Freefall has ratings and reviews. Trevor said: This is To say that Joseph E. Stiglitz is an “Insanely great Economist” is a truism. This book indicates . Freefall: Free Markets and the Sinking of the Global Economy by Joseph The warnings of Stiglitz and a handful of other dissident voices were. An incisive look at the global economic crisis, our flawed response, and the implications for the world’s future Great Recession.

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Freefall: Free Markets and the Sinking of the Global Economy by Joseph Stiglitz

Stiglitz explains the fteefall financial crisis—and the coming global economic order. In this forthright and incisive book, Nobel Laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz explains how America exported bad economics, bad policies, and bad behavior to the rest of the world, only to cobble t Nobel Prize winner Joseph E.

Stiglitz explains how America exported bad economics, bad policies, and bad behavior to the rest of the world, only to cobble together a haphazard and ineffective response when the markets finally seized up. Drawing on his academic expertise, his years spent shaping policy in the Clinton administration and at the World Bank, and his more recent role as head of a UN commission charged with reforming the global financial system, Stiglitz outlines a way forward building on ideas that he has championed his entire career: Freefall is an instant classic, combining an enthralling whodunit account of the current crisis with a bracing discussion of the broader economic issues at stake.

Hardcoverpages. Published January 18th by W. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

To ask other freefapl questions about Freefallplease sign up. Lists with This Book. Feb 17, Trevor rated it really liked it Shelves: In a decade in which per capital GDP in the US increased by ten percent while average wages decreased by 4 percent we have learnt that some rising tides only lift the biggest of boats.

Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy by Joseph E. Stiglitz

The increasing inequity of the US is but reflective of the increasing inequity in the rest of the world. But inequity has social, moral and even economic costs. What is also clear is that, despite his clear warnings that we need more regulation, more effective government intervention in the economy, a closer alignment of incentives toward social needs — nothing is likely to change.

Freefll own theory is that the US public is so enamoured with the idea that they live in the best of all possible worlds that too much of their effort freefalk spent trying to find ways to justify the unjustifiable to which the most unjustifiable is freefalo extreme and increasing inequity that is central to economic, foreign policy, environmental degradation and elsewhere that there is no strength left to look at how we might actually make the world a better place.

Anyway, if this is already the best of all possible worlds … Markets are efficient, self-interest brings social good, the blind-hand of the market fixes all, big government is bad government — all of these are myths carefully and clearly explained and deconstructed in this book. He also gives a fascinating explanation of the work he freeflal in winning the Nobel Prize around how information asymmetries even seemingly minor ones destroy the possibility of market efficiency. And all this in clear and easily understood prose.

He points to the normative role neoliberal economics plays — saying that the more time people spend in business school and economics classes the more selfish and let’s not be cute repulsive they become. It really is time to worry about the consequences of breeding generations of greedy bastards whose sole reason for being is to pillage and to gorge.


This is a lucid book, it is a book that challenges the existing assumptions particularly neoliberal economic assumptions and presents a way forward for a more stable, ecologically sustainable and more just society. It is written freefll a winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics not that that is anything worth boasting about — they even gave one of those to Milton Friedman and a chief economist with the World Bank.

This is a guy from the centre of the establishment — when people like him start telling us things have got to change, well, who knows, perhaps it is time to start paying attention. Those are the bastards stiiglitz to win. As we have seen, No Drama Obama is no salvation — we are freeall the audacity of greed to trump the audacity of hope, it seems.

But perhaps, if we can ferefall least learn and remember what these bastards have done by reading books like this, to remember what they have gotten away with, perhaps then we can move from empty hope to positive action. View all 19 comments. I am ‘mostly’ conservative freefall very much into holding on tight to my faith. That puts me somewhere on the right—maybe far right, although I am no radical.

But I freffall looovvved reading this freefsll. Economist Stiglitz worked for former President Clinton and he maintains that Sarbanes and Oxley didn’t go far enough in regulating, especially, the big banks that without Chase-Steagall since have been virtually guaranteed huge incentives for risky financial innovation CDOs?

Maybe it is time for a global currency? It’s a best seller and if you are like me you freefal want to put it down. Oh, How did such a liberal idea government regulation become so agreeable to me?

How did I find myself in the liberal camp cheering Stiglitz on! The truth is simply the truth. Markets may not be self correcting; trust in the institution might be now all but gone; so, law must replace common sense and moral principle. Jul 09, Lobstergirl rated it liked it Recommended to Lobstergirl by: It’s probably unfair to call Stiglitz a subpar storyteller, since he’s not really trying to tell a story here.

I will anyway, though. Reading through a bunch of books on the financial crisis, you can’t help make comparisons among them though they may be apples and oranges.

Freefall by Joseph Stiglitz | Book review | Books | The Guardian

Freefall lacks both the verve and masterfully absorbing narrative of All the Devils Are Here: The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis ; the latter, written by two business journalists, wasn’t trying to be an economic treatis It’s probably unfair to call Stiglitz a subpar storyteller, since he’s not really trying to stjglitz a story here.

The Hidden History of the Financial Crisis ; the latter, written by two business journalists, wasn’t trying to be an economic treatise. Stiglitz, a Nobel prize winner, says many valuable and important things here.

But it feels like he’s stating and restating those things seven times. If this book were an animal, it would be an octopus, with numerous long, virtually identical parts.

Its pages of text seem more like – and the endnotes are interminable, 62 pages worth. The hardcover edition lacks an index! His suggestions for reforming the financial sector, the economy, and actually all of society are vast, wide, deep, and most of them are so frankly aspirational as to be hopeless.

None of this will ever come to pass, because the forces arrayed against change are too powerful. This went to press before the financial reform law, Dodd-Frank, was passed, but Dodd-Frank is pretty weak tea compared to what Stiglitz and other progressive economists would like to have happen.

Too-big-to-fail is still with us; the stigpitz sector is still awash, drowning, in moral hazard. There is still little penalty for risk-taking, because the government will still deem it necessary stigllitz bail out systemically important organizations. But there will be no bailouts for the little people. Jul 20, Simon Wood rated it it was amazing. In “Freefall” he looks at the current economic debacle, how it happened, its origins, the inadequate response, as well as speculating on what might get us out of this awful mess.

His focus is almost wholly on the Freefa,l experience with only occasional sideway glances at events in Europe and across the globe. The narrative of the events, and processes, that led to the credit crunch are put before the reader in a concise and comprehensive manner, including the variety of complex financial innovations that contributed to the crash.


Stiglitz then looks at the Bush and the Obama administrations, he is fairly scathing about the latter, in particular regarding his economic team, almost all of them have played a part in getting the US economy into its current stglitz.

Unsurprisingly he finds their responses to be inadequate, and primarily focused at preserving financial institutions that have failed, and a policy environment that has failed, at the expense of the majority of the US population he freefall the bank rescue program “The Great American Robbery”.

Stiglitz appears to favour some sort of bankruptcy proceeding for banks, as well as legislating for a return to the separation of commercial banks from investment banks, amongst other measures. Next Stiglitz stigiltz at the mortgage industry, particularly the sub-prime segment of it. This is followed with a more general appraisal of Americas position with rising public debt, it’s relationship with China, and a still dysfunctional financial sector.

One of the more interesting chapters is Stiglitz look freerall the rise and failure of the free-market economics: The final chapter “Towards a New Society” steps back from the crisis and looks at how we can begin to move towards a society that works for the majority of the population, rather than one run in the interests of the few. A stimulating read, that packs a surprising amount of narrative, analysis and thinking into pages.

One shortcoming is that despite being fully referenced the book omits an index. I assume this will be rectified when “Freefall” is published in paperback? A book that I would have no problems recommending to anyone interested in how the economic crisis came about, the resulting response, it’s roots, as well as some more fundamental thinking on the whole debacle.

View all 3 comments. Apr 20, Syiglitz rated it really liked it Shelves: Very lucid and insightful explanation of the recent financial crisis, and what is to be done to recover from it. I learned about this book from this review by Travis. The suggestions offered seem to be good ideas to me. Welcome to the new corporate welfare state. Financially stressful times are opportunities to make improvements. Many improvements were made to the banking system during the s depression, but the author indicates that’s not what has happened during the current crisis: This was the perfect time to start thinking about developing a truly efficient financial system that directs capital to where it is needed and where it is most productive in an efficient way, one that helps households and corporations alike to manage risk and that provides the basis of a fast and low-cost payment system.

Instead, two separate presidential administrations undertook a series of measures to help the financial system, with little thought of the kind of financial system the country should have when if finally emerges from the crisis.

And so now the members of congress who voted for TARP are now under attack for wasting so much money. Another variation on this are those who say the whole mess could have been avoided if the collapse of Lehman Brothers would have been prevented. Maybe so, but there’s a political side to the question to consider. The following quotation sums it up: It was hard enough to do so after its collapse. The author freeflal this book offers a lot of criticism on how things were done and suggests better approaches to the problems.

He suggests that it would have been better to target small banks instead of big banks and home owners over bankers. He also says it would have been better to have more oversight on how the banks used money given to them by the government.