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A Good Foundation, But Read Around
on 13 July 2010
This book is written by "Dr Doom", whose story is a take on the impending collapse of the US economy in the context of a fictional economy based on the value of fish. It is an amusing tale, highlights of which include an obvious allusion to George W Bush and his southern drawl. It's a quick read, and I finished it in a day (but I am a quick reader). For somebody who knew nothing - literally nothing, about economics I feel it has given me a great foundation and incentive to find out more. It explains basic concepts such as inflation and interest rates with a refreshing lack of esotericism and this has undoubtedly inspired me to read more.
The introduction makes it clear that the author is a firm adherent of the Austrian school of economics, naturally opposed to the contemporary economic policies of the USA of spending more and providing more and more stimulus to keep consumers spending. The bad thing is that you learn much from Schiff's views, but the whole publication is very one-sided. As such the reader wonders whether the criticism of Keynesian policies is justified. However, this one-sided approach is perhaps rife in publications of this sort. Hopefully those who purchase this book have the sense to read around and find ideas that make the most sense to them. But if Schiff's purpose is to create a convincing argument against Keynesian economics, he very much succeeds.
This book is suitable for all ages. It comes with illustrations, which while very amusing can sometimes appear somewhat condescending. Nevertheless, it's a fantastic book for anybody who feels they should know more about economics, and it explains the basic principles with considerable clarity.