• The Conservative Nanny State

  • How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer
  • By: Dean Baker
  • Narrated by: Sandra Swafford
  • Length: 6 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 29-01-08
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Polity Audio LLC
  • 3 out of 5 stars 3.1 (29 ratings)

Summary

In his new book, economist Dean Baker debunks the myth that conservatives favor the market over government intervention. In fact, conservatives rely on a range of "nanny state" policies that ensure the rich get richer while leaving most Americans worse off. It's time for the rules to change. Sound economic policy should harness the market in ways that produce desirable social outcomes: decent wages, good jobs, and affordable health care.
©2006 Dean Baker; (P)2006 Polity Audio LLC and Creative Commons
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 11-01-12

Oh, really?

This is probably worth a listen if you want to expand your horizons and have a lot of time on your hands.

I would not say that I have a particularly strong leaning either left or right, but I felt that this was paper-thin. I have not journeyed (too) far into this audiobook as I found it tiresome from early on. It makes confident statements about the negative aspects of capitalism without really explaining the rationale behind its apparent evilness. We then find ourselves given a short, positive alternative without explanation.

It doesn't feel as though the writer has gone to lengths to justify his perspective of the world, nor to deride the alternative.

Imagine the general musings from a trade union agitator-slash-conspiracy theorist that people politely ignore in the local pub.

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1 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Kristi Richardson on 25-08-14

Tax breaks to businesses or the poor? Which way?

The premise of the book is the Conservatives in the United States have been able to frame the discussions on budget by claiming that they want less government, and the Liberals want more. In reality both want as much government, it's just the Conservative's want their government to protect the business interests and the 1% with tax breaks, protectionism and corporate welfare. The Liberals want the government to help the middle class and poor.

Things that did soak through my addled brain were:
1. We need to stand up to the Conservatives and re frame the discussion on their "less government" stance.
2. One of the reasons our healthcare system is in trouble is the salaries paid to doctors are higher than any where else in the world and the fact the government frowns on too many doctors from other countries practicing here. Same for lawyers and CEO's salaries are out the roof.
3. Mr. Baker wants to do away with patents and install a system of vouchers so entrepreneurs can be paid for their work. (Didn't understand where the money would come from, but understand the idea that people like Bill Gates made an exorbitant profit from his patents.)

The best part of this book is the new ideas that are coming to change the way we do business. I am not sure if they will all work but I welcome the innovation.

I enjoyed the narration and liked the way the footnotes were handled.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Vladimir on 23-08-08

An eye opening book

A clear and direct book that points out flaws in conservative policy and suggests possible alternatives. This book addresses issues such as protectionism for certain professions, unnecessarily high CEO pay, medical insurance, language tricks used by conservatives to promote their agenda (e.g. "free trade" agreements such as NAFTA and CAFTA are not designed to promote free trade), and many others. Assertions made in the book as supported by a large number of studies noted in the reference section. The book (including figures and references) is also available for (free) on-line reading at the book's website: http://www.conservativenannystate.com/

This is a "must read" book for anyone who wants to understand the deeply rooted reason for many of the current political and economic problems.


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10 of 13 people found this review helpful

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