It would take days to write a review that does the book justice. Its well written and full of great insights.
If I had to say there was one real revolutionary thought for me it is the following;
The wealthy, no not the rich, but those with 50+Million in the bank, need to come to the party. One of the worst offenders is probably Buffet. He is hoarding the money that could be greasing this economy. He espouses frugality but seems to conveniently forget that the US is a consumer-spending based economy. I lived in Palm Beach for a while and I can tell you that the wealthy don't spend anywhere near their fair share. Ok Warren, you win, you're the best. Now break the weld on that wallet and go buy a few billion dollars worth of American products! Why not buy everyone in Nebraska a new Corvette!
Its pretty simple; you give a guy with 100 Million in the bank a tax cut and he uses it to pad his investments. You give the same tax cut to a working mother of two and that tax cut is spent the next day.
The wealthy should either start spending a fair percentage of their wealth or they should be taxed in order to bring that money back into the economy. This should include a tax on capital, and a tax on income. Everyone knows what happens when one person has all the capital in a friendly game of Monopoly - you have to fold up the board and start again. America is dangerously close to folding up the board. It could get ugly.
Every book is worth considering. It's the kind of consideration on what to do with the book that differs.
Aftershock: The Next Economy explains why the current economic system is unsustainable. I think everybody with any interest with the question of where the economy is going has to read this. Some parts are shocking, but it isn't all doom and gloom. This audiobook explains the problem, the possible consequences and some potential solutions to avert them.
i.m going to read this again . I've recommended it on facebook .1st time I've ever done that
i am pretty liberal but this is typical one sided liberal viewpoint. It's like listening to a speech. I like that the author read it, but its pretty much the far left viewpoint without any attempt to provide a balanced opinion/view of the isues.
Yes... he provides a lot of analysis and facts that make a second listen worthwhile.
The use of historical analysis. Dr. Reich's credentials in academia are very well established, but his work at the Labor Department during the 1990s was particularly impressive. As an economist, I often shy away from books from people (even those with as good of credentials as Dr. Reich) that have taken an active roles in political fights. However, Dr. Reich does an outstanding job of stepping outside of his liberal background and offering support and criticism of "both sides". His point is decidedly not to blame anyone, nor is it to engage in class warfare (as someone that is very much a capitalist, I appreciated that investors were not the 'villains'). Instead, his focus was on what can we do to make our economy better for EVERY class. His ability to synthesize economics, numbers, history and behavioral finance and then present it in such a way that is easy to follow and understand makes it clear that he is also a very capable educator. I enjoyed a lot about the book, but would have to say the one most memorable thing is that it was a rational, well reasoned and argued prescription that serves all Americans, and does not seek to vilify anyone.
I have not listened to any of his "performances" in audio book before... I have watched some of his speeches and interviews, and this one is relatively comparable. When he is assigned the position of arguing for the political left, he is a bit more partisan than he is in this book, but for the most part it is consistent and always very impressive.
I found myself nodding in agreement a lot... glad to hear someone speaking the clear truth.
If you have an interest in gaining a better understanding of where our economy is right now, and some ideas (not the only ideas, but some pretty good ones) on where we can go now to make our country better off... all while not having to listen to how the rich or the folks on government assistance are the bane of our existence, I highly encourage you to listen to this book
I really appreciate all the author had to say about why the New Deal worked. I wasn't convinced by his tax plan, but I do appreciate the effort. There have been a number of books in this area from the likes of Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz -- how can you not talk about the biggest financial crisis in the US (if not the world) since the Great Depression. Having the author read the book had for me the sense of Dr Reich talking to me and explaining what's happening in the economy. It's a quick listen so very worth your time.
In an eloquent, wonderfully pleasant, soft, disarmingly convincing voice Robert Reich takes us through the looking glass into a world where fantasy is fact, black is white and white is black. As if it is not enough to fall through the looking glass, Reich delivers us into a world filled with mirrors where there is no way to tell what is real and what is an illusion. In Orwellian double speak, Reich repeatedly drives home the concept that if we can only focus closely on the wheels of the cart we will see that every time they turn, the horse moves.
As the patient gets sicker he gleefully announces the patient is responding to the medicine. He extolls the engine of consumption as the thing that builds wealth and is quick to measure assets but totally ignores liabilities and fails to acknowledge the obvious; that consumption is by definition wealth destruction. In a disturbingly perverted view, Reich asserts that the mess we are in is because we have failed to adequately “share the wealth” while conveniently ignoring the fact that for more than 20 years every effort was made to push money at people in the form of low interest loans that bore no relevance to the associated risk.
His enamor of Eccles, the privateer who helped FDR revitalize the economy, is so gushing that perhaps he can be excused for allowing it to cloud his mind when he manages the great leap of connecting two dots and establishing a trend, forgetting about the small sample size. There may be many reasons for the disproportion of wealth in our country in 1928 and 2007, but Reich uses it to erect a tower of defense of the great failure of 50 years of Keynesian economics better known as the great ice cream effect. Those who promise the most free ice cream to the most people will get elected. Had Reich written his book in 2007, no doubt we would have had a book of gushing acclaim that Keynes was right and the vast wealth spread across the middle class is proof of that. Instead, with the financial collapse, the tower began to crack in 2008 and Reich could not bring himself to accept his share of the blame for what ice cream givers had wrought even though he was one of the givers himself.
Reich effortlessly holds up the wondrous recovery (ending in the 1950’s) from the great depression as proof that the Keynesian approach magically works, cleverly ignoring that given 30 years and just about any approach would have led to recovery. This book is a defense of the indefensible. It is a “someone else did it” defense and he points a finger squarely at the 1% of wealthy Americans for hoarding money, as if we are in a poker game and there are a fixed number of chips, ignoring the croupier behind him printing more chips every second and pouring them into the game by the truckload. Thanks to the ice cream givers we are now all about the “share the poverty” and now with his book in print, Reich can smugly say “I didn’t do it.” Read Peter Schiff’s book on “How and Economy Grows” to clear your head of Reich’s psychobabble. It is a bit corny but you will not end every chapter with your mouth agape thinking “What the hell did he say?”
His disproven remedies for an economic fix.
Many of his assertions were not factual
Skewed point of view
His assumptions about governments role in the economy.
Do not recommend this book for a novice on economics.
Mr. Reich's comprehensive review of the last century in American economics gives a clear understanding of how the "Great Recession of 2008" came to be, and what can be done to to bring the nation back to prosperity, at least from a Keynesian perspective. His points are well supported and his conclusions are worth listening to, even by those who might have political differences.
Fascinating, detailed perspective.
We will have the same problem again if tough decisions aren't made soon.
I miss his appearances on Marketplace.
This is worth taking a break as there is so much info. He does a great job of keeping it interesting.
We need more information like this with historical perspective.