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Inflated: How Money and Debt Built the American Dream Americans as a whole view themselves as reasonably prudent and sober people when it comes to matters of money, even though the choices we make at the ballot box and in Washington seem to be at odds with that self image. Yet drawing on the ideal of the American Dream, our nation seems to believe that we are ...More
entitled to a national agenda and personal lifestyle that is beyond our current income, a tendency that goes back to the earliest days of the United States. This book examines this apparent conflict by telling the history of the nation from a political and financial perspective, and with an emphasis on the portions of the narrative prior to the past decade of economic boom and bust. Events such as the Gold Rush of the 1840s, the Civil War, the creation of the Federal Reserve System, and the two World Wars, are examined in the context of the changing definition of the aspirations of a nation, what we shall call the American Dream.