THE FORGOTTEN AMERICANS

An arresting appraisal of America's working poor. Drawing on anecdotal evidence as well as statistical data, Schwarz (Political Science/Univ. of Arizona) and his colleague (mayor of Tucson from 1987-91) limn the hard lives of the industrious individuals whose paychecks are too low to provide them or their families with basic necessities—adequate housing, food, clothing, medical care, transport, etc. During 1989, they calculate, 56 million Americans resided in households that could not make ends meet despite one or more breadwinners with full-time jobs. By the numbers, the authors estimate, an income at least 155% of the federal government's official poverty line is necessary for households to reach the threshold of self-sufficiency. To bring the needy employed up to these subsistence levels, they propose that Washington increase the minimum wage to $4.85 per hour and expand earned-income tax credits on a sliding scale. In the course of investigating the hand-to-mouth existence of the working poor, Schwarz and Volgy made some discoveries that go against the grain of conventional wisdom—e.g., that capitalism's low-profile casualties are neither uneducated nor unskilled: In fact, two thirds have high-school diplomas, and approximately one million hold college degrees. While white males account for the single largest segment, moreover, the ranks of the working poor encompass all age, ethnic, and racial groups in the US. Nor, the authors determined, has either the putative decline in domestic manufacturing or decelerating gains in industrial productivity contributed measurably to the impoverishment of these wage-earners; and the writers argue that the public sector's job-creation programs, however successful, cannot solve what is a problem involving shortfalls in income. Accordingly, Schwarz and Volgy conclude, an affluent society owes its working poor an affordable helping hand. A heartfelt and persuasively documented reminder that all isn't well at home.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-393-03388-0

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Norton

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1992

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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