23.9.10

"Uncle Sam's Plantation" by Star Parker



Star Parker, Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What We Can Do About It. Thomas Nelson, 2010. 241 pgs. 

Disclosure: This book was given to me by Thomas Nelson to review. 

The title really does say it all in this case.  Parker argues the US government has caused a lot of problem, keeping the poor enslaved to a liberal mindset which is preventing them from actually being helped. She claims that ever since the great depression, the USA has been headed down the wrong path: towards free-loading moral relativism, and away from the character, responsibility, and freedom that made the US great. She explores this effect in multiple areas of life: welfare, sexuality, education, and the family. She concludes by arguing that the answer is to hold up freedom as opposed to dependence.

As I review this, I am acutely aware that I am Canadian and, therefore, am approaching this book with a somewhat unique perspective.  I am not a Republican nor a Democrat, and I do not live with all of the problems listed in this book (though, we have plenty of our own problems in Canada, and many are very similar).  In the end though, this book came off as a well written Republican rant.  Parker effectively mixes polished rhetoric with unreferenced statistics to make her arguments sound very convincing.  However, I couldn't help wondering how many lines she had blurred in her attempt to fit the entire republican agenda into this diatribe against liberals.  There were many points in her book where I agreed, and many where I disagreed, and part of the problem I have always had with politics in the US is that with a two party system so many different items get glued together and the package is nigh inseparable.  This is unfortunate; there are some very interesting thoughts here and Parker's defense of responsibility, virtue, and character are stirring.  

Conclusion: 3 Stars, Not Recommended.  A well written book, but not very informative.  

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