Comeback America: Turning the Country Around and Restoring Fiscal Responsibility
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Comeback America: Turning the Country Around and Restoring Fiscal Responsibility

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  173 ratings  ·  37 reviews
He's one of America's most capable, canny, candid, and independent financial experts. Now David M. Walker sounds a call to action. Comeback America is a tough-minded, innovative, inspiring guide to help us avoid the approaching economic abyss and put the country back on track again.

As comptroller general of the United States and head of the Government Accountability Office...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published January 12th 2010 by Random House (first published December 22nd 2009)
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If you’ve seen David Walker anywhere, you’ll remember him as a straight talkin’, former Comptroller General of the United States who is really REALLY worried about the financial deficits of the US. He’s been on 60 Minutes, written several books, has a movie (IOUSA). All of which seek to drive home the point that the US is in a huge financial hole ($56 trillion as of 2008) and we need to get serious. His solution: raise taxes and cut spending, with an emphasis on entitlement spending.

As an accoun...more
Walker was comptroller general for 10 years. He knows Washington, the Federal debt crisis and is not shy about offering solutions. It should be a requirement to know what is in this book to vote.
Feb 04, 2010 Kat rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone.
Recommended to Kat by: Jon Stewart
Giving this a five-star even though the style of writing wasn't the most amazing in the world (though good enough that it was an easy read) and the subjects were occasionally repetitive to the point of tedium. Part of that may have been emphasized by the fact that I read it in two days.


Read this book and feel as nauseous as I did when you realize that "by 2040, all of our federal tax revenues will add up to enough to cover only our two biggest expenses: interest on o...more
Much of the information in this book I already knew. Unfortunately, many of the solutions Walker offers to are very progressive in nature, which, in my opinion, are the problems facing the nation today. If all men are created equal, why must gov't impose progressive taxes, regulations, etc? And I'm firmly in the lower-middle class.

Needless to say, I found the "solution" portion of the book to be very lacking and very evident that it was written by someone who's been in government much too long....more
Daniel (Attack of the Books!) Burton
As the former comptroller general of the United States, David Walker knows a little about the fiscal workings of the modern federal government. For fifteen years, he served under both Republican and Democratic presidents from Reagan to Clinton to the Bushes), and had a unique opportunity to call into question the decisions that have lead to our current fiscal woes.And he doesn’t hold back. As he argues in the first few pages of his book “Comeback America,” we are a great country, but we are putt...more
It's amazing to me that the country does not truly realize the problems associated with our current budget trajectory and the government spending and lack of taxes to pay for it. Walker doe an excellent job of laying out those facts - in clearcut language leaving no dispute about the seriousness of the issue. He is also very clear about how our children and grandchildren will ultimately pay the price if we don't get the situation corrected.

Like them or not, he lays out some relatively common-sen...more

Books about fixing America's dysfunctional economy are trendy again and partisan finger pointing is probably the most notable component in most books. The book by David M. Walker called Comeback America is no exception when it comes to the frustration and anger he shares when in particular chastising President George W. Bush. Irritation aside, Walker is one who has the credentials to deliver punches since he also work under President Reagan, Bush 41 and Clinton eventually becoming comptroller ge

I downloaded this book from my uncle’s Kindle account. He has a whole slew of “fixing” America how-to books and I’ve always been intrigued by his selections. This book, subtitled “Turning the Country Around and Restoring Fiscal Responsibility”, was the title I found my finger hoovering over time and time again.

One of my biggest pet peeves is when people complain about paying taxes. Nobody likes paying taxes but we derive so many services from paying taxes that I’m always flabbergasted by people’...more
Alan Flyer
A great take on our current long-term financial crisis by someone who actually knows something, the former comptroller general of the United States, David Walker. Walker is very convincing in his analysis of our current economic problems, and offers as solid a list of suggestions as is possible in today's environment.

Rather than rehash his theories, I'll use this space to highly recommend this book to anyone who is concerned beyond the typical political tripe that dominates today's media. There'...more
After, I think more than a year of reading this book, I'm glad I'm finished. It's actually kind of interesting because he wrote this book in 2008-09 and much has taken place in America since. Sadly much is opposite of what he teaches. America is still fiscally irresponisible, we are still fighting 2 unnecessary wars, and Obama's hope and change bit never came to fruition. David M. Walker has a lot of the right (more conservative) ideas it's just getting the citizens of America to adopt his chall...more
A sobering look at the country's current fiscal debacle. Walker attempts (and mostly succeeds) at a non-partisan look at what is wrong, where it went wrong, the barriers to fixing it, and ideas to turn things around.

Personally, I was left looking for a little more meat on the bones of many of his analyses and proposals. However, given that the book is geared to speak to a wide range of people and thus has to keep it at a high level rather than digging into the details.

Recommended reading for any...more
Jan 12, 2010 Jonathan marked it as to-read
Shelves: heard-on-mpr-npr

Former federal official warns about mounting deficit
Broadcast: Midday, 01/12/2010, 12:00 p.m.

David Walker, a former comptroller general of the United States and former head of the Government Accountability Office, says the U.S. faces longterm disaster if it doesn't fix its financial condition.

Walker is the author of the new book, "Comeback America: Turning the Country Around and Restoring Fiscal Responsibility."

He spoke at the National Press Club in Wash...more
Saw this guy on the Daily Show and I am really excited to read it.

This book really makes excellent points, about the role of government with regards to fiscal accountability. The truth here seems to be not whether we are liberal or conservative, but whether we can find true representation that will help us return our fiscally irresponsible country, that is addicted to credit to the black. It's not about what services the government provides us, it is what we need and how we pay for it. This is a...more
This was an eye-opening book about America's fiscal irresponsibility. The author managed to be non-partisan and well-informed. I didn't like one of the chapters near the end where he was very self-congratulatory about the work he did with the Government Accountability Office. I also felt his overall tone of hope for the future seemed a little forced and overly positive given the situation he describes. However overall I would highly recommend that everyone read this book. It certainly made me th...more
I really wanted to like this, but I just couldn't. Basically, Walker finds both sides of the political spectrum too principled. Instead, Walker aims for practicality which is what drawn me to this book. However, it seems that Walker interprets practicality as "centrist" which is a principled position. Sometimes, doing the practical thing is on both sides of the spectrum and not just in the center. Walker aims for moderation, but it didn't grab me. I was disappointed.
Sean Rosenthal
Interesting Quote:

"The federal government borrowed $787 billion...for the stimulus bill...and the entire amount was added to out national debt. Does that remind you of anything? How about all the Americans who made no down finance homes they couldn't afford? Those irresponsible borrowing practices...caused the subprime mortgage crisis. Now our government is acting like one of those irresponsible mortgagees."

-David Walker, Comeback America
David Walker held a very important position in government where he observed the mismanagement government is involved in doing daily. He held the office of Comptroller General, which is the only Federal Government job or position that is contractual for a fifteen year period. Walker resigned the last two years of his job to warn Americans of the coming financial disaster. This book tells his story and every citizen needs to read.
Best book I've read about the financial situation we face. Honest and scary yet hopeful. If our system didn't prevent people like David Walker from running for president, I would elect him and we could get this country back on solid ground. I will recommend this to everyone I know. Excellent, excellent book if you are interested in the current economic crisis the US faces and potential ways to escape the next Great Depression.
Jun 22, 2012 Rachel added it
I didn't finish this, but I can summarize it for you: our national financial situation makes our government look like drunken, irresponsible frat boys. THe solution is to raise taxes and decrease spending, especially on social programs. Since our government won't do it (and neither political party is going to like the above prescription completely), American citizens have to demand it. Good luck with that.
This was a worthwhile read. Having been comptroller general of the US and CEO of the GAO certainly lends credibility to his recommendations. I thought he did a good job generally of laying out his case for fiscal responsibility. I would have liked him to played more devil's advocate and argue the other side on occasion, but overall I thought it was persuasive. I am not however very optimistic.
Nicholas Miller
A great read on the financial situation America finds itself in and how we arrived here. Though the author presents himself as a fiscal conservative, I felt he presented his case in a non-partisan tone and used hard numbers to back his claims. I found myself agreeing with most everything in the book. Anyone interested in the financial future of our nation should give this a read.
Drew Johnson
As Comptroller and CEO of GAO, Walker knows the state of our country's financial situation as well as anyone. He's not the most compelling writer and is repetitive at times but his recommendations are on point. He is a practical, non partisan guy who is passionate about fixing our fiscal challenges. I would have liked more data and charts but worth the read.
Patrick Crowe
The subject matter and stances taken by the author aren't necessarily bad. As "serious" as the author would like the book to be, I feel the solutions offered were painted with too broad a brush. I understand the severity of our financial situation and I hoped to get more from the author on what we can do about it.
Mr. Walker has written a "fiscal policy for dummies" book and tried to pass it off as an intelligent, nonpartisan look at governmental spending (while mostly ignoring revenue). His oversimplification of the issues combined with his completely unrealistic suggestions make this a book to avoid.
Hunter Johnson
Lightweight but provocative book on the problems systemic in the U.S. government (the worst of both worlds: big spending plus low taxes) and specific recommendations for changes, disconnected from either party's platform.
Josh Camire
Great book, really speaks to the problems that face us. The problem is I doubt anyone will listen to the advice and plan put forth in this book. And that scares me.

Read this book. Make your own decision.
Dec 15, 2010 Tamra rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Tamra by: Justin
Will make you want to move to Canada.

Should it be so hard to balance our budget and pay off our national debt? Increase revenue and decrease spending. Let's get to it already.
Walter Punsapy
Fantastic book on the problems that America is facing after decades of splurging. I especially enjoyed the author's non-partisan view, pointing fingers at both parties.
Kathryn Bashaar
What I learned: we had better get our heads out of our butts or we will be leaving our children and grandchildren much poorer than we are.
A good primer on the dangers of America's worsening fiscal predicament, how we reached this point and suggestions on turning it around.
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