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Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy

Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy

by Joseph E. StiglitzJoseph E. Stiglitz
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The New York Times bestseller: "A lucid account" (New York Times) of the recent financial crisis and the way forward by the Nobel Prize-winning economist, with a new afterword.

The Great Recession, as it has come to be called, has impacted more people worldwide than any crisis since the Great Depression. Flawed government policy and unscrupulous personal and corporate behavior in the United States created the current financial meltdown, which was exported across the globe with devastating consequences. The crisis has sparked an essential debate about America’s economic missteps, the soundness of this country’s economy, and even the appropriate shape of a capitalist system.

Few are more qualified to comment during this turbulent time than Joseph E. Stiglitz. Winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics, Stiglitz is “an insanely great economist, in ways you can’t really appreciate unless you’re deep into the field” (Paul Krugman, New York Times). In Freefall, Stiglitz traces the origins of the Great Recession, eschewing easy answers and demolishing the contention that America needs more billion-dollar bailouts and free passes to those “too big to fail,” while also outlining the alternatives and revealing that even now there are choices ahead that can make a difference. The system is broken, and we can only fix it by examining the underlying theories that have led us into this new “bubble capitalism.”

Ranging across a host of topics that bear on the crisis, Stiglitz argues convincingly for a restoration of the balance between government and markets. America as a nation faces huge challenges—in health care, energy, the environment, education, and manufacturing—and Stiglitz penetratingly addresses each in light of the newly emerging global economic order. An ongoing war of ideas over the most effective type of capitalist system, as well as a rebalancing of global economic power, is shaping that order. The battle may finally give the lie to theories of a “rational” market or to the view that America’s global economic dominance is inevitable and unassailable.

For anyone watching with indignation while a reckless Wall Street destroyed homes, educations, and jobs; while the government took half-steps hoping for a “just-enough” recovery; and while bankers fell all over themselves claiming not to have seen what was coming, then sought government bailouts while resisting regulation that would make future crises less likely, Freefall offers a clear accounting of why so many Americans feel disillusioned today and how we can realize a prosperous economy and a moral society for the future.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393338959
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 10/04/2010
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 480
Sales rank: 505,422
Product dimensions: 8.54(w) x 11.28(h) x 1.17(d)

About the Author

Joseph E. Stiglitz is a Nobel Prize–winning economist and the best-selling author of Globalization and Its Discontents Revisited: Anti- Globalization in the Age of Trump, The Price of Inequality, and Freefall. He was chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Clinton, chief economist of the World Bank, named by Time as one of the 100 most influential individuals in the world, and now teaches at Columbia University and is chief economist of the Roosevelt Institute.

Table of Contents

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xxvii

Chapter 1 The Making of a Crisis 1

Chapter 2 Freefall and Its Aftermath 27

Chapter 3 A Flawed Response 58

Chapter 4 The Mortgage Scam 77

Chapter 5 The Great American Robbery 109

Chapter 6 Avarice Triumphs over Prudence 147

Chapter 7 A New Capitalist Order 184

Chapter 8 From Global Recovery to Global Prosperity 210

Chapter 9 Reforming Economics 238

Chapter 10 Toward a New Society 275

Afterword 299

Notes 345

Index 417

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From the Publisher

"A useful and timely book.... It is a powerful indictment of Wall Street, the United States financial sector and the Federal Reserve Board." —-The New York Times

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