A short but thorough primer on modern political economy.

RICH NATION / POOR NATION

WHY SOME NATIONS PROSPER WHILE OTHERS FAIL

A defense of economic freedom as the linchpin of wealth creation.

Debates about economics and politics necessarily address the nature of inequality and distributive justice. To that end, Genetski (Classical Economic Principals & the Wealth of Nations, 2011, etc.), inspired by famed economists Adam Smith and Milton Friedman, argues that individual freedom is both morally and economically defensible, as it’s the most effective tonic to chronic poverty. First, the author defines wealth (“the value of those goods and services originally created to meet the demands of others”), plumbs the mechanics of its generation, and discusses the real difficulties of comparing the wealth of heterogeneous nations. He asserts that the most reliable way to comparatively measure wealth is by output per person; China is the world’s largest economy, but by this standard, it barely registers as a middle-class nation. A considerable portion of the book focuses on the United States, and according to Genetski, its wages and wealth creation have generally coincided with fidelity to free market principles. The author also provides a brief analysis of the world’s major economic regions, including Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Africa. Repeatedly, he discovers a causal relation between robust market liberalization and wealth generation, and he powerfully contends that involuntary wealth redistributions ultimately perpetuate poverty by dramatically reducing future output. Genetski’s analysis is remarkably concise, and the ground that he covers in fewer than 150 pages is impressive. Of course, that same concision demands the elision of significant detail; all of modern Latin America, for instance, is summed up in just a few pages. The book is unfailingly rigorous, providing hard data to substantiate its chief claims, but the philosophical argument undergirding the entire study—that people of all cultures ultimately desire freedom and generally respond predictably to the same economic policies—requires far more defense than the author gives here. Nonetheless, this is a sober and provocative contribution to the debate regarding the role of governments in regulating economic activity.

A short but thorough primer on modern political economy. 

Pub Date: March 8, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4999-0277-8

Page Count: 152

Publisher: FastPencil

Review Posted Online: April 18, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

Did you like this book?

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

Did you like this book?

more