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When the Money Runs Out : The End of Western Affluence
by Stephen D. King


Overview - The Western world has experienced extraordinary economic progress throughout the last six decades, a prosperous period so extended that continuous economic growth has come to seem normal. But such an era of continuously rising living standards is a historical anomaly, economist Stephen D.  Read more...

 
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More About When the Money Runs Out by Stephen D. King
 
 
 
Overview
The Western world has experienced extraordinary economic progress throughout the last six decades, a prosperous period so extended that continuous economic growth has come to seem normal. But such an era of continuously rising living standards is a historical anomaly, economist Stephen D. King warns, and the current stagnation of Western economies threatens to reach crisis proportions in the not-so-distant future. Praised for the "dose of realism" he provided in his book Losing Control, King follows up in this volume with a plain-spoken assessment of where the West stands today. It's not just the end of an age of affluence, he shows. We have made promises to ourselves that are achievable only through ongoing economic expansion. The future benefits we expect--pensions, healthcare, and social security, for example--may be larger than tomorrow's resources. And if we reach that point, which promises will be broken and who will lose out? The lessons of history offer compelling evidence that political and social upheaval are often born of economic stagnation. King addresses these lessons with a multifaceted plan that involves painful--but necessary--steps toward a stable and just economic future.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780300190526
  • ISBN-10: 0300190522
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publish Date: June 2013
  • Page Count: 304
  • Dimensions: 9.48 x 6.54 x 1.21 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.48 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Political Science > Public Policy - Economic Policy
Books > Business & Economics > International - Economics
Books > Business & Economics > Government & Business

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2013-04-29
  • Reviewer: Staff

HSBC economist King (Losing Control) argues that the West is doomed to suffer extended recessions, rising unemployment, and declining standards of living, with no end in sight. A fan of clunky metaphors—“the economic goose kept laying golden eggs,” he says, has become “menopausal”—King suggests that excessive lending has led to the rise of risky investments, causing debtor countries to default and creditor countries’ assets to vanish. According to King, in the end the entire international financial infrastructure is an illusion “involving a heavy dose of wish-fulfillment.” King’s forays through economic history mix long, highly technical passages with entertaining vignettes from U.S. lunar missions, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and Mary Poppins, but the conclusion is the same: we’re broke. King dismisses the economic lessons of past depressions as obsolete, based as they were on radically different fundamentals, but warns that the accompanying social ills are inevitably reappearing. His brief section on policy recommendations provides a set of disappointingly vague proposals for restoring trust and accountability in the Eurozone, which, relatively anodyne though they may be, are “near enough impossible” to implement in the current political climate. (June)

 
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