By Adam Seth Levine

ISBN-10: 0691162964

ISBN-13: 9780691162966

Americans at the present time face no scarcity of threats to their monetary health, equivalent to activity and retirement lack of confidence, well-being care charges, and spiraling university college. whereas one may well count on that those issues could encourage humans to turn into extra politically working on the problems, this usually does not occur, and the ensuing state of being inactive contains results for political debates and public coverage. relocating past formerly studied boundaries to political association, American Insecurity sheds mild at the public's inactivity over monetary insecurities via exhibiting that the rhetoric surrounding those matters is de facto self-undermining. by way of their nature, the very arguments meant to mobilize individuals--asking them to commit funds or time to politics--remind electorate in their fiscal fears and private constraints, resulting in undermobilization and nonparticipation.

Adam Seth Levine explains why the set of people that develop into politically lively on monetary lack of confidence matters is as a result particularly slender. while funds is required, in basic terms those that care concerning the matters yet usually are not for my part affected get involved. while time is required, participation is restricted to these now not in my view affected or those who find themselves in my view affected yet outdoors of the exertions strength with time to spare. The latter explains why it really is rather effortless to mobilize retirees on themes that mirror own monetary issues, akin to Social safety and Medicare. ordinarily, although, whilst political illustration calls for a wide staff to make their case, financial lack of confidence threats are uniquely disadvantaged.

Scrutinizing the rules of political habit, American Insecurity bargains a brand new point of view on collective participation.

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42 Self-undermining rhetoric arguably has greater political consequences when it is not so easily avoided. Consider economic insecurity issues. One aspect that separates these issues from many others is that for many people who care about them the issues are fundamentally personal. Thus it is difficult to talk about them without also reminding people about such constraints in their own lives. 44 This is why the power to mobilize people based on their financial constraints faces a particularly high hurdle, even if people find them to be so critically important.

A focal goal all along was an ill-fated proposal for a public insurance option that promised to boost competition in the insurance market and ultimately reduce health insurance costs. C. By the time Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in March 2010, HCAN had half a million people on its mailing list. 10 Some had also made monetary donations to the group. But who were the members? The answer, it turns out, is that they were overwhelmingly middle- to upper-middle-class professionals who, by virtue of their occupations, likely had decent health insurance.

Without such organizations, it might simply be the case that people do not have a concrete sense of the political possibilities. Perhaps there is no hook, no story, no narrative that connects people’s insecurity with a realistic sense of political change. Such a conclusion would suggest that my focus on individuals’ decisions to become politically active might make sense in theory but is misguided in practice because we do not have good examples of people being recruited to participate in the first place.

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American insecurity : why our economic fears lead to political inaction by Adam Seth Levine


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