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Back to Work: Why We Need Smart Government for a Strong Economy | [Bill Clinton]

Back to Work: Why We Need Smart Government for a Strong Economy

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".
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Publisher's Summary

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, resolving the mortgage crisis, and financial responsibility, and offering a plan to get us "back in the future business". He explains how we got into the current economic crisis, and lays down a plan for long-term prosperity. He also offers specific recommendations on how we can put people back to work, increase bank lending and corporate investment, double our exports, restore our manufacturing base, and create new businesses. He supports President Obama's emphasis on green technology, saying that changing the way we produce and consume energy is the strategy most likely to spark a fast-growing economy while enhancing our national security.

Clinton also stresses that we need a strong private sector and a smart government working together to restore prosperity and progress, demonstrating that whenever we've given in to the temptation to blame government for all of our problems, we've lost our ability to produce sustained economic growth and shared prosperity. He believes our ability to compete in the 21st century is dependent on our willingness to invest in infrastructure: we need faster broadband, a state-of-the-art national electrical grid, modernized water and sewer systems, and the best airports, trains, roads, and bridges.

"There is simply no evidence that we can succeed in the 21st century with an anti-government strategy," writes Clinton, based on "a philosophy grounded in 'you're on your own' rather than 'we're all in this together.'" He believes that conflict between government and the private sector has proved to be good politics but has produced bad policies, giving us a weak economy with not enough jobs, growing income inequality and poverty, and a decline in our competitive position. In the real world, cooperation works much better than conflict, and "Americans need victories in real life."

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2011 Bill Clinton (P)2011 Random House

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Joseph Fredericksburg, VA, United States 01-18-12
    Joseph Fredericksburg, VA, United States 01-18-12 Member Since 2004
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    "What a waste!"
    What would have made Back to Work better?

    Probably couldn't. It is dripping with libralism as I suppose the author would have it.


    What was most disappointing about Bill Clinton’s story?

    I was hoping for some engaging antecdotes of President Clinton's career. Instead, I got a dose of libralism; not with a spoon but, with a shovel.


    What about Bill Clinton’s performance did you like?

    I think he is well spoken and has a great voice delivery.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Back to Work?

    I suppose from page one to the last page.


    Any additional comments?

    This is one of the very few dissapointments that I have had listening to a book. It is also one of the few that I just could not listen to in it's entirety.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marcus Bailey Darnestown, MD 01-03-12
    Marcus Bailey Darnestown, MD 01-03-12 Member Since 2009

    Marc 'grailwolf' Bailey

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    "A sober and insightful economic prescription"
    Would you listen to Back to Work again? Why?

    Let's face it. You probably already know whether or not you'll agree with what President Clinton lays out in this book, so I won't waste any time getting into the politics of the book. I That said, I am a big fan and I didn't agree with absolutely everything here. But the bulk of what is here is interesting, compelling, and well thought out. Certainly, this presents a better roadmap than the one we seem to be using at present.


    What does Bill Clinton bring to the story that you wouldn???t experience if you just read the book?

    President Clinton is a surprisingly good reader. Not every great author or public speaker can make the jump to narration, but this performance had an almost perfect blend of poised and apparent spontaneity. The subject matter is necessarily a bit dry, but this reading does just about everything you could do to make it easier to stay awake through.


    Any additional comments?

    All-in-all, a worthwhile listen. Not exactly entertaining, but interesting, hopeful, and even a bit inspiring.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ANDREW 01-03-12
    ANDREW 01-03-12 Member Since 2012
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    "A call for reason"
    What did you love best about Back to Work?

    Former President Clinton backs his views with data and reasoning. He calls into question conservative rhetoric that is not consistent with historical data. This book challenged the efficacy of many of my political and economic beliefs. I recommend this book to all critical thinkers, regardless of their political affiliations.


    If you could give Back to Work a new subtitle, what would it be?

    A call for reason


    Any additional comments?

    The narration refers to charts that are in the viewable versions of the book. I found it useful to buy an ebook version so that I could review the charts.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DAVE SCHAFER 12-14-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Clinton Statistics Review"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I would avoid using semi supportable statistics to


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Fewer statistics and shorten the book


    Did Bill Clinton do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Characters?


    Did Back to Work inspire you to do anything?

    Yes, i agree that internal bickering is STUPID & DESTRICTIVE to all


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James Arlington Heights, IL, United States 12-13-11
    James Arlington Heights, IL, United States 12-13-11 Member Since 2013
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    "President Clinton makes a great argument"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. A great crash course of the important political issues of today. He is always interesting to listen to.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Constance COLUMBUS, OH, United States 12-12-11
    Constance COLUMBUS, OH, United States 12-12-11 Member Since 2015

    looking for something new to intrigue me.

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    "Study Economics!"
    What made the experience of listening to Back to Work the most enjoyable?

    I yearn to hear viable proposals to move forward. Does anyone think there is only one path? Bill Clinton proposes a plan, presents the supporting logic and the expected results - just like the heart friendly diet we should all follow. So what I want to hear!


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Masoomeh 12-12-11
    Masoomeh 12-12-11 Member Since 2010
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    "As usual he delivers"
    Would you listen to Back to Work again? Why?

    I really loved his approach, explaining the problem and providing detailed proposed solutions. I have not checked his assumptions but knowing what a brilliant mind he is I would absolutely trust his work.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Current issues that US is facing and rather than hearing slogans and meaningless marketing campaigns he is providing a real step by step approach to solving our problems. He can explain the problem in a way that everybody can understand. What a great communicator! Also I love the fact that he acknowledges American place in the world and the fact that we are not who we think we are anymore.


    What about Bill Clinton’s performance did you like?

    Yes. I love listening to his lazy accent. It is familiar and reassuring.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Understand the core issues, Step up, do the hard work


    Any additional comments?

    I am so thrilled that he is still working. I am quite impressed with his global mind set. Absolutely admire him.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Boyle Medford Long Island 12-12-11
    Richard Boyle Medford Long Island 12-12-11 Member Since 2009
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    "Clinton's make a good case for our country"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes, it is important for everyone to get as many points of view as possible to make an informed voting decisions


    If you’ve listened to books by Bill Clinton before, how does this one compare?

    Different subjects


    Have you listened to any of Bill Clinton’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Bill is always a good talker


    Was Back to Work worth the listening time?

    about right


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mr. M Metwally 12-12-11 Listener Since 2003
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    "Good'Ol Bill alive and kicking"
    Would you listen to Back to Work again? Why?

    Yes, good and impartial analysis of the state of the affairs in the US.


    What other book might you compare Back to Work to and why?

    Common Wealth by Jeffrey Sachs, but Sachs book had significantly lot more beef on depth and breadth.


    Have you listened to any of Bill Clinton’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    My Life (unabridged)


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    Mr Clinton views of G8 countries as competitors when it comes to Government services, planning, and global positioning.


    Any additional comments?

    It is a good positive thoughts book where Mr Clinton decided to air his views against the rising tide of disappointment with the Democratic among the American people.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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