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Well read, but content is dull. It's full of names of infamous people but unless you get chills from reading about meetings between Nixon and Greenspan you may, like me, get bored. I think I was hoping to get something with more of an insight into the thought process and rationale behind decisions and causes of problems that he has faced as an economic guru.
For me The End of Alchemy by ex Bank of England chairman Mervin King is better in every way.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
23 hours and the entire CFMA conspiracy is conspicuously missing. Alan Greenspan was not an innocent bystander. There should have been an entire chapter devoted to it, but then you would need to revise your conclusion to be much harsher on the Alan Greenspan legacy. Cities go bankrupt while rich bankers get bailed out with no strings attached. The bankers even got to keep their loot. Did Alan Greenspan make you pull the CFMA chapter? I can't imagine that is an oversight on your part.
You also fail to talk about the consequences when they are negative. You praise his successes continuously. You briefly give it lip service at the very end, but all the while extreem poverty and grandioos income disparity became the norm and bailing out Wall Street and punishing main street is the new normal.
You continuously praise the Fed for focusing on inflation, glossing over the consequences of that. At one point you even call out real net income increases as a negative.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
This is a masterful work that weaves seamlessly between (1) US large-scale money and financial history from about 1970 to 2010, (2) the persons, institutions, policies and politics involved, and the successes and failures of those elements at each turn of events, and (3) one brilliant, powerful but quite imperfect man's journey across this landscape. Meanwhile, with great discipline, this author consistently found that sweet spot between clear explanation and well-paced listenable story on one hand, and complexity on the other (in a way any reasonably bright reader can grasp). Even the quirky personal details are in service to this overall work of enlightenment, as I found my mind could pause just enough across personal details, to re-engage as the economic-financial story moved forward, such that I could reflect and form opinions of my own in real time. I had seen bits and pieces of this whole story before, but it was a great service to pull it all together with such deftness. I am now better equipped to evaluate events past and present that affect my financial life. No definitive, simplistic, single verdict can be rendered of Greenspan's career, I believe, but I feel some expertise now on every phase of it. Credit goes to both the author and to Alan Greenspan for the courage all around to allow a process to occur which as freely praised as criticized Mr. Greenspan. This sort of bold factual storytelling (and respect for the reader's search for the reader's own conclusions) helps refresh my respect for the political system in which it occurred.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful