Happy New Year! The overall economy hasn’t recovered since the 2007-2008 Great Recession but here’s some practical approaches to gaining a foundational education in essential information that can help you and all of us to extricate ourselves from political and economic challenges that we face:
* Learn about the subject of economics. A great reference is: Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy, Third Edition, by Thomas Sowell, Published by Basic Books in 2007. A careful reading of this dry book will reward you at the very least about such topics as “Profit vs. Loss”, and “What is an Economic Market?” Our public schools and universities have neglected the broad topic of economics even though everyone is affected by our economy. You should try to learn something about economics because our divisive politics that has become so full of combative subjects has become that way due to economic conflicts. When you don’t understand anything about economics, it makes you more vulnerable to economic exploitation.
*In addition you should make an effort to learn about financialization and derivatives from a variety of online sources. A really fantastic resource on financialization is an article by Greta R. Krippner, “The Financialization of the American Economy” by Socio-Economic Review, (2005)3, 173-208, http:cas.umkc.edu/econ/economics/faculty/Wray/ 631/Week%207/Krippner.pdf
* Read about the Great Recession and discover its causes with this useful book: All The Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis, by Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera, copyright 2008 published by The Penguin Group. This book will tell you the deregulation steps that led to the rise of derivatives. It will help you to understand where Congress went wrong and how the Federal Reserve gained too much power over our economic opportunities. Our economy today continues to be vulnerable to imbalances like the ones that caused the Great Recession.
* Read Confessions of an Economic Hitman by John Perkins, the Plume Group, copyright 2004 to see more about the shaping of a global system and the use of debt as an opportunity to gain power over people. Most of us fail to know as much about globalization as we need to know. This book will get you started.
* Read Political Catsup with Economy Fries: Liberalism, Pragmatism, Opportunism, by Mel Scanlan Stahl, published by Fast Car Publishing, 2015, to put all of these resources plus a lot of historical ones into a big picture that will help you to understand how we got into our economic and political predicaments as we enter 2020. Get your copy today at Amazon.com.
If you are facing 2020 with misgivings about your future, take a moment to read these few references to give yourself some solid ground to stand on as you face a new year full of challenges.