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Pity the Billionaire

The Hard-Times Swindle and the Unlikely Comeback of the Right

Thomas Frank, read by the author

Macmillan Audio

From the bestselling author of What's the Matter with Kansas?, a wonderfully insightful and sardonic look at how the worst economy since the 1930s has brought about the revival of conservatism

Economic catastrophe usually brings social protest and demands for change—or at least it's supposed to. But when Thomas Frank set out in 2009 to look for expressions of American discontent, all he could find were loud demands that the economic system be made even harsher on the recession's victims and that society's traditional winners receive even grander prizes. The American right, which had seemed moribund after the election of 2008, was strangely reinvigorated by the arrival of hard times. The Tea Party movement demanded not that we question the failed system but that we reaffirm our commitment to it. Republicans in Congress embarked on a bold strategy of total opposition to the liberal state. And TV phenom Glenn Beck demonstrated the commercial potential of heroic paranoia and the purest libertarian economics.

In Pity the Billionaire, Frank, the great chronicler of American paradox, examines the peculiar mechanism by which dire economic circumstances have delivered wildly unexpected political results. Using firsthand reporting, a deep knowledge of the American right, and a wicked sense of humor, he gives us the first full diagnosis of the cultural malady that has transformed collapse into profit, reconceived the Founding Fathers as heroes from an Ayn Rand novel, and enlisted the powerless in a fan club for the prosperous. What it portends is ominous for both our economic health and our democracy.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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  • Pity the Billionaire by Thomas Frank--Audiobook Excerpt

    Listen to this audiobook excerpt from Thomas Frank's book Pity the Billionaire: The Hard-Times Swindle and the Unlikely Comeback of the Right. From the bestselling author of What's the Matter with Kansas? comes a wonderfully insightful and sardonic look at why the worst economy since the 1930s has brought about the revival of conservatism. Economic catastrophe usually brings social protest and demands for change—or at least it's supposed to.

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    Thomas Frank on MSNBC's Morning Joe

    Thomas Frank discusses Pity the Billionaire on MSNBC's Pity the Billionaire.

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REVIEWS

Praise for Pity the Billionaire

“[Frank’s narration] adds a connection to the author whose purpose seems most passionate.” – Sound Commentary

“[Frank’s] knowledge and enthusiasm for his subject matter are immediately evident to listeners. The result is not unlike listening to a political pundit on television.” – AudioFile Magazine

“Narrator Oliver Wyman hits the right tone, blending mock naïveté and sarcasm with indignation for breezy listening on a heavy topic…With writing aimed at the ear and a strong reading, listening is the way to go for this hot book.” –Audiofile on The Wrecking Crew

In the Press

Pity The Billionaire
Thomas Frank argues that conservative politicians and President Obama are governing to please the plutocrats.
- The New York Times
PITY THE BILLIONAIRE by Thomas Frank | Kirkus Book Reviews
Read the Kirkus Review of PITY THE BILLIONAIRE The Hard Times Swindle and the Unlikely Comeback of the Right. Why one of the biggest financial disasters in history somehow strengthened the political position of those who were most responsible.
- Kirkus Reviews

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Thomas Frank, read by the author

  • Thomas Frank is the author of Pity the Billionaire, The Wrecking Crew, What's the Matter with Kansas?, and One Market Under God. A former opinion columnist for The Wall Street Journal, Frank is the founding editor of The Baffler and a monthly columnist for Harper's. He lives outside Washington, D.C.

  • Thomas Frank Jane Magellanic
    Thomas Frank
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Available Formats and Book Details

Pity the Billionaire

The Hard-Times Swindle and the Unlikely Comeback of the Right

Thomas Frank, read by the author

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Macmillan Audio

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