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What government can do : dealing with poverty and inequality / Benjamin I. Page, James R. Simmons.

By: Page, Benjamin I.
Contributor(s): Simmons, James Roy, 1946-.
Material type: TextTextSeries: American politics and political economy: Publisher: Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 2000Description: xiii, 409 p. ; 24 cm.ISBN: 0226644812; 9780226644813; 0226644820; 9780226644820.Subject(s): Poverty -- United States | Income distribution -- United States | United States -- Social policy | Economic assistance, Domestic -- United StatesDDC classification: 362.5/8/0973 Other classification: 71.80
Contents:
Introduction -- Poverty and inequality in the United States -- What should government do? -- Social insurance -- Fair taxes -- Investing in education -- Jobs and good wages -- "Safety nets" and basic needs -- Conclusion.
Review: "What Government Can Do argues that federal, state, and local governments can and should do a great deal. Benjamin I. Page and James R. Simmons detail what programs have worked and how they can be improved, while introducing the general reader to the fundamentals of social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicaid, tax structures, minimum wage laws, educational programs, and the concept of "basic needs." Through their discussions of high-profile campaign plans, proposals, successes, and failures, they have written a readable, optimistic, and clear-headed book on government and poverty. And they find that, contrary to popular belief, government policies already do, in fact, help alleviate poverty and economic inequality. Often these policies work far more effectively and efficiently than people realize, and in ways that enhance freedom rather than infringe on it. At the same time, Page and Simmons show how even more could be - and should be - accomplished."--Jacket.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
HC110.P6 P328 2000 (Browse shelf) Available 0000001492503

Includes bibliographical references (p. 349-379) and index.

Introduction -- Poverty and inequality in the United States -- What should government do? -- Social insurance -- Fair taxes -- Investing in education -- Jobs and good wages -- "Safety nets" and basic needs -- Conclusion.

"What Government Can Do argues that federal, state, and local governments can and should do a great deal. Benjamin I. Page and James R. Simmons detail what programs have worked and how they can be improved, while introducing the general reader to the fundamentals of social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicaid, tax structures, minimum wage laws, educational programs, and the concept of "basic needs." Through their discussions of high-profile campaign plans, proposals, successes, and failures, they have written a readable, optimistic, and clear-headed book on government and poverty. And they find that, contrary to popular belief, government policies already do, in fact, help alleviate poverty and economic inequality. Often these policies work far more effectively and efficiently than people realize, and in ways that enhance freedom rather than infringe on it. At the same time, Page and Simmons show how even more could be - and should be - accomplished."--Jacket.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Since the mid-1970s, many Americans have contended that government cannot solve the social and economic problems we face. Page (political science, Northwestern Univ.; Who Deliberates?) and Simmons (political science, Univ. of Wisconsin, Oshkosh) are more optimistic. In this well-written book, they argue that many government programs, here and abroad, have reduced poverty and inequality. They discuss the causes and consequences of poverty and inequality in America and explore theories on what government should and should not do to correct them. They further argue that social security, Medicare, and other social-insurance programs are successful and that the potential crises facing them can be corrected if the political will is present. They also state that progressive taxes can reduce poverty without reducing incentives to work or invest. Finally, they argue that government should develop better health, education, and training programs; initiate policies to create and maintain good jobs at high wages; and continue developing effective social-insurance programs. This timely, thoughtful book presents a strong case for greater government action and is recommended for all academic and public libraries.DStephen L. Hupp, Urbana Univ., OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

CHOICE Review

There is a troubling silence in the vast research on poverty and inequality concerning what works. There are good reasons for this silence: This is a complex question with profound ideological implications. It is difficult to define either causes or consequences of impoverishment and nearly impossible to construct analyses that would settle these questions once and for all. This volume grapples with these issues in a clear and straightforward way. It synthesizes the best of what we know about poverty and inequality and tackles the question of what government can and should do about them. This is no small feat. The argument is clear, thorough, nonideological, and theoretically sophisticated. After analyzing the constraints on government action and reviewing the principal government programs designed to address poverty and inequality, the work builds the case for policy proposals that would advance equal opportunity, promote human capital, ensure that jobs are available at good wa ges, provide social insurance, appropriately redistribute income, and provide basic necessities. This book is essential reading for everyone interested in creating a more just society. Highly recommended for general readers, undergraduates, graduate students, researchers, and faculty. D. R. Imig University of Memphis

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Benjamin I. Page is the Gordon Scott Fulcher Professor of Decision Making in the Department of Political Science at Northwestern University. He is author or coauthor of seven books, including Who Gets What from Government , The Rational Public , and Who Deliberates? , the latter two published by the University of Chicago Press.<br> <br> James R. Simmons is a professor in and chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. He also directs the Public Administration Program there and has written extensively on public policy issues.

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