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The Great Risk Shift: The New Economic Insecurity and the Decline of the American Dream

Author

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  • Hacker, Jacob S.

    (Yale University and Fellow at the New America Foundation)

Abstract

America's leaders say the economy is strong and getting stronger. But the safety net that once protected us is fast unraveling. With retirement plans in growing jeopardy while health coverage erodes, more and more economic risk is shifting from government and business onto the fragile shoulders of the American family. In The Great Risk Shift , Jacob S. Hacker lays bare this unsettling new economic climate, showing how it has come about, what it is doing to our families, and how we can fight back. Behind this shift, he contends, is the Personal Responsibility Crusade, eagerly embraced by corporate leaders and Republican politicians who speak of a nirvana of economic empowerment, an "ownership society" in which Americans are free to choose. But as Hacker reveals, the result has been quite different: a harsh new world of economic insecurity, in which far too many Americans are free to lose. The book documents how two great pillars of economic security--the family and the workplace--guarantee far less financial stability than they once did. The final leg of economic support--the public and private benefits that workers and families get when economic disaster strikes--has dangerously eroded as political leaders and corporations increasingly cut back protections of our health care, our income security, and our retirement pensions. Blending powerful human stories, big-picture analysis, and compelling ideas for reform, this remarkable volume will hit a nerve, serving as a rallying point in the vital struggle for economic security in an increasingly uncertain world.

Suggested Citation

  • Hacker, Jacob S., 2008. "The Great Risk Shift: The New Economic Insecurity and the Decline of the American Dream," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195335347.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxp:obooks:9780195335347
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    Cited by:

    1. John Milbank & Adrian Pabst, 2015. "The meta-crisis of secular capitalism," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 62(3), pages 197-212, September.
    2. Walter Bossert & Conchita D'Ambrosio, 2016. "Economic insecurity and variations in resources," Working Papers 422, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
    3. Karen Chapple & Edward G. Goetz, 2011. "Spatial justice through regionalism? The inside game, the outside game, and the quest for the spatial fix in the United States," Community Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(4), pages 458-475, October.
    4. Molly Dahl & Thomas DeLeire & Jonathan A. Schwabish, 2011. "Estimates of Year-to-Year Volatility in Earnings and in Household Incomes from Administrative, Survey, and Matched Data," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 46(4), pages 750-774.
    5. Arne HEISE, 2016. "‘Why has economics turned out this way?’ A socio-economic note on the explanation of monism in economics," The Journal of Philosophical Economics, Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies, The Journal of Philosophical Economics, vol. 10(1), pages 81-101, November.
    6. Lisa Gennetian & Sharon Wolf & Heather Hill & Pamela Morris, 2015. "Intrayear Household Income Dynamics and Adolescent School Behavior," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(2), pages 455-483, April.
    7. Craig VanSandt & Mukesh Sud, 2012. "Poverty Alleviation through Partnerships: A Road Less Travelled for Business, Governments, and Entrepreneurs," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 110(3), pages 321-332, October.
    8. Jacob S. Hacker & Gregory A. Huber & Austin Nichols & Philipp Rehm & Mark Schlesinger & Rob Valletta & Stuart Craig, 2014. "The Economic Security Index: A New Measure for Research and Policy Analysis," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 60(S1), pages 5-32, May.
    9. William Elliott & Melinda Lewis, 2015. "Student Debt Effects On Financial Well-Being: Research And Policy Implications," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(4), pages 614-636, September.
    10. repec:bla:indrel:v:48:y:2017:i:3:p:274-291 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Marion Fourcade & Kieran Healy, 2013. "Classification situations: Life-chances in the neoliberal era," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/6cbt691h0h8, Sciences Po.
    12. Lewis, Melinda & Cramer, Reid & Elliott, William & Sprague, Aleta, 2014. "Policies to promote economic stability, asset building, and child development," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 15-21.
    13. Fourcade, Marion & Healy, Kieran, 2013. "Classification situations: Life-chances in the neoliberal era," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 559-572.

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