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A World of Wealth: How Capitalism Turns Profits into Progress [Kindle Edition]

Thomas G. Donlan
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)

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Book Description

 “Thomas Donlan’s defense of free market capitalism is especially timely today given all the pressures to regulate and stifle it. The anti-globalization movement wants more trade protectionism and less immigration. The global credit crisis is putting pressure on governments to bail out irresponsible lenders and borrowers at taxpayers’ expense. Instead, Donlan convincingly and clearly explains why we would all prosper more by doing all we can to make markets freer.”

—Ed Yardeni, President, Yardeni Research, Inc.

 

“Thomas Donlan reminds us all that capitalism is not simply one choice among different and equally valid economic systems, but instead that hard work and the accumulation of wealth is the natural tendency of successful people and healthy societies around the world.”

—Christopher Whalen, Managing Director, Institutional Risk Analytics

 

“It has been several decades since Joseph Schumpeter observed that the philosophical defense of a free-market economy must never cease. Thomas Donlan has taken up that challenge, but this clear-eyed book is much more than a defense. It is a magnificently constructed explanation of how the world works and why free-market capitalism continues to offer the greatest hope for solving our greatest challenges.”

—Carl J. Schramm, Ph.D., President, Kauffman Foundation

 

“The author brings to the table a healthy skepticism of the conventional wisdom, an admirable ability to separate fact from fancy, and an undisguised repugnance for the mumbo-jumbo that’s the curse of so much commentary on anything to do with economics or investment. A World of Wealth is not only a lively read, but an exceptionally enlightening and rewarding one to boot.”

—Alan Abelson, Barron’s Columnist

 

“With the facts of a primer laid out in the fast-paced narrative of a storyteller, Thomas Donlan’s A World of Wealth lucidly explains today’s marketplace. From the credit crisis to immigration and from oil prices to global warming, the book guides the reader through the economic issues of our day—jargon-free. It’s a fast, fun read that illuminates while it entertains.”

—Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University

 

“An indispensable—and highly readable—primer on how the economic world really works, whether politicians of both left and right want it to work that way or not. If it were required reading for all political reporters, they might do a lot more reporting and carry a lot less water in the process.”

—John Steele Gordon, Author of Empire of Wealth: The Epic History of American Economic Power

 

Acknowledgments xii

About the Author xiii

Introduction xv

 

Chapter 1: The Capitalist Answer to the “Energy Crisis”: Pay Higher Prices 1

Chapter 2: The Capitalist Approach to Environmental Pollution and Global Warming: Breathe Easy 23

Chapter 3: A Capitalist Prescription for Trade: Free Exchange Enriches Both Sides of Every Deal 43

Chapter 4: Capitalist Immigration Policy: Tear Down the Walls 65

Chapter 5: The Essential Elements of Capitalism: Investment and Invention 81

Chapter 6: The Capitalist Take on Taxes: Keep Taxes Low and Equal 93

Chapter 7: The Capitalist Struggle against Low Finance: Price Controls and Regulation Endanger the Free Market 113

Chapter 8: A Capitalist Diagnosis for the High Cost of Health Care: Pay What It’s Worth 131

Chapter 9: The Capitalist Approach to Retirement Security: It’s an Individual's Duty First 149

Chapter 10: A Capitalist Look at the Current Economy 169

Chapter 11: The Capitalist Quest for Productivity 185

 

Reading Further 201

Index 205


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Thomas G. Donlan is Editorial Page Editor at Barron’s National Business and Financial Weekly. For fifteen years, he has been writing in his Barron’s columns about the power of capitalism to solve society’s toughest problems. One of America’s best-known writers on issues related to the economy, politics, and investing, he is a frequently cited expert and guest in the nation’s major media.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

A World of Wealth

Praise Quotes for A World of Wealth

"Thomas Donlan's defense of free market capitalism is especially timely today given all the pressures to regulate and stifle it. The anti-globalization movement wants more trade protectionism and less immigration. The global credit crisis is putting pressure on governments to bail out irresponsible lenders and borrowers at taxpayers' expense. Instead, Donlan convincingly and clearly explains why we would all prosper more by doing all we can to make markets freer."

—Ed Yardeni, President, Yardeni Research, Inc.

"Thomas Donlan reminds us all that capitalism is not simply one choice among different and equally valid economic systems, but instead that hard work and the accumulation of wealth is the natural tendency of successful people and healthy societies around the world."

—Christopher Whalen, Managing Director, Institutional Risk Analytics

"It has been several decades since Joseph Schumpeter observed that the philosophical defense of a free-market economy must never cease. Thomas Donlan has taken up that challenge, but this clear-eyed book is much more than a defense. It is a magnificently constructed explanation of how the world works and why free-market capitalism continues to offer the greatest hope for solving our greatest challenges."

—Carl J. Schramm, Ph.D., President, Kauffman Foundation

"The author brings to the table a healthy skepticism of the conventional wisdom, an admirable ability to separate fact from fancy, and an undisguised repugnance for the mumbo-jumbo that's the curse of so much commentary on anything to do with economics or investment. A World of Wealth is not only a lively read, but an exceptionally enlightening and rewarding one to boot."

—Alan Abelson, Barron's Columnist

"With the facts of a primer laid out in the fast-paced narrative of a storyteller, Thomas Donlan's A World of Wealth lucidly explains today's marketplace. From the credit crisis to immigration and from oil prices to global warming, the book guides the reader through the economic issues of our day—jargon-free. It's a fast, fun read that illuminates while it entertains."

—Thomas W. Hazlett, Professor of Law & Economics, George Mason University

"An indispensable—and highly readable—primer on how the economic world really works, whether politicians of both left and right want it to work that way or not. If it were required reading for all political reporters, they might do a lot more reporting and carry a lot less water in the process."

—John Steele Gordon, Author of Empire of Wealth: The Epic History of American Economic Power


© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.


Product Details

  • File Size: 363 KB
  • Print Length: 245 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0132350009
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (May 8, 2008)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004M18NJS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,453,459 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Straight Talk July 26, 2008
Format:Hardcover
I find it very easy to accept the Washington Times review posted here. It is a very good overview of Mr. Donlan's book. Too good, perhaps, as it almost convinced me not to bother writing one of my own, but this book deserves some comments.

Tom Donlan has done an exceptionally good job of describing the capitalist system and its operation in terms that are, at one and the same time, sufficiently sophisticated to attract specialists, yet intelligible to a much broader public. Mr. Donlan's viewpoint is very obvious; he's "pro-capitalism" and not ashamed to say so, yet he does not beat you over the head with it. When discussing climate change, for example, he presents Vice President Gore's viewpoint and his own, but without the overly-emotionally, anti-intellectual verbiage so common these days from both sides of this issue. Rather, he discusses what Gore's conclusions may mean in terms of the capitalist system's response. As he says, "Global warming is not just an environmental problem; it is also an economic problem." Donlan rightly emphasizes a subject that will become increasingly important as we move from debate to action.

"A World of Wealth" is not a polemic so much as it is a patient and intelligent explanation of a system that most of us think we understand, but few of us can explain in any detail. By focusing on how capitalism and free markets work in a straightforward manner, Donlan brings us back to the basics of the system that has provided is with so much wealth to enjoy and to squander. His emotional commitment to capitalism is clear, but it is his plain-spoken analysis that makes this book worth reading by anyone, socialists included.

I enjoy reading books on finance and economics.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Economics is an incredibly complex field. It remains one of the most esoteric ideals for the layman - us average folks really don't study it much beyond balancing the checkbook on average, and what work we put into retirement funds. However, one could argue in the world in which we live it's prudent to do so. A World of Wealth is a great starting point for this daunting venture. It has it's flaws to be sure. Overall, if you are already immersed in studying economics, it will merely accent what you know. If you're a neophyte to the world of how capitalism works, and how it makes the world run, it's a decent place to begin.

My biggest complaint was that the author did not cite sources for his claims. For instance, there is a chapter on how capitalism effects the enviroment. I may disagree with some of his statements (such as global warming being more or less hype), but none of the sources used to make his points are cited at all. This is disappointing for me, because the text makes several interesting points I would not have minded expounding on, but cannot, due to there being no available means to see where he garnered the information.

The book is overall well-written and easily understandable, even without a background in economics. If you'd like a better understanding for the global impacts of capitalism, and also a review of recent history regarding its efficiency, this book shines here. I only wish it had more citing/notation. Admittedly, that is a personal bias and preference of mine...but for a book that professes to be a textbook of all things, it seems odd that there is none. So, fewer stars for that. Otherwise, it's recommended for being a well-rounded (if biased) review of capitalism and what it does for the world.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dear Gov't: It works if you get out of the way! May 20, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The topic of economics is often clear as mud to many, but Donlan carefully explains (with good examples) how capitalism and free markets work just fine when regulations and government restrictions are removed. And, with today's world in economic turmoil, questions abound on the best path to take. Donlan does a great job of spelling out the problems with trade protectionism, government regulations, and bailing out irresponsible lenders.

This book presents eleven well-written chapters that confirm what I've believed for many years: Get government out of the way, and businesses of all shapes and sizes will thrive as they meet the needs of the market. Yes, economic conditions will ebb and flow, but just like oceans, if the government would just let them be they will settle out by themselves just fine.

My main thought for improving the text would be for Chapter 2 (The Capitalist Approach to Environmental Polution and Global Warming) to appear later in the text.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, please ma, more capitalism January 20, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The sins of capitalism are vast. The opportunities of capitalism span this gulf with a thousand bridges of opportunity. Mr. Donlan has the craft, the experience and the knowledge to 'condemn with faint praise' those who rule by fiat or dictat.
Sit here. Enjoy. The word craft is elegant. The complex story is one told simply, with grace.
Yes, we are over taxed. The wealthy are taxed because we create wealth, because we have capital. It is the 80/20 rule applied again. 20% contribute. 80% consume. Whether it is vegetables or taxes, cars or cabbages, the rule always works. Edison did not create the light bulb. He simply mass manufactured it, after much trial and error: with the capital of J P Morgan. The results are well illuminated in this brilliant tome.
Beyond here, lie dragons. The unknown is just that. Most are fearful and unwilling. A few try; fewer succeed. Those who do create opportunity. Some call it wealth. Others tax it.
Read this book. Hate , depise, like or love it - but read it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Still relevant four years later?
I thought it was ironic that shortly after I received this book, the Crash of 2008 happened. (Wait, am I telling myself that I've had this book for four years already? Read more
Published 16 months ago by Curtis G
4.0 out of 5 stars Trust Freedom. Always
One of my favorite sentences in this book comes early in the introduction: "A hungry free man is better off than a well-fed slave. Read more
Published on October 13, 2011 by Daniel Greene
4.0 out of 5 stars Unfortunate timing but great book
The book on Capitalism arrived just when the country was plunged into an unforgiving recession. But nonetheless, I enjoyed the book even though the timing was off.
Published on June 29, 2011 by Jagadeesh K. Venugopal
3.0 out of 5 stars Largely Correct Conclusions, Poor Reasoning
Thomas Donlan is, as am I, a fan of free markets and capitalism, which I define as a free market for capital. Read more
Published on June 15, 2010 by James Skrydlak
5.0 out of 5 stars Energetic defense of capitalism
Journalist Thomas G. Donlan is one of the U.S.'s strongest advocates of capitalism. The editorial page editor of Barron's, he is a convinced, and often convincing, champion of free... Read more
Published on February 1, 2010 by Rolf Dobelli
4.0 out of 5 stars Written like Conscience of a Conservative
The author does an excellent job separating the subjects into chapters. The book reminds me of reading Conscience of a Conservative by Barry Goldwater. Read more
Published on August 4, 2009 by DRoberts
3.0 out of 5 stars An adequate introduction
With all the talk about the distribution of wealth, it's easy to forget that it has to be created in the first place. This books tries to address that need. Read more
Published on July 16, 2009 by Rob T
4.0 out of 5 stars The Case for Laizzez-Faire
The book examines various major issues of the day and makes the case for why the issues are best addressed by free markets and not the government. Read more
Published on June 25, 2009 by E. Moscato
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic primer on Economics
I consider this book to be a fantastic primer on Economics, a subject that is not understood nearly well-enough, especially when you consider the state our economy is in currently. Read more
Published on May 21, 2009 by Nicholas Scopelliti
4.0 out of 5 stars Good overview of free market economics - covers lots (too many?)...
This book is a good, short argument that the best way to solve problems that politicians deal with such as energy supply, global warming, immigration issues is to rely on free... Read more
Published on May 2, 2009 by Dan Sherman
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