27 July 2010

New Book: Were You Born on the Wrong Continent?"

Labor lawyer, activist, and (sadly unsuccessful) Congressional candidate, and all around smart guy Thomas Geoghegan has written a new book* in which he basically seeks to convince Americans that everything they think they know about European Social Democracies is mistaken. The point seems to be that we ought not to prefer the social democratic polities for this or that high-minded moral reason but because, in the first instance at least, we'd all generally be better off ourselves. You can find an brief excerpt/essay that serves as something of an advert for the book here at In These Times.
* Thomas Geohegan. 2010. Were You Born on the Wrong Continent? New Press.

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Blogger Rachel said...

I have not yet read this book, although I will soon. I'm truly glad someone has published this though! When I tell most people that I lived in Sweden there are two reactions: they think I was in Switzerland or they only know about Sweden's high taxes. There is no awareness of Sweden's true social mobility (with the exception of their figure-head royal family), the state regulated & provided with minimal or no cost health care for all, the truly free education for everyone (and even the "student loan" that all University students receive so that no one is forced to work through their education and the loan is paid back based on ones salary) their environmental consideration--of course they have their own sets of problems but at least the most basic needs of every individual are considered. It's not just Sweden though, most European Nations are like that to some degree. I think it is something all Americans who get the opportunity to study/live in Europe or abroad are deeply influenced by and is probably covered in this book too. Sorry for the rant. I get excited when other people express praise for systems that seem to work immeasurably better than our own.

28 July, 2010 09:00  

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