Friday, January 30, 2009

Smart (or as we say in Boston, "Smaht")

I finally got Whatever Happened to Penny Candy? from the library and finished it last night. Coincidentally, I also started it last night. It's that thin. But, man! is it full of good, easily accessible information (the author states in his opening, A Note about Economics, that "No concept was included until it was declared to be clear and easy to understand" by his advisory group of students, business managers, and investors).

The book starts with the amusing poem, Smart, by Shel Silverstein from Where the Sidewalk Ends. The seemingly clueless child who narrates the poem may be onto something here.

Penny Candy gives some interesting lessons in the history of money, its debasement by governments looking to fund public projects, and the use and counterfeiting of fiat money more recently. The book, a revised edition of Precious Metals, Politics and Paper Money: Key to Understanding Inflation and Recession, written in 1978, was last revised by the author, Richard Maybury, in 1993. I'm guessing not even the author had an idea how important understanding the facts presented in his little book would become for all of us.

If you are concerned about, but confused by what is going on with our economy, I recommend this thin book as a primer on your way to becoming "smahtah" about the economic situation today.

And you can thank Beth for the pointer, too.


HaynesBE said...


Glad you liked the book. Maybury wrote another one "The Money Mystery" which is even shorter. It is specifically aimed at explaining the effect of money velocity (how fast a dollar circulates in the economy)and the effect on inflation. His book Whatever Happened to Justice is also worth reading.

Lynne said...

I found the whole velocity idea intriguing and am not done on posting about the tiny book (look for a "tanstaafl" post at some point).

And congratulations on the new blog. I've added it to the my side bar.

Whatever Happened to Justice is next on my library list.