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The Coming First World Debt Crisis Paperback – November 28, 2006

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (November 28, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0230007848
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230007840
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #986,243 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


'This insightful book examines how the current international trade in goods and finance that is making the rich richer and the poor poorer and threatens ecosystem and societal collapse is no accident.' - Jonathan Essex, Green World

About the Author

ANN PETTIFOR was the co-founder of Jubilee 2000 which campaigned for debt relief at the turn of the millennium and is now a Director of Advocacy International, which works with debtor governments, and has helped countries like Nigeria, Ethiopia and Guyana write off millions of dollars of debt.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Chiu-ying Wong on July 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I read the book before I read the reviews here. After I read the book, I thought to myself that the author had some interesting ideas. Not many people before 2007 thought so negatively about bankers : before the crisis, bankers were well-respected people who were regarded as upright, intelligent and deservedly rich. Young graduates rushed to join banks not only for the money but the prestige. Now we know how wrong we all were. The banks abused the privilege (of being able to create money from thin air) given to them, chased short-term profits that resulted in the collapse of the system, dragging down innocent people with them. If anything, the book should have served as a warning to policy makers before 2007 that bankers should be reined in. I disagree with the other reader who called the author Marxist and other names. The facts support her views. Banks serve an important function in a capitalist society, but they have to be kept under a leash, otherwise they will do damage to the society. Credit creation is a two-way sword, we need it for economic growth, but if it is given too loosely, it will destroy the system. This is not Marxist speak, this is pragmatism.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas Battafarano on May 14, 2010
Format: Paperback
In this book published in 2006 Ann Pettifor put forward a detailed scenario in which excessive debt in the developed world caused a serious economic crisis. The 2008 financial crisis proceeded exactly as she suggested it would. Pettifor does an excellent job of explaining how the basic financial structure of our society was undermined in the lead up to our most recent crisis. I have read fairly extensively on economics, and this book contains by far the best explanation of what money is and how it works that I have encountered. Pettifor makes a case for her own solutions to the problems leading up to the crisis, which are mostly radically outside of the mainstream options being considered. Of course the idea of a first world financial collapse was outside of the mainstream when the book was published.

Ultimately the presentation of the flaws in our system that led to the crisis is easily separated from the critique/solutions that Pettifor presents. Pettifor's ideological bent isn't as cut and dry as other reviewers have suggested, people ranging from marxists to libertarians will find suggestions they agree with and others they don't. Even if you aren't amenable to any of the solutions proposed in the book it does such a phenomenal job of outlining the problem that, regardless of your ideological bent, it is well worth your time. If you are looking for an incisive analysis of the underlying flaws that have lately plagued our economy this is the book for you.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sarah on May 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
Dr. Pettifor sums up in quick reading what has really been going on in finance and economy.
How was she able to get the G8 or EU to 'forgive billions in debt owed by "developing" countries?
Because she - and they - know that money is created from nothing.
Therefore, the IMF, World Bank and whoever else didn't lose a dime forgiving those loans.
Yes, other authors have come before her - and we should read those books, as well.
Dr. Pettifor is the most recent eye-witness, and this book is a valuable contribution.
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