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John Maynard Keynes Paperback – April 16, 2008
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From the Back Cover
About the Author
Hyman P. Minsky, Ph.D., was the first to explain how uncertainty, risk, and financial markets drive the economy. He was a distinguished scholar at The Levy Economics Institute of Bard college, and taught at Washington University for 25 years.
Top Customer Reviews
Chapter two explores the more orthodox (conventional) view of Keynesian economics. Chapter three is very good, as it spells out the concepts that are to be used later in Minsky's analysis of capitalism: the recurrence of the business cycle, uncertainty, and investment and disequilibrium.
Chapters 4 - 7 develop Minsky's theory of capitalism. Minsky argues that booms are inevitably followed by crises and debt deflation not because of certain institutional weaknesses, but because of the fundamental nature of capitalism. In other words, "Keynes visualized [the imperfections of the financial system] as systemic rather than accidental or perhaps incidental attributes of capitalism." Minsky explores the way investments are made, and examines how they are financed. Central to Minsky's analysis is the importance of uncertainty. Financing and liability structures cannot insulate themselves from danger (excessive risk) precisely because the future is uncertain.Read more ›
The second topic covered through most of the remainder of the book consists in the correct interpretation of Keynes according to Minsky and the integration of Minsky's own theory of crisis within Keynes' framework. Minsky attempts to do both simultaneously. And, he generates a rather awkward narrative. Minsky acknowledges numerous times that Keynes did not advance a logical model of bubbles and crises. He also adds that Keynes ignored the dynamics of the debt side of the balance sheet of households, companies, banks, and governments. And, that's where Minsky's own brilliant theory comes in. And, that is why he is one of the most praised economists in this post-housing crisis era.
However, Minsky contradicts himself.Read more ›
Keynes' thinking largely broke free of the conventional wisdom, that wrecking the trade unions would make the market work again. But he didn't leave behind all conventional free trade thinking.
Minsky writes, "the missing step in the standard Keynesian theory was the explicit consideration of capitalist finance within a cyclical and speculative context." Minsky shows that private investment is the constant source of speculation, instability, slumps and mass unemployment.
Minsky shows the conflict at the centre of capitalism: "the boom is critical; it builds an ever-more-demanding liability structure on the base of a cash-flow foundation consisting of the prospective yields of capital assets, which are, because of technology and the limited ability to squeeze workers' real wages, at best constrained ultimately to grow at a steady rate in real terms. The debt base, which grows at an accelerating rate during a boom, is not so constrained. Thus, debts require increased servicing as they grow and as financing charges increase."
He observes, "In Keynes' own view his theory implied that the existing order should be replaced by a much more egalitarian economy, based upon a dominance of social control over investment. As the private, profit-motivated decisions to invest cannot guarantee a reasonable approximation to full employment, `a somewhat comprehensive socialization of investment' (GT, p. 378) will prove necessary." But Keynes breezed over the politics needed to do this.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I think that if one wants to get familiar with the great insight of Minsky (which by the way I think is a very good idea), this is the book to begin with.Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
Minsky's supreme statement of his Financial Instability Hypothesis--far better than the later and better known "Stabilising an Unstable Economy". Read morePublished 17 months ago by Steve Keen
The typesetting and paper were a bit cheap. And Minsky is not always the clearest writer (he could have benefitted from reading Rudolf Fleisch). But these are important insights. Read morePublished on April 16, 2014 by Hazard
In this text Minsky analyzes why the Neo-classical synthesis should be rejected and does not represent a outgrowth of Keynes' work in "The General Theory of Employment, Interest,... Read morePublished on July 5, 2013 by Gregory Alan Wingo
This book presents a convincing case that important aspects of Keynes' thinking has been neglected or omitted from the neoclassical synthesis. Read morePublished on March 4, 2013 by Rob Julian
This is the kind of book that everyone should read. Especially in this time of economic upheaval. There is a lot of useful information here.Published on March 25, 2012 by Dorothy M. Dupont
Dr. Hyman Minsky has written a very interesting, pertinent, and generally very readable interpretation and exposition of the economics of John Maynard Keynes. Dr. Read morePublished on March 13, 2011 by Crosslands
I am not trained in economics, but I have been trying to educate myself. I read Mr Keynes 1935 book, The General Theory...and didn't understand much of it. Read morePublished on November 19, 2010 by Timmo
The author makes a statement that conventional intepretation of Keynes's ideas loses the true meaning and spirit of the real theory of JMK. Read morePublished on April 22, 2010 by Amazon Customer