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End This Depression Now! Hardcover – 11 May 2012


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (11 May 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393088774
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393088779
  • Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 0.3 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 157,773 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Paul Krugman writes a twice-weekly column for the op-ed page of the New York Times. A winner of the John Bates Clark Medal who was also named Columnist of the Year by Editor and Publisher magazine, he teaches economics at Princeton University.

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Review

"Starred review. Krugman (Fuzzy Math), winner of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Economics, takes an edifying and often humorous journalistic approach to the current economic crisis in this accessible and timely study. Rather than provide a mere postmortem on the 2008 collapse (though relevant history lessons are provided), Krugman aims to plot a path out of this depression. Krugman has consistently called for more liberal economic policies, but his wit and bipartisanship ensure that this book will appeal to a broad swath of readers from the Left to the Right, from the 99% to the 1%." --Publishers Weekly

"Krugman has picked a good time to unleash a thoroughly persuasive polemic against premature fiscal austerity in the wake of a deep recession. He does so in a remarkably easy style [...] it's lively and readable." --Financial Times

"Krugman...most hated and most admired columnist in the US..." --Martin Wolf, Financial Times

"...Krugman divides opinion like no other. To his followers, he's a saint; to his detractors, he's a false prophet with satanic intent." --Jeremy Warner, Daily Telegraph

"[...]since reading Paul Krugman's new book, I fear I'm in danger instead of becoming a bore. It's the sort of book you wish were compulsory reading, and want to quote to anyone who'll listen, because End This Depression Now! provides a comprehensive narrative of how we have ended up doing the opposite of what logic and history tell us we must do to get out of this crisis." --Decca Aitkenhead, Guardian G2

"Although it is not without flaws, I hope without much confidence that the book s wide readership includes the UK prime minister and chancellor." --Samuel Brittan, Financial Times

"Loathe him or love him and Krugman's take-no-prisoners writing style has as many enemies as admirers it is impossible to ignore him." --Ben Chu, The Independent

"Furious but funny, Krugman's seductive style renders recondite theory readable for even the most economically illiterate." --Word

"Krugman is "feisty" and "sharp-elbowed": you might disagree with his thesis, but you'll keep on reading." ----The Week

"In this lively polemic, he [Krugman] makes a powerful case against austerity." --<The Evening Standard

Krugman is "feisty" and "sharp-elbowed": you might disagree with his thesis, but you'll keep on reading. --The Week

About the Author

Paul Krugman is the recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Economics. He is a best-selling author, columnist, and blogger for the New York Times, and is a professor of economics and international affairs at Princeton University.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Rob Julian on 1 Jun 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As the title to this review suggests, this book convincingly argues that America (and in most cases the rest of the developed world) needs a boost in government spending to return our economies to a healthy state. As with all Krugman's books, this is very well written in an easy conversational style, which makes it very accessible to all those whom have only recently become interested in economics due to the recent troubles.

The books I value the most are those which generate within me challenging questions and gut reactions, and reading this book has left me with a disconcerting amount of both. Can it really be that simple? Why hadn't I seriously supported this before? Could America really just government spend it's way out of a recession? Imagine how much cash it would take! . . . But then I suppose back in the 1930s perhaps the prospect of more government debt was also very scary at the time, but after a few decades of growth and inflation the debt seemed paltry. (Reader warning, homespun analogy coming up): A number of years ago I was unemployed for a few months and became very conscious of what I was spending. After I returned to work I wished I had spent a sizeable bit of money on renovating my flat, which would have been a better use of my time!

One difference between now and the last depression was that back then America had valuable manufacturing strengths and advantages, not yet developed by the majority of the world. Where as now Asia has caught up by gaining many of these positive externalities. Krugman mentions in passing that: "it's long past time to take a tougher line on China and other currency manipulators, and sanction them if necessary".p221.
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60 of 68 people found the following review helpful By Diziet TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 20 May 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Paul Krugman's purpose in writing this book is to:

'...go over the heads of the Serious People who have, for whatever reason, taken all of us down the wrong path, at immense cost to our economies and our societies, and to appeal to informed public opinion in an effort to get us doing the right thing instead.' (Intro, Pxii).

He starts out by analysing just what has gone wrong. Many, many writers have already done this, of course - David Harvey, Nouriel Roubini, Massimo Amato to name but a few - but Krugman's analysis is still really useful. He draws exact parallels between the Great Depression and the current so-called 'Great Recession', not only in terms of cause and effect but also in the variety of responses. His central thesis, however, is that:

'...this doesn't have to be happening [italics in original]...the problem isn't with the economic engine, which is as powerful as ever. Instead, we're talking about what is basically a technical problem, a problem of organization and co-ordination.' (P22)

We have reached a 'Minsky Moment' - as an economy expands, debtors and creditors are happy to borrow and lend until, suddenly, something pops.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David Tuckwell on 21 Jan 2013
Format: Hardcover
There is a spectre spreading across the Northern Hemisphere, the spectre of Austerity. Western Europe and North America are recording record low growth rates. Unemployment is rising, particularly among the young. Corporations are sitting on huge piles of cash and not investing. The future is bleak.

All this is because - don't forget - of the Financial Crises in 2008-09.

Western governments are responding to these terrifying prospects by cutting back on government spending and cutting back on social programs. When governments do this, it is called `austerity'.

Krugman does not like austerity and thinks little of the politicians and economists who champion it - `Austerians'. He thinks they make matters worse because by austerity results in there being less `aggregate demand' in the economy. During a recession or an economic slump, private companies and individuals stop spending money. This means that unless governments make up for the difference, things will only get worse.

This is, of course the standard Keynsian argument. Close to a century ago now, the famous British economist John Maynard Keynes argued that `the boom not the slump' was when austerity should be pursued. Keynes thought policy makes should focus on lowering unemployment and that the way to do this was to increase aggregate demand. Krugman follows closely in Keynes footsteps, quoting him frequently.

Krugman is completely right of course. History shows unambiguously that cutting back on government during a recession only makes things worse. For example, witness Britain tip towards an historically unprecedented triple dip recession under the `Austerian' David Cameron.

Krugman's writing is clean and concise.
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