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October 22, 2007

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notsneaky

The fact that an author is listed as "So-and-so, PhD" is a pretty big signal about the quality.

Will

Although I often disagree with you Dani, I couldn't be with you more here.

steveb

My impression is that there is no body of knowledge in macroeconomics that is testable and verifiable. There are just politically correct and politically incorrect viewpoints. Thus one opinion becomes as valid as another.

paine

will b and company
churned out
some hot buttered
pop-econ
with their
bad capitalism
worse capitalism

talk about banality on toast

the k foundation got their money's worth

i used to have
A high regard
for mr B

now.... with is life style lifting
god bless the entrepreneurs
smoltz


HE'S FLOWN
INTO
THE george gilder
HEN COOP

i know i know
dr has an area of overlap on
the catalytic value
of
emerging market entrepreneurs


ya
and both
a viking warrior
and a milk cow have horns

Ken

This just makes me want to read them to see what the fuss is about.

wjd123

I know why I wouldn't read the first book "The Coming Economic Collapse," because judging from the table of contents it looks like a survivalist book for those who play the market. I don't have any money to invest, so why bother.

I couldn't get a look at the table of contents for the second book "The New Golden Age," but I did find this review by bubblemaniac:

"In this book, Batra explains how the economic chaos and political corruption will continue to escalate and worsen over the next few years until the working class eventually rise up like warriors against the acquisitor class (capitalist - Russ Winter calls them the "pigmen") who have infiltrated all aspects of our government, the press, and our society at large. This uprising will dawn a new golden era of prosperity for the masses and the working class. A move away from "trickle down" economics where indebtedness of the masses for the fortitude of the richest has resulted in an increasingly unstable bubble-led economy with resultant record trade imbalances that leaves us (as a nation and society) in a precarious and vulnerable situation."

This sounds like latter day Marxism to me. A lot of its Utopian appeal has been lost because of the the historical record of communism. Though in all fairness, Batra. also predicted the downfall of communism. Still I don't want to read it.

Lou Dobbs had a poll for his viewers last night asking this question:

"Do you believe America's middle class has any chance of recovering from the Bush administration's faith-based economic policies and so-called free trade?" (Yes, all of his poll questions are loaded, but this one I found interesting.)

Out of 8028 votes cast, 89% said no.

So the middle class is practicing nihilism, the working class is getting ready to revolt, and the investor class is looking for a way to make money on the collapse.

To answer the question of why people like to read books like the two mentioned is because they resonate with their mindset. Though if Batra is right about the revolution and Dobbs' poll is right about the nihilism it hard to understand why either class reads at all.

The last book I read of this genre was Harvard Economist, Benjamin M. Friedman's "Day of Reckoning--The Consequences of American Economic Policy Under Reagan and After."

SS

I don't know...but they have pretty good names. Even, now I really want to read them.

Regards

cvj

I think people read Ravi Batra because of his uncanny prescience as exhibited in his previous works:

The Great Depression of 1990 by Ravi Batra (Mass Market Paperback - May 1, 1988)

The Crash of the Millennium: Surviving the Coming Inflationary Depression by Ravi Batra (Hardcover - Sep 7, 1999)

inthemachine

Use of words like 'revolution,' 'oil,' and 'crash' in the title makes econ sound like intellectual NASCAR. Hard to beat that.

robertdfeinman

I don't know why you are objecting to the free market at work. If the books don't sell, publishers will stop offering them and authors will stop writing them.

It's why Britney Spears continues to appear on magazine covers - popular demand.

It's possible that even a very bad book has a few novel ideas or has gleaned some obscure facts. Unfortunately sometimes one has to wade through a lot of chaff first...

ben

payne wrote:

used to have
A high regard
for mr B

now.... with is life style lifting
god bless the entrepreneurs
smoltz

Smoltz? Do you mean John Smoltz, the pitcher for the Atlanta Braves? That's the only thing that came up when I googled Smoltz- what the heck are you talking about here?

gaddeswarup

I googled 'packaging smolz' and found similar verses in:
http://www.kapshow.com/pinkos/archives/2006/12/a_marketing_twi.html
There are probably more hints there.
According to Wikipedia Ravi Batra turned to religion at some stage and his predictions are not as good as they used to be.

Joseph Cohen

Why do they write it? Money. People are willing to buy it. These books are much more likely to sell than anything technical.

Why are people willing to buy it? If you put "so-and-so, PhD" on the jacket, then you are probably selling it to people who do not have doctorates, and are likely to be impressed by a doctorate degree. (If you have one, you know better). This type of audience is likely to be unaware that these types of studies are probably lacking in many respects. Unaware of the difference between a good and bad study, they probably opt for something a little more interesting than something with a sufficiently limited scope as to be rigorous.

To be honest, half of the highly technical stuff that I read is out of an obligation, in order to cover my bases in my own research -- and it _is_ really boring.

paine

ben

thanks for trying
to figure out
what in hell my writing
imagine
a typo is => his
and a heterodox spelling
of the german word for
sap running sentiment
in just 5 words
baumol and company
have written a very thibn bookette
on the dual chambered growth economy

台球杆

Wish you success! May you success!

SEO

Hello Good website, I love, I hope you do better! !

Bill aka NO DooDahs!

People read these books for the same reason adolescents love horror movies - the vicarious thrill.

Unfortunately many readers take this garbage seriously.

PhD = Piled, High and Deep. In far too many cases ...

infopractical

What's the complaint? That people read books that self-validate? And that people who want to eat and send their children to college are willing to write those books for them?

So, you have two options: (1) write books that people want to read, and (2) don't write books that people want to read.

You could in fact do (1) without resorting to what these authors resort to doing. You just have to be clever about it. You have ponder a bit until you understand something about human nature -- enough to know what initial ideas people are interested in. Then, take those ideas, and lead people to good, useful knowledge. Recognize that cover art is as important as labels on wine bottles to the consumers. Then do the job right so that lesser minds don't step ahead.

Or don't, and then bitch about the fact that people (who haven't yet studied enough economics to have a good decision calculus for what's good or bad economics) are reading books you don't like.

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Dani,

I think you are being facetious, as you know titles with high shock value sells. How's this: "The Next Coming Bull Market"


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