Monday, July 27, 2009

The Capitalist’s Bible: A Student's View

Our college intern, Sara Kendall, is an English major--but she's taken Intro to Economics AND Macroeconomics--making her the perfect choice to give us a student's perspective on The Capitalist's Bible edited by Gretchen Morgenson.

I happily drifted through high school without a clear understanding of how the economy actually worked. My basic understanding was that it was an economy, which was a word that meant “money,” and that it worked, which meant, “someday you will have the money.”

Try not to roll your eyes so much that they roll right out of your head. I have always been an English major at heart. I’m not great with numbers. Eventually I learned how to do my taxes and what a 401(k) was. Beyond that, things like learning how the economy functioned were not necessary for my life goals (and were probably best left in someone else’s hands anyway). Obviously I was going to
be fine.

Then the economy died. And obviously I was doomed.

Enter The Capitalist’s Bible. This book has saved my sanity.

It seems like common sense, but in easier times, we tend to overlook the idea that we all need to be informed of how the economy, and capitalism, works. Where do we each fit into the system? And why does it matter to me?

The Capitalist’s Bible answers these questions. It explains the basic concepts of the system that underwrites the American economy.

Personally, I wish I’d had to read this in school. I was, in fact, required to take an Economics class there, it just happened to be one where we did no reading and a lot of math. This book is an invaluable tool in learning and teaching the most fundamental concepts you need to understand if you have any hope of understanding capitalism and the economy as a whole.

I didn’t have an interest in the economy until it up and died, but I do now. Gretchen Morgenson’s The Capitalist’s Bible is essential reading that has (shockingly) made me curious to learn more.

The Capitalist's Bible will publish in September. However, I have a galley to giveaway to the first three people who email me!


  1. There is some socialist and even communistic views in the real bible. Here's something in the new testament:
    "There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. There was a Levite, a native of Cyprus, Joseph, to whom the apostles gave the name Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”). He sold a field that belonged to him, then brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet."
    (Acts 4:34-37)
    Is it possible that Marx’s famous line “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need” took its inspiration directly from the New Testament?

  2. The Bible verses quoted above actually make a case for Capitalism rather than Communism. Notice Barnabas sold land "...belonging to him..." Under Socialism you don't really own anything - in Communism, the means of production belongs to the State and they have powers to redistribute it as they see fit, often at gunpoint. But Barnabas was free to keep his land if he chose to. Private ownership and freewill is evident in these Bible verses. That's Capitalism - "the economic system wherein the means of production are privately owned". What we do see illusrated in these Bible verses is GENEROSITY, not Socialism and Communism.