Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Panderer to Power: The Untold Story of How Alan Greenspan Enriched Wall Street and Left a Legacy of Recession Hardcover – November 12, 2009
|New from||Used from|
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Sheehan makes the case using several examples throughout Greenspan's career that the Fed Chairman couldn't have bungled it up any more than he did during his tenure. He weaves a story that can be hard to follow for the lay reader not versed in economic jargon which limits the book's impact when trying to assess and follow Sheehan's arguments. Being a book on economic policy and the Fed it's expected to touch on aspects of this but a lot of the storyline hinges on the reader understanding economic parlance and shuffling between dates of a specific timeline that make it hard to keep track of it all. This lack of understanding can limit the reader in grasping the full argument of the book having to instead come away only with broad estimations of Greenspan's negative performance.
The facts Sheehan presents concerning Greenspan's performance amount to the same standard economic argument against central banking and the Fed that has been put forth many times over. Economic explanations against government intervention abound. But why aren't people convinced, why isn't there an overwhelming popular sentiment to get rid of the Fed and establish a real system of laissez-faire? Because people aren't moved primarily by economics but by morality. Enter Ayn Rand and the real flaw of Sheehan's argument.
Given the amount of focus that Sheehan draws to Greenspan's record the reader can only assume that the author wishes there were merely a *better* bureaucrat sitting in as Chairman instead of Greenspan. The whole time he points out Greenspan's missteps he implicitly endorses the role the Fed plays in setting the terms of the economy merely disagreeing at what time or what percent the fed fund rate should have been changed to. Not once did he say as he should have that, "any rate the Fed makes will be the wrong one because it is arbitrary based on agency edict not market forces." This is where more tie-in to Ayn Rand's ethical and political theories would have been beneficial since Sheehan alludes to her a few times throughout the book and because Greenspan did in fact have a professional connection to Rand at one time. Sheehan cites Greenspan's essay, "Gold and Economic Freedom" found in Ayn Rand's Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal but mainly as retort to Greenspan's economic policies not as any deeper moral analysis.
Given that the subject of study is Greenspan's legacy and not the Fed in general it's expected that the author focus on that and in this task Sheehan accomplishes his goal. However in not presenting the arguments against government intervention on principle it leaves the reader with the impression that the fault lies solely with Greenspan or other individual bureaucrats and not the Fed itself. This is why if Sheehan had explained how Greenspan betrayed Rand's philosophy it would have helped bolster his thesis instead of having to rely on supposition regarding how many times he was on the cover of a magazine.
For the moral argument missing in Sheehan's book look for Rand's, Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal and for Greenspan's supposed enduring relation to Ayn Rand and Objectivism I refer you to "Alan Greenspan vs. Ayn Rand and Freedom" [...]
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The potentially unrecoverable damage done to the American financial system...Read more
For the bulk of my life so far, I have lived in the age of Alan Greenspan, the chairman of the Federal Reserve...Read more