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Stephen

Coleys Point, NL, Canada

18
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 2 ratings
  • 377 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2015
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  • Back to Work: Why We Need Smart Government for a Strong Economy

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Bill Clinton
    • Narrated By Bill Clinton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (504)
    Performance
    (431)
    Story
    (429)

    President Bill Clinton gives us his views on the challenges facing the United States today and why government matters—presenting his ideas on restoring economic growth, energy, job creation, financial responsibility, resolving the mortgage crisis, and financial responsibility, and offering a plan to get us "back in the future business".

    Christine A. Haimann says: "Great and it all makes sense"
    ""anti-ideological" work crippled by ideology"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First off, I am not American and so have little to gain by critiquing the Republicans or the Democrats. I empathize with many of the points brought up by the former president, but just as Clinton rightly chastises the right for being seemingly immune to evidence, he himself fails to make the links between the facts he gives and the proper solution (which seems to be "smarter" government).

    While rightly stating that over-levraging caused the financial crises, he jumps over the possible causes of over leveraging and simply states that government regulation would be the solution.

    He simply assumes the government's success is to be measured by "jobs created" or lowering of poverty and income equality, while never telling us why it is the government's job to drive the economy in job creation, or even why it would be beneficial for the government to take on this role, or what is even meant by poverty or why income inequality is a bad thing (i make tons less than Bill Gates, in fact well less than the US average income... if I have a great standard of life, why does that matter?).

    At one point, he even opines against ideologies because they keep us from seeing "what works". What the goal in mind is, how we would measure it, and other like questions aside, isn't pragmatism an ideology (and one often hamstrung practically by the question of goals and measurement that I just mentioned)?

    We all have paradigms through which we view the world, and our politics. Former President Clinton's mistake is in assuming that such ideologies are limited to his political detractors, and as a result he fails to make a case for his understanding.

    16 of 32 people found this review helpful
  • The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth: Popularity, Quirk Theory, and Why Outsiders Thrive After High School

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Alexandra Robbins
    • Narrated By Kathleen McInerney
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (34)

    In a smart, entertaining, reassuring book that reads like fiction, Alexandra Robbins manages to cross Gossip Girl with Freaks and Geeks and explain the fascinating psychology and science behind popularity and outcasthood. She reveals that the things that set students apart in high school are the things that help them stand out later in life.

    James says: "Not what I expected..."
    "A Good thesis, maybe overstated."
    Overall

    The main thesis is a valid and valuable one. Society needs its cafeteria fringe people to advance and have positive changes. However, I wonder at the distaste for conformity.

    Conformity is not always a bad thing, nor is a lack of conformity always a good thing. The question is whether we courageously seek the truth and what really works, whether that is accepted by the culture or not.

    2 of 7 people found this review helpful

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