Inflated: How Money and Debt Built the American Dream

(Wiley, 2010)

Book Forum
February 8, 2011 12:00PM
Hayek Auditorium
Featuring the author Christopher Whalen, Institutional Risk Analytics; with comments by Dean Baker, Center for Economic and Policy Research; and Alex Pollock, American Enterprise Institute; moderated by Mark Calabria, Cato Institute.

Americans view themselves as reasonably prudent and sober people when it comes to matters of money. Yet as a community, we also seem to believe that we are entitled to a lifestyle that is well beyond our income, a tendency that goes back to the earliest days of the United States and particularly to get-rich-quick experiences ranging from the Gold Rush of the 1840s to the real-estate bubble of the early 21st century. Inflated examines this apparent conflict, as it seeks to tell the story of money inflation and public debt as recurring features of American life. Inflated also draws on the insights of Austrian business-cycle theory in painting its picture of American economic history.