Just Read – Empire of Debt – William Bonner & Addison Wiggin

Finally, i finished reading this book.  Have been reading it on and off for the past 6 odd months.  In the meanwhile have finished reading a few others too.  Odd, because the book is a very good read and written with lots of historical references.  For someone who loves to know the Roman, Greek, French, British and American history, this book is a treasure trove.

The authors of this book are Bill Bonner & Addison Wiggin who have been writing the free daily newsletter, The Daily Reckoning for more than 10 years now. The newsletter covers a lot about the daily economy, world politics, investment strategies, gold, stock market etc.  Bonner is also the founder and president of Agora Publishing.

The authors believe that the America of today has left the values of its founding fathers far behind and has become an imperial power instead of being a country.  Bonner also believes that the end of America is also coming soon.  The author talks about the dollar crisis, the coming end of the US economy. He writes about how successive US governments have gone to war and wasted all resources, the decoupling of the dollar to the gold standard, the federal reserve under Alan Greenspan with his inflationary policies totally wrecked the US economy.

Quoting from Amazon,

Bonner and Wiggin view ancient Rome as the classical model of empire. Running an empire was an expensive business; the folks in the homeland needed to be mollified with government handouts (bread and circuses), while a large military had to be maintained in the frontier. Rome used its military power to exact tribute from neighboring states; it was a protection racket, no different from the Mafia. Nevertheless, this scheme generally kept the central state solvent and the territories at peace. The United States is also an empire, Bonner and Wiggin maintain, but it does not follow the classical model. It placates its citizens with massive distributions of government largess while using its powerful military to exert influence and keep peace abroad. However, “[i]nstead of getting paid for providing protection, the United States is on the receiving end of loans from its tributary states and trading partners ” (p. 77). This is how the United States became the Empire of Debt.

Empire of Debt: The Rise of an Epic Financial Crisis
Authors – Bill Bonner & Addison Wiggin
Pages – 384
Publisher – Wiley

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