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The Retreat of Western Liberalism

The Retreat of Western Liberalism

Scritto da Edward Luce

Narrato da Julian Elfer


The Retreat of Western Liberalism

Scritto da Edward Luce

Narrato da Julian Elfer

valutazioni:
4/5 (18 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
5 ore
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Jul 25, 2017
ISBN:
9781541479227
Formato:
Audiolibro

Descrizione

In his widely acclaimed book Time to Start Thinking, Financial Times chief U.S. columnist and commentator Edward Luce charted the course of America's relative decline, proving to be a prescient voice on our current social and political turmoil.

In The Retreat of Western Liberalism, Luce makes a larger statement about the weakening of western hegemony and the crisis of liberal democracy—of which Donald Trump and his European counterparts are not the cause, but a terrifying symptom. Luce argues that we are on a menacing trajectory brought about by ignorance of what it took to build the West, arrogance towards society's economic losers, and complacency about our system's durability—attitudes that have been emerging since the fall of the Berlin Wall. We cannot move forward without a clear diagnosis of what has gone wrong.

Combining on-the-ground reporting with intelligent synthesis of the literature and economic analysis, Luce offers a detailed projection of the consequences of the Trump administration, the rise of European populism, and a forward-thinking analysis of what those who believe in enlightenment values must do to defend them from the multiple onslaughts they face in the coming years.
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Jul 25, 2017
ISBN:
9781541479227
Formato:
Audiolibro


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  • (5/5)
    excellent read. great point of view. well written and explained
  • (5/5)
    Insightful and eye opening. Great read. Couldn't put it down.
  • (5/5)
    Luce focuses primarily on the decline of American power, economic influence and standing but also reviews the falling fortunes of Western European countries including Britain, Germany and France. The election of Donald Trump has further weakened our democracy and and trust by our allies. Trump has candidly said that he will put America first. Our allies may not be able to count on America for military or economic support. The analysis from this book is not exactly shocking if one watches or reads the news. But Luce does connect the dots and envisions that the Chinese will soon be the predominant power in the world.

    Listed below are some of the sections that I highlighted from the book:

    "Economists are notorious for getting the future wrong (just as they are peerless at
    explaining the past). The joke is that they have predicted ten out of the last five recessions. In recent years, during what is now called the age of hyperglobalisation, bad forecasting has erred in the opposite direction. Economists have consistently predicted growth where none has materialised.

    It was an Atlantic recession. In 2009, China’s economy grew by almost 10 per cent, and India’s by almost 8 percent.

    Today, the US median income is still below where it was at the beginning of this century. Clearly what the typical American understands by growth differs greatly from that of macroeconomists.

    To be clear: the West’s souring mood is about the psychology of dashed expectations rather than the decline in material comforts.

    There is now a higher share of French males in fulltime jobs than Americans – a statistic that reflects poorly on America, rather than well on France.

    Having hundreds of Facebook friends is no substitute for seeing people.

    The fastest growing units in the big Western companies are the legal and public relations departments. Big companies devote the bulk of their earnings to buying back shares and boosting dividend payments. They no longer invest anything like what they used to in research and development.

    America, in particular, which had traditionally shown the highest-class mobility of any Western country, now has the lowest. Today it is rarer for a poor American to become rich than a poor Briton, which means the American dream is less likely to be realized in America.

    Little wonder the tone of our politics has shifted so markedly from hope to nostalgia.

    Similarly, every single one of America’s 493 wealthiest counties, almost all of them urban, voted for Hillary Clinton. The remaining 2623 counties, most of them suburban or small town,
    went for Donald Trump.

    A third of Americans who graduated in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths) are in jobs that do not require any such qualification.

    Almost three quarters of independent workers in the US report serious difficulties in chasing up what they are owed.

    The world now has twenty-five fewer democracies than it did at the turn of the century.

    To put it more bluntly: when inequality is high, the rich fear the mob. In early 2016 I had an eye-popping conversation with a very big name from New York. He argued that there should be a general knowledge test for voters to screen out all the ‘low information voters’. He estimated the franchise test would cut the electorate in half.

    The UFC is to popular culture what Trump is to politics – a brutal and unforgiving breed of show business.

    During the campaign, one journalist summarized the gap between the heartland view of Trump, and that of the liberal elites as follows: ‘the press take him literally, but not seriously; his supporters take him seriously, but not literally.”

    As Western democracy has come into question, so too has its global power. America’s loss has been relative: its share of world GDP has declined. It has also devalued its global credibility by prosecuting reckless wars in the false name of democracy.

    But I believe that protecting society’s weakest from arbitrary misfortune is the ultimate test of our civilizational worth. It seems blindingly obvious that universal healthcare ought to be a basic shield against the vicissitudes of an increasingly volatile labour market.
  • (4/5)

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile

    The Retreat of Western Liberalism (2017) is more of a long essay. The page count is over 200 but probably due to font or margins, it's really about a 125-150 page book. It makes a good case that what we're seeing with Trump and elsewhere is part of a bigger trend and there is probably worse to come. Nothing new there but insightful.

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile