From the Publisher
"Bob Kuttner pulls off the all-but-impossible. He hits the high notes with artful precision, lifting expectations and articulating the steps that can make Barack Obama a great president--while setting forth a strong and highly readable call for comprehensive and essential economic change."--John Sweeney, AFL-CIO President
"Obama's Challenge is the fruit of Bob Kuttner's lifetime of engagé reporting, analysis, and advocacy... it is riveting, brilliant, and persuasive. Kuttner, in concise chapters written with great vigor and clarity, shows what the change could look like if Obama is bold enough to go for it and the gods continue to smile on him."--Hendrik Hertzberg, from his New Yorker blog
"As Kuttner convincingly argues, a President Barack Obama will have an historic opportunity to radically transform America's direction--but only if he rejects the tired centrist policies of the past and inspires his fellow citizens to forge new progressive paths. Kuttner systematically lays out the case for why Obama should give full voice to a robust progressive message at a time when the American people are suffering from years of conservative policy. Obama's Challenge is an enlightening road map for all Americans who hunger for a change in direction and priorities in America, and who hope Obama can be our leading agent of change."--Markos Moulitsas Zúniga, founder of DailyKos.com, author of Taking on the System and coauthor of Crashing the Gate
"A manifesto, forceful but fair, by a leading political economist who lays out a bold but solid program if Obama is elected. As current as the morning's newspaper, this book should be read by all activists--especially Barack Obama."--James MacGregor Burns, author of Leadership
"Robert Kuttner has incisively captured the political moment, underscored by the deepening economic crisis. Lucidly and passionately, he lays out the hurdles facing an Obama presidency and challenges him to seize the moment and achieve greatness by redeeming the promise of America."--Arianna Huffington, cofounder and editor-in-chief, The Huffington Post
Library Journal Xpress Reviews-
Verdict: Kuttner's erudite book is highly recommended for readers of all political persuasions who are open to exploring viable solutions for the current U.S. economic and political crises--especially those in favor of working collectively to arrive at a solution.Background: World-renowned economist and educator Kuttner presents a realistic road map decoding the political and economic complexities facing a newly elected American president, who is attempting to keep election promises and secure widespread public support for his party and government. Kuttner offers Barack Obama, his campaign advisors, and readers a persuasive plan of action for meeting these challenges head-on, complete with a thoughtful outline and eloquent examples taken from transformational leaders like Roosevelt, Lincoln, Kennedy, and Johnson, using snippets of strategy gleaned from the past to suggest solutions for our current political and economic dilemmas.
In the latest from Kuttner (The Squandering of America), the liberal author and commentator correctly anticipates the economic failures only recently unfolding, and proposes a bold, transformative plan he believes can only be carried out by presidential candidate Barack Obama. Following the dubious tradition of pre-election expectation-raising, Kuttner proposes a veritable wish list for liberal economists-like permanent investment in public infrastructure, energy independence, active labor market policy (good jobs at good wages), professionalization of human services work like elder- and child-care, housing subsidies, universal health insurance-and why they'll pay off in jobs, health and wealth. Estimating the cost of all these programs at $600 billion until 2010, Kuttner finds convincing reasons to hope for these changes. Comparing Obama's role to FDR and Lincoln's, Kuttner believes the Illinois senator has the ability to inspire the public, and Congress, to carry out this agenda; as timely and apt as it is, left-leaning readers may be energized, or they may be in for quite a bit of disappointment.
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