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It Could Happen Here: America on the Brink
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It Could Happen Here: America on the Brink

3.50  ·  Rating Details  ·  40 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
The severe economic downturn has been blamed on many things: deregulation, derivatives, greedy borrowers, negligent lenders. But could there be a deeper problem that is so severe, so long-lasting, and so dangerous that it makes these problems look like minor swerves in the road? Could we be facing an existential challenge to the promise of America, and to our system of gov ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published October 6th 2009 by Harper (first published 2009)
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Will Byrnes
Feb 19, 2016 Will Byrnes rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Could the USA be ripe for revolution? Judson looks at the big historical picture and sees that conditions are such that this is not a trivial, parlor-game question, but one that bears serious examination. What are the conditions in which mega-change occurs, historically? Major economic upheaval, a toxic distribution-of-wealth imbalance, a loss of confidence that authorities are acting honestly or fairly, and an expectation that things will not get any better, in fact will only get worse. Gee, gu ...more
Mar 12, 2016 David rated it really liked it
Judson's warning -written in 2009 at the start of the Obama administration- sounds practically prophetic now. The argument boils down to: nations with large amounts of economic equality are historically prone to revolutions (examples are cited from ancient Greece to the Great Depression), and with inequality in the US worse than it's ever been we are looking due for some profound changes in government and society. If the Obama administration is not able to clean up some of the issues that lead t ...more
Oct 11, 2010 Matt rated it liked it
There are a lot of places critics could poke holes in Judson's arguments, reasoning, and academic references (or lack thereof) in his critique of income inequality in the US. It's a sensational hypothetical to posit that an anti-government revolution could be sparked in the near future by the fallout of the economic crisis and income inequality, so the author is going to lose a lot of credibility right off the bat for most readers.

Nevertheless, he had a few interesting bits of analysis illustrat
Savinipop Savini
Mar 06, 2010 Savinipop Savini rated it liked it
A very clear and well thought out look at what conditions are needed in a nation to start a revolution.
Bruce Judson is a well read writer, who has led me to reading a couple other books, and I applaud him for that. Every fact is well footnoted and some of them do make your jaw drop.
Though a fascinating subject, this book leans more towards a text book, IE, a bit dry.
This is not to say it doesn't read easily, or that it's a bore to get through, but after reading the likes of Malcolm Gladwell, i
Monica Willyard
Sep 18, 2015 Monica Willyard rated it really liked it
Shelves: bookshare
I would have dismissed this book ten years ago. Now? I'm not so sure.
T Dale
Feb 19, 2010 T Dale added it
That the economic inequities I have often obliquely referred to when I rail against the pay of CEOs is actually a sign of a real danger to our republic. That historically a society's rich and poor can only get so far apart before revolution or collapse occur. I didn't realize just how close we are and for how long it had been building up. Scary, but well reasoned, by a senior fellow of the Yale School of Management.
Joel Roberts
Oct 28, 2011 Joel Roberts rated it it was ok
with the Occupy movement ongoing... a timely read. the book served its purpose, reminding us that inequality (social, racial, financial, economic, etc al... the focus here was on income/wealth) is usually the root of civil unrest and revolution. a bit sensationlist in its approach, and i wonder whether some of the statistics were dressed up a little... but overall, i thought it was a decent read.
Jul 25, 2010 Brian rated it liked it
I'm not sure that revolution in America is all that likely, but this book gives you some things to think about.
pretty extreme
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