A government that has spiraled out of control and is no longer responsive to working Americans demoralizes voters, regardless of their party affiliation. These are the people Bruce E. Levine reaches out to in Get Up, Stand Up: Uniting Populists, Energizing the Defeated, and Battling the Corporate Elite. Levine holds a PhD and is a practicing clinical psychologist who relies on professional insight to offer plans and strategies to energize the public to take back control from the “corporatocracy,” the corporate/government alliance that ensures a small, wealthy elite maintains power over the majority anti-authoritarians.
The author portrays the American Revolution, abolitionism, and late nineteeth-century Populism as successful mass movements that resulted in positive change and serve as models for current groups comprised of angry Republicans, Democrats, and independents. Levine demonstrates that “corporatocratic” subjugation can be challenged by people who recover their self-respect and self-esteem then go on to connect with like-minded individuals who become empowered to challenge the elite fat cats who are calling the shots.
Dissident psychologist Levine (Surviving America’s Depression Epidemic) contrasts American political apathy to the popular revolts in many countries against harmful policies pushed by the power elite. He diagnoses the numerous maladies that make ordinary Americans feel powerless in the face of “tyrannical corporatocracy”—from too much corporate-controlled news and entertainment and overprescription of antidepressant and attention deficit disorder medications to the decline of organized labor and the lack of real economic differences between our two dominant political blocs. Levine argues that ordinary folk on both the right and the left can find common ground, much like the populists who united disparate strands of anticorporatism and antielitism to storm the economic heights of the Gilded Age. Levine prescribes a mixture of education, protest, promotion of independent economic institutions, and revival of the belief that Americans can once again control their own future rather than meekly accept the dictates of the corporate powers that be. VERDICT A compelling alternative look at today’s unsettled U.S. political circumstances through the lens of social psychology, this will be attractive to those who already feel alienated and those looking for new ways to make sense of our changing world.
"Bruce Levine attempts to wake us from our collective political stupor, our anesthetized resignation to corporate rule. Get Up, Stand Up inspires hope that together we can regain our self-respect and create the families, communities and, perhaps, the country we once dreamed possible."--Oryx Cohen, Director of the National Empowerment Center's Technical Assistance Center
"Get Up, Stand Up is a powerful call to action that inspires us to take our country back. . . . This comprehensive analysis of how modern corporatocracy robber barons stole the US (and most of the world) is a must read for all who resonate with Levine's belief that We the People have the power and the responsibility to overthrow the ruling elite."--John Perkins, New York Times best-selling author of Hoodwinked, Confessions of an Economic Hit Man, and The Secret History of the American Empire
"As you read Bruce Levine's rousing Get Up, Stand Up, inevitably you will be reminded of Thomas Paine's Common Sense, which served as a rallying cry for the colonialists to take action against their British rulers. Today, Levine argues, Americans are ruled by a tyrannical 'corporatocracy'-i.e. government by big business and for big business-and his analysis of why the American people remain so passive in the face of such tyranny is smart, lucid, and passionate. Readers will also find, in his proposals for how the 'people' today can stand up and 'do battle' with the corporatocracy, a stirring call for action that surely needs to be heard."--Robert Whitaker, author of Anatomy of an Epidemic and Mad in America
"In an era when most political commentary has degenerated into self-satisfied carping and smug Monday morning quarterbacking, Bruce E. Levine breaks out of this intellectual paralysis with a clarion call for a new kind of politics. Levine offers a progressive user's manual for reclaiming our government from the stranglehold of corporate greed and rightwing paranoia. As an antidote to apathy, Get Up, Stand Up is worthy of Bob Marley, which is very high praise indeed. Read it, absorb it, act on it."--Jeffrey St. Clair, co-editor, CounterPunch, and author of Born Under a Bad Sky
"Bruce Levine's intriguing new book examines how emotional suffering is interwoven with political disempowerment. He has taken our discussion of mental health out of the doctor's office and put it back where it belongs: in the community."--Will Hall, host of Madness Radio and co-founder of Freedom Center
"With this book, Bruce Levine reinvents the old saw 'the personal is political.' Healthy people make up a healthy movement, and Get Up Stand Up is full of both hope and practical solutions."--Anya Kamenetz, author of DIY U and Generation Debt
"Feeling politically demoralized? You're not alone. In his latest book, Get Up, Stand Up, Bruce Levine provides not only the diagnosis for our country's seeming paralysis, but also a very strong antidote."--Steve Clark, Walking and Bicycling Program Manager, Transit for Livable Communities, Minneapolis
"Over the years, I have been astounded at the way mainstream, hardworking, formerly self-sufficient Americans have meekly accepted being screwed by big business, Wall Street and their elected officials. I have wondered, why hasn't there been an uprising over the looting of mainstream America by big business and Wall Street, facilitated by Congress? Through his brilliant analysis, psychologist Bruce Levine explains the process by which mainstream America has become demoralized and docile, how those in power maintain that power, and what it will take to turn things around. Anyone who cares about the decline of mainstream America should read this book. Anyone who wants to do something about the decline of mainstream America must read this book."--Jim Gottstein, President/CEO Law Project for Psychiatric Rights
"We are living in a land in which corporate power buys as many politicians as it needs, unjust laws shovel money to the rich, and media substitute entertainment for information. Yet Bruce Levine dares to show how we can reclaim our deadened souls, regain integrity and passion, and begin to change a political system we have let numb us into resigned helplessness."--Rev. Davidson Loehr, author of America, Fascism, and God