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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: 16.5 x 2.5 x 24.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 87,312 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

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr. R. G. Bullock on 24 April 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Paul Krugman is Professor of Economics and International Affairs at Princeton University and a columnist at The New York Times. He won the Nobel prize for economics in 2008. His book, `End this Depression Now!', argues that the present economic depression, dating from 2008, is not essentially different from other depressions, notably the Great Depression following the Wall Street crash of 1929. He argues that the experiences, actions and research of the 1930s and 1940s, augmented by recent research, has given us the tools to bring the economic situation under control. They are simply being ignored by governments in the USA, the UK and Euroland, or governments haven't the courage to do it.

He begins by outlining the tremendous costs of a prolonged depression, especially in human terms. His humanity comes through strongly, not something one normally associates with economists. For example, he notes research which shows that a graduate qualifying during a downturn has his or her whole career affected adversely, not just for the duration of the recession. Long recessions cause permanent, irretrievable losses that leave nations with weak industries and poor skill bases, unable to take full advantage of any recovery. They can lead to political extremism - look at Hungary and Greece today.

The lessons of the Great Depression are outlined. Krugman sees himself as a "sorta-kinda New Keynesian" and argues that depressions are essentially due to lack of demand. This can be counteracted effectively by government spending of particular types - infrastructure spending, mortgage debt relief, temporary higher target rates for inflation, and effective devaluation of the currency and "printing of money".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Peter Skelton on 1 July 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Paul Krugman does not pretend that this is an unbiased account of the current world economy. Instead he concentrates on establishing what he thinks the problem with the current economic situation is and how he thinks it ought to be fixed. In order to do this he examines the arguments of his opponents (The Republican Party in America and Conservative Party in the UK)and sets about demolishing them.

Krugman does a good job of explaining the economic jargon for the general reader. This makes it a reasonably easy read (considering the subject).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lloobee on 1 July 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I can't reccomend this book highly enough. In the introduction Krugman sets out to "appeal to informed public opinion in an effort to get us doing the right thing instead". An what an appeal it is. The bulk of the book shows, with evidence, the shear amount of innacuracy, or downright lies, that have been told in the unfolding of this crisis. His arguments are pretty compelling, the writing style is nicely concise and very readable.

I could say a lot more of the content of the book, but instead will settle for this - if you are an educated lay-person when it comes to ecconomics, and you are trying to understand how we got into this mess, wondering why the UK's GDP has sufferred longer than it did in even the Great Depression, then really you should read this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dennis Littrell TOP 500 REVIEWER on 25 Oct. 2012
Format: Hardcover
Krugman makes it clear in the kind of prose that even middle school students can appreciate that what we need now is more spending not less. The problem for most of us is that we think about the US government's finances in the way we think about our household or small business finances. If we spend more than we take in we are in trouble. However the US economy as a whole doesn't work that way and neither does the government. As Krugman observes in reference to why we are still in what he calls (variously) "a slump," "a great recession," and in the title, "a depression": "...your spending is my income and my income is your spending." He asks, "if ordinary citizens are tightening their belts--spending less--and the government also spends less, who is going to buy American products?" (p. 28)

So the solution to our economic problem, Krugman insists, is not austerity (which might work for households) but the opposite. We need the government to spend money to create jobs so that people can buy other people's goods and services. We especially need some infrastructure building here at home instead of in the Middle East.

"Collectively," Krugman asserts, "the world's residents are trying to buy less stuff than they are capable of producing, to spend less than they earn. That's possible for an individual, but not for the world as a whole. And the result is the devastation all around us." (p. 30)

The other thing to understand about governments, especially huge governments like the US with a $15-trillion a year economy is that government intervention can smooth out a crisis. This is because the US will not run out of people to buy its debt since its tax base is so huge that the risk of default is miniscule.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. D. Thibeault on 25 Jun. 2012
Format: Hardcover
*A full executive-style summary of this book is now available at newbooksinbrief dot wordpress dot com

Since the housing and financial crash of 2008, America's economy has been stuck deep in the doldrums. Indeed, GDP has remained well beneath pre-2008 levels, and employment levels have failed to recover. In an effort to resuscitate the economy, the American government tried first to jump-start it through stimulus spending, and has now replaced this approach with greater austerity. Nothing seems to be working. For Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman, though, the answer is clear: the problem is that the original stimulus effort was too small, and, since that time, the government is moving squarely in the wrong direction. Indeed, Krugman argues that America's current situation bares a striking resemblance to the stagnation of the Great Depression, and that history has taught us what to do in such situations: the government must take an aggressive approach to stimulate the economy into recovery. This is the argument that Krugman makes in his new book `End This Depression Now!'.

Now, Krugman is not a proponent of big government spending under normal conditions. Indeed, even in a recession, Krugman's preferred approach is to drop interest rates in order to spur consumer spending. The problem now is that interest rates are already at zero, and this has not been enough to get consumer spending off the ground, thus leaving the economy in what is called a `liquidity trap'. For Krugman, the liquidity trap is actually quite common in economic downturns that follow financial crashes (as is the case with the current one, and as was the case with the Great Depression), and is why such slumps tend to be deep and prolonged.
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