White House Burning
- The Founding Fathers, Our National Debt, and Why It Matters to You
- Narrated by: Nicholas Hormann
- Length: 10 hrs and 1 min
- Unabridged Audiobook
- Release date: 04-03-12
- Language: English
- Publisher: Random House Audio
Regular price: $28.00
Buy Now with 1 Credit
Buy Now for $28.00
In White House Burning, Simon Johnson and James Kwak—authors of the national best seller 13 Bankers and cofounders of The Baseline Scenario, a widely cited blog on economics and public policy—demystify the national debt, explaining whence it came and, even more important, what it means to you and to future generations. They tell the story of the Founding Fathers’ divisive struggles over taxes and spending. They chart the rise of the almighty dollar, which makes it easy for the United States to borrow money. They account for the debasement of our political system in the 1980s and 1990s, which produced today’s dysfunctional and impotent Congress. And they show how, if we persist on our current course, the national debt will harm ordinary Americans by reducing the number of jobs, lowering living standards, increasing inequality, and forcing a sudden and drastic reduction in the government services we now take for granted.
But Johnson and Kwak also provide a clear and compelling vision for how our debt crisis can be solved while strengthening our economy and preserving the essential functions of government. They debunk the myth that such crucial programs as Social Security and Medicare must be slashed to the bone. White House Burning looks squarely at the burgeoning national debt and proposes to defuse its threat to our well-being without forcing struggling middle-class families and the elderly into poverty.
Carefully researched and informed by the same compelling storytelling and lucid analysis as 13 Bankers, White House Burning is an invaluable guide to the central political and economic issue of our time. It is certain to provoke vigorous debate.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Keith Ball on 05-15-12
A great book on our national debt and our future
Would you listen to White House Burning again? Why?
Yes, I have already listened to this book twice. The book is not only very interesting from a historical reference, but debunks so much of the disinformation and hyperbole in the political rhetoric today.
Our nation faces some serious problems, and as a nation we need to have an intelligent discussion on how we are going to address these problems.
Johnson and Kwak have done an excellent job of explaining deficits, our debt, and how to look at our fiscal responsibilities in relation to our GDP, creditworthiness, and the dollar as the world's reserve currency.
Of particular interest, was how attitudes to government debt evolved from our very beginning as a fragile new nation, through crisis of war and depression, and into today, where US treasuries are the world's choice as a safe haven investment.
The book takes a very sobering look at Social Security, Medicare and what our future costs will be if we don't make some important decisions soon. It looks at the current debt that was created by the two wars, the Bush tax cuts, and the financial crisis, all in what I felt was an objective and nonpartisan analysis.
We as a nation need to make some decisions on how we are going to solve these problems. This book gave me a historical view of past financial crisis and how we got through them, which gave me some hope that despite the political grid lock in Washington we might be able to do it again.
The final chapters offered what the authors felt was a fair and reasonable solution to the debt crisis. I agreed with their solution, but even if you don't agree with their solution, the book offers other possibilities that should be discussed.
There is a solution. There is hope. We can, and must fix this for our children, and future generations. It's not as dire as some would have us believe, but we do have to start now. This book is a great starting point for getting the facts straight, so that we can have a reasonable, and rational discussion of what path we are going to layout for our country's future.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
By Adam on 11-25-13
Warning: The narrator sounds like Mitt Romney.
I enjoyed 13 Bankers, the first book by these authors, much more. However, I do think the topics in this book are important to understand and feel the authors provide reasonable proposals for reforming U.S. economic and fiscal policy.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful