Shakedown: The Continuing Conspiracy Against the American Taxpayer

Shakedown: The Continuing Conspiracy Against the American Taxpayer

by Steven Malanga
     
 

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As their infatuation with President Obama fades, millions of Americans anxiously ask, Is this the change we were waiting for? The current administration represents change, for sure, Steven Malanga argues - a momentous transformation of the fundamental structure of American politics. A self-interested coalition of public-sector unions and government-financed community

Overview

As their infatuation with President Obama fades, millions of Americans anxiously ask, Is this the change we were waiting for? The current administration represents change, for sure, Steven Malanga argues - a momentous transformation of the fundamental structure of American politics. A self-interested coalition of public-sector unions and government-financed community activists (like the young Barack Obama) has become our era's characteristic political machine. In Shakedown, Mr. Malanga shows how this machine's single-minded goal is always bigger government and more public spending. The bill, he says, is now coming due for the relentless rise of this new political powerhouse. He chronicles how public-sector unions and the corrupt political hacks beholden to them have all but bankrupted once-rich states like California and New Jersey. He details the campaigns to undermine the successful and popular 1990s welfare reform and to revitalize the failed, wasteful War on Poverty programs that funnel taxpayer money to the advocacy groups that are integral cogs in the new political machine. And he provides a comprehensive summary of how these same advocacy groups spent decades helping undermine mortgage standards in the name of helping the poor - in the process enriching themselves and enabling the housing meltdown. As Americans anxiously ponder the future direction of their government and their economy, Shakedown explores the questions of who got us in this mess and why we need change - constructive change - more than ever.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In his latest effort, Malanga (The New New Left) argues that the U.S. government's expansion into previously unprecedented realms, from managing mortgage programs to expanding welfare, has increased personal taxes and stifled business growth. While president Obama entered office on a promise of change, in Malanga's view, he is the perfect poster child for this new political climate-a community organizer whose work was heavily funded by taxpayer dollars and pork barrel projects. Malanga, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute, argues that America has lost the work ethic and discipline that once made it great and replaced those traits with an entitlement complex that will beggar the nation. Of great concern to the author is the lobbying muscle of public sector unions and the mishandling of welfare programs, and he heaps praise on former president George W. Bush and Rudy Giuliani for their efforts in addressing those issues. Malanga is a compelling narrator with a command of statistics, and though he assigns blame and praise in a mostly bipartisan manner, readers who don't share his views will be left wishing he'd considered the complete social picture behind his doomsday story.
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Book Ideas
This book details the crisis as it grew out of control. The clout of the unions is also displayed as a settlement with one municipality soon becomes the blueprint for many others. To add insult to injury, the unions are big political donors. So you can see that the taxpayer is often at a disadvantage. Who do you think the politician will listen to, the group cutting checks or the voting public who may or may not vote for that person? This book looks at the growth of government as a big reason for this happening. The more people on the public rolls, the more union employees there are. Often the promises made in unionizing segments of the government end up being baseless. Again, the taxpayer is out in the cold. And the growth of government is likewise a huge issue addressed in this book. More and more services are co-opted by governments allegedly for savings and quality. Often the costs balloon - and the quality often goes down. Just remember this: Barack Obama got his start in community organizing by fighting city hall to get toilets fixed in the Chicago Projects! This book is an eye-opener for the American taxpayer not only of the skyrocketing pay and benefits of the public sector unions, but the ever far-reaching encroachment of the government into our lives.
Michael Barone
While the federal fiscal mess has had lots of attention, Americans face even more danger from runaway spending and improvident pension promises by state and local governments. Steven Malanga provides the grisly details in Shakedown: The Continuing Conspiracy Against the American Taxpayer. He shows how public sector unions and government-financing "community organizers" are wreaking ruin on our private sector economy.
Andrew Breitbart
The mainstream media is not interested in exposing the powerful machinations of public sector unions and social service advocacy groups, and their increasingly strong grip on politics. Why? For that you have to turn to writers like Steve Malanga and books like Shakedown.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781566639668
Publisher:
Dee, Ivan R. Publisher
Publication date:
10/16/2010
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
176
File size:
408 KB

Meet the Author

Steven Malanga is senior editor of City Journal and a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute specializing in the intersection of urban economies, business communities, and public policy. He is the former executive editor of Crain's New York Business. His other books include The New New Left and, with Victor Davis Hanson and Heather Mac Donald, The Immigrant Solution. His work has appeared in a wide variety of publications including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, andthe Los Angeles Times.

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