Overview: The Bubble and Beyond by Michael Hudson

The Road from Industrial Capitalism to Finance Capitalism and Debt Peonage
Essays on Fictitious Capital, Debt Deflation and the Global Crisis by Michael Hudson

Summary and Analytic Table of Contents
Introduction: Today’s Financial Crisis and Economic Theory
Summary and Analytic Table of Contents
Introduction: Today’s Financial Crisis and Economic Theory

I. Fictitious Capital and Economic Fictions
  1. Two Traditions of Financial Doctrine
  2. The Magic of Compound Interest: Mathematics at the Root of the Crisis
  3. How Ricardo’s Value Theory Ignored the Role of Debt
  4. The Industrialization of Finance and the Financialization of Industry
  5. The Use and Abuse of Mathematical Economics
  6. The Financial Character of Today’s Crisis

II. From Inflated Debts to Debt Deflation
  7. Property is Worth Whatever a Bank Will Lend Against It
  8. The Real Estate Bubble at the Core of Today’s Debt-leveraged Economy
  9. Junk-Bonding Industry
 10. Privatizing Social Security to Rescue Wall Street
 11. Saving, Asset-Price Inflation, and Debt Deflation
 12. Saving our Way into Debt Peonage

III: The Global Crisis
 13. Trade and Payments in a Financialized Economy
 14. U.S. Quantitative Easing fractures the Global Economy
 15. America’s Monetary Imperialism: Dollar Debt Reserves without Constraint
 16. The Dollar Glut Finances America’s Military Build-up
 17. De-dollarizing the Global Economy
 18. Incorporating the Rentier Sectors into a Financial Model

IV: The Need for a Clean Slate
 19. From Democracy to Oligarchy: National Economies at the Crossroads
 20. Scenarios for Recovery

This summary of my economic theory traces how industrial capitalism has turned into finance capitalism. (emphasis added). The finance, insurance and real estate (FIRE) sector has emerged to create “balance sheet wealth” not by new tangible investment and employment, but financially in the form of debt leveraging and rent-extraction. This rentier overhead is overpowering the economy’s ability to produce a large enough surplus to carry its debts. As in a radioactive decay process, we are passing through a short-lived and unstable phase of “casino capitalism,” which now threatens to settle into leaden austerity and debt deflation.

This situation confronts society with a choice either to write down debts to a level that can be paid (or indeed, to write them off altogether with a Clean Slate), or to permit creditors to foreclose, concentrating property in their own hands (including whatever assets are in the public domain to be privatized) and imposing a combination of financial and fiscal austerity on the population. This scenario will produce a shrinking debt-ridden and tax-ridden economy.

Continue here ...  http://michael-hudson.com/2012/08/overview-the-bubble-and-beyond/

Note: I have purchased and received the book. It is not inexpensive, since it is print-on-demand, but I highly recommend it. Tom Christoffel