In early May, John Wiley & Sons released Debt, Deficits, and the Demise of the American Economy by Peter Tanous and Jeff Cox. I looked forward to reading this book because Jeff Cox is one of my favorite financial writers, not only at his post at CNBC.com, but on the entire World Wide Web. Unfortunately, I came away from the publication dissatisfied with the contents. Not the writing, which I expected to be solid, and, not the subject matter, but that it doesn't distinguish itself from the pack of books that are already out there.
I don't mean to violate the company handbook by not endorsing it, and, I am not going to give it a tongue-lashing because it does have merit. However, there are other books on the shelves on the same subject (and yes, many of them are from the same publisher), that better command your attention and disposable income. These other books I'm referring to by Wiley are The Age of Deleveraging by Gary Shilling, Endgame by John Mauldin and Jonathan Tepper, and, Aftershock by David Wiedemer, Robert Wiedemer and Cindy Spitzer.
All of the above publications, including Debt, Deficits, and the Demise of the American Economy, discuss the global sovereign debt crisis, how the handwriting is already on the wall, and, that we are at the point of no return. It's like our fate is sealed and you can see your life flashing before your eyes. These are all distinguished authors. They don't live on their own planets in an alternative universe. They tell it like it is. You may not agree with what they are saying, but they back up their arguments with facts, and lots of them. They see financial thermonuclear disruption. It's too late to talk it off the ledge.
That's not saying that all this is going to come to pass. It's just their theories, theories that I've subscribed to for a few years. None of the authors gives a timetable when all of this will happen, but they believe it will be soon. I don't intend to shortchange Debt, Deficits, and the Demise of the American Economy, it's just that out of the four books I've mentioned in this review, it's last on the reading list. In addition, it doesn't give you enough information on where to park your assets other than to invest in oil and gold. Although I did learn a few things from the book, I wanted more. Maybe I just expected too much.
That said, even though I did not glean that much new information from Debt, Deficits, and the Demise of the American Economy, it may be a good starting point for those of you who haven't read the other three books I have mentioned. The Tanous and Cox publication is a more breezy read as opposed to the other ones. In addition, there is an immediacy to the book in that it discusses the unraveling of the European Union and how that will be the trip hammer for a global meltdown. Not to give too much away, but after Europe implodes, the United States is next, at least according to the book. End of story.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.