Answering Back: Which Tools Are Needed for Liberals to Regain Lost Ground

Jan 22, 2010, 14:24 ET from Wake Forest University

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Democrat's bitter election loss in Massachusetts underscores just how far liberals have fallen in the last year. But a new book, Answering Back: Liberal Responses to Conservative Arguments, provides the tools they need to regain lost ground. "This book is a must-read for everyone who supports Obama and the liberal agenda," says author David Coates. "Never before have we been called on to be more effective communicators in representing our side. There's so much at stake."

Answering Back presents both conservative and liberal arguments on eight key policy issues now in contention between the parties: trickledown economics and the role of public spending, the desirability of welfare reform, the future of social security, the establishment of health care for all, the possibility of comprehensive immigration control, religious issues and the social agenda, the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the causes of the financial meltdown.

"I wanted to give liberals a guide to counter conservative rhetoric," Coates says. "To save them having to spend hours listening to conservative pundits like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, or pouring over Republican Party policy statements, I have done that, listening and reading for them. Because I believe that the only way our side can win is if we understand our opponents' arguments - both the strong ones and the weak ones - and can counter both."

Each chapter of the book begins with a brief introduction, followed by conservative views and a point-by-point progressive response. Each stage of each argument is labeled for easy memorization, and the language used is deliberately jargon free, to make the material as accessible as possible. The sources of both conservative and progressive arguments (and their supporting evidence) are cited to open the door to further research. This is an essential tool for anyone interested in policy reform, party politics, and American politics.

Giving the rapidly changing political landscape, Answering Back also takes publishing to a new level by offering readers an online living book where key issues are regularly updated. Updates are already being posted at  "The book and the blog site together turn Answering Back into a living source for everyone keen to defuse the distortions of the tea-party activists currently commanding the Republican base," Coates says.

David Coates holds the Worrell Chair of Anglo-American Studies, Department of Political Science at Wake Forest University (NC). He previously held personal chairs at the universities of Leeds and Manchester in the UK. He has written extensively on labor politics, contemporary political economy, and US public policy. He is the author of several books, including The Labour Party and the Struggle for Socialism and Models of Capitalism: Growth and Stagnation in the World Economy (translated into Chinese and South Korean).

January 2010

ISBN: 9781441126931 / paperback $21.95 / 296 Pages


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SOURCE Wake Forest University