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The Untold History of America's First Debt and its Relevance in Today's Economy
“Wright tackles the thorny question of what makes countries wealthy through the lens of a U.S. addiction: government indebtedness.”
-Simon Constable, TheStreet.com
“Think that our burgeoning national debt is something new? We've been down this road before. One Nation Under Debt traces the roots of today's looming fiscal crisis back to the birth of the republic and shows how the founding fathers averted financial Armageddon.”
“This is economic history both high and low-from Alexander Hamilton, the wizard who put America's finances in order, to the men and women who secured America's future by buying its bonds.”
“This book is magnetic. Wright regales us with the bankers and merchants, slaveholders and bondholders, and pen-named politicians of the Early Republic.”
-James W. Mueller, Ph.D., Chief Historian, Independence National Historical Park
"If I could write like Wright, I would be thrilled. Some passages in the book are stunning—almost poetic. For anyone interested in the evolution of the U.S. economy and its early financial system, the first six chapters of this book are essential. Wright makes his point: under skilled management (e.g., Hamilton), debt is good for deepening capital markets, but incurred excessively to finance wars or inappropriate government expenditures, it can eventually prove disastrous."
-Richard Vietor, Harvard Business School, Journal of American History
Robert E. Wright is the Rudy and Marlyn Nef Family Chair of Political Economy in the Division of Social Sciences at Augustana College and is a curator for the Museum of American Finance. He is the author of scores of articles, entries, reviews, and chapters, and has authored or coauthored nine books. Wright has written for Barron's, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Forbes.com, and other prominent publications, and has appeared on NPR, C-SPAN, and the BBC.
I was mislead into buying this book. Considering all that's happening these days with the national debt, I wanted to learn about why the national debt was created. Read morePublished 19 months ago by John J. Bernardi
This reads like propaganda. The author has the annoying habit of supporting his argument with anecdotes, so every other paragraph you get cherry-picked quotes from the 18th or... Read morePublished on August 2, 2012 by Michael Chesser
At times, this book became ponderous to read, but overall it was both enjoyable and very informative. Read morePublished on January 22, 2012 by Terry Jennrich
This book provides rare insight into the financial foundations of the US economy. Supporting data, trends, and documentation add additional color to this thoughtful commentary on... Read morePublished on June 3, 2008 by J. Terry