Say good-bye to your beloved Benjamins, because the world is going cashless. So says David Wolman, and in The End of Money, he explores the drastic implications. How is it happening? What's at stake? Why does it matter? Each chapter of this timely and fascinating audiobook focuses on a specific aspect of the coming cashlessness. Its cast of compelling characters includes an end-times fundamentalist who views the growing obsolescence of cash as a sign of the coming rapture; an Icelandic artist whose claim to fame illustrates the complicated relationship between cash and nationalism; an American libertarian and coin-maker convicted on federal charges for the distribution of "Liberty" coins and Ron Paul dollars; and an Indian software engineer (self-billed as "the assassin of cash") whose firm is enabling digital payment methods that are lifting the living standards of thousands of poor New Dehli residents via their cell phones. Raising the stakes with a personal experiment, Wolman goes (almost) a full year without using cash at all. All told, The End of Money offers everything there is to love about popular nonfiction, rendering a complex subject entertaining and easily approachable for a wide audience while proving the ultimate adventurousness inherent in a curiosity about the workings of the world.
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Fascinating Book on Cash and Its Eventual Demise
Wolman writes in the Malcolm Gladwell style -- mixing science/history with contemporary observation.
No. But Hagen did a fine job narrating.
Wolman's personal anecdotes about trying to live a year without using cash put the entire thesis of the book into context.
Wolman mixes a very fascinating discussion of the history of cash, with a forward-looking exploration of where society is going in its use of cash. He envisions the end of the use of physical cash, and all of the benefits that would entail (counterfeiting, benefits for the poor, and even cutting down on germs). In the midst of all of this, Wolman himself tries to live without using physical cash. Wolman writes in a very engaging way, with hip and interesting asides. His book is populated with odd characters who help explore his thesis.
- Ken L.
Poorly constructed rehash of econ 101
This book is a rare disappointment in my otherwise enjoyable Audible experience. The themes are poorly constructed and do not land any solid points. Obviously, the way that we use money has changed and will continued to change in the age of the Internet. However, David Wolman makes very few points about the ramifications of these changes.
Sketch out some themes, reinforce them with data and actual interviews (not remembrances of conversations).
Don Hagen read the material well. An easy voice to listen to.