A fascinating up-to-date look at the roots of our financial crisis from the New York Times bestselling author Kevin Phillips Kevin Phillips’s Bad Money revealed the roots of the financial malignance that led to 2008’s devastating market meltdown, explaining how the financial sector hijacked the American economy and put our very global future at risk. In this substantial and thought-provoking update, he refocuses his arguments through the lens of the real losses and reverses that have befallen us since the book’s publication. Drawing on the latest developments on Wall Street and the response from the Obama White House, After the Fall provides a sobering yet illuminating postmortem of how we got ourselves into this crisis, and what we must do going forward if we hope to emerge from it.
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Okay, we're all going to hell in a handbasket. Oil, bad mortgage loans, banking system that is not transparent. The Euro or the Yen will replace the dollar as the currency of choice. Our standard of living is actually falling. Education doesn't really help. Gloom and doom. Maybe it's all correct, but somehow or other I believe USA will muddle through for a little while longer.more
Kevin Phillips has published 13 books relating to the subject of doom of the American financial system and as of this review almost 100 reviewers on Amazon have recommended this book and admitted Phillips shows no solution to the decline of the US economy, largely because we have left agriculture and manufacturing for a plunge into finances as our largest economic section. The rest of the world hates and resents us and now has us under their feet. It could have been entitled, Goodbye American Dreams. What is interesting is that published before the Obama administration took office, predictions are correct.There are interesting historical references to the decline and fall of earlier empires, Rome Spain, the Netherlands,and of course Britain.more
Keven Phillips is a respected and knowledgeable writer on politics and economics since as a young man he predicted the realignment of American politics with the domination of conservative Republicans. In this book he looks at the current global crisis, comparing it against three previous imperial failures, that of Spain, the Dutch, and the British. He goes into lengthy explanations of the financial services sector domination of the U.S. economy and the questionable nature of the wealth it produced and the reasons for the failure of these financial instruments. He also ties in the question of the influence of oil on the world's economy, politics, and wars. If oil production has, or is about, to, peak, the world's economies are in for major and painful restructuring. Moreover, failed U.S. foreign policy, especially the disastrous Iraq war, has increased the speed of the formation of anti-American or post-American power blocks.An important look at the current financial crisis and the problems that led up to it.more
I have a grand total of two complaints to level against this work: First, it tries to cover too much territory for a mere 200 or so pages of text, excluding notes and index. Second, it appears Mr. Phillips doesn't quite "get" the Efficient Market Hypothesis, as discussed on pages 73-79 of the text. Not that I personally consider the EMH above criticism necessarily, simply that Mr. Phillips seems to be battling against a straw man, using a version of EMH that very few people who believe in it hold.But these are two relatively minor blemishes on an otherwise very well written and very frightening work. Simply put, Phillips thinks the days of US domination of the world are over. And not only that, the activities fo the powers that be over the last thirty years have done nothing but create a bill that is now going to have to be paid sooner rather than later. The best chapters of the book are Chapter 4 on securitization and Chapter 6 on Debt and Oil. Phillips seems to truly understand both topics.more
Monday, June 23, 2008Phillips Loses Sight of an Essential American TraitBad MoneyBy Kevin PhillipsHardcover: 256 pagesPublisher: Viking Adult (April 15, 2008)ISBN-10: 0670019070ISBN-13: 978-0670019076Rating – 3 starsI have spent four decades reading Kevin Phillips’ books. In other forums, I have identified him as one of my favorite authors and analysts. In my mind he has authored at least brilliant books: The Emerging Republican majority]], The Politics of Rich and Poor: Wealth and the American Electorate in the Reagan Aftermath and Wealth and Democracy: A Political History of the American Rich. It is difficult for me to say, this book does not measure up to his early high analytic standardsHe is not known as a flamethrower. In the past he offered clarity where there was confusion. These books provided my first exposure to emerging national trends. He was trained as a lawyer. His research is meticulous; his arguments convincing. But he is wrong.His argument ignores an essential trait of the American people: we are practical; we pride ourselves in being problem-solvers. Each day at work, we are asked to place a size 13 foot into a size 10 shoe. Not only are we good at the “impossible,” we love the challenge. In his latest book, Phillips argues what he terms “megafinance”-- the perilous interaction of debt and financial recklessness coupled with cost of oil dooms us to a crisis. Readers familiar with his work, already recognize he has lost one evil leg of his previous argument in American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21stCentury – the danger of what he termed “Patriot Pastors.” Those of us who are not quite so alliterative know them as right-wing evangelicals. The American voter dispatched them during the last mid-term elections.I am positing everything is rosy. It is not. As a country we face serious problems. What I am saying, however, is that anytime during the past 40 years Phillips has been analyzing the American scene he could have seized on any number of problems at the time those books were published and come to the same this book’s conclusion. But it did not happen. The American people rose to the occasion and conquered the problems they faced. I have no doubt they do the same this time.Phillips, as he always does, delivers a skillful and thought-provoking argument against dynastic leadership. The book is worth reading. According to Phillips, Americans will knuckle under. I believe they will rise to the occasion.Penned by the Pointed PunditJune 23, 20088:39:57 PMmore
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