Read as much as you want at your own pace!
Add this book to bookshelf
Grey
Write a new comment Default profile 50px
Grey
Read online the first chapters of this book!
All characters reduced
The Prosperity Agenda - What the World Wants from America--and What We Need in Return - cover

The Prosperity Agenda - What the World Wants from America--and What We Need in Return

Nancy Soderberg

Publisher: Wiley

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0

Summary

Following the devastating 2005 earthquake in Pakistan, the Bush administration pledged more than $500 million for earthquake relief and sent American helicopters and soldiers to help. Immediately afterward, polls showed that the number of Pakistanis with a favorable opinion of the United States had doubled to more than 46 percent. The Prosperity Agenda argues that this may be the best foreign policy moment of the entire Bush administration—at the cost of what we spend in Iraq every day—and should become a model for future action.In this provocative, ingenious book, Soderberg and Katulis make one of the most controversial arguments that foreign policy circles have seen in years: no more putting all our eggs in the basket of promoting democracy or market reforms, or even diplomacy, sanctions, or cash handouts to faltering governments. Instead, they argue, we should go right to the citizens of troubled nations and give them what they need most. People in the Congo, Iraq, Pakistan, and North Korea all have the same concerns, and the right to vote is far from the top of the list. They need freedom from war, good food and shelter, basic health care, and the reasonable hope that tomorrow will be better. It's not only the right thing to do; it's likely to do more for American interests than the policies we've been relying on for years.Why have seven years of President Bush's "freedom agenda" failed to achieve freedom or democracy in Iraq, Afghanistan, or anywhere else? When democracy starts to sound like a code word for advancing U.S. interests, it backfires. Latin America provides an excellent example of why freedom's march has stalled, in large part due to quality-of-life issues. A 2004 survey showed that a majority of people in Latin America would rather have a government that provided economic gains than a democracy.The Prosperity Agenda embraces a new and compelling strategy for overcoming that problem and dealing with the world. Giving money, weapons, and loans with lots of strings attached doesn't do it. But handing out vaccines, disaster relief, and $100 laptops does. Working to improve the basic lives of people will, in the end, help defeat terrorism, increase America's leverage against its enemies, weaken dictatorships, and, most importantly, save the lives of millions.

Other books that might interest you

  • The Good Country Equation - How We Can Repair the World in One Generation - cover

    The Good Country Equation - How...

    Simon Anholt

    • 1
    • 1
    • 0
    “Not only does Anholt explain the challenges facing the world with unique clarity, he also provides genuinely new, informative, practical, innovative solutions. . . . The book is a must-read for anyone who cares about humanity's shared future.” 
    —H. E. Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (Farmaajo), President of the Federal Republic of Somalia 
     
    Simon Anholt has spent decades helping countries from Austria to Zambia to improve their international standing. Using colorful descriptions of his experiences—dining with Vladimir Putin at his country home, taking a group of Felipe Calderon's advisors on their first Mexico City subway ride, touring a beautiful new government hospital in Afghanistan that nobody would use because it was in Taliban-controlled territory—he tells how he began finding answers to that question.  
     
    Ultimately, Anholt hit on the Good Country Equation, a formula for encouraging international cooperation and reinventing education for a globalized era. Anholt even offers a “selfish” argument for cooperation: he shows that it generates goodwill, which in turn translates into increased trade, foreign investment, tourism, talent attraction, and even domestic electoral success. Anholt insists we can change the way countries behave and the way people are educated in a single generation—because that's all the time we have.
    Show book
  • Housing the New Russia - cover

    Housing the New Russia

    Jane R. Zavisca

    • 0
    • 1
    • 0
    In Housing the New Russia, Jane R. Zavisca examines Russia's attempts to transition from a socialist vision of housing, in which the government promised a separate, state-owned apartment for every family, to a market-based and mortgage-dependent model of home ownership. In 1992, the post-Soviet Russian government signed an agreement with the United States to create the Russian housing market. The vision of an American-style market guided housing policy over the next two decades. Privatization gave socialist housing to existing occupants, creating a nation of homeowners overnight. New financial institutions, modeled on the American mortgage system, laid the foundation for a market. Next the state tried to stimulate mortgages—and reverse the declining birth rate, another major concern—by subsidizing loans for young families.Imported housing institutions, however, failed to resonate with local conceptions of ownership, property, and rights. Most Russians reject mortgages, which they call "debt bondage," as an unjust "overpayment" for a good they consider to be a basic right. Instead of stimulating homeownership, privatization, combined with high prices and limited credit, created a system of "property without markets." Frustrated aspirations and unjustified inequality led most Russians to call for a government-controlled housing market. Under the Soviet system, residents retained lifelong tenancy rights, perceiving the apartments they inhabited as their own. In the wake of privatization, young Russians can no longer count on the state to provide their house, nor can they afford to buy a home with wages, forcing many to live with extended family well into adulthood. Zavisca shows that the contradictions of housing policy are a significant factor in Russia's falling birth rates and the apparent failure of its pronatalist policies. These consequences further stack the deck against the likelihood that an affordable housing market will take off in the near future.
    Show book