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Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World
Universal basic income. A 15-hour workweek. Open borders. Does it sound too good to be true? One of Europe's leading young thinkers shows how we can build an ideal world today.After working all day at jobs we often dislike, we buy things we don't need. Rutger Bregman, a Dutch historian, reminds us it needn't be this way - and in some places it isn't.Rutger Bregman's TED Talk about universal basic income seemed impossibly radical when he delivered it in 2014. A quarter of a million views later, the subject of that video is being seriously considered by leading economists and government leaders the world over. It's just one of the many utopian ideas that Bregman proves is possible today.Utopia for Realists is one of those rare books that takes you by surprise and challenges what you think can happen. From a Canadian city that once completely eradicated poverty, to Richard Nixon's near implementation of a basic income for millions of Americans, Bregman takes us on a journey through history, and beyond the traditional left-right divides, as he champions ideas whose time have come. Every progressive milestone of civilization-from the end of slavery to the beginning of democracy-was once considered a utopian fantasy. Bregman's book, both challenging and bracing, demonstrates that new utopian ideas, like the elimination of poverty and the creation of the fifteen-hour workweek, can become a reality in our lifetime. Being unrealistic and unreasonable can in fact make the impossible inevitable, and it is the only way to build the ideal world.
The SPEED of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything
Covey, Stephen M.R.
Trust, says Stephen M.R. Covey, is the very basis of the new global economy, and he shows how trust - and the speed at which it is established with clients, employees, and constituents - is the essential ingredient for any high–performance, successful organization.For business leaders and public figures in any arena, The Speed of Trust offers an unprecedented and eminently practical look at exactly how trust functions in our every transaction and relationship - from the most personal to the broadest, most indirect interaction - and how to establish trust immediately so that you and your organization can forego the time–killing, bureaucratic check–and–balance processes so often deployed in lieu of actual trust.
Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America (10th Anniversary Edition)
Our sharpest and most original social critic goes "undercover" as an unskilled worker to reveal the dark side of American prosperity.Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages. In 1998, Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that a job -- any job -- can be the ticket to a better life. But how does anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 an hour? To find out, Ehrenreich left her home, took the cheapest lodgings she could find, and accepted whatever jobs she was offered. Moving from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, she worked as a waitress, a hotel maid, a cleaning woman, a nursing-home aide, and a Wal-Mart sales clerk. She lived in trailer parks and crumbling residential motels. Very quickly, she discovered that no job is truly "unskilled," that even the lowliest occupations require exhausting mental and muscular effort. She also learned that one job is not enough; you need at least two if you int to live indoors.Nickel and Dimed reveals low-rent America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity -- a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate stratagems for survival. Read it for the smoldering clarity of Ehrenreich's perspective and for a rare view of how "prosperity" looks from the bottom. You will never see anything -- from a motel bathroom to a restaurant meal -- in quite the same way again.
Remarkable as it may seem today, there once was a time when the president of the United States could pick up the phone and ask the president of General Motors to resign his position and take the reins of a great national enterprise. And the CEO would oblige, no questions asked, because it was his patriotic duty.In Freedom's Forge, bestselling author Arthur Herman takes us back to that time, revealing how two extraordinary American businessmen - automobile magnate William Knudsen and shipbuilder Henry J. Kaiser - helped corral, cajole, and inspire business leaders across the country to mobilize the "arsenal of democracy" that propelled the Allies to victory in World War II.Featuring behind-the-scenes portraits of FDR, George Marshall, Henry Stimson, Harry Hopkins, Jimmy Doolittle, and Curtis LeMay, as well as scores of largely forgotten heroes and heroines of the wartime industrial effort, Freedom's Forge is the American story writ large. It vividly re-creates American industry's finest hour, when the nation's business elites put aside their pursuit of profits and set about saving the world.
Utopia for Realists: How We Can Build the Ideal World
Universal basic income. A 15-hour workweek. Open borders. Does it sound too good to be true? One of Europe's leading young thinkers shows how we can build an ideal world today.After working all day at jobs we often dislike, we buy things we don't need. Rutger Bregman, a Dutch historian, reminds us it needn't be this way - and in some places it isn't.Rutger Bregman's TED Talk about universal basic income seemed impossibly radical when he delivered it in 2014. His April 2017 talk continues to make the provocative case, detailing the idea's 500-year history and even its brief success in a forgotten trial in Manitoba in the 1970s. Nearly a million views later, guaranteed basic income is being seriously considered by leading economists and government leaders the world over. It's just one of the many utopian ideas that Bregman proves is possible today.Utopia for Realists is one of those rare books that takes you by surprise and challenges what you think can happen. From a Canadian city that once completely eradicated poverty, to Richard Nixon's near implementation of a basic income for millions of Americans, Bregman takes us on a journey through history, and beyond the traditional left-right divides, as he champions ideas whose time have come. Every progressive milestone of civilization-from the end of slavery to the beginning of democracy-was once considered a utopian fantasy. Bregman's book, both challenging and bracing, demonstrates that new utopian ideas, like the elimination of poverty and the creation of the fifteen-hour workweek, can become a reality in our lifetime. Being unrealistic and unreasonable can in fact make the impossible inevitable, and it is the only way to build the ideal world.
The Coming Collapse of China
Chang, Gordon G.
China is hot. The world sees a glorious future for this sleeping giant, three times larger than the United States, predicting it will blossom into the world's biggest economy by 2010. According to Chang, however, a Chinese-American lawyer and China specialist, the People's Republic is a paper dragon. Peer beneath the veneer of modernization since Mao's death, and the symptoms of decay are everywhere: Deflation grips the economy, state-owned enterprises are failing, banks are hopelessly insolvent, foreign investment continues to decline, and Communist party corruption eats away at the fabric of society. Beijing's cautious reforms have left the country stuck midway between communism and capitalism, Chang writes. With its impending World Trade Organization membership, for the first time China will be forced to open itself to foreign competition, which will shake the country to its foundations. Economic failure will be followed by government collapse. Covering subjects from party politics to the Falun Gong to the government's insupportable position on Taiwan, Chang presents a thorough and very chilling overview of China's present and not-so-distant future.
The Global Economy as You've Never Seen It: 99 Ingenious Infographics That Put It All Together
An ingeniously conceived tour of the global economy and all its key components, illuminated one by one in 99 large-scale, full-color infographics.The economy is a complex, world-spanning, layer-upon-layer-upon-layer behemoth: One could argue that almost every aspect of our lives is connected to the realms of business and finance. And yet few of us truly understand it—even the world’s foremost economists can’t seem to agree on how it runs.The Global Economy as You’ve Never Seen It presents 99 brilliant infographics that everyone can understand. From start-ups to monopolies, from trade agreements to theory, author Thomas Ramge and infographic specialist Jan Schwochow bring every facet of the economic web to life.Economics connects us all, from what we buy, to how we buy it, who made it, and where. See the economy differently—and the world.
The Other America
When Michael Harrington's masterpiece, the Other America, was first published in 1962, it was hailed as an explosive work and became a galvanizing force for the War on poverty. Reviewing the book for The New Yorker, Dwight Macdonald said: "In the admirably short space of under two hundred pages [Harrington] outlines the problem, describes in imaginative detail what is means to be poor in this country today and analyzes the reasons for the persistence of mass poverty in the midst of general prosperity. It is an excellent book-and a most important one." This illuminating, profoundly moving classic is still all too relevant for today's America. For the first time, this edition contains both of Michael Harrington's additional essays on poverty in the seventies and eighties as well as a new introduction by best-selling author Irving Howe.
The Armchair Economist
Landsburg, Steven E.
In this revised and updated edition of Steven Landsburg’s hugely popular book, he applies economic theory to today’s most pressing concerns, answering a diverse range of daring questions, such as: Why are seat belts deadly? Why do celebrity endorsements sell products? Why are failed executives paid so much? Who should bear the cost of oil spills? Do government deficits matter? How is workplace safety bad for workers? What’s wrong with the local foods movement? Which rich people can’t be taxed? Why is rising unemployment sometimes good? Why do women pay more at the dry cleaner? Why is life full of disappointments? Whether these are nagging questions you’ve always had, or ones you never even thought to ask, this new edition of The Armchair Economist turns the eternal ideas of economic theory into concrete answers that you can use to navigate the challenges of contemporary life.
Zero Hour: Turn the Greatest Political and Financial Upheaval in Modern History to Your Advantage
Dent, Harry S. Jr
Harry S. Dent Jr., bestselling author of The Demographic Cliff and The Sale of a Lifetime, predicted the populist wave that has driven the Brexit vote, the election of Donald Trump, and other recent shocks around the world. Now he returns with the definitive guide to protect your investments and prosper in the age of the anti-globalist backlash.The turn of the 2020s will mark an extremely rare convergence of low points for multiple political, economic, and demographic cycles. The result will be a major financial crash and global upheaval that will dwarf the Great Recession of the 2000s - and maybe even the Great Depression of the 1930s. We’re facing the onset of what Dent calls "Economic Winter."In Zero Hour, he and Andrew Pancholi (author of The Market Timing Report newsletter) explain all of these cycles, which influence everything from currency valuations to election returns, from economic growth rates in Asia to birthrates in Europe. You’ll learn, for instance:• Why the most-hyped technologies of recent years (self-driving cars, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, blockchain) won’t pay off until the 2030s. • Why China may be the biggest bubble in the global economy (and you’d be a fool to invest there). • Why you should invest in the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries, and pull out of real estate and automotive. • Why putting your faith in gold is a bad idea. Fortunately, Zero Hour includes a range of practical strategies to help you turn the upheaval ahead to your advantage, so your family can be prepared and protected.
Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist's Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations
Friedman, Thomas L.
A field guide to the twenty-first century, written by one of its most celebrated observers.We all sense it - something big is going on. You feel it in your workplace. You feel it when you talk to your kids. You can’t miss it when you read the newspapers or watch the news. Our lives are being transformed in so many realms all at once - and it is dizzying.In Thank You for Being Late, a work unlike anything he has attempted before, Thomas L. Friedman exposes the tectonic movements that are reshaping the world today and explains how to get the most out of them and cushion their worst impacts. You will never look at the world the same way again after you read this book: how you understand the news, the work you do, the education your kids need, the investments your employer has to make, and the moral and geopolitical choices our country has to navigate will all be refashioned by Friedman’s original analysis.Friedman begins by taking us into his own way of looking at the world - how he writes a column. After a quick tutorial, he proceeds to write what could only be called a giant column about the twenty-first century. His thesis: to understand the twenty-first century, you need to understand that the planet’s three largest forces - Moore’s law (technology), the Market (globalization), and Mother Nature (climate change and biodiversity loss) - are accelerating all at once. These accelerations are transforming five key realms: the workplace, politics, geopolitics, ethics, and community.Why is this happening? As Friedman shows, the exponential increase in computing power defined by Moore’s law has a lot to do with it. The year 2007 was a major inflection point: the release of the iPhone, together with advances in silicon chips, software, storage, sensors, and networking, created a new technology platform. Friedman calls this platform “the supernova” - for it is an extraordinary release of energy that is reshaping everything from how we hail a taxi to the fate of nations to our most intimate relationships. It is creating vast new opportunities for individuals and small groups to save the world - or to destroy it.Thank You for Being Late is a work of contemporary history that serves as a field manual for how to write and think about this era of accelerations. It’s also an argument for “being late” - for pausing to appreciate this amazing historical epoch we’re passing through and to reflect on its possibilities and dangers. To amplify this point, Friedman revisits his Minnesota hometown in his moving concluding chapters; there, he explores how communities can create a “topsoil of trust” to anchor their increasingly diverse and digital populations.With his trademark vitality, wit, and optimism, Friedman shows that we can overcome the multiple stresses of an age of accelerations - if we slow down, if we dare to be late and use the time to reimagine work, politics, and community. Thank You for Being Late is Friedman’s most ambitious book - and an essential guide to the present and the future.
The Road to Ruin: The Global Elites' Secret Plan for the Next Financial Crisis
A drumbeat is sounding among the global elites. The signs of a worldwide financial meltdown are unmistakable. This time, the elites have an audacious plan to protect themselves from the fallout: hoarding cash now and locking down the global financial system when a crisis hits. Since 2014, international monetary agencies have been issuing warnings to a small group of finance ministers, banks, and private equity funds: the U.S. government’s cowardly choices not to prosecute J.P. Morgan and its ilk, and to bloat the economy with a $4 trillion injection of easy credit, are driving us headlong toward a cliff. As Rickards shows in this frightening, meticulously researched book, governments around the world have no compunction about conspiring against their citizens. They will have stockpiled hard assets when stock exchanges are closed, ATMs shut down, money market funds frozen, asset managers instructed not to sell securities, negative interest rates imposed, and cash withdrawals denied. If you want to plan for the risks ahead, you will need Rickards’s cutting-edge synthesis of behavioral economics, history, and complexity theory. It’s a guidebook to thinking smarter, acting faster, and living with the comforting knowledge that your wealth is secure. The global elites don’t want this book to exist. Their plan to herd us like sheep to the slaughter when a global crisis erupts—and, of course, to maintain their wealth—works only if we remain complacent and unaware. Thanks to The Road to Ruin, we don’t need to be.
Giants: The Global Power Elite
A look at the top 300 most powerful players in world capitalism, who are at the controls of our economic future.Who holds the purse strings to the majority of the world's wealth? There is a new global elite at the controls of our economic future, and here former Project Censored director and media monitoring sociologist Peter Phillips unveils for the general reader just who these players are. The book includes such power players as Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Jamie Dimon, and Warren Buffett. As the number of men with as much wealth as half the world fell from sixty-two to just eight between January 2016 and January 2017, according to Oxfam International, fewer than 200 super-connected asset managers at only 17 asset management firms—each with well over a trillion dollars in assets under management—now represent the financial core of the world's transnational capitalist class. Members of the global power elite are the management—the facilitators—of world capitalism, the firewall protecting the capital investment, growth, and debt collection that keeps the status quo from changing. Each chapter in Giants identifies by name the members of this international club of multi-millionaires, their 17 global financial companies—and including NGOs such as the Group of Thirty and the Trilateral Commission—and their transnational military protectors, so the reader, for the first time anywhere, can identify who constitutes this network of influence, where the wealth is concentrated, how it suppresses social movements, and how it can be redistributed for maximum systemic change.
The Future Is Asian
In the 19th century, the world was Europeanized. In the 20th century, it was Americanized. Now, in the 21st century, the world is being Asianized.The “Asian Century” is even bigger than you think. Far greater than just China, the new Asian system taking shape is a multi-civilizational order spanning Saudi Arabia to Japan, Russia to Australia, Turkey to Indonesia—linking five billion people through trade, finance, infrastructure, and diplomatic networks that together represent 40 percent of global GDP. China has taken a lead in building the new Silk Roads across Asia, but it will not lead it alone. Rather, Asia is rapidly returning to the centuries-old patterns of commerce, conflict, and cultural exchange that thrived long before European colonialism and American dominance. Asians will determine their own future—and as they collectively assert their interests around the world, they will determine ours as well.There is no more important region of the world for us to better understand than Asia – and thus we cannot afford to keep getting Asia so wrong. Asia’s complexity has led to common misdiagnoses: Western thinking on Asia conflates the entire region with China, predicts imminent World War III around every corner, and regularly forecasts debt-driven collapse for the region’s major economies. But in reality, the region is experiencing a confident new wave of growth led by younger societies from India to the Philippines, nationalist leaders have put aside territorial disputes in favor of integration, and today’s infrastructure investments are the platform for the next generation of digital innovation.If the nineteenth century featured the Europeanization of the world, and the twentieth century its Americanization, then the twenty-first century is the time of Asianization. From investment portfolios and trade wars to Hollywood movies and university admissions, no aspect of life is immune from Asianization. With America’s tech sector dependent on Asian talent and politicians praising Asia’s glittering cities and efficient governments, Asia is permanently in our nation’s consciousness. We know this will be the Asian century. Now we finally have an accurate picture of what it will look like.
Think Like a Freak
Levitt, Steven D.
The New York Times bestselling Freakonomics changed the way we see the world, exposing the hidden side of just about everything. Then came SuperFreakonomics, a documentary film, an award-winning podcast, and more. Now, with Think Like a Freak, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner have written their most revolutionary book yet. With their trademark blend of captivating storytelling and unconventional analysis, they take us inside their thought process and teach us all to think a bit more productively, more creatively, more rationally—to think, that is, like a Freak. Levitt and Dubner offer a blueprint for an entirely new way to solve problems, whether your interest lies in minor lifehacks or major global reforms. As always, no topic is off-limits. They range from business to philanthropy to sports to politics, all with the goal of retraining your brain. Along the way, you'll learn the secrets of a Japanese hot-dog-eating champion, the reason an Australian doctor swallowed a batch of dangerous bacteria, and why Nigerian e-mail scammers make a point of saying they're from Nigeria. Some of the steps toward thinking like a Freak: First, put away your moral compass—because it's hard to see a problem clearly if you've already decided what to do about it. Learn to say "I don't know"—for until you can admit what you don't yet know, it's virtually impossible to learn what you need to. Think like a child—because you'll come up with better ideas and ask better questions. Take a master class in incentives—because for better or worse, incentives rule our world. Learn to persuade people who don't want to be persuaded—because being right is rarely enough to carry the day. Learn to appreciate the upside of quitting—because you can't solve tomorrow's problem if you aren't willing to abandon today's dud. Levitt and Dubner plainly see the world like no one else. Now you can too. Never before have such iconoclastic thinkers been so revealing—and so much fun to read.
The End of Poverty
Sachs, Jeffery D.
A landmark exploration of the roots of economic prosperity and the escape from extreme poverty for the world's poorest citizens. Hailed by Time as one of the world's hundred most influential people, Jeffrey Sachs is renowned for his work around the globe advising economies in crisis. Now he distills twenty-five years of experience to offer a uniquely informed vision of the steps that can transform impoverished countries into prosperous ones. Marrying vivid storytelling with rigorous analysis, Sachs lays out a clear conceptual map of the world economy. Explaining his own work in Bolivia, Russia, India, China, and Africa, he offers an integrated set of solutions to the interwoven economic, political, environmental, and social problems that challenge the world's poorest countries. The End of Poverty is an indispensable work, with the power to remake the world.
Average Is Over: Powering America Beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation
The groundbreaking follow-up to the New York Times bestseller The Great Stagnation The United States continues to mint more millionaires and billionaires than any country ever. Yet, since the great recession, three quarters of the jobs created here pay only marginally more than minimum wage. Why is there growth only at the top and the bottom? Renowned economist and bestselling author Tyler Cowen explains that high earners are taking ever more advantage of machine intelligence and achieving ever-better results. Meanwhile, nearly every business sector relies less and less on manual labor, and that means a steady, secure life somewhere in the middle - average - is over. In Average is Over, Cowen lays out how the new economy works and identifies what workers and entrepreneurs young and old must do to thrive in this radically new economic landscape.
China's political and economic growth in the past three decades is one of astonishing, epochal dimensions. The country has undergone a remarkable transformation on a scale similar to that of the Industrial Revolution in the West. The most remarkable part of this transformation, however, has been left largely untold - the central role of the Chinese Communist Party. As an organization alone, the Party is a phenomenon of unique scale and power. Its membership surpasses seventy-three million, and it does more than just rule a country. The Party not only has a grip on every aspect of government, from the largest, richest cities to the smallest far-flung villages in Tibet and Xinjiang, it also has a hold on all official religions, the media, and the military. The Party presides over large, wealthy state-owned businesses, and it exercises control over the selection of senior executives of all government companies, many of which are in the top tier of the Fortune 500 list. In The Party, Richard McGregor delves deeply into China's inner sanctum for the first time, showing how the Communist Party controls the government, courts, media, and military, and how it keeps all corruption accusations against its members in-house. The Party's decisions have a global impact, yet the CPC remains a deeply secretive body, hostile to the law, unaccountable to anyone or anything other than its own internal tribunals. It is the world's only geopolitical rival of the United States, and is steadfastly poised to think the worst of the West. In this provocative and illuminating account, Richard McGregor offers a captivating portrait of China's Communist Party, its grip on power and control over China, and its future.
Don't Be Evil: How Big Tech Betrayed Its Founding Principles -- and All of Us
“Don’t be evil” was enshrined as Google’s original corporate mantra back in its early days, when the company’s cheerful logo still conveyed the utopian vision for a future in which technology would inevitably make the world better, safer, and more prosperous.Unfortunately, it’s been quite a while since Google, or the majority of the Big Tech companies, lived up to this founding philosophy. Today, the utopia they sought to create is looking more dystopian than ever: from digital surveillance and the loss of privacy to the spreading of misinformation and hate speech to predatory algorithms targeting the weak and vulnerable to products that have been engineered to manipulate our desires.How did we get here? How did these once-scrappy and idealistic enterprises become rapacious monopolies with the power to corrupt our elections, co-opt all our data, and control the largest single chunk of corporate wealth - while evading all semblance of regulation and taxes? In Don’t Be Evil, Financial Times global business columnist Rana Foroohar tells the story of how Big Tech lost its soul - and ate our lunch.Through her skilled reporting and unparalleled access - won through nearly thirty years covering business and technology - she shows the true extent to which behemoths like Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon are monetizing both our data and our attention, without us seeing a penny of those exorbitant profits.Finally, Foroohar lays out a plan for how we can resist, by creating a framework that fosters innovation while also protecting us from the dark side of digital technology.
The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization
Friedman, Thomas L.
A brilliant investigation of globalization, the most significant socioeconomic trend in the world today, and how it is affecting every part of society--economically, politically, and culturally--abroad and at home.
The Capitalist Comeback: The Trump Boom and the Left's Plot to Stop It
Puzder, Andrew F.
As a successful CEO in the restaurant industry, Andy Puzder uniquely understands how important the profit motive is to our country's ultimate prosperity. Furthermore, as the grandson of immigrants, the son of a car salesman, and someone who worked his way up from earning minimum wage to running an international business, he has a first-hand view of how America's exceptional capitalist spirit can lift everyone to success.In 2016, the American people faced a stark choice between two very different presidential candidates. Hillary Clinton spent most of her adult life involved in politics and promised to uphold and advance the progressive legacy of President Barack Obama who had first won the White House on promises to "spread the wealth around." Donald Trump, on the other hand, came from the business world, was an unapologetic capitalist, used his own personal wealth as inspiration, and promised simply to "Make America Great Again."By choosing Trump over Clinton, the American people put a stop to decades of government expansion under progressive leadership, and they might just have saved our economy by doing so.
Trumponomics: Inside the America First Plan to Revive Our Economy
Donald Trump promised the American people a transformative change in economic policy after eight years of stagnation under Obama. But he didn’t adopt a conventional left or right economic agenda. His is a new economic populism that combines some conventional Republican ideas–tax cuts, deregulation, more power to the states–with more traditional Democratic issues such as trade protectionism and infrastructure spending. It also mixes in important populist issues such as immigration reform, pressuring the Europeans to pay for more of their own defense, and keeping America first.In Trumponomics, conservative economists Stephen Moore and Arthur B. Laffer offer a well-informed defense of the president's approach to trade, taxes, employment, infrastructure, and other economic policies. Moore and Laffer worked as senior economic advisors to Donald Trump in 2016. They traveled with him, frequently met with his political and economic teams, worked on his speeches, and represented him as surrogates. They are currently members of the Trump Advisory Council and still meet with him regularly. In Trumponomics, they offer an insider’s view on how Trump operates in public and behind closed doors, his priorities and passions, and his greatest attributes and liabilities.Trump is betting his presidency that he can create an economic revival in America’s industrial heartland. Can he really bring jobs back to the rust belt? Can he cut taxes and bring the debt down? Above all, does he have the personal discipline, the vision, the right team, and the right strategy to pull off his ambitious economic goals? Moore and Laffer believe that he can pull it off and that Trumponomics will usher in a new era of prosperity for all Americans.
The End of Normal: The Great Crisis and the Future of Growth
Galbraith, James K.
The years since the Great Crisis of 2008 have seen slow growth, high unemployment, falling home values, chronic deficits, a deepening disaster in Europe - and a stale argument between two false solutions, "austerity" on one side and "stimulus" on the other. Both sides and practically all analyses of the crisis so far take for granted that the economic growth from the early 1950s until 2000 - interrupted only by the troubled 1970s - represented a normal performance. From this perspective, the crisis was an interruption, caused by bad policy or bad people, and full recovery is to be expected if the cause is corrected.The End of Normal challenges this view. Placing the crisis in perspective, Galbraith argues that the 1970s already ended the age of easy growth. The 1980s and 1990s saw only uneven growth, with rising inequality within and between countries. And the 2000s saw the end even of that - despite frantic efforts to keep growth going with tax cuts, war spending, and financial deregulation. When the crisis finally came, stimulus and automatic stabilization were able to place a floor under economic collapse. But they are not able to bring about a return to high growth and full employment.
The Great Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies DIe
A searching and provocative examination of the widespread institutional rot that threatens our collective future What causes rich countries to lose their way? Symptoms of decline are all around us today: slowing growth, crushing debts, increasing inequality, aging populations, antisocial behavior. But what exactly has gone wrong? The answer, Niall Ferguson argues in The Great Degeneration, is that our institutions - the intricate frameworks within which a society can flourish or fail - are degenerating. With characteristic verve and historical insight, Ferguson analyzes the causes of this stagnation and its profound consequences for the future of the West. The Great Degeneration is an incisive indictment of an era of negligence and complacency - and to arrest the breakdown of our civilization, Ferguson warns, will take heroic leadership and radical reform.
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