• One Billion Americans

  • The Case for Thinking Bigger
  • By: Matthew Yglesias
  • Narrated by: Matthew Yglesias
  • Length: 6 hrs and 2 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (575 ratings)

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One Billion Americans

By: Matthew Yglesias
Narrated by: Matthew Yglesias
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Publisher's Summary

National best seller

What would actually make America great: more people.

If the most challenging crisis in living memory has shown us anything, it’s that America has lost the will and the means to lead. We can’t compete with the huge population clusters of the global marketplace by keeping our population static or letting it diminish, or with our crumbling transit and unaffordable housing. The winner in the future world is going to have more - more ideas, more ambition, more utilization of resources, more people.

Exactly how many Americans do we need to win? According to Matthew Yglesias, one billion.

From one of our foremost policy writers, One Billion Americans is the provocative yet logical argument that if we aren’t moving forward, we’re losing. Vox founder Yglesias invites us to think bigger, while taking the problems of decline seriously. What really contributes to national prosperity should not be controversial: supporting parents and children, welcoming immigrants and their contributions, and exploring creative policies that support growth - like more housing, better transportation, improved education, revitalized welfare, and climate change mitigation. Drawing on examples and solutions from around the world, Yglesias shows not only that we can do this, but why we must.

Making the case for massive population growth with analytic rigor and imagination, One Billion Americans issues a radical but undeniable challenge: Why not do it all and stay on top forever?

©2020 Matthew Yglesias (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about One Billion Americans

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Novelty and Vision

One Billion Americans makes an affirmative and expansive case for radically expanding the remit of America. Frankly it was refreshing to read a book that actually has something to say rather than another book just explaining how dumb and broken our current system is. That said, I don't agree with every point in the book but that is as it should be. There a bunch of BS feel-good books out there that can repeat orthodoxy or explain the current system if that is what you want. What I want is a book with some guts and ideas.

While I was waiting for my audio preorder which was released after the physical book I saw a lot of bashing of this book and harsh reviews. After reading it myself I understand the criticism though I mostly find it overblown. The bottom line is this is a book that presented interesting new ideas and perspective. You can disagree with it but at least it is not a milquetoast political memoir, insider story, or explainer of our current system focused on the past.

Matt is right about this, it is better to think big than wallow in the myriad failing of our current system. If you are stuck thinking about the world as it is, how can you ever expect to create the world as it should be?

12 people found this helpful

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FINALLY SOME BIG IDEAS

Fantastic book. Extremely readable, digestible, and enormously enlightening. Even if you disagree, these are great points for getting our country back on track.

4 people found this helpful

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Bold ideas, well presented

Matt provides a lot of interesting ideas, in a framework premised on main stream ideas like America should strive to maintain its position in the world. If you enjoy Matt's contributions on Vox podcasts, you will greatly enjoy this audiobook.

4 people found this helpful

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Good Premise, NOT Non-Partisan

I really like this concept. Absolutely support massive legal immigration and a better immigration process. That being said, this book is definitely NOT non-partisan. when describing conservatives, he misrepresents the Conservative position and calls conservatives "far-right" and "right-wing". But when speaking about Liberals, he calls them liberals and progressives. He doesn't use the same inflammatory terminology. He doesn't repeatedly call them left-wing or far left. Specifically in Chapter 5 he repeats this terminology over and over. I would've been been much more on board if he would've been truly non-partisan. Otherwise, it's an excellent concept.

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Like the Weeds but with less cynicism.

I enjoyed listening. Didn't understand everything. Sometimes got lost in the minute, but overarching theme connected well. Not gonna lie the audio definitely didn't have the call to action resonate well with me.

1 person found this helpful

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Inspiring and Optimistic

This book speaks more directly to my values and experiences in America than any I've ever read. every American should read it.

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intrguing

information presented was very thoughtful provoking and insightful. I look forward to learning more about the topics discussed.

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Well written and well performed thesis

Matthew Yglesias provides excellent sourcing and optimistic views of America’s future without being Pollyanna. Broad look at the multiple advantages to the US geography and comparative advantages.

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a Hamiltonian plea after Alexander Hamilton's own

not since Alexander Hamilton has such an optimistic dream for America' been envisioned. Matt Yglesias makes a persuasive case of how to ensure America's future. a truly progressive program of how to restore American Greatness by thinking big again. any fan of Alexander Hamilton should be proud.

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Simple and to the point. If you are wondering why the economics and social science support expanding immigration, this is the book for you.

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  • Dermot Hegarty
  • 12-16-21

Great read

Controversial perspective but nonetheless based on sound logic and argumentation. If only we could turn this into policy - the USA (and other developed countries with declining birth rates) would be a better place for it. Sadly the US is going in the opposite direction and the imminent end to the empire is on the horizon.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-06-20

A Closed America is a dying America

Matt Yglesias makes strong arguments for why America should continue to lead the world economically and politically in the 21st century. The only way that's remotely feasible in the presence of rapidly growing rivals like China and India is a return to historic rates of population growth through less restrictive immigration policy and a more egalitarian family policy. this book provides a path leading away from the profound malaise presently afflicting America, on a path with both rapid and sustainable growth. Anyone looking to keep America great would be wise to give it a careful read.

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  • Will
  • 10-04-20

Great national revivalist book

This book does a great job in providing policy ideas to ensure future American greatness. Some of the ideas are a little esoteric but there are also some sensible seeming ones. How good the ideas are is difficult to say but the book is entertaining.

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  • Cameron Knott
  • 03-05-22

Essential reading for the policy minded

Yglesias ties together diverse stands of policy thinking into a compelling framework for American progress.