The Speech: A Historic Filibuster on Corporate Greed and the Decline of Our Middle Class
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The Speech: A Historic Filibuster on Corporate Greed and the Decline of Our Middle Class

4.13 of 5 stars 4.13  ·  rating details  ·  174 ratings  ·  33 reviews
In the wake of President Obama’s deal with congressional Republicans to preserve Bush-era tax cuts—tax cuts that gave colossal breaks to the wealthiest Americans— Senator Bernie Sanders, the independent senator from Vermont, publicly denounced the deal as an “absolute disaster” and decided to do something about it. On Friday, December 10, 2010, Senator Sanders galvanized m...more
Paperback, 270 pages
Published March 1st 2011 by Nation Books (first published February 1st 2011)
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Bradley Jarvis
Nov 26, 2011 Bradley Jarvis rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Bradley by: Debbie Jarvis
During the height of last year's debate over extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, Independent Senator Bernie Sanders spoke in opposition for several hours on the Senate floor. During his speech, reproduced (with minor editing) in this book, Sanders laid out the many problems with the agreement between President Obama and Senate Republicans which ultimately - and unfortunately - became law.

The speech was, more than anything, an indictment of how greed and corruption have rui...more
Richard Sahn
A must read for young people trying to form political opinions. He pulls no punches in exposing the hypocrisy, greed, and corruption of his colleagues in Congress. This book makes readers aware of what they're not getting from mainstream media and pundits—in fact, just the opposite. Sanders is fiercely critical of politics as usual.
Kathleen
Bernie Sanders is a hero and an inspiration for the incredible work and time and energy he put into his efforts to halt the extension of the Bush-era tax cuts. In this amazing filibuster he repeatedly calls on the American people to take action and let their Senators and representatives know that in this age of crumbling infrastructure, rampant child poverty, joblessness and homelessness they do not think it is necessary or wise to extend tax breaks to the multimillionaires and billionaires of t...more
Joe
Longest-standing Independent Senator from Vermont, Bernie Sanders shown light on the curtained-off greed in politics. In this eye-opening speech, Sanders denounces the tax agreement being worked out between President Obama and the Republican leadership. He speaks out against the entrenched corporate interests on behalf of the poor, working and middle class. During the course of this speech which lasted for over eight and a half hours, Sanders criticizes continuing tax cuts for multi-millionaires...more
Danny
From the floor of the Senate Senator Bernie Sanders told us of the rape of our economy by the Federal Reserve, Wall Street, Big Banks and the bought off politicians. Reveling the 15/16 TRILLION dollars that the Fed doled out to Wall Street and the Big Banks with out you and I knowing about it..that's on top of the TRILLION in TARP bailout money we knew about. It is repetitive as he says as it was taken from the floor of the senate in a hours long speech broadcast on CSPAN. But sometimes we need...more
Pascal Lapointe
Le 10 décembre 2010, le sénateur indépendant du Vermont Bernie Sanders, s’avançait à la tribune du Sénat pour un discours qui allait durer... 8 heures et demi. C’était sa façon de protester contre une entente entre le président Obama et les élus républicains, qu’il jugeait profondément inéquitable —sauf pour la petite fraction des super-riches.

Sauf que, au contraire de ces élus prennent le micro pendant des heures et lisent la bible ou l’annuaire téléphonique, Sanders a tenu un vrai discours, s...more
J.M. Slowik
Apr 14, 2013 J.M. Slowik rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: So-called conservatives
Shelves: essentials, politics
An extraordinarily important and perceptive speech about where we are as a country, the corrosive effects of corporate power, and how we can do much better. Of course he's repetitious over the span of an 8-hour filibuster, and long-winded in places where a concise turn of phrase would be more effective. But the combination of disheartening statistics and real-life stories of hardship is powerful.

Pair with America: What Went Wrong? which more or less predicted, 20 years ago, most of the problems...more
Don
The book, less the introduction, is simply a transcript of the speech (hence the title) that Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont) gave on the Senate floor on December 10, 2010. It was an old-fashioned filibuster, like Jimmy Stewart in "Mr Smith Goes to Washington," except that all of the speech included actual political commentary content, as opposed to simply reading the phone book. Senator Sanders' speech was in protest against the deal that the President had reached with Republicans that extended...more
Daniel Parker
Had seen this mentioned in a couple of places and came across a copy at the library. This is a printed version of the hours long speech Senator Sanders gave a couple of years back against a compromise bill by the White House and Republicans. The book has some redundancy because he knew people would be tunining in at different hours on CSPAN. Yet the duplication does help the reader solidify the facts and thoughts that Senator Sanders is sharing. He makes a good case for what is now discussed eve...more
Vincent
Like any good liberal, I love Bernie and the fire that he brings to any issue.
I have a vague memory of this famous speech on the senate floor from last year when he was trying to persuade Obama and other Democrats not to cave on the battle over extending the Bush tax cuts.
Of course, they did cave, so the speech was all for naught.
And my main issue with the book is that the speech itself was very redundent.
Bernie was speaking off the top of his head mostly and he repeats himself quite a bit.
I res...more
Mlg
This book contains the text of the 8+ hour speech that Sen Sanders made on the floor of the US Senate in 2010. He admits it is a little repetitious in parts because he was aware of people tuning in and out of C-Span and wanted everyone to hear his main points. The most poignant parts were at the end when he had Vermonters write in about the problems they were facing as a result of the recession. Some of the letters describe unbelievable sacrifices that people are making. This book ought to be r...more
Ann Douglas
The text of an 8 1/2 hour speech that Senator Bernie Sanders -- an independent senator from Vermont -- made in an effort to delay passage of a truly outrageous piece of legislation that gave tax breaks to billionaires while other Americans were losing their homes. If you've ever wondered what spurred the Occupy movement, this tiny book will explain it. Expect to feel angry while you read. (Anger is healthy. It moves you to action against a system that needs to be fixed.)
Joe
Got an autographed copy for donating to his campaign. should be a quick read and probably stuff I already know, but it does make me feel better to know there is at least one person in the US Senate who cares about the middle class.

Update: finished. There is a lot (a lot) of repetition (repetition) in this book. But, I'm not convinced that is a negative. I think it is important for me to read his arguments over and over so I can repeat them to people and evangelize.
Ella
Rarely has a filibuster been so interesting or compelling. Too bad nobody seemed to take him seriously. The mainstream media acted like "look -- that progressive is oddly talking in the senate and holding up the works" but never bothered to listen and report exactly what he was saying. Bernie Sanders is a national treasure, and this speech was but one small part of all he has given. I fear the day when he is not pushing for the right thing in our government.
Michael
This 4-star rating is based entirely on sentiment. The rhetoric is not particularly elegant, and as Sanders notes, there's a lot of repetition, so this is what it is: a document, for the record, of one senator's attempt to derail a lousy tax bill squeezed through at the end of 2010. I'm not sure it'll end up in Library of America's next Great Speeches installment, but it's a much-needed shot of populist outrage.
Chris
I think an interesting book on the problems of our society and economy. It was very repetitive. However, you know (or should know) that going in and he mentions it several times throughout the book. While I don't agree with some of the particulars (e.g. our level of debt to China) he puts forth, I do agree with most of what he said.
Josh
A great speech. The book is simply the transcript of Sanders' filibuster last December, and it's only fault is that it is fairly repetitive. It makes sense that Bernie repeated himself during the speech - he knew most people wouldn't be watching for the whole 8 hours - but when you're reading the text the repetition is more evident.
G0rd0
The only politician I like, telling it like it is. Not a good book but a speech, a rant, a repetitious telling that needs to be heard. It's a plea to the people because he realizes that the Senate only hears special interests and party ideologies. Bernie calls himself a progressive independent but he just rings of common sense.
Jack Keaton
An inspiring eight and a half-hour speech made in December 2010 on corporate and Wall Street greed, the shrinking Middle Class, and how our lawmakers and presidents have betrayed our trust.

Senator Sanders may not have started the Occupy movement, but his repeated call for public action may have inspired action.
Benjamin
There is common sense aspects that is in this book. I like how it was a flabuster speech about spending, I agree with what he had to say, it shows that some people make themselves puppets to the people that supply money for there seat in goverment.
Lara
Apr 20, 2011 Lara is currently reading it
So far, it is very repetitive. I know it is by design as it is an 8 hour speech to Congress and the American people, but it doesn't make for the most intereting reading. It is chock full of facts that all American citizens need to know.
Pam
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Bernie Sanders 8 hour filibuster. They don't make them like Bernie anymore. Of course, I agree with his ideas and admired his willingness to make this effort.
Bettina
Excellent recounting of a historical filibuster on Corporate Greed, and the Decline of Our Middle Class
Rafael
this is what democracy looks like. a strong argument against the falsehoods of political rhetoric.
Charles Pearce
Very repetitive but moving when quoting letters for constituents.
Kati
good but repetitive. no need to read through the first 100 pages
Jimmie
Love Senator Sanders. His message needs to be repeated often.
Erin
Much better listening to him or watching the videos.
Adriana
eye-opening about how congress is spending our money.
Adrian
He had a lot of great points to offer.
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Bernard "Bernie" Sanders is the junior United States Senator from Vermont, elected on November 7, 2006. Before becoming Senator, Sanders represented Vermont's at-large district in the United States House of Representatives for 16 years. Sanders also served as mayor of Burlington, Vermont from 1981 through 1989.
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