Success often depends on timing. Though Mr Blyth has been working on this book for two years, its launch seems to have come at a very appropriate moment. After several years of austerity measures, public opinion in countries across the world is becoming more critical on the cutbacks their governments have brought in to reduce their deficits. Adding to that is the discovery that Reinhart and Rogoff’s models, the theoretical underpinning of these policies, were erroneous. This is a well researched and well argued book and the title, “Austerity: The History of a Dangerous Idea”, will give you a clear indication of where the author stands.
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BOOK REVIEW : “This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly” by Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff (2011)
A few weeks ago this book would have been read quickly, given an A+ with a little gold star and a request from the teacher for a “Show and Tell” from two of her best pupils. Thomas Herdon, a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst has dented the myth though by identifying the errors in their calculation. This has coincided with increasing criticisms of the current policies even in academic circles. Mark Blyth at Brown University has just published “Austerity: The History of a Dangerous Idea.” In this context, “This Time is Different” is certainly worth another critical read.