs, infrastructure, a rededication to public education, universal healthcare, higher taxes on higher incomes, a more secure Social Security, an end to the rule of the bankers, stronger unions, a living minimum wage, better working conditions, an end to the prison state, secure reproductive rights, voter equality, a more moral foreign policy, a more humane refugee policy, and action on global warming.
A clear, concise manifesto supported by hard data, Sixteen for andrsquo;16 makes a compelling case for each of these ambitious positions. And as ambitious as Babonesandrsquo;s suggested policies are, they represent a beginning, not an end. The progressive movement is on the march in America, and this accessible book charts a realistic path toward a destination all can believe in: a better tomorrow.
About the Author
John Edwards is the former director of the Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity. He practiced law for twenty years before serving as a senator from 1998-2004 and running for vice president in 2004. He holds an Alumni Distinguished Professorship at UNC. Marion Crain, the director of the Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity, is the Paul Eaton Professor of Law at UNC. Arne L. Kalleberg is a Kenan Distinguished Professor of Sociology and the Senior Associate Dean for Social Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences at UNC.
Table of Contents
Build Americaand#39;s Human Infrastructure
Support Public Education
Extend Medicare to Everyone
Raise Taxes on Top Incomes
Refinance Social Security
Make the Bankers Pay
Make It Easy to Join a Union
Set a Living Minimum Wage
Upgrade to 10-10-10
Put an End to the Prison State
Pass a National Abortion Law
Let People Vote
Stop Torturing, Stop Assassinating, and Close Down the NSA
Suffer the Refugee Children
Save the Earth