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09/11/2001 WE REMEMBER

"Fear is the foundation of most governments." - John Adams

"My family is more important than my party." - Zell Miller

I feel like I've got stuck in a bit of an echo-chamber of my own making. I've realised I haven't read any lefty writers for years now, except Orwell, but he doesn't count.

Can anyone recommend me a non-fiction book or two that espouses left-wing politics? Not of the faux-left identity/grievance politics variety - I have no interest in that. But something that makes the argument for state intervention, egalitarianism, etc?

There are 13 Replies

Saving Capitalism - by Robert Reich

^ Possibly the greatest example of what you're looking for.

Posted May 11th by mariomguy


Posted May 11th by poptart!

I suggest you look for books that take a "left" perspective on a certain issue, maybe about an issue you don't know much about.

Or you could just listen to a podcast.

Posted May 12th by Agis

Read Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky and you will realize hearing them out isn't worth it.

Posted May 12th by #85

Rules for Radicals is an excellent book and Alinsky was a very good sport to have published it - but it's about tactics, not theory.

Edited May 12th by Pink Peruvian Flying Bear
Pink Peruvian Flying Bear

I have some friends that may be able to reccomend you something.

Posted May 12th by tnu

Tony Judt's Ill Fares the Land. And then his essay collections Reappraisals and When the Facts Change.

IFTL is a short overt polemic. You'll probably get more enjoyment from his essays though, as Judt had a vast and seemingly unending knowledge of European history and politics. His 900-page Postwar remains arguably the best synthesising piece of contemporary European history to this day.

Edited May 12th by Arch

Rule34 for radicals!

Posted May 13th by Weid man
Weid man

Robert Reich is like the poster child for left-leaning Democratic thinking. He was Secretary of Labor for Bill Clinton and is an economics professor at U.C. Berkeley. Most progressives hate him for supporting Hillary Clinton at the end (just like everyone else), but he supported a lot of Bernie's ideas and has a strong center. He had several meetings with Republicans and a lot of conservatives can't help but appreciate his ideas, some saying they take his book "Saving Capitalism" to heart.

I really, really, really, really hate Clinton, but I know why Reich did it.

BTW, Saving Capitalism is also a documentary on Netflix. If you don't want to read the (fairly short) book, you should definitely watch the documentary.

Posted May 15th by mariomguy

At this point I am not so sure capitalism is worth saving. :(

Posted May 15th by pacman

You're gonna have to flirt with socialism if you want to save capitalism.

Posted May 15th by S.o.h.

Capitalism is, right now, a very drunk man precariously balanced between socialism and guillotines.

Posted May 15th by Pink Peruvian Flying Bear
Pink Peruvian Flying Bear

The funny thing is, Robert Reich says he finds people divided on his title: those who believe capitalism doesn't need any saving, and those who ask "why should we bother saving capitalism?" His book argues how old systems that were intended to be beneficial for the economy are being gamed so that fewer people benefit, and those old systems would work fine if they weren't so maligned against the general population. When asked what system works better, capitalsim or socialism, Reich responded "any system that works for people." If that isn't centerist, nothing is.

Again, this guy makes traditionally leftist and Democratic ideas very appealing to both progressives and hard conservatives. He was in the White House during one of the only times in American history when our nation had a surplus, and he saw the beginnings of how this system got gamed. He might be the only guy in this country whose "policies" could sufficiently challenge Bernie if they ever ran against each other, and he is very much a classic Democrat.

Posted May 16th by mariomguy
Reply to: Sensible lefties

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