Book Review: The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes by Raoul McLaughlin

[FULL DISCLOSURE: I received my copy of this book free from the author and/or publisher. I was not paid for this review and the opinion expressed is purely my own] Many people think that global trade is a relatively new development in the world.  That is not the case and The Roman Empire and the Silk Routes by Raoul McLaughlin describes the ways in which ancient Rome and China traded goods over the ancient Silk Routes. First, the specs.  There are 225 pages of text divided into 14 topical chapters and 5 appendices.  There are also extensive notes, a bibliography and an index. While many histories of both Rome and … More after the Jump…

Book Review: The Only Game in Town: Central Banks, Instability, and Avoiding the Next Collapse by Mohamed A. El-Arian

In The Only Game in Town Dr. El-Arian writes a prescient and provocative book that takes a long hard look at modern central banking and the global economy in an effort to describe where the world can go from where it is right now. The book itself is divided into six topical parts with 35 chapters.  There are 264 pages of text with notes and an index. The central premise of the book is that since the outbreak of the Great recession in 2008 the only economic institutions that have acted responsibly in response to the crash have been the Central Banks and that have been forced to step into … More after the Jump…

Book Review: The New Case for Gold by James Rickards

I have previously reviewed James Rickards other books The Death of Money and Currency Wars and found them both well written and compelling reads. His newest book, The New Case for Gold is no different. This is not a huge book but it covers its topic very well. The book is not hugeat 172 pages of text with an acknowledgements section and index. It is organized into 6 topical chapters and a conclusion. The first five chapters essentially explain at length why gold is worth owning even though central bankers say it is not. The essential argument, and one that I happen to agree with is that gold is money. … More after the Jump…

Book Review: Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell

Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy by Thomas Sowell I picked this book up because I enjoy reading Dr. Sowell’s editorial and opinion pieces and thought if they are so good then the book must be good as well.  I was not disappointed.  I will admit that I was at best a lackluster math student in school, hence the reason my degrees are in History and not business.  I have a grasp of economics and economic principles but this book made many things clear to me that I thought I knew but come to find out only dimly understood. An appeal of this book is it’s clear examples … More after the Jump…

Similarities Between the 1920’s and Today?

I am currently reading The Origins of the First World War (3rd Edition), during a pause in my reading I started thinking about not the origins of WWI but its results.  To say that the peace of Versailles was flawed is an understatement.  Given the unsettled economic situation of the Euro and the recently announced renunciation of deposit guarantees by the government of Cyprus I started to wonder if there are parallels between then and now despite the lack of a just concluded titanic war on the continent.  I think that the economics are similar, even to the extent of the various crises being self-inflicted wounds. There were many things wrong with the Treaty of Versailles but … More after the Jump…

Book Review: Race & Economics: How Much Can be Blamed on Discrimination? by Walter E. Williams

I was first motivated to buy this book by the blizzard of negative articles and news pieces about it when it was first published. I also realize that I am opening myself to charges that I am not competent to comment or even post a review of this book because I am white, as the picture on the About Me page clearly shows. I am going to review it anyway because I think the book was worth reading and worth talking about even if someone disagrees with its conclusions. Williams makes several highly controversial points in this book about policies that have kept black people and other minorities from achieving … More after the Jump…