Aug 22 2010

The Ascent of Money

Published by under Meetings

On Friday 27 August, David will introduce us to the book “The Ascent of Money” by Niall Ferguson. He writes:

This book talks about the  “Boom and Bust cycles” that have gone on for ever and was written after the start of the current financial “bust”, so it is very topical.

“The Ascent of Money” does not say much about religion, but it implies a lot about the reality of human behaviour despite centuries of religious belief about the essential “goodness?” of man.

The book brought home to me how many world events are triggered by financial events and considerations. For instance the American civil war was lost, not by the superior forces of the North or the moral force of its cause, but by the fact that the South ran out of credit before the North did. The South’s bonds were backed by the future sale of cotton, which for a reason totally unrelated to the war, suddenly dropped in value.

Another observation from reading the book, is that whilst moral values have existed through out time, when it comes to money, moral considerations are of little concern on the list of factors that finally decide the issue of the day.

Which raises for me the huge gap between “Sunday values” and  “Weekday values” which has been evident throughout time.

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