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  • Fate of the States: The New Geography of American Prosperity

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Meredith Whitney
    • Narrated By Jo Anna Perrin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    One of the most respected voices on Wall Street, Meredith Whitney shot to global prominence in 2007 when her warnings of a looming crisis in the financial sector proved all too prescient. Now, in her first book, she expands upon her biggest call since the financial crisis. Whitney offers a sobering vision of the next few decades, with the coastal states continuing to struggle while the central corridor (Texas to North Dakota) contin­ues to thrive. Whitney also offers practical ideas to help the struggling parts of the country - before the fate of the states becomes irreversible.

    JLynn says: "Statistic Overload.Grateful to the Narrator."
    "Too obviously political"

    I read the reviews and hoped for better from Whitney. I guess she's just too much a Republican but instead of sticking to reality, she puts in a lot of loaded words like government "handouts" and "outrageous" pension payments. She pays lip service to the fact that these are simply competing interests, legitimate on all sides, but can't seem to help herself from creating good guy taxpayers versus greedy pensioners. (I don't even have a pension and I found her ragging on teachers, firefighters and police retirees pretty distasteful. God forbid a teacher or a firefighter or a policeman might retire anything but lower middle-class, apparently. Hearing this from a Wall Street person is just...ugh...Yeah, distasteful.)

    Also, apart from her point that the states which were dogs during the housing boom are now doing great because of the oil and gas boom, there's really not much here beyond the painful and difficult pension problem. She seems to have forgotten her early days as an oil and gas analyst (according to Wikipedia) because she really appears to think that an oil and gas economy will transform places like Texas and Nebraska in some fundamental way.

    On top of her loaded and politicized terminology, which makes it hard to trust her, this idea that O/G is ever anything but another boom-bust cycle is just weirdly naive. Nebraska will do great as long as the price of oil stays high enough to go for the expensive technology--this is a price per barrel calculation every company makes, something she knows perfectly well. All that has to happen to Nebraska is for the price to fall, with some big new producer or technology or political shift, and that has happened over and over. So let's hope for Nebraska's sake they ARE being frugal now.

    Yeah, you can't get a hotel room in Midland TX right now, but I've seen it a ghost town, then a boom town, then a ghost town, then a boom town again. I guess it takes seeing that happen on the ground a few times before you truly comprehend the boom bust cycle of O/G. There is nothing else driving the economies of these middle states she loves so much, so good luck to them when it busts.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Money Culture

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Alexander Cendese
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The 1980s was the most outrageous and turbulent era in the financial market since the crash of ’29, not only on Wall Street but around the world. Michael Lewis, as a trainee at Salomon Brothers in New York and as an investment banker and later financial journalist, was uniquely positioned to chronicle the ambition and folly that fueled the decade. In these trenchant, often hilarious true tales we meet the colorful movers and shakers who commanded the headlines and rewrote the rules.

    Me says: "Not the normal great Michael Lewis"
    "Louis Rukeyser in the Amazon"

    The whole thing is worth it for the hilarious story of the Louis Rukeyser "investment cruise" to the jungle.

    I agree that some of these are a bit slow, but it's a rather fun walk through the 80's and 90's, looking back.

    I thought the narrator was great.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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