Saturday, March 15, 2014

More Book Arrivals

Publishers often send me books for potential reviewing at EPJ. I don't review them all, but starting with this post I will announce any books I receive.  Later, I will review some of them, but not all.

War, Empire, and the Military: Essays on the Follies of War and U.S. Foreign Policy by Laurence M. Vance. You can always expect quality writing and analysis from Laurence. From the blurb: These 127 essays, although organized under seven headings, have one underlying theme: opposition to the warfare state that robs us of our liberty, our money, and in some cases our life. Conservatives who decry the welfare state while supporting the warfare state are terribly inconsistent. The two are inseparable. Libertarians who are opposed to war on principle, but support the state's bogus "war on terrorism," even as they remain silent about the U.S. global empire, are likewise contradictory. Although many of these essays reference contemporary events, the principles discussed in all of them are timeless: war, militarism, empire, interventionism, and the warfare state. In chapter 1, "War and Peace," the evils of war and warmongers and the benefits of peace are examined. In chapter 2, "The Military," the evils of standing armies and militarism are dis-cussed, including a critical look at the U.S. military. In chapter 3, "The War in Iraq," the wickedness of the Iraq War is exposed. In chapter 4, "World War II," the "good war" is shown to be not so good after all. In chapter 5, "Other Wars," the evils of war and the warfare state are chronicled in specific wars: the Crimean War (1854 1856), the Russo-Japanese War (1904 1905), World War I (1914 1918), the Persian Gulf War (1990 1991), and the war in Afghanistan (2001 ). In chapter 6, "The U.S. Global Empire," the beginnings, growth, extent, nature, and consequences of the U.S. empire of bases and troops are revealed and critiqued. In chapter 7, "U.S. Foreign Policy," the belligerence, recklessness, and follies of U.S. foreign policy are laid bare.

Money Mania: Booms, Panics, and Busts from Ancient Rome to the Great Meltdown by Bob Swarup. From the blurb:Money Mania is a sweeping account of financial speculation and its consequences, from ancient Rome to the Meltdown of 2008. Acclaimed journalist and investor Bob Swarup tracks the history of speculative fevers caused by the appearance of new profitable investment opportunities; the new assets created and the increasing self-congratulatory euphoria that drives them to unsustainable highs, all fed by an illusion of insight and newly minted experts; the unexpected catalysts that eventually lead to panic; the inevitable crash as investors scramble to withdraw their funds from the original market and any other that might resemble it; and finally, the brevity of financial memory that allows us to repeat the cycle without ever critically evaluating the drivers of this endless cycle. Note: The book only has one reference to the great Austrian business cycle theorist, Ludwig von Mises, it comes in a footnote.

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