"Who knew that the daily gusher of corporate myths and right-wing lies could be boiled down to just fifteen big ones? Holland and Team AlterNet toss up all fifteen for us and knock 'em out of they park, while also teaching us how to detect any new twists they might throw out at us. What a handy book!" ---Jim Hightower, author of Swim against the Current
"A valuable antidote to the brasen lies, calculated deceptions, and vacuous sound bites of those who want to use our government for their own gain rather than to benefit us all." -David Cay Johnston, author of Free Lunch
"Most of the basic facts that people need to know about the economy are straightforward, as this book demonstrates. It is only the bad guys who make things complicated." -Dean Baker, author of False Profits
"Joshua Holland's brilliant, data-rich, accessible, and in-your-face book, The Fifteen Biggest Lies about the Economy, should be required reading for every American livid about floating a political-financial system that benefits powerful institutions and megalomaniac leaders." -Nomi Prins, author of it Takes a Pillage
By nearly every conceivable standard, the American economy has gotten steadily worse from the time Reagan took office to the present. The anti-government, pro-corporate agenda has damaged our nation for too long, and yet, turn on Fox News and you'll find them still hawking the same foolish theories, baseless accusations, and bald-faced lies. The Fifteen Biggest Lies about the Economy dissects each malicious fiction to reveal how the Right is just plain wrong on the economy --- wrong on jobs, wrong on the deficit, wrong on taxes, wrong on trade. However, Holland goes beyond the most recent Republican talking points to explain the issues with the depth and nuance that you'll need to see through the nonsense rhetoric you're going to hear about the nation's economy for some time to come.
How our conventional wisdom fails us.
A Closer Look: "This Modern World" by Tom Tomorrow.
1. Conservatives Don't Want Good Government.
Don't believe that limited government means anything would be better for you, personally.
A Closer Look: Is Big Business Passing Itself Off as "Small Business"?
2. It's Not Your Fault There Aren't Enough Good Jobs.
Don't believe America is still the land of opportunity.
A Closer Look: Is the Value of Education Declining?
3. There Is No Free Market.
Don't believe that modern markets exist without government.
A Closer Look: "Troubletown: Fanning the Flames of Class Warfare" by Lloyd Dangle.
4. How Could Anyone Believe the Big Banks Are Victims?
Don't believe that the housing crisis was caused by poor people.
A Closer Look: Were the Titans of Finance Really Too Big to Fail?
5. Tax Cuts Aren't a Solution to Every Problem.
Don't believe the conservatives' magic bullet for economic woes.
A Closer Look: No, Tax Cuts Don't Always Generate Jobs and Prosperity.
6. Republicans Have Never Cared about the Deficit.
Don't believe there's a budget apocalypse just over the horizon.
A Closer Look: How More Government (of One Sort) Brings Greater Individual Liberty and Personal Choice.
7. America Has No Respect for Family Values.
Don't believe that women choose motherhood over work (or vice versa).
A Closer Look: The Myth of the Pipeline: Why Women Aren't Poised to Shatter the Glass Ceiling.
8. Our Health-Care System Is a Huge Rip-Off.
Don't believe we have the greatest health care in the world a closer look: The Health-Care Economy.
9. Obama Is Not a Socialist.
Don't believe that those poor, oppressed corporations need saving.
A Closer Look: "Corporate America Had a Dream, Too" by Matt Bors.
10. Green Jobs Are a Great Idea.
Don't believe that environmental activists want to ruin the economy
A Closer Look: Why a Gallon of Gas Should Cost $10.
11. The Europeans Are All Right.
Don't believe that more progressive governments are always on the brink of bankruptcy.
A Closer Look: The Incredible Shrinking Americans.
12. "Illegal" Immigration Isn't Hurting Your Prospects.
Don't believe that a border-crossing Mexican stole your job.
A Closer Look: The Real Costs of Stupid Immigration Laws.
13. Blacks Still Kept Back 216
Don't believe the U.S. economy is a postracial meritocracy.
A Closer Look: The African American Economy, Before and After the Crash.
14. Unions Still Matter.
Don't believe organized labor is corrupt, lazy, and an artifact of a different age.
A Closer Look: Whither the $20-an-Hour Wage?
15. There's Nothing Free about Free Trade.
Don't believe that corporations want fewer rules and everyone else is an isolationist Luddite
A Closer Look: Corporate America Says You Can't Have a Green Economy.