This shockingly simple question opens the door to look at history as a guide for what is to come for the U.S. economy. Florida reviews two different economic slowdowns in American history, the Long Recession of the 1870s, and the Great Depression of the 1930s, and compares those to our most recent financial meltdown of 2007-present.
While there are a number of accounts of what went wrong, and whose fault it was that the economy tanked (Big greedy banks! The dollar-hungry, exchange-rate fixing Chinese! Government’s insatiable quest for higher levels of home ownership! Homeowners’ binge-spending, house-as-ATM profligacy!), Florida largely leaves the causes of the crisis aside. This is really for the better. Florida is a metropolitan sociologist – primarily concerned with what makes cities, and what makes them better.
But, Florida hits on a larger theme that has so far been ignored by most Great Recession books: what now? Continue reading “What Now? Resetting the Economy for the Next 50 Years”