Summary of Rebuild the Dream

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  • Controversial
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Van Jones has not given up on the ideal of public service and productive citizenry despite his rocky, short-lived experience as an Obama White House adviser concentrating on green jobs. A former community organizer, Jones has returned to public life with a new initiative, “Rebuild the Dream,” to re-energize the grassroots movement that helped propel Barack Obama to the presidency. Inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement, Jones argues that the 99% should work against the outsized influence of the 1% for the good of all. What’s more, he explains how they can do it. While getAbstract is completely neutral politically – as always – and some of Jones’s optimistic wishes perhaps could be labeled pie in the sky, his earnest reasoning has appeal for political observers who seek an oasis of calm in today’s cacophonous US political environment.

About the Author

Van Jones served as an Obama administration advisor working on green jobs.



The Popping Bubble

Americans elected President Barack Obama on a wave of hope and desire for change. Although he was a rather unlikely candidate, several factors contributed to his success:

  1. Americans had already organized in opposition to the Iraq War and George W. Bush’s administration.
  2. New media helped like-minded people communicate more easily with one another.
  3. Causes such as environmentalism and immigration reform spurred large numbers to want to be heard.

Obama emerged as an inspiring leader who could harness those energies at just the right time.

Despite the ways in which he was politically ineffective, Obama achieved several milestones in his first term, including passing the 2009 stimulus, saving the US auto business, reforming Wall Street, disengaging the US from Iraq, repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” killing Osama bin Laden and passing health care reform. But at the same time, his administration allowed the energy that brought it into office to dissipate by committing the following seven errors:

  1. It allowed the Democratic National Committee to absorb and subsume...

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