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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Schooling Myself: Political

      I've mentioned before that I don't often comment on politics in general because I feel the topics are more complicated than most people give them credit for and I don't have the time or the energy to collect enough information to feel completely confident in my opinion.  And I think people who buy into the over-hyped spinmiesters are complete tools.

      This morning, I was listening to discussions on the radio of President Obama's Jobs Bill as well as some of the Republican proposals.  My thinking (based solely off what President Obama and the Republican Candidates said about their own proposals)?  I think it makes a hell of a lot more sense to put money into building schools and roads - putting teachers and construction workers back to work - than it does to tear apart our environment and sink the nation deeper into the oil pit.  That said, I'm sure there is a heck of a lot more to each plan, but I do know enough to say that I instantly bulk at the idea of using environmental destruction as a tool for economic advancement.

      But, really, that's about as far as my knowledge goes.  So I started thinking that maybe, just maybe, I should add a book to my reading list that will educate me a little about economics and politics.  Something a little less pop-culture than Freakonomics - not that I'm knocking it.

      So I've added a new book to my list: 
      The Price of Civilization by economist Jefferey D. Sachs examines the widening income gap between the rich and the middle class and looks at the reasons why middle class growth has basically died in the last couple decades.  If you click on the image of the book above, you can read an exerpt.

      Even though it intimidates me a little, I find economics facinating and am looking forward to digging into this book as soon as I finish up one of the other 3 I'm reading right now.  Anyone care to join me?  I would love to start a little mini book club (as in this one book and stop - I like my book club committments limited to one book at a time).

      Heaven knows I found the information about farm subsidies in Menu For The Future extremely enlightening.

      If you're on the fence about whether or not to join me in reading Price of Civilization, you can check out an interview the author gave on NPR here.


MiMi said...

I think reading books about economics might. just. kill. me.
I prefer to sit on the sidelines and bitch about them though. HAHA!

Karen Peterson said...

It's definitely important to educate ourselves about these matters if we're going to talk about them.

Economics really is an interesting thing and I hope this book is pretty neutral. Many that I come across are slanted one way or the other, which I find infuriating.