It's Up to Us: Ten Little Ways We Can Bring About Big Change

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A Little Book About Big Change

“Uplifting.”—Kirkus Reviews

We all want the same things. We want to live a life of purpose and meaning. We want to leave a legacy for our children and grandchildren. We want to leave the world a better place. And yet we spend so much time wringing our hands over what’s wrong and not nearly enough time fixing those things within our control.

John Kasich has walked the corridors of power both in the politics, as a former leader of Congress, governor of Ohio, presidential candidate, and in the private sector, as an in-demand public speaker, best-selling author and a strategic advisor to businesses and large non-profits. Yet he’s seen that the most powerful movements have started from the bottom up. Rather than waiting on Washington, the solutions happen once we become leaders in our own lives and communities. The strength and resilience of our nation lies in each of us. That’s what this book is about.

In It’s Up to Us, Kasich shares the ten little ways we each can bring about big change. Taken together, they chart a path for each to follow as we look to live a life bigger than ourselves. Taken one-by-one, they can help to lift us from a place of outrage or complacency or helplessness and move us closer to our shared American dream.
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About the author

JOHN KASICH is the former Governor of Ohio and a former U.S. presidential candidate. As a US Congressman, he served for 18 years on the Armed Services Committee and was Chairman of the House Budget Committee the last time the budget was balanced. He's also had a successful career as an investment banker, as a host of Heartland with John Kasich on Fox News, as an author of 4 NYT bestsellers and now as a senior political commentator on CNN. He and his family live in Westerville, OH.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Harlequin
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Published on
Oct 15, 2019
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Pages
234
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ISBN
9781488056352
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Political
Business & Economics / Leadership
Political Science / American Government / General
Self-Help / Affirmations
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Content protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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With so many social challenges facing our world, trying to effect change feels daunting. The problems are complex, the politics murky, and the players innumerable. Yet, every day there are regular heroes making a significant impact on our most intractable social issues.

“Can’t Not Do” is a catchphrase for the urge that captures the heart of effective social change agents—explaining, in their own words, their passion and drive: “I can’t not do this.” “It’s not that I can do this, it’s that I can’t not.” “I could not imagine not doing something about this issue.” The surprising truth from the trenches is: we already have numerous proven solutions for our many social challenges; what our world needs most, and what most changes our children’s future, are more people prepared and committed to act on their social impulses for the long haul. Innovation helps. Money helps, too. But greater numbers of committed people help the most.

If you feel an internal, persistent call to do more for the world, Can’t Not Do will help you to bridge the gap between “wanting to do” and “doing”—to access the drive of an effective change agent, to break through self-imposed barriers, to learn key principles for success, and to start seeing yourself acting as a change agent.

There is no “secret sauce” someone is born with and no special club needed to be successful at social change. Rather, successful change agents share some fundamental orientations to the world and to their committed cause and, over time, learn certain lessons that help them become more effective. These lessons are reflected in Can’t Not Do in seven seemingly simple questions that provide guideposts and unlock the reader’s potential to make a difference for a social cause they care about.

This isn’t a self-help book. It’s an inspiring narrative intertwined with a “street-readiness” dialogue, between the author and you, between you and your inner aspirations. These are authentic success stories, vital questions, and unconventional answers that can guide and inspire you to realize your greatest potential.

The notion that groups form and act in ways that respond to objective, external costs and benefits has long been the key to accounting for social change processes driven by collective action. Yet this same notion seems to fall apart when we try to explain how collectivities emerge out of the choices of individuals. This book overcomes that dilemma by offering an analysis of collective action that, while rooted in individual decision making, also brings out the way in which objective costs and benefits can impede or foster social coordination. The resulting approach enables us to address the causes and consequences of collective action with the help of the tools of modern economic theory. To illustrate this, the book applies the tools it develops to the study of specific collective action problems such as clientelism, focusing on its connections with economic development and political redistribution; and wage bargaining, showing its economic determinants and its relevance for the political economy of the welfare state. "Medina's study is a great step forward in the analytics of collective action. He shows the inadequacies of currently standard models and shows that straightforward revisions reconcile rational-choice and structural viewpoints. It will influence all future work." -Kenneth Arrow, Stanford University "Olson, Schelling, and now Medina. A Unified Theory deepens our understanding of collective action and contributes to the foundations of our field. A major work." -Robert H. Bates, Harvard University "Medina thinks that the main problem of social action is not whether or not to cooperate but how to do it. To this end he has produced an imaginative approach to analyzing strategic coordination problems that produces plausible predictions in a range of circumstances." -John Ferejohn, Stanford University Luis Fernando Medina is Associate Professor in the Department of Politics at the University of Virginia.
Big, unexpected changes are here to stay.

Slow, incremental change has become a relic of the past. Today's shifts come fast and big, what Darrell West calls megachanges, in which dramatic disruptions in trends and policies occur on a regular basis.

Domestically, we see megachange at work in the new attitudes and policies toward same-sex marriage, health care, smoking, and the widespread legalization of marijuana use. Globally, we have seen the extraordinary rise and then collapse of the Arab Spring, the emergence of religious zealotry, the growing influence of nonstate actors, the spread of ISIS-fomented terrorism, the rise of new economic and political powers in Asia, and the fracturing of once-stable international alliances.

Long-held assumptions have been shattered, and the proliferation of unexpected events is confounding experts in the United States and around the globe. Many of the social and political institutions that used to anchor domestic and international politics have grown weak or are in need of dramatic reform.

What to do? West says that we should alter our expectations about the speed and magnitude of political and social change. We also need to recognize that many of our current governing processes are geared to slow deliberation and promote incremental change, not large-scale transformation. With megachange becoming the new normal, our domestic and global institutions must develop the ability to tackle the massive economic, political, and social shifts that we face.
When former Ohio governor John Kasich ran for president, his powerful message of hope and togetherness struck a chord with American voters. In Two Paths: America Divided or United, he carries that message forward by reflecting on the tumultuous 2016 campaign, sharing his concerns for America and his hopes for our future, and sounding a clarion call to reason and purpose, humility and dignity, righteousness and calm.

“The country never looked so grand and magnificent as it did from ten thousand feet,” he writes of his time on the campaign trail, “and it was always a thrilling, faith-affirming thing to look out our window and see the sun splashing across Bryce Canyon in Utah, or the lights of the New York skyline at night as we flew past the Statue of Liberty, or an open field in the heartland that ran as far as our eyes could see.... I’d look out and think what an honor it would be to lead this great nation, what a blessing.”

To be sure, the full story of the 2016 Presidential race will be written over time, but to understand what it was to be on the front lines of one of the most divisive and corrosive campaign battlegrounds in history, readers won’t find a richer, more thoughtful firsthand account than this one—a frank, refreshing assessment of the American dynamic and a clear path we might follow toward a more promising tomorrow.

As former governor Kasich reminds us in these pages, America is great because America is good—and because Americans have stayed true to who we are: one nation, under God, indivisible.

As President Trump’s National Security Advisor, John Bolton spent many of his 453 days in the room where it happened, and the facts speak for themselves.

The result is a White House memoir that is the most comprehensive and substantial account of the Trump Administration, and one of the few to date by a top-level official. With almost daily access to the President, John Bolton has produced a precise rendering of his days in and around the Oval Office. What Bolton saw astonished him: a President for whom getting reelected was the only thing that mattered, even if it meant endangering or weakening the nation. “I am hard-pressed to identify any significant Trump decision during my tenure that wasn’t driven by reelection calculations,” he writes. In fact, he argues that the House committed impeachment malpractice by keeping their prosecution focused narrowly on Ukraine when Trump’s Ukraine-like transgressions existed across the full range of his foreign policy—and Bolton documents exactly what those were, and attempts by him and others in the Administration to raise alarms about them.

He shows a President addicted to chaos, who embraced our enemies and spurned our friends, and was deeply suspicious of his own government. In Bolton’s telling, all this helped put Trump on the bizarre road to impeachment. “The differences between this presidency and previous ones I had served were stunning,” writes Bolton, who worked for Reagan, Bush 41, and Bush 43. He discovered a President who thought foreign policy is like closing a real estate deal—about personal relationships, made-for-TV showmanship, and advancing his own interests. As a result, the US lost an opportunity to confront its deepening threats, and in cases like China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea ended up in a more vulnerable place.

Bolton’s account starts with his long march to the West Wing as Trump and others woo him for the National Security job. The minute he lands, he has to deal with Syria’s chemical attack on the city of Douma, and the crises after that never stop. As he writes in the opening pages, “If you don’t like turmoil, uncertainty, and risk—all the while being constantly overwhelmed with information, decisions to be made, and sheer amount of work—and enlivened by international and domestic personality and ego conflicts beyond description, try something else.”

The turmoil, conflicts, and egos are all there—from the upheaval in Venezuela, to the erratic and manipulative moves of North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, to the showdowns at the G7 summits, the calculated warmongering by Iran, the crazy plan to bring the Taliban to Camp David, and the placating of an authoritarian China that ultimately exposed the world to its lethal lies. But this seasoned public servant also has a great eye for the Washington inside game, and his story is full of wit and wry humor about how he saw it played.
I don't know about you, but I'm troubled by a lot of what I see and hear in America's heartland...John Kasich calls it like he sees it. A former longtime U.S. congressman, a respected author and popular television host, Kasich has been around the neighborhood a few times. In his first book, Courage Is Contagious, he celebrated the under-the-radar accomplishments of ordinary people doing extraordinary things to change America. Now, in Stand for Something, he tackles-head-on-the erosion of long-standing, hard-earned values upon which our nation is built.

"Honesty, integrity, personal responsibility, faith, humility, accountability, compassion, forgiveness...These are our American values, our common denominators..." Drawing on his childhood growing up in blue-collar McKees Rocks, PA, his college years, his Washington career, and his most recent turn in the private sector, Kasich reminds us of the fundamental principles that are our American legacy.

In blunt, straight-shooting tones, he reveals new ways to hold our government officials accountable for their actions, and how to pressure sports figures to start living up to their role model status. He encourages us to have the gumption to be morally responsible business leaders who look beyond the bottom line, and shows us how courageous people of faith have helped transform their communities. He inspires parents to improve their children's schools, reminding us that our educational institutions need dollars and sense to compete on a global scale.

And, saving the "best" for last, he takes on American popular culture, including the media, and asks us to use our wallets, the free press, and our own good judgment to protest all that is offensive in the current American way of life.Leadership starts with you, Kasich tells us. "We all share the power to grow and change and reimagine the world," he writes. "If you see something happening that sets you off, rise up and do something about it."John Kasich's book is a rallying cry for all Americans that will make us think and-most important-make us get out of our easy chairs and Stand for Something.
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