Balance by Glenn Hubbard
The Economics of Great Powers from Ancient Rome to Modern America

59%

7 Critic Reviews

Readers will conclude, as many a history tutor has written on an undergraduate essay: “This thesis needs more work.”
-The Economist

Synopsis

In this groundbreaking book, two economists explain why economic imbalances cause civil collapse—and why America could be next.

From the Ming Dynasty to Ottoman Turkey to Imperial Spain, the Great Powers of the world emerged as the greatest economic, political, and military forces of their time—only to collapse into rubble and memory. What is at the root of their demise—and how can America stop this pattern from happening again?

A quarter century after Paul Kennedy's Rise and Fall of the Great Powers, Glenn Hubbard and Tim Kane present a bold, sweeping account of why powerful nations and civilizations break down under the heavy burden of economic imbalance. Introducing a profound new measure of economic power, Balance traces the triumphs and mistakes of imperial Britain, the paradox of superstate California, the long collapse of Rome, and the limits of the Japanese model of growth. Most importantly, Hubbard and Kane compare the twenty-first century United States to the empires of old and challenge Americans to address the real problems of our country’s dysfunctional fiscal imbalance. Without a new economics and politics of balance, they show the inevitable demise ahead.
 

About Glenn Hubbard

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Glenn Hubbard is the dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business and the former chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. He is a frequent contributor to Business Week, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times, as well as PBS’s The Nightly Business Report and American Public Media’s Marketplace. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and two sons.Tim Kane is the chief economist of the Hudson Institute, veteran Air Force officer, and has twice served at the Joint Economic Committee of the US Congress. He regularly writes for The Atlantic, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and USA TODAY and is a well-known public speaker. He lives in northern Virginia with his wife and children.
 
Published May 21, 2013 by Simon & Schuster. 368 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Education & Reference, History. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Balance
All: 7 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 4

NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Robert D. Kaplan on Aug 02 2013

...because the authors assail Kennedy’s thesis mainly through numbers, they miss a larger, more subtle point: that the cost of foreign military adventures saps a nation’s energies...

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Publishers Weekly

Good
on May 06 2013

Theirs is political economy with a grand historical sweep—and provocative implications for the present.

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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Matthew Rees on Jun 20 2013

For America, Messrs. Hubbard and Kane see "the storm clouds of history" gathering on the horizon. The culprits are again internal: political inertia and, because of wayward policies, the erosion of economic vigor.

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Kirkus

Above average
on May 15 2013

The authors’ tone is less alarmist than, say, David Stockman’s, but there’s not much room for good news here, either.

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Financial Times

Below average
Reviewed by Edward Luce on Jun 07 2013

Their chapters on the US...are neither fun nor convincing. America does, indeed, face deep challenges...Regulation of election spending is not among them. It beats me how anyone could conclude that it was.

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NY Journal of Books

Good
Reviewed by Stephen Roulac on May 21 2013

Dealing with big ideas and important concepts, Balance is engagingly and accessibly told, for anyone with basic third grade arithmetic can follow the important numbers. Balance merits the widest audience.

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The Economist

Below average
on Jun 29 2013

Readers will conclude, as many a history tutor has written on an undergraduate essay: “This thesis needs more work.”

Read Full Review of Balance: The Economics of Gre... | See more reviews from The Economist

Reader Rating for Balance
70%

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