• Unchecked and Unbalanced: How the Discrepancy Between Knowledge and Power Caused the Financial Crisis and Threatens Democracy (Hoover Studies in Politics, Economics, and Society)

    linked to by 2 published by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. on Tue 1st Dec 09
    Arnold Kling

    ISBN 144220124X

    In Unchecked and Unbalanced, Arnold Kling provides a blueprint for those who are skeptical of political and financial elitism. At the heart of Kling's argument is the growing discrepancy between two phenomena: knowledge is becoming more diffuse, while political power is becoming more concentrated. Kling sees this knowledge/power discrepancy at the heart of the financial crisis of 2008. Financial industry executives and regulatory officials lacked the ability to fathom the complexity of the system that had emerged.
  • Posts discussing this item

    • The Case for Competitive Government, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Wed 20th Jan 10

      Scott Sumner writes, The recent election of Scott Brown is just one more opportunity to ruminate over the excessive size of the US government. In earlier posts I have argued that there are big diseconomies of scale in governance. Small countries like Singapore,

    • Yuval Levin on Capitalism, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 14th Jan 10

      Now that it is on the web, I listened to Yuval Levin's lecture . Basically, Levin does not think that capitalism has any enemies. However, he thinks that it has many misguided and/or unreliable friends.1. Liberals are misguided/unreliable because they believe

    • TeaPartarians?, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 7th Jan 10

      The Bush Administration, particularly in its final year, discredited the Republican Party as a proponent of free markets. What should come next?One idea, promoted at Cato by Brink Lindsey and Will Wilkinson, is liberaltarianism. The idea is to approach liberals

    • Intellectuals and Society, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Tue 5th Jan 10

      It seems to be the theme du jour. The interview with Thomas Sowell continues. At one point, Sowell notes that we cannot blame Larry Summers for policies, because politicians are selecting the policies. I think that Bryan Caplan would say that you should not

    • Bernanke's Speech to the AEA, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Sun 3rd Jan 10

      He says, Slide 4 shows that the version of the Taylor rule based on forecast inflation (in green dots) explains both the course of monetary policy earlier in the past decade as well as the decision not to respond aggressively to what did in fact turn out to

    • Comes the Revolution..., by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 31st Dec 09

      Glenn Reynolds discusses using charitable donations to fund the now-killed D.C. school voucher program. In Unchecked and Unbalanced, one of the reforms I propose is to allow citizens rather than Congress to allocate some of their tax dollars to their preferred

    • Three Links from Mark Thoma, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 24th Dec 09

      Chosen from among those here.1. Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story write, authorities appear to be looking at whether securities laws or rules of fair dealing were violated by firms that created and sold these mortgage-linked debt instruments and then bet

    • The Regulators' Cognitive Failure, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Mon 21st Dec 09

      The Washington Post reports, The Fed's failure to foresee the crisis or to require adequate safeguards happened in part because it did not understand the risks that banks were taking, according to documents and interviews with more than three dozen current

    • Unchecked and Unbalanced Podcast, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Mon 21st Dec 09

      Tom Keene interviews me. He likes the fact that Unchecked and Unbalanced is short--only 116 pages.

    • Preview of Book 2, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Tue 1st Dec 09

      Policy Review publishes a preview of Book 2. Executives had too much confidence in their risk management strategies. Regulators, too, had excessive confidence in the measures that they had in place to ensure safety and soundness of banks and other regulated

    • The Party of No, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Mon 30th Nov 09

      The Washington Post reports, a new Washington Post poll also reveals deep dissatisfaction among GOP voters with the party's leadership as well as ideological and generational differences that may prove big obstacles to the party's plans for reclaiming power.

    • Book 1, Book 2, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 26th Nov 09

      Tyler Cowen recently said, if everyone read the book and was persuaded by it, would anything change for the better? An author should aim to write a book which matters. My latest book, Unchecked and Unbalanced is out. We might call it Book 2, since it is the

    • Think about for the Day

      posted to The Bayesian Heresy on Sun 22nd Nov 09

      In the United States today, democracy means that most people have essentially zero political power, and a relative handful of people have almost unimaginable power. The central point of Unchecked and Unbalanced is to call attention to the extreme political

    • The Government/Slavery Analogy, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Thu 19th Nov 09

      Reacting to my recent post on the analogy Robert Higgs drew between libertarianism and abolitionism, a commenter wrote, Hans Hoppe, hardcore libertarian, once described what may be the crucial difference between a democratic state and slavery: the latter was

    • Unchecked and Unbalanced Watch, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Wed 18th Nov 09

      Robert Higgs writes, Slavery existed for thousands of years, in all sorts of societies and all parts of the world. To imagine human social life without it required an extraordinary effort. Yet, from time to time, eccentrics emerged to oppose it, most of them

    • Unchecked and Unbalanced Watch, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Fri 13th Nov 09

      Michael Strong talks about special economic zones as a way of creating competition in governance. The idea seems similar to Paul Romer's concept of charter cities. Strong is optimistic that the state will "wither away" (as Marx would put it) if this sort of

    • Unchecked and Unbalanced Watch, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Wed 11th Nov 09

      John Kay writes, Control of rent-seeking requires decentralisation of economic power. These policies involve limits on the economic role of the state; constraints on the concentration of economic power in large business; constant vigilance at the boundaries

    • Status Competition, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Wed 11th Nov 09

      Gordon Wood, in Empire of Liberty, writes, After all, wealth, compared to birth, breeding, ethnicity, family heritage, gentility, even education, is the least humiliating means by which one person can claim superiority over another; and it is the one most easily

    • Paul Collier on Democracy, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Sun 8th Nov 09

      He writes, What incumbents fear most is not losing an election, but being overthrown by their own military. When the international community can protect a government from such a threat, it should do so, conditional upon the election being properly conducted.

    • Book Update, by Arnold Kling

      posted to EconLog on Fri 6th Nov 09

      It looks like I will have two books come out in the same month. The first one will be out in two weeks, but you cannot pre-order it on Amazon. The second one will be out in three weeks, and you can pre-order the book, called Unchecked and Unbalanced, now.I