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Robert Reich on the "Haters" in America

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  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    Facebook Page, Robert Reich, July13, 2014

    "The real dividing line in America today isn’t between conservatives and liberals or between Democrats and Republicans. It’s between the haters and the big-hearted. The haters direct their venom not just at child refugees seeking asylum from the drug war we created, but also at gays who want to marry, African-Americans who want to vote and exercise their other rights of citizenship, women who seek abortions, or even women in general, Latinos who want their children to be taught in Spanish, immigrants in general, Muslims, Jews, government “bureaucrats,” the poor and needy, anyone who dares suggest a required background check before buying guns, people they call “liberals” or “socialists” or “communists,” even the President of the United States. The haters are enflamed by hate-mongers in the media who blame the nation’s troubles on “them.” The haters are loud and angry; they yell and wave their signs before the cameras. But the haters are not America. They are a small and vocal minority. Most Americans are generous and welcoming, decent and kind-hearted. We are the silent majority, who have been silent too long."

    Robert Reich

    Well articulated observation of hate in America by one of America's premier journalists and economists.
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Denton, TX
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    Robert Reich made a very interesting, informative documentary that came out last year, on the subject of income inequality, called "Inequality For All". I recommend it to anyone interested. I'm a fan of his work for sure. Above quote is well said, by the way. Thanks for the post.

  • Center Left
    Independent
    Denton, TX
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    Oh, just realized, the documentary is now on Netflix. So, if you have that service, it's free to watch.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    Schmidt Wrote:

    "The real dividing line in America today isn’t between conservatives and liberals or between Democrats and Republicans. It’s between the haters and the big-hearted. The haters direct their venom not just at child refugees seeking asylum from the drug war we created, but also at gays who want to marry, African-Americans who want to vote and exercise their other rights of citizenship, women who seek abortions, or even women in general, Latinos who want their children to be taught in Spanish, immigrants in general, Muslims, Jews, government “bureaucrats,” the poor and needy, anyone who dares suggest a required background check before buying guns, people they call “liberals” or “socialists” or “communists,” even the President of the United States. The haters are enflamed by hate-mongers in the media who blame the nation’s troubles on “them.” The haters are loud and angry; they yell and wave their signs before the cameras. But the haters are not America. They are a small and vocal minority. Most Americans are generous and welcoming, decent and kind-hearted. We are the silent majority, who have been silent too long."

    Robert Reich

    Well articulated observation of hate in America by one of America's premier journalists and economists.
    I couldn't have said it better myself. The American media perpetuates this by fanning the flames as much as they possibly can to gin up anger and increase their ratings. Our media has played a critical role in dividing America into the 'haters and the big-hearted' and they should be taken to task for it.

    I also agree that they are a small, but very vocal, minority. The loudest people in the room always make the most noise, but that doesn't mean they are the majority. Compassion and cooperation doesn't 'sell.' Fighting and demonizing does.

    While I am no fan of Glen Beck, his planned trip to the border on July 19 to give food, blankets, toys, and water to the immigrant women children stuck on our border shows that this issue isn't as black and white as many want it to be. I disagree with Beck on 99.99 percent of things and have a very negative opinion of him, but I would still commend him for showing a compassionate side when it comes to women and children. Maybe this is just a big publicity stunt for him, but I'd rather see more of these kind of publicity stunts than seeing loud and angry haters 'wave their signs before the cameras.'

    The vast majority of Americans are good and kind hearted people. The media and pundits who have a political or financial motive to fan the flames of division will do their best to amplify the divisions, but I think that most sane Americans don't fall for their diversionary tactics.
  • Strongly Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Portland, OR
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    sbfriedman Wrote: Robert Reich made a very interesting, informative documentary that came out last year, on the subject of income inequality, called "Inequality For All". I recommend it to anyone interested. I'm a fan of his work for sure. Above quote is well said, by the way. Thanks for the post.
    I also highly recommend this documentary. He is one of my favorite authors and a much needed counterweight to the vast majority of economists and pundits who continue to blindly follow American capitalism without questioning any of its downsides.

    Paul Krugman and Ezra Klein are two of my other favorite financial writers. They both approach things from a different perspective and show different levels of vitriol, but they both are well known and intelligent writers who can explain the pitfalls of unchecked capitalism better than most others.
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Denton, TX
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    What I appreciate most from Reich in the documentary was that he never once even hinted at blaming Republicans or Democrats. He didn't try to partisan it up, like so many do. (You just lose a certain amount of econ credibility will you couch the issue, blaming one side or the other. Sometimes, its not altogether fair, but its true.) He told the story as plainly and straight-forwardly as he could from his point of view, like a true Economist should. His statement quoted above mirrors what he's been saying for decades now.
  • Center Left Democrat
    Democrat
    Flagstaff, AZ
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    jared:




    I'm not a fan of Glenn Beck either, but his trip to the border reinforced the fact that the haters and the big-hearted are miles apart. As of this week, he's raised $1.8 million to help needy refuges, which has caused him to receive ANGRY DEATH THREATS from conservatives who object to what he is doing.



    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/beck-border-visit-critics-can-complain-but-i-have-responsibility-to-god/
  • Liberal Democrat
    Democrat
    Colorado Springs, CO
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    I watched Robert Reich's Inequality for All a few months ago. I didn't realize how short Reich was (4 ft 11 inches) but he makes good humor about it.

    In addition to the video, Reich has authored 14 books, many with similar themes as well as numerous op eds in the New York Times and other periodicals. He was also an excellent Secretary of Labor under Clinton.

    Here is his personal website:

    Robert Reich
  • Center Left
    Independent
    Central, FL
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    I'm looking forward to checking it out on Netflix. Doe's anyone think that he'll have another stint of public service ? I'm hoping so.