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  1. 8.0 hrs • 7/1/2016 • Unabridged

    National polling indicates that for the first time in American history, people believe their children will not be as well off as they are. The primary reason for this? The lack of performance by government. The public sector receives trillions of American taxpayer dollars every year and yet because of its seeming inability to run effectively, government is not delivering the level of service the people are paying for. In Saving America, Mark Aesch tells us where government—at the local, state, and federal level—is falling short and offers a coherent, non-partisan, seven-step plan for rebuilding our nation’s public agencies. The audiobook is not a political broadside or a theoretical academic tract; it’s an accessible guidebook that helps local citizens, elected officials, and administrators make American government great again. The seven steps process will lead to measurable gains for organizations large and small, including school systems, municipal governments, entire states, and even the federal government itself.

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    Saving America

    8.0 hrs • 7/1/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 0 reviews 0 5 4.7 4 out of 5 stars 4.7/5
    12.4 hrs • 2/9/2016 • Unabridged

    Shocking bestseller: the original version of this astonishing tell-all book spent seventy-three weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, has sold more than 1.25 million copies, and has been translated into thirty-two languages. New revelations: featuring fifteen explosive new chapters, this expanded edition of Perkins’ classic bestseller brings the story of economic hit men (EHMs) up to date and, chillingly, home to the US. Over forty percent of the book is new, including chapters identifying today’s EHMs and a detailed chronology extensively documenting EHM activity since the first edition was published in 2004. Former economic hit man John Perkins shares new details about the ways he and others cheated countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. Then he reveals how the deadly EHM cancer he helped create has spread far more widely and deeply than ever in the United States and everywhere else—to become the dominant system of business, government, and society today. Finally, he gives an insider view of what we each can do to change it. Economic hit men are the shock troops of what Perkins calls the corporatocracy, a vast network of corporations, banks, colluding governments, and the rich and powerful people tied to them. If the EHMs can’t maintain the corrupt status quo through nonviolent coercion, the jackal assassins swoop in. The heart of this book is a completely new section, over 100 pages long, that exposes the fact that all the EHM and jackal tools—false economics, false promises, threats, bribes, extortion, debt, deception, coups, assassinations, unbridled military power—are used around the world today exponentially more than during the era Perkins exposed over a decade ago. The material in this new section ranges from the Seychelles, Honduras, Ecuador, and Libya to Turkey, Western Europe, Vietnam, China, and, in perhaps the most unexpected and sinister development, the United States, where the new EHMs—bankers, lobbyists, corporate executives, and others—“con governments and the public into submitting to policies that make the rich richer and the poor poorer.” But as dark as the story gets, this reformed EHM also provides hope. Perkins offers a detailed list of specific actions each of us can take to transform what he calls a failing Death Economy into a Life Economy that provides sustainable abundance for all.

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    The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins

    The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

    12.4 hrs • 2/9/16 • Unabridged
    0 reviews 0 5 4.7 4 out of 5 stars 4.7/5
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  3. 8.1 hrs • 1/19/2016 • Unabridged

    From the former secretary of defense and author of the acclaimed #1 bestselling memoir Duty, a characteristically candid, urgent assessment of why big institutions are failing us and how good leaders can change them. Across the realms of civic and private enterprise alike, bureaucracies vitally impact our security, freedoms, and everyday life. With so much at stake, competence, efficiency, and effective service are essential; yet Americans know these institutions are often anything but, and many despair that they are too big and too hard to reform. Robert Gates disagrees. Having led change successfully at three monumental organizations—the CIA, Texas A&M University, and the Department of Defense—he argues that smart, committed leadership can effect real improvement regardless of scale. He offers us the ultimate insider’s look at how major institutions can be transformed that is by turns startling, heartening, and always instructive. Through his own experience and other examples of leadership (both successful and failed), Gates offers practical, nuanced advice for leaders at all levels of an organization, and for those who aspire to such a role. He brings the full weight of his wisdom, candor, and devotion to civic duty to inspire others to lead urgently needed change.

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    A Passion for Leadership

    8.1 hrs • 1/19/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 6.5 hrs • 6/2/2015 • Unabridged

    From childhood, we’re taught one central, noncontroversial idea about morality: self-sacrifice is a virtue. It is universally accepted that serving the needs of others, rather than our own, is the essence of morality. To be ethical—it is believed—is to be altruistic. Questioning this belief is regarded as tantamount to questioning the self-evident. Here, Peter Schwartz questions it. In Defense of Selfishness refutes widespread misconceptions about the meaning of selfishness and of altruism. Basing his arguments on Ayn Rand’s ethics of rational self-interest, Schwartz demonstrates that genuine selfishness is not exemplified by the brutal plundering of an Attila the Hun or the conniving duplicity of a Bernard Madoff. To the contrary, such people are acting against their actual, long-range interests. The truly selfish individual is committed to moral principles and lives an honest, productive, self-respecting life. He does not feed parasitically off other people. Instead, he renounces the unearned, and deals with others—in both the material and spiritual realms—by offering value for value, to mutual benefit. The selfish individual, Schwartz maintains, lives by reason, not force. He lives by production and trade, not by theft and fraud. He disavows the mindlessness of the do-whatever-you-feel-like emotionalist, and upholds rationality as his primary virtue. He takes pride in his achievements, and does not sacrifice himself to others—nor does he sacrifice others to himself. According to the code of altruism, however, you must embrace self-sacrifice. You must subordinate yourself to others. Altruism calls, not for cooperation and benevolence, but for servitude. It demands that you surrender your interests to the needs of others, that you regard serving others as the moral justification of your existence, that you be willing to suffer so that a non-you might benefit. To this, Schwartz asks simply: Why? Why should the fact that you have achieved any success make you indebted to those who haven’t? Why does the fact that someone needs your money create a moral entitlement to it, while the fact that you’ve earned it, doesn’t? Using vivid, real-life examples, In Defense of Selfishness illustrates the iniquity of requiring one man to serve the needs of another. This provocative book challenges readers to re-examine the standard by which they decide what is morally right or wrong.

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    In Defense of Selfishness

    6.5 hrs • 6/2/15 • Unabridged
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  5. 18.5 hrs • 4/14/2015 • Unabridged

    Henry M. Paulson, Jr., former Secretary of the US Treasury and CEO of Goldman Sachs, delivers a behind-the-scenes account of China’s rise as an economic superpower. When Hu Jintao, then China’s vice president, came to visit the New York Stock Exchange and Ground Zero in 2002, he asked Hank Paulson to be his guide. It was a testament to the pivotal role that Goldman Sachs played in helping China experiment with private enterprise. In Dealing with China, the bestselling author of On the Brink. draws on his unprecedented access to both the political and business leaders of modern China to answer several key questions: How did China become an economic superpower so quickly?How does business really get done there?What are the best ways for Western business and political leaders to work with, compete with, and benefit from China?How can the US negotiate with and influence China given its authoritarian rule, its massive environmental concerns, and its huge population’s unrelenting demands for economic growth and security? Dealing with China is certain to become the classic and definitive examination of how to engage China’s leaders as they build their economic superpower.

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    Dealing with China

    18.5 hrs • 4/14/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 11.9 hrs • 3/13/2015 • Unabridged

    The definitive story of American health care today—its causes, consequences, and confusions In March 2010, the Affordable Care Act was signed into law. It was the most extensive reform of America’s health care system since at least the creation of Medicare in 1965, and perhaps ever. The ACA was controversial and highly political, and the law faced legal challenges reaching all the way to the Supreme Court; it even precipitated a government shutdown. It was a signature piece of legislation for President Obama’s first term, and it was a ball and chain for his second. Ezekiel J. Emanuel, a professor of medical ethics and health policy at the University of Pennsylvania who also served as a special adviser to the White House on health care reform, has written a brilliant diagnostic explanation of why health care in America has become such a divisive social issue, how money and medicine have their own—quite distinct—American story, and why reform has bedeviled presidents of the left and right for more than one hundred years. Emanuel also explains exactly how the ACA reforms are reshaping the health care system now. He forecasts the future, identifying six mega trends in health that will determine the market for health care to 2020 and beyond. His predictions are bold, provocative, and uniquely well-informed. Health care—one of America’s largest employment sectors, with an economy the size of the GDP of France—has never had a more comprehensive or authoritative interpreter.

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    Reinventing American Health Care

    11.9 hrs • 3/13/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 2 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5 (2)
    23.8 hrs • 12/2/2014 • Unabridged

    In this fifth edition of Basic Economics, Thomas Sowell revises and updates his popular book on commonsense economics, bringing the world into clearer focus through a basic understanding of the fundamental economic principles and how they explain our lives. Drawing on lively examples from around the world and from centuries of history, Sowell explains basic economic principles for the general public in plain English. Basic Economics, which has now been translated into six languages and has additional material online, remains true to its core principle: that the fundamental facts and principles of economics do not require jargon, graphs, or equations and can be learned in a relaxed and even enjoyable way.

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    Basic Economics, Fifth Edition by Thomas Sowell

    Basic Economics, Fifth Edition

    23.8 hrs • 12/2/14 • Unabridged
    2 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5 (2)
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  8. 19.9 hrs • 6/11/2014 • Unabridged

    Who rules America? All the Presidents’ Bankers is a groundbreaking narrative of how an elite group of men transformed the American economy and government, dictated foreign and domestic policy, and shaped world history. Culled from original presidential archival documents, All the Presidents’ Bankers delivers an explosive account of the hundred-year interdependence between the White House and Wall Street that transcends a simple analysis of money driving politics—or greed driving bankers. Prins ushers us into the intimate world of exclusive clubs, vacation spots, and Ivy League universities that binds presidents and financiers. She unravels the multi-generational blood, intermarriage, and protégé relationships that have confined national influence to a privileged cluster of people. These families and individuals recycle their power through elected office and private channels in Washington, DC. All the Presidents’ Bankers sheds new light on pivotal historic events—such as why, after the Panic of 1907, America’s dominant bankers convened to fashion the Federal Reserve System; how J. P. Morgan’s ambitions motivated President Wilson during World War I; how Chase and National City Bank chairmen worked secretly with President Roosevelt to rescue capitalism during the Great Depression while J.P. Morgan Jr. invited Roosevelt’s son yachting; and how American financiers collaborated with President Truman to construct the World Bank and IMF after World War II. Prins divulges how, through the Cold War and Vietnam era, presidents and bankers pushed America’s superpower status and expansion abroad, while promoting broadly democratic values and social welfare at home. But from the 1970s, Wall Street’s rush to secure Middle East oil profits altered the nature of political-financial alliances. Bankers’ profit motive trumped heritage and allegiance to public service, while presidents lost control over the economy—as was dramatically evident in the financial crisis of 2008. This unprecedented history of American power illuminates how the same financiers retained their authoritative position through history, swaying presidents regardless of party affiliation. All the Presidents’ Bankers explores the alarming global repercussions of a system lacking barriers between public office and private power. Prins leaves us with an ominous choice: either we break the alliances of the power elite, or they will break us.

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    All the Presidents' Bankers

    19.9 hrs • 6/11/14 • Unabridged
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  9. 18.4 hrs • 5/13/2014 • Unabridged

    From the former Treasury Secretary, the definitive account of the unprecedented effort to save the U.S. economy from collapse in the wake of the worst global financial crisis since the Great Depression On January 26, 2009, during the depth of the financial crisis and having just completed five years as president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Timothy F. Geithner was sworn in by President Barack Obama as the seventy-fifth secretary of the treasury of the United States. Now, in a strikingly candid, riveting, and historically illuminating memoir, Geithner takes readers behind the scenes during the darkest moments of the crisis. Swift, decisive, and creative action was required to avert a second Great Depression, but policy makers faced a fog of uncertainty, with no good options and the risk of catastrophic outcomes. Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises takes us inside the room, explaining in accessible and forthright terms the hard choices and politically unpalatable decisions that Geithner and others in the Obama administration made during the crisis and recovery. He discusses the most controversial moments of his tenures at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and at the Treasury, including the harrowing weekend Lehman Brothers went bankrupt; the searing crucible of the AIG bonuses controversy; the development of his widely criticized but ultimately successful plan in early 2009 to end the crisis; the bracing fight for the most sweeping financial reforms in seventy years; and the lingering aftershocks of the crisis, including high unemployment, the fiscal battles, and Europe’s repeated flirtations with the economic abyss. Geithner also shares his personal and professional recollections of key players such as President Obama, Ben Bernanke, Hank Paulson, and Larry Summers, among others, and examines the tensions between politics and policy that have come to dominate discussions of the US economy. An insider’s account of how the Obama administration saved the economy but lost the American people, Stress Test reveals a side of Timothy Geithner that only few have seen.

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    Stress Test

    18.4 hrs • 5/13/14 • Unabridged
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  10. 10.2 hrs • 1/1/2014 • Unabridged

    Simpler government arrived four years ago. It helped put money in your pocket. It saved hours of your time. It improved your children’s diet, lengthened your life span, and benefited businesses large and small. It did so by issuing fewer regulations, by insisting on smarter regulations, and by eliminating or improving old regulations. Cass R. Sunstein, as administrator of the most powerful White House office you never heard of, oversaw it and explains how it works, why government will never be the same again (thank goodness), and what must happen in the future.  Cutting-edge research in behavioral economics has influenced business and politics. Long at the forefront of that research, Sunstein, for three years President Obama’s “regulatory czar” heading the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, oversaw a far-reaching restructuring of America’s regulatory state. In this highly anticipated book, Sunstein pulls back the curtain to show what was done, why Americans are better off as a result, and what the future has in store.  The evidence is all around you, and more is coming soon. Simplified mortgages and student loan applications. Scorecards for colleges and universities. Improved labeling of food and energy-efficient appliances and cars. Calories printed on chain restaurant menus. Healthier food in public schools. Backed by historic executive orders ensuring transparency and accountability, simpler government can be found in new initiatives that save money and time, improve health, and lengthen lives. Simpler: The Future of Government will transform what you think government can and should accomplish.

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    Simpler

    10.2 hrs • 1/1/14 • Unabridged
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  11. 9.5 hrs • 11/12/2013 • Unabridged

    The United States is more vulnerable today than ever before—including during the Great Depression and the Civil War—because the pillars of democracy that once supported a booming middle class have been corrupted, and without them, America teeters on the verge of the next great crash. The United States is in the midst of an economic implosion that could make the Great Depression look like child’s play. In The Crash of 2016, Thom Hartmann argues that the facade of our once-great United States will soon disintegrate to reveal the rotting core where corporate and billionaire power and greed have replaced democratic infrastructure and governance. Our once-enlightened political and economic systems have been manipulated to ensure the success of only a fraction of the population at the expense of the rest of us. The result is a “for the rich, by the rich” scheme leading to policies that only benefit the highest bidders. Hartmann outlines the destructive forces-planted by Lewis Powell in 1971 and come to fruition with the “Reagan Revolution”—that have looted our nation over the past decade, and how their actions fit into a cycle of American history that lets such forces rise to power every four generations. However, a backlash is now palpable against the “economic royalists”—a term coined by FDR to describe those hoarding power and wealth-including the banksters, oligarchs, and politicians who have plunged our nation into economic chaos and social instability. Although we are in the midst of what could become the most catastrophic economic crash in American history, a way forward is emerging, just as it did in the previous great crashes of the 1760s, 1856, and 1929. The choices we make now will redefine American culture. Before us stands a genuine opportunity to embrace the moral motive over the profit motive-and to rebuild the American economic model that once yielded great success. Thoroughly researched and passionately argued, The Crash of 2016 is not just a roadmap to redemption in post-Crash America, but a critical wake-up call, challenging us to act. Only if the right reforms are enacted and the moral choices are made, can we avert disaster and make our nation whole again.

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    The Crash of 2016

    9.5 hrs • 11/12/13 • Unabridged
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  12. 9.5 hrs • 11/12/2013 • Unabridged

    One of our most influential progressive voices tells the story of the hollowing of the American middle class and lays out the choices that we must make to ensure that the dream of prosperity can live on for generations. In The Crash of 2016, Thom Hartmann describes a country not on the road to collapse but in the midst of an economic implosion that could make the Great Depression seem like small potatoes. Our once-enlightened political and economic systems have been manipulated to ensure the success of only a fraction of the population at the expense of the rest, a “for the rich, by the rich” system that is turning our democracy into an ancient feudal kingdom and leading to policies that only benefit the highest bidder. A backlash is now palpable—against the banksters, oligarchs, and economic royalists like Milton Friedman, Lewis F. Powell, Alan Greenspan, Ronald Reagan, Jude Wanniski, Roger Ailes, the Koch brothers, and others who have plunged our nation into economic chaos and social instability. But like the previous crashes of 1770, 1856, and 1929, the Crash of 2016 will give us the chance to once again embrace the moral motive over the profit motive and to rebuild an economic model that has always yielded great success. Thoroughly researched and passionately argued, The Crash of 2016 assures us that if the right reforms are enacted we can avert disaster and make our nation whole again.

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    The Crash of 2016

    9.5 hrs • 11/12/13 • Unabridged
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  13. 6.7 hrs • 5/7/2013 • Unabridged

    Politicians have talked endlessly about the seismic economic and social impacts of the recent financial crisis, but many continue to ignore its disastrous effects on human health, and have even exacerbated them, by adopting harsh austerity measures and cutting key social programs at a time when constituents need them most. The result, as pioneering public health experts David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu reveal in this provocative audiobook, is that many countries have turned their recessions into veritable epidemics, ruining or extinguishing thousands of lives in a misguided attempt to balance budgets and shore up financial markets. Yet sound alternative policies could instead help improve economies and protect public health at the same time. In The Body Economic, Stuckler and Basu mine data from around the globe and throughout history to show how government policy becomes a matter of life and death during financial crises. In a series of historical case studies stretching from 1930s America, to Russia and Indonesia in the 1990s, to present-day Greece, Britain, Spain, and the US, Stuckler and Basu reveal that governmental mismanagement of financial strife has resulted in a grim array of human tragedies, from suicides to HIV infections. Yet people can and do stay healthy, and even get healthier, during downturns. During the Great Depression, US deaths actually plummeted, and today Iceland, Norway, and Japan are happier and healthier than ever, proof that public wellbeing need not be sacrificed for fiscal health. Full of shocking and counterintuitive revelations and bold policy recommendations, The Body Economic offers an alternative to austerity, one that will prevent widespread suffering, both now and in the future.

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  14. 16.8 hrs • 5/6/2013 • Unabridged

    Sheila Bair is widely acknowledged in government circles and the media as one of the first people to identify and accurately assess the subprime crisis. Appointed by George W. Bush as the chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in 2006, she witnessed the origins of the financial crisis and in 2008 became—along with Hank Paulson, Ben Bernanke, and Timothy Geithner—one of the key players invested in repairing the damage to our economy. Bull by the Horns is her remarkable and refreshingly honest account of that contentious time and the struggle for reform that followed and continues to this day. A level-headed, pragmatic figure with a clear focus on serving the public good, Bair was often one of the few women in the room during heated discussions about the economy. Despite her years of experience and her determination to rein in the private banks and Wall Street, she frequently found herself at odds with Geithner. She is withering in her assessment of some of Wall Street’s finest, and her narrative of Citibank’s attempted takeover of Wachovia is a stinging indictment of how regulators and the banks worked against the public interest at times to serve their own needs.

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    Bull by the Horns

    16.8 hrs • 5/6/13 • Unabridged
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  15. 14.3 hrs • 4/9/2013 • Unabridged

    When the first fissures became visible to the naked eye in August 2007, suddenly the most powerful men in the world were three men who were never elected to public office. They were the leaders of the world’s three most important central banks: Ben Bernanke of the US Federal Reserve, Mervyn King of the Bank of England, and Jean-Claude Trichet of the European Central Bank. Over the next five years, they and their fellow central bankers deployed trillions of dollars, pounds, and euros to contain the waves of panic that threatened to bring down the global financial system, moving on a scale and with a speed that had no precedent. Neil Irwin’s The Alchemists is a gripping account of the most intense exercise in economic crisis management we’ve ever seen—a poker game in which the stakes have run into the trillions of dollars. The audiobook begins in, of all places, Stockholm, Sweden, in the seventeenth century, where central banking had its rocky birth, and then progresses through a brisk but dazzling tutorial on how the central banker came to exert such vast influence over our world, from its troubled beginnings to the age of Greenspan, bringing the listener into the present with a marvelous handle on how these figures and institutions became what they are—the possessors of extraordinary power over our collective fate. What they chose to do with those powers is the heart of the story Irwin tells. Irwin covered the Federal Reserve and other central banks from the earliest days of the crisis for the Washington Post, enjoying privileged access to leading central bankers and people close to them. His account, based on reporting that took place in twenty-seven cities in eleven countries, is the holistic, truly global story of the central bankers’ role in the world economy we have been missing. It is a landmark reckoning with central bankers and their power, with the great financial crisis of our time, and with the history of the relationship between capitalism and the state. Definitive, revelatory, and riveting, The Alchemists shows us where money comes from-and where it may well be going.

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    The Alchemists

    14.3 hrs • 4/9/13 • Unabridged
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  16. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    36.7 hrs • 4/2/2013 • Unabridged

    A coruscating, brilliantly insightful exegesis of where capitalism went wrong, how it was corrupted, and how it might be restored, by outspoken former Reagan budget director and bestselling author David Stockman David Stockman was the architect of the Reagan Revolution meant to restore sound money principles to the United States government. It failed, derailed by politics, special interests, welfare, and warfare. In The Great Deformation, Stockman describes how the working of free markets and democracy has long been under threat in America and provides a surprising nonpartisan catalog of the corrupters and defenders. His analysis overturns the assumptions of Keynesians and monetarists alike, showing how both liberal and neoconservative interference in markets has proved damaging and often dangerous. Over time, crony capitalism has made fools of us all, transforming Republican treasury secretaries into big-government interventionists and populist Democrat presidents into industry-wrecking internationalists. Today’s national debt stands at nearly $16 trillion. Divided equally among taxpayers, each of us is $52,000 in debt. This book explains how we got here—and why this warped crony capitalism has betrayed so many of our hopes and dreams.

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    The Great Deformation by David A. Stockman

    The Great Deformation

    36.7 hrs • 4/2/13 • Unabridged
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