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The Lost Science of Money: The Mythology of Money, The Story of Power Hardcover

ISBN-13: 978-1930748033 ISBN-10: 1930748035 Edition: First Edition

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 736 pages
  • Publisher: American Monetary Institute; First Edition edition (December 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1930748035
  • ISBN-13: 978-1930748033
  • Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 6.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,197,078 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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I am not a free market proponent.
David Eagen
Since this day in 1913 virtually every dollar in circulation has been borrowed from these 10 FOR Profit banks that make up the Federal Reserve.
Eddie Spaghetti
With three sons all out of college and in their twenties this is one of the books I am getting for each of them to read.
Jon W. Davis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

94 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Jon W. Davis on November 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Having read numerous books on the issues of money systems I can say without equivocation this is the best by far of any I have come across including many of the Austrian economics books and those by Rothbard. All of them have their perspectives but Zarlenga's work and conclusions are a synthesis from history, well documented, and ring true on deep gut level. He makes his case very well and there is no hype or misplaced emotion as there are in many works on the money issues. Taken as a history book alone I would give the book 5 stars. Too many people, including me, have been ignorant of the historical roots of money and Zarlenga helps us to learn the dramas, political games, and debasement of money systems through the ages. It is fascinating and shocking story. What is taking place in the world now, including the Federal Reserve and World Bank is a slight variation of the historical power struggles over the control of money that go back thousands of years. The most informative issues that come out of this work is the history of gold and silver as money and how they are fiat currencies just like any other proclaimed currency. The money powers, governments, and kings have at various times decreed gold to be money (fiat) as they stood to benefit from it. Yes, gold can't be created out of nothing but it is just as fiat as a dollar bill. As a defender of the gold standard I have to admit that my notions of the gold standard have been flipped upside down even though I have read many of the Mises Institutes books. I can't say that a commodity-based money may not be useful or that the connection between paper money and its basis in gold adds integrity to the system but I do believe now that the issues is not black and white, gold or paper money.Read more ›
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Torrey K. Byles on November 17, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book provides a huge service to understanding one of the most central and powerful artifacts in human civilization: money. The brilliance of Zarlenga's treatment of this subject and what makes it stand out from others, is that while including massive historical detail and richness, he brings a cogent message about money that anyone (viz. the non-specialist) can walk away with. And it is, that money systems are designed by the intelligence of humans and established and empowered through a collective authority. Thus, the more all of society understands money and willingly participates in backing its authority, the greater the possibility that it will serve all people, and not private elites who may be tempted to structure its design in their favor. This single human innovation - money - has many alternative ways of being socially constructed and politically established as a means of exchange. Get the design right, and the quality of life for all people can be dramatically altered. The structural design of money will directly affect the degree to which individual market action will be morally and socially responsible. Getting the money system right can lead to the alignment of individual and collective action of people. This understanding that money is a human-specified tool (and not some mystical object that we all use but don't really know where it came from or how it works) is so important in birthing a new awareness around emergent economic and market behavior. To me, this kind of writing is a great examplar of how economics should be performed: taking a historical perspective to see what worked and what didn't work. The metaphysical clap-trap around money, as well as the professional economist's mathematical obfuscations are avoided. Seeing it for what it truly is - a designable artifact - is really the gift of this study. Highly recommended, and in my recent reading, complements Kevin Phillips', Wealth and Democracy.
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57 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Lewis S. Coleman on July 4, 2003
Format: Hardcover
This book is a "keeper"! It offers a wealth of valuable information about the history of money and banking in Western Civilization that will be indispensible for all students of history, particularly those interested in the reform of money and banking systems. It offers information that is very difficult to find elsewhere, and is the key to an in-depth understanding of history, in terms of the power exercised through the control of money. Despite all this, it is quite readable.
I recall my "honors" course in the humanities at Ohio State in which I was assigned to write a paper on some aspect of ancient history. I chose the subject of money, as I thought this would offer the perfect opportunity to explore a subject which had been the object of my curiosity for some years. I spent hours searching the resources of the university library, with precious little result. I remember discovering information about the silver mining efforts of the Romans, but being generally frustrated in my search. When the dust settled, I had learned very little, and my focus returned to the physical sciences for the remainder of my college days. Much later, I came to read history as a hobby, but continued to be frustrated in my search for information about the role of money in history. With this background, reading Mr. Zarlenga's book was like drinking nectar. If only it had been available during my college days! It answered nearly all the questions about monetary history I've harbored since college.
Every citizen should read this book; it has the potential to light the path to reforms that might save the present incarnation of Western Civilization from self-destruction. It will be a classic.
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