A provocative and accessible case for making the EU stronger rather than allowing it to disintegrate.

REWRITING THE RULES OF THE EUROPEAN ECONOMY

AN AGENDA FOR GROWTH AND SHARED PROSPERITY

Nobel Prize–winning economist Stiglitz (People, Power, and Profits: Progressive Capitalism for an Age of Discontent, 2019, etc.) turns a gimlet eye on the EU.

The Brexiteers may be wolves in sheep’s clothing, but they have a couple of points to make—e.g., the European economy is a tangled mess that defies explanation. A number of its key doctrines, writes the author, are mistaken and damaging. One is the “austerity doctrine,” which requires governments to keep deficits below 3% of GDP, an arbitrary number that doesn’t make sense. Another is a borrowing from the U.S. that the market knows best, when, “without strong government actions, competition will erode as firms create barriers to entry…and work hard to reduce competition through mergers and acquisitions.” Debt is, of course, a difficult issue to work around, and European economic leaders have seen it through the lens of moral hazard: “the risk that the debt mutualization will incentivize countries to become overindebted.” That may be, but something needs to give Europe a jolt, and it won’t be borrowing from American ideas, which often yield only monopoly and inequality. Stiglitz notes, approvingly, that India has low telecom rates because there is so much competition, forcing prices down, while in places like Mexico and the U.S., rates are high because competition is scarce or nonexistent. The author offers recipes for improvement, such as shoring up the European banking union in order to “prevent macroeconomic harms to the community” and balancing competing doctrines. Europe has fallen behind the U.S. and China in some realms of the economy because of its concern for individual privacy, which hampers the development of artificial intelligence. Most pointedly, the author encourages the EU to stick to its regard for institutional justice, fostering multilateral agreements rather than following the current U.S. administration’s “retreat from globalization and the global rule of law,” which has benefited no country so much as China.

A provocative and accessible case for making the EU stronger rather than allowing it to disintegrate.

Pub Date: Jan. 28, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-39-335563-5

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Norton

Review Posted Online: Oct. 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2019

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However charily one should apply the word, a beautiful book, an unconditionally involving memoir for our time or any time.

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

Maya Angelou is a natural writer with an inordinate sense of life and she has written an exceptional autobiographical narrative which retrieves her first sixteen years from "the general darkness just beyond the great blinkers of childhood."

Her story is told in scenes, ineluctably moving scenes, from the time when she and her brother were sent by her fancy living parents to Stamps, Arkansas, and a grandmother who had the local Store. Displaced they were and "If growing up is painful for the Southern Black girl, being aware of her displacement is the rust on the razor that threatens the throat." But alternating with all the pain and terror (her rape at the age of eight when in St. Louis With her mother) and humiliation (a brief spell in the kitchen of a white woman who refused to remember her name) and fear (of a lynching—and the time they buried afflicted Uncle Willie under a blanket of vegetables) as well as all the unanswered and unanswerable questions, there are affirmative memories and moments: her charming brother Bailey; her own "unshakable God"; a revival meeting in a tent; her 8th grade graduation; and at the end, when she's sixteen, the birth of a baby. Times When as she says "It seemed that the peace of a day's ending was an assurance that the covenant God made with children, Negroes and the crippled was still in effect."

However charily one should apply the word, a beautiful book, an unconditionally involving memoir for our time or any time.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1969

ISBN: 0375507892

Page Count: 235

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1969

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A Churchill-ian view of native history—Ward, that is, not Winston—its facts filtered through a dense screen of ideology.

AN INDIGENOUS PEOPLES' HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES

Custer died for your sins. And so, this book would seem to suggest, did every other native victim of colonialism.

Inducing guilt in non-native readers would seem to be the guiding idea behind Dunbar-Ortiz’s (Emerita, Ethnic Studies/California State Univ., Hayward; Blood on the Border: A Memoir of the Contra War, 2005, etc.) survey, which is hardly a new strategy. Indeed, the author says little that hasn’t been said before, but she packs a trove of ideological assumptions into nearly every page. For one thing, while “Indian” isn’t bad, since “[i]ndigenous individuals and peoples in North America on the whole do not consider ‘Indian’ a slur,” “American” is due to the fact that it’s “blatantly imperialistic.” Just so, indigenous peoples were overwhelmed by a “colonialist settler-state” (the very language broadly applied to Israelis vis-à-vis the Palestinians today) and then “displaced to fragmented reservations and economically decimated”—after, that is, having been forced to live in “concentration camps.” Were he around today, Vine Deloria Jr., the always-indignant champion of bias-puncturing in defense of native history, would disavow such tidily packaged, ready-made, reflexive language. As it is, the readers who are likely to come to this book—undergraduates, mostly, in survey courses—probably won’t question Dunbar-Ortiz’s inaccurate assertion that the military phrase “in country” derives from the military phrase “Indian country” or her insistence that all Spanish people in the New World were “gold-obsessed.” Furthermore, most readers won’t likely know that some Ancestral Pueblo (for whom Dunbar-Ortiz uses the long-abandoned term “Anasazi”) sites show evidence of cannibalism and torture, which in turn points to the inconvenient fact that North America wasn’t entirely an Eden before the arrival of Europe.

A Churchill-ian view of native history—Ward, that is, not Winston—its facts filtered through a dense screen of ideology.

Pub Date: Sept. 16, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-8070-0040-3

Page Count: 296

Publisher: Beacon Press

Review Posted Online: Aug. 18, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2014

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