That Used to Be Us

That Used to Be Us

How America Fell Behind in the World It Invented and How We Can Come Back

Book - 2011
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America is in trouble. We face four major challenges on which our future depends, and we are failing to meet them--and if we delay any longer, soon it will be too late for us to pass along the American dream to future generations.
In That Used to Be Us , Thomas L. Friedman, one of our most influential columnists, and Michael Mandelbaum, one of our leading foreign policy thinkers, offer both a wake-up call and a call to collective action. They analyze the four challenges we face--globalization, the revolution in information technology, the nation's chronic deficits, and our pattern of excessive energy consumption--and spell out what we need to do now to sustain the American dream and preserve American power in the world. They explain how the end of the Cold War blinded the nation to the need to address these issues seriously, and how China's educational successes, industrial might, and technological prowess remind us of the ways in which "that used to be us." They explain how the paralysis of our political system and the erosion of key American values have made it impossible for us to carry out the policies the country urgently needs.
And yet Friedman and Mandelbaum believe that the recovery of American greatness is within reach. They show how America's history, when properly understood, offers a five-part formula for prosperity that will enable us to cope successfully with the challenges we face. They offer vivid profiles of individuals who have not lost sight of the American habits of bold thought and dramatic action. They propose a clear way out of the trap into which the country has fallen, a way that includesthe rediscovery of some of our most vital traditions and the creation of a new thirdparty movement to galvanize the country.
That Used to Be Us is both a searching exploration of the American condition today and a rousing manifesto for American renewal.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780374288907
Call Number: 973.932 F9146t
Characteristics: xiv, 380 p. ; 24 cm
Additional Contributors: Mandelbaum, Michael


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Dec 29, 2014

Oh wow. . . I see the Library Journal has tremendously lowered the bar in the employment realm, or rather hit rock bottom: /// This is a book of exceptional importance, written on a sweeping scale with remarkable clarity by two of our most gifted thinkers.\\\ If these two stooges are gifted, America is soooo over! Thomas "freaky" Friedman says: offshore all the jobs, but education be important - - - offshore all the jobs, but create more jobs? Make sense, moron!

Jun 27, 2013

Excellent thug de[ressing to read how we've changed - and not for the better.

Melo00 Apr 03, 2013

A good book for parents to read and the rest of the nation.

Sep 22, 2012

Three things
America is the greatest country ever - nonsense
W really made a mess of everything-true
The US needs a 3rd party-no kidding

jlazcan Jan 14, 2012

This is a good book that explains the current state of the US economy and the many problems we as a nation face. I am not a big fan of Thomas Friedman, but this book seems to be more written by Mandelbaum with anecdotes from Friedman's life. The book covers many different subjects and offers up some solutions that may or may not work, but at least they are attempts to fix the situation our country is in.

bubbazannetti Oct 29, 2011

A better title for this book should be "That was Never Us". Or maybe how "G.W. And Company Used Us". As a famous college business student once quipped, "Where you going to build it, Fantasy Land?" Creating a factitious past is no way to approach the future. But this doesn't seem to stop"Tom". Condeming the War in Iraq and let slip by the Vietnam mess is more of same petty politics, left v right. These guys in the last chapter look toward a 3rd political party. This may be the only valid prediction in the book. Truth is the evolving 3rd party will not be of these old scool thinkers liking. If anybody is still into the old politics of this country, this book will add ammunition to the left wing, as both left and right Neros continue to play their old sheet music.

johnf108 Oct 07, 2011

I had considered Friedman's books and TV commentary 'one note' comments, but this book is different.
It is part a pep-talk and part a chide on how we have sought to be 'average' [if that in America] and the world is passing us up [though I'm sure other countries chide their people]. The authors point out some of the things we need to do to produce more [services and manufacturing] and strong education policy---not just academic subjects but show how to get back to the creative spirit of a Gates, Jobs, etc.. Also make sure the children and adults are 'really' prepared for the new reality of present not to mention the future.
They point out we will fail if we just want to 'get by' until retirement or deatth---and if we ALL don't change that 'getting by' may not be that pleasant a life.

debwalker Sep 20, 2011

"We need to study harder, save more, spend less, invest wisely, and get back to the formula that made us successful as a country in every previous historical turn."

What happens when a nation's politics are controlled by people who are proud of being ignorant?


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