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Hot Flat And Crowded [Hardcover]

Thomas Friedman
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sept. 8 2008

Thomas L. Friedman’s phenomenal number-one bestseller The World Is Flat has helped millions of readers to see the world in a new way. In his brilliant, essential new book, Friedman takes a fresh and provocative look at two of the biggest challenges we face today: America’s surprising loss of focus and national purpose since 9/11; and the global environmental crisis, which is affecting everything from food to fuel to forests. In this groundbreaking account of where we stand now, he shows us how the solutions to these two big problems are linked--how we can restore the world and revive America at the same time.

Friedman explains how global warming, rapidly growing populations, and the astonishing expansion of the world’s middle class through globalization have produced a planet that is “hot, flat, and crowded.” Already the earth is being affected in ways that threaten to make it dangerously unstable. In just a few years, it will be too late to fix things--unless the United States steps up now and takes the lead in a worldwide effort to replace our wasteful, inefficient energy practices with a strategy for clean energy, energy efficiency, and conservation that Friedman calls Code Green.

This is a great challenge, Friedman explains, but also a great opportunity, and one that America cannot afford to miss. Not only is American leadership the key to the healing of the earth; it is also our best strategy for the renewal of America.

In vivid, entertaining chapters, Friedman makes it clear that the green revolution we need is like no revolution the world has seen. It will be the biggest innovation project in American history; it will be hard, not easy; and it will change everything from what you put into your car to what you see on your electric bill. But the payoff for America will be more than just cleaner air. It will inspire Americans to something we haven’t seen in a long time--nation-building in America--by summoning the intelligence, creativity, boldness, and concern for the common good that are our nation’s greatest natural resources.

Hot, Flat, and Crowded is classic Thomas L. Friedman: fearless, incisive, forward-looking, and rich in surprising common sense about the challenge--and the promise--of the future.


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"At the intersection of leveled economic and technological access (flat) with an aggravated environment (hot), and a surging population (crowded), Friedman stands upon his pulpit as preacher, prophet, and promoter of a green revolution starting in the United States. He provides an exhaustive, impressive, and convincing argument about the need for the United States to transition to more sustainable systems of energy soon or else risk any possible chance of maintaining hegemony. His ability to identify and summarize succinctly the issues and controversies over resistance to a green revolution is matched by his clear and definitive solutions to these forthcoming problems. Oliver Wyman provides a congenial and gentle voice that works well with the text.... He navigates the quoted text of this book with a distinguishing voice that sometimes hints at personality traits not referred to in the text. Impressively, Wyman keeps his consistency of cadence and tone throughout the entire reading."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
 
“Hot, Flat, and Crowded is a cri de Coeur, an impassioned appeal, read with equal zeal by Oliver Wyman…Cogent, persuasive, fascinating in its scope, Friedman’s call to arms will make you ask what kind of America you want for yourself and your children.” – BookPage, Sukey’s favorite
 
Praise for The World is Flat—winner of the 2006 Audie award for best nonfiction:

“Narrator Oliver Wyman does a superb job...The audiobook technology that enables us to take in so much information while caught in traffic or scrubbing a pan is precisely the sort of handhold Friedman would urge us all to grasp, and with both hands."—AudioFile
 
“[This book’s] insight is true and deeply important.... The metaphor of a flat world, used by Friedman to describe the next phase of globalization, is ingenious.... [His method] works in making complicated ideas accessible.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
“This book showcases Friedman’s gift for lucid dissections of abstruse economic phenomena, his teacher’s head, his preacher’s heart, his genius for trend-spotting.” —The Washington Post
 
“No one today chronicles global shifts in simple and practical terms quite like Friedman. He plucks insights from his travels and the published press that can leave you spinning like a top.”—The Christian Science Monitor

“Wyman successfully faces the difficult demands of conveying Friedman’s concerns while maintaining listener interest in the information-rich text. His youthful, conversational delivery is engaging and, in fact, seems to subtly echo Friedman’s own speech patterns.” – Booklist

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Thomas L. Friedman is an internationally renowned author, reporter, and columnist—the recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes and the author of five bestselling books, among them From Beirut to Jerusalem and The World Is Flat.
 
He was born in Minneapolis in 1953, and grew up in the middle-class Minneapolis suburb of St. Louis Park. He graduated from Brandeis University in 1975 with a degree in Mediterranean studies, attended St. Antony's College, Oxford, on a Marshall Scholarship, and received an M.Phil. degree in modern Middle East studies from Oxford.
 
After three years with United Press International, he joined The New York Times, where he has worked ever since as a reporter, correspondent, bureau chief, and columnist. At the Times, he has won three Pulitzer Prizes: in 1983 for international reporting (from Lebanon), in 1988 for international reporting (from Israel), and in 2002 for his columns after the September 11th attacks. 
 
Friedman’s first book, From Beirut to Jerusalem, won the National Book Award in 1989. His second book, The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization (1999), won the Overseas Press Club Award for best book on foreign policy in 2000. In 2002 FSG published a collection of his Pulitzer Prize-winning columns, along with a diary he kept after 9/11, as Longitudes and Attitudes: Exploring the World After September 11. His fourth book, The World Is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century (2005) became a #1 New York Times bestseller and received the inaugural Financial Times/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award in November 2005. A revised and expanded edition was published in hardcover in 2006 and in 2007. The World Is Flat has sold more than 4 million copies in thirty-seven languages. 
 
In 2008 he brought out Hot, Flat, and Crowded, which was published in a revised edition a year later. His sixth book, That Used to Be Us: How American Fell Behind in the World We Invented and How We Can Come Back, co-written with Michael Mandelbaum, will be published in September 2011.
 
Thomas L. Friedman lives in Bethesda, Maryland, with his family.

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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Doable, Win-Win Plan Sept. 9 2008
Format:Hardcover
In Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution--and How It Can Renew America, Thomas Friedman presents an irresistible opportunity for Americans--one that can save the planet and increase our wealth.

The world is flat because of globalization--which is good, as ideas and practices can spread effectively. What is not so good is that our world population is exploding and countries like India and China are seeing an increase in wealth, which puts more strain on the world's resources and increases global warming.

Friedman begins the book with a discussion of how America has changed post 9/11. He uses the example of the US consulate built in 1882 in Istanbul. The consulate was built in the heart of the city: "it was an easy place for Turks to get a VISA, to peruse the library or to engage with an American diplomat."

Following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the building was closed and a nearly impenetrable consulate was built. This all but stopped visitors from visiting. Although the new building does protect against attacks, it isolates Americans and impacts on how we are viewed and how we see ourselves.

Friedman writes that he wrote the book because: "An American living in a defensive crouch cannot fully tap the vast rivers of idealism, innovation, volunteerism, and philanthropy that still flow through our nation. And it cannot play the vital role it has long played for the rest of the world--as a beacon of hope and the country that we can always be counted on to lead the world in response to whatever is the most important challenge of the day."

That challenge is global warming. He proposes we begin a massive project called "code green."

Friedman identifies three broad trends in our society:
1.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
If you oppose conservation and clean energy, I wonder why you would. Typical concerns relate to when conservation and clean energy reduce economic growth or reduce profits for some special interest in the near term. Longer term, most people would agree that conservation and clean energy make sense.

Journalist and social activist Thomas L. Friedman could have written a much shorter book if he had simply started with the premise that it's a good idea to have conservation and clean energy. He spends most of the book providing arguments in favor of those approaches.

Those arguments are related to these propositions:

1. Rising carbon dioxide levels are either causing global warming and more violent weather . . . or will at some point fairly soon.
2. Rapid population growth and concentration into urban areas are making pollution a greater problem.
3. Fast economic growth in the developing world is accelerating pollution.
4. Natural environments are disappearing at a rapid rate, taking with them weather-dampening resources and species which might have value that we don't yet appreciate.
5. Free markets encourage polluting rather than nonpolluting solutions.
6. Extractive energy sources encourage dictatorships, terrorism, and harm to women.

Most of these points are exemplified by an anecdote from when Mr. Friedman talked to someone while on a speaking tour, was traveling from country to country, or was helicoptering around to see some sight that interested him. Much of this book has a travelogue aspect, even though it is a book about social change.

When Mr. Friedman gets into his arguments in favor of laws, regulations, and tax incentives, his thesis is sometimes contradictory.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good Book Feb. 10 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The "used" book was in very good condition. The shipping took a bit longer than expected (3 weeks). I am satisfied with this seller.
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