Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Free Book

Dean Baker's latest book, The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive, is available as a free download in PDF here at The Center for Economic and Policy Research.

Here is a description:
Progressives need a fundamentally new approach to politics. They have been losing not just because conservatives have so much more money and power, but also because they have accepted the conservatives’ framing of political debates. They have accepted a framing where conservatives want market outcomes whereas liberals want the government to intervene to bring about outcomes that they consider fair.

This is not true. Conservatives rely on the government all the time, most importantly in structuring the market in ways that ensure that income flows upwards. The framing that conservatives like the market while liberals like the government puts liberals in the position of seeming to want to tax the winners to help the losers. 

This "loser liberalism" is bad policy and horrible politics. Progressives would be better off fighting battles over the structure of markets so that they don't redistribute income upward. This book describes some of the key areas where progressives can focus their efforts in restructuring market so that more income flows to the bulk of the working population rather than just a small elite.


Matt Franko said...

"puts liberals in the position of seeming to want to tax the winners to help the losers. 

This "loser liberalism" is bad policy and horrible politics."

Have to agree here, a "win/win" proposition is always the better approach... GOP could learn this also imo...

mike norman said...

Perceived that way only because liberals have not explained that the "winners" are not really winners at all, but have been subsidized unfairly...received welfare. And the "losers" happen to teach the winners' kids in schools, protect their homes and neighborhoods (fire, police, etc), operate their transit systems, maintain their roads and public infrastructure, serve them in their local restaurants, attend to their needs in the stores they frequent, etc. Bottom line: those "losers" contribute much more to society than the so-called winners. That's the truth and that's how they have to communicate it.

CybrWeez said...

I'm on page 2, and I'm already confused by all these labels. Conservative, right, left, liberal, progressive... These things mean something different to each individual, and makes it hard to know who or what he's talking about. Most equate conservative w/Republican, yet he's talking about conservatives in control of all the money, yet we know Obama got millions from bankers. So does conservative <> Republican?

Would be great if the author could avoid this confusion. But some interesting thoughts I hope are developed nicely. I'll keep at it.

CybrWeez said...

Ok, a question. Footnote 4:

The Fed currently holds close to $3 trillion in mortgage-backed securities and government bonds. As long as the Fed holds on to these bonds, the interest on these assets is refunded to the Treasury: in 2010 the refund was almost $80 billion. By continuing to hold these assets indefinitely, rather than selling them to the public (which would mean the Fed would no longer be able to refund the interest), the Fed would substantially reduce the government‟s interest burden in future years.

The Fed pays the Treasury interest. Isn't it just the govt paying the govt? What's going on here?

Matt Franko said...

" Isn't it just the govt paying the govt? What's going on here?"

Is that a rhetorical question or are you seriously inquiring ?

mike norman said...


Yes, it's the government paying the government and nobody in policy is pointing that out. Ron Paul suggested one solution: The Fed should just rip up those $3 trillion worth of securities and the debt goes down by that much. Even that didn't catch anyone's attention at how ridiculous this whole debt situation is.

Bob said...

Tea Baggers, Liberals, Repukelicans,Democraps,Conservative,supply siders all bullshit.

Only one candidate so far that I see is willing to even speak about the only problem that has to be solved, and with this solution all else will fall into place. Eliminate Ursury the sin of mankind. The banks create money out of thin air and charge interest, this is a crime and parasytic, the Central bank system wants interest on money the govt money. I say govt should shut down the existing banking system, create their own money and charge the banks interest for the privilege of using the american people. Ron Paul comes close to this. All other candidates are bootlickers for the banks, including this president. The govt should implement an asset based loan system to private enterprise not debt based, the scam from Jekyll Island must end, if the puppet masters who pull the american peoples strings can,t be controlled, shut it down. I like serving only one master not two. Govt is bad enough, get rid of the second partner in crime the banking system.

CybrWeez said...

Thanks Mike, that's what I thought. It's easy to go crazy when you think about a run away train that is incapable of being stopped. I don't see any change, unless I guess things get really bad.