Mysteries Government Reefer Madness : Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor

Reefer Madness : Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor

Reefer Madness : Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor
Catalog # SKU0572
Publisher Distributors
Weight 1.50 lbs
Author Name Eric Schlosser
 
$23.00
Quantity

Description

Reefer Madness
Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor
in the American Black Market

by Eric Schlosser



Schlosser, author of "Fast Food Nation," offers an unprecedented view of the nexus of ingenuity, greed, high-mindedness, and hypocrisy that is American culture. He reveals the vast and fascinating workings of the shadow economy by focusing on marijuana, pornography, and illegal migrant workers.

Publishers Weekly (Monday , March 31, 2003):

From the bestselling author of Fast Food Nation comes this captivating look at the underbelly of the American marketplace. In three sections, Schlosser, an Atlantic Monthly correspondent, examines the marijuana, migrant labor and pornography trades, offering compelling tales of crime and punishment as well as an illuminating glimpse at the inner workings of the underground economy. The book revolves around two figures: Mark Young of Indiana, who was sentenced to life in prison without parole for his relatively minor role in a marijuana deal; and Reuben Sturman, an enigmatic Ohio man who built and controlled a formidable pornography distribution empire before finally being convicted of tax evasion, after beating a string of obscenity charges. Through recounting Young's and Sturman's ordeals, and to a lesser extent, the lives of migrant strawberry pickers in California, Schlosser unravels an American society that has "become alienated and at odds with itself." Like Fast Food Nation, this is an eye-opening book, offering the same high level of reporting and research. But while Schlosser does put forth forceful and unique market-based arguments, he isn't the first to take aim at the nation's drug laws and the puritanical hypocrisy that seeks to jail pornographers while permitting indentured servitude in California's strawberry fields. Nevertheless, this is a solid-and timely-second effort from Schlosser. As world events force Americans to choose values worth fighting for, Schlosser reminds readers, "the price of freedom is often what freedom brings." (May 5) Forecast: Although this book may not score as high as Fast Food Nation did with readers, a 15-city author tour and ads in the New York Times and Mother Jones will help sales. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.


Library Journal (Tuesday , April 15, 2003):

Atlantic Monthly correspondent Schlosser made a muckraking splash with Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal (an LJ Best Book of 2001). He continues to extend the investigative reporting tradition in this episodic expos of America's black economy. In turn, he takes on the (now largely domestic) marijuana business, California big agriculture's reliance on Mexican migrant workers, and the adult video and bookstore industry. Schlosser follows one specific story within the wider framework of his subjects, and the first one, about a hapless pothead whose incompetent ambition and pride got him a life sentence, is as compelling a read as any thriller. From there the energy flags somewhat; brevity would have better served the tale of one innovative pornographer's rise and fall. Still, even when piling it on, Schlosser has produced a provocative book-this despite a certain na vet in the author's claims about the innocence of pot and porn, both of which he favors fully legalizing. Even dedicated civil libertarians with a bacchanalian bent might argue that recreational drugs and commercial sex provide greater opportunities for exploitation and violence than Schlosser admits into evidence. On balance, however, this book is essential for all public and academic libraries. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/03.]-Scott H. Silverman, Bryn Mawr Coll., PA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.


In Reefer Madness, the best-selling author of Fast Food Nation investigates America's black market and its far-reaching influence on our society through three of its mainstays -- pot, porn, and illegal immigrants.

The underground economy is vast; it comprises perhaps 10 percent -- perhaps more -- of America's overall economy, and it's on the rise. Eric Schlosser charts this growth, and finds its roots in the nexus of ingenuity, greed, idealism, and hypocrisy that is American culture. He reveals the fascinating workings of the shadow economy by focusing on marijuana, one of the nation's largest cash crops; pornography, whose greatest beneficiaries include Fortune 100 companies; and illegal migrant workers, whose lot often resembles that of medieval serfs.

All three industries show how the black market has burgeoned over the past three decades, as America's reckless faith in the free market has combined with a deep-seated puritanism to create situations both preposterous and tragic.

Through pot, porn, and migrants, Schlosser traces compelling parallels between underground and overground: how tycoons and gangsters rise and fall, how new technology shapes a market, how government intervention can reinvigorate black markets as well as mainstream ones, how big business learns -- and profits -- from the underground.

With intrepid reportage, rich history, and incisive argument, Schlosser illuminates the shadow economy and the culture that casts that shadow.

Schlosser is a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly.

Bibliography, Dust Cover, Illustrated, Index,


Hardbound, 6.3 x 9.4, 320 pages

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