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According to Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera, two of America's most acclaimed business journalists, the real answer is all of the above-and more. Many devils helped bring hell to the economy. And the full story, in all of its complexity and detail, is like the legend of the blind men and the elephant. Almost everyone has missed the big picture. Almost no one has put all the pieces together.
All the Devils Are Here goes back several decades to weave the hidden history of the financial crisis in a way no previous book has done. It explores the motivations of everyone from famous CEOs, cabinet secretaries, and politicians to anonymous lenders, borrowers, analysts, and Wall Street traders. It delves into the powerful American mythology of homeownership. And it proves that the crisis ultimately wasn't about finance at all; it was about human nature.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By ecl on 11-19-10
I would recommend everyone to read this book. It explores the iceberg that that caused the financial crisis. I was skeptical about the title but now I see that it couldn't be more fitting. It is very rich in quotes and anecdotes. Critic reviews are accurate, I just have to add that it is a very heavy reading. It was hard to it listen while working, if you get distracted a few seconds you completely loose track of what they are saying; otherwise I enjoyed it a lot.
45 of 45 people found this review helpful
By D. Littman on 11-20-10
an well-written & comprehensive view
To understand the financial and economic events in the US (& throughout the developed world) of the last couple of years, one book will not suffice. One book cannot tell you, analytically and with convincing evidence, the root causes, the immediate causes, the action of the crisis, the evaluation of the policy response. A number of good books are in the Audible collection on this subject. But this book by Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera is among the best yet.
The authors do a good job digging back into the 1950-1980 period to find the institutional and policy roots of the current malaise (plenty of government policy to blame, over the decades), they are especially good in showing the constellation of actions (and inactions) in the 1990s and 2000s brought us to what now appears to be a perfect storm (of course, it was not, a perfect storm presupposes no human causes). The book is well-written, breezy, grabs you with lots of human stories and anecdotes. It can be read and understood quickly without a grounding in economics or quantitative methods.
It is shallow in parts. It could be more analytical in parts. But that is why reading more than one book is necessary (a good sweeping complement to this book is "This Time is Different"). Anyway, highly recommended work.
38 of 38 people found this review helpful