Economic Contractions in the United States: A Failure of Government

Obama is repeating the mistakes of the Great Depression

Note: only the first part of the book is currently available to download (Contents, Foreword, Preface and Introduction).

Seeking 'not to let a crisis go to waste', left-leaning politicians and old-style Keynesian economists want to remedy the alleged failure of capitalism with a rising tide of big government. Let the budget deficits rip, empower the unions, socialise healthcare, increase trade protection, go green, and socialise the financial and industrial base.

The irony, as Charles Rowley and Nathanael Smith show in this timely monograph, is that the Keynesian policy prescriptions that are serving as the pretext for this programme have already been tried. Expansionary fiscal and monetary policies by the Bush administration and the Greenspan Fed were implemented to deal with the recession of 2001, and are precisely what caused the current crisis.

Applying sound economic reasoning and cutting-edge public choice theory, Rowley and Smith show that both the Great Depression and the c