Swim Against the Current by Jim Hightower and swim against the current WITH Jim Hightower. His new book shows one how to live outside the norm, and reveals that so many of us do live outside the norm that it changes what normal is. With acerbic Texan wit, Hightower Reports daily topping the pundit list on the left.
Wiki says of him, “born in Denison, Texas, Hightower came from a working class background. He worked his way through college as assistant general manager of the Denton Chamber of Commerce and later landed a spot as a management trainee for the State Department. He received a bachelor of arts in government from the University of North Texas in Denton, where he served as student body president. He later did graduate work at Columbia University in New York City in international affairs.”
In the late 1960s, he worked in Washington, D.C., as legislative aide to Senator Ralph Yarborough. After managing the presidential campaign of populist former Senator Fred R. Harris of Oklahoma in 1976, he returned to Texas to become the editor of the magazine The Texas Observer. His first run for office was for the Democratic nomination for the Texas Railroad Commission (which regulates the oil industry), which he narrowly lost. Hightower was elected Agricultural Commissioner in 1982, serving in that capacity until 1991. His tenure was noted for fostering organic production, alternative crops, direct marketing by small farmers, strong pesticide regulations, and other programs. During that time, he also became a leading national spokesman for populist and progressive Democrats. He was defeated in 1990 by Republican Rick Perry, later governor and client of the political consultant and manager Karl Rove.
So you see he has been around the block and back the other way. His popular Hightower Report runs daily on local radio community radio WMNF in Tampa Bay. His upbeat banter kicks politicians in the pants and tears holes in the rumps of raw deals for the working man. You can listen live at wmnf.org and hear the DJs do a riff on his spin … or is the other way around? Of course, his own site JimHightwower.com features the daily radio rants, along with news about his new book “Swim Against the Current.”
According to his own site Hightower is “the country’s #1 populist,” and he has picked up some useful advice over the years, from “never eat at a cafe featuring ‘bargain kebobs'” to “never hit a man with glasses; hit him with something much heavier.” He and Susan DeMarco have explored grassroots America, where they found “more serious words of wisdom…namely: question authority, trust your values, seek alternatives, break away, stand up for your beliefs, and swim against the current!”
“Their book introduces readers to people across the country who have actually done this-people in business, politics, health care, farming, religion, and other areas who are taking charge, living their values, doing good, and doing well. Hightower and DeMarco show how they are doing precisely what the elites want us to believe can’t be done: changing their lives and making a difference. He tells the stories of these people and offers inspiration and information that will help readers tap into their own maverick potential in order to navigate a different, more satisfying course of their own.”
“Whether they are young and just starting out or older and searching for a different path, the commonsense folks in this book have escaped the corporate tentacles to find their own way toward a richer life and a better American future. They are creating a new, deeply democratic model for the country, edging it back onto the long road toward egalitarianism and the common good.”
Cantankerous and ready to trash any pandering politician or funny smelling policy, Jim Hightower’s opinion and point of view reveal that revolution is really nothing new.