The Great Deformation is a searing look at Washington's craven response to the recent myriad of financial crises and fiscal cliffs. It counters conventional wisdom with an eighty-year revisionist history of how the American stateespecially the Federal Reservehas fallen prey to the politics of crony capitalism and the ideologies of fiscal stimulus, monetary central planning, and financial bailouts. These forces have left the public sector teetering on the edge of political dysfunction and fiscal collapse and have caused America's private enterprise foundation to morph into a speculative casino that swindles the masses and enriches the few.
Defying right- and left-wing boxes, David Stockman provides a catalogue of corrupters and defenders of sound money, fiscal rectitude, and free markets. The former includes Franklin Roosevelt, who fathered crony capitalism; Richard Nixon, who destroyed national financial discipline and the Bretton Woods gold-backed dollar; Fed chairmen Greenspan and Bernanke, who fostered our present scourge of bubble finance and addiction to debt and speculation; George W. Bush, who repudiated fiscal rectitude and ballooned the warfare state via senseless wars; and Barack Obama, who revived failed Keynesian borrow and spend” policies that have driven the national debt to perilous heights. By contrast, the book also traces a parade of statesmen who championed balanced budgets and financial market discipline including Carter Glass, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, Bill Simon, Paul Volcker, Bill Clinton, and Sheila Bair.
Stockman's analysis skewers Keynesian spenders and GOP tax-cutters alike, showing how they converged to bloat the welfare state, perpetuate the military-industrial complex, and deplete the revenue baseeven as the Fed's massive money printing allowed politicians to enjoy deficits without tears.” But these policies have also fueled new financial bubbles and favored Wall Street with cheap money and rigged stock and bond markets, while crushing Main Street savers and punishing family budgets with soaring food and energy costs. The Great Deformation explains how we got here and why these warped, crony capitalist policies are an epochal threat to free market prosperity and American political democracy.
David A. Stockman
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
David Stockman believes that our economy is almost past the point of no return. With a staggering federal debt and a deficit that keeps rising, he considers our economy to be a "setting sun" economy- our best days are behind us. But there's still hope, it's not too late to turn it around.
The book starts off with details on how, in the past, the banks leveraged capital and how their methods of investment were contingent on a constant upward spiral of success. He goes on to talk about how the fed propped Wall Street up with hopes of creating wealth through the stock market and that he believes they have overstepped their bounds. He criticizes Greenspan for his fiscal policies and compares that bubble to the one we are in today. Most of the book talks about the past and how we can relate it to the present and what we can learn from the mistakes made by our predecessors.
The facts and statistics he presents show that the "too big to fail" ideology adopted by the...
For devoted followers of David Stockman's blog, this book is like fundamentalist scripture. Anyone trying to better understand the intensity of the daily diatribes on his Contra Corner website needs to read The Great Deformation to gain full immersion into his torment. He believes that our global economic system has become progressively unhinged over the past three decades and is now poised for a catastrophic collapse unlike any that has gone before. The book is a kind of conservative answer to Karl Marx's theory of capitalism's end-game crisis, except that Stockman sees statist intervention - which has grown in scope over most of the past century - as the problem's cause, not its solution. In his view, Keynesian policymakers are like doctors continuously upping the dosage of bad medicine in a self-defeating effort to cure a disease they themselves have caused.
The primary targets for Stockman's wrath are the world's central banks, and in particular the U.S. Fed. He sees...
This is going to be a review of David Stockman's 768-page tome The Great Deformation, and 0831-deform although I never thought it was possible, it makes me angry to write this book review.
I'm not angry because I don't like the book. On the contrary, this is the best economics book I've ever read. Indeed, it may be the best and most influential book I've ever read in my life. I only wish I had read it the moment it was published in April 2013. I only finished reading it today, and for the entire time I've been plowing through it, I've been trying to think of what I would say in this review.
Why am I angry, then, to write this? Bluntly stated, because nothing I can say will make what I want a reality. And what I want is for every literate person in the United States to read this book, cover to cover. I want them to read it. I want them to understand it. I want them to agitate for the changes that it recommends.
But I know at the outset that none of...
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