Friday, March 04, 2011

Books: War on the Middle Class

War on the Middle Class
By Lou Dobbs
Read by the Author
Abridged
Copyright 2006

I grabbed this audiobook in desperation the other day when I was in the local library and couldn't find anything I wanted to listen to in the car. Now that I am in school, I have an additional two hours of driving time every week that requires something in the audiobook line.

Lou Dobbs, at the time of this writing, had a show on CNN. He is now on FOX, or will be soon, with a show debuting at March 14. That is not an endorsement or even a suggestion to watch: I don't watch anything at all if it appears on FOX as I refuse to support the network and its corporate heads. It's just information.

In the War on the Middle Class, Dobbs calls himself a liberal conservative. I strongly suspect he is now tea partier but since I don't listen to his radio show or read his other books or have anything else to do with him, I cannot say for certain. This book sounds like early tea party idealogy, however, in many respects. Late in the book Dobbs declares himself an Independent and suggests everyone should change their voting affiliation to Independent in order to get the attention of the politicians. So maybe he's just a right-leaning moderate, much as I consider myself to be a left-leaning moderate.

In this book, which is admittedly old now though it maintains some relevance, Dobbs advocates for the middle class. He explains how trade imbalances have sent jobs overseas, how the corporate sector has taken over the government, how public education is failing (he does, however, believe in public education, not private school vouchers, or did at the time he wrote this book), and how illegal immigration is over taxing the public sector and is the result of corporate greed. He also advocates for a universal health care system, one which would cover everyone and include catastrophic health care to keep people from going bankrupt simply because they are ill. I have no idea what he thinks now that we actually are headed in that direction.

These opinions and information, of course, are all from 2006, before we had a change of presidency and the political climate grew even nastier than it already was. I can't say where he stands on any of these issues now.

I do believe there is a war on the middle class, and I believe it is being waged by corporations and the politicians, on both sides, who only believe in capitalism and not in democracy. DEMOCRACY AND CAPITALISM ARE NOT THE SAME THING, and one day maybe people will realize that. I doubt it happens in my lifetime, though. (Go to the links at Merriam-Webster above and read the definitions. Neither one refers back to the other.)

This book offers an interesting historic perspective and I really could see the beginnings of some of the tea party ideas in these writings, thanks to hindsight. That and a quarter will buy me next to nothing.

I don't see that he has anything out that is current. That's too bad, because even if he is now on FOX, he seems to have a grasp of some of the issues and is good at explaining.

1 comment:

  1. Too bad I refuse to watch the FOX network. We really don't watch much Network television at all, although I do watch about 30 minutes of CNN each morning. Can't believe Lou Dobbs is on FOX now. Guess he was hard up to get a job.

    DI

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