Political Bubbles: Financial Crises and the Failure of American Democracy

Princeton University Press
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Behind every financial crisis lurks a "political bubble"--policy biases that foster market behaviors leading to financial instability. Rather than tilting against risky behavior, political bubbles--arising from a potent combination of beliefs, institutions, and interests--aid, abet, and amplify risk. Demonstrating how political bubbles helped create the real estate-generated financial bubble and the 2008 financial crisis, this book argues that similar government oversights in the aftermath of the crisis undermined Washington's response to the "popped" financial bubble, and shows how such patterns have occurred repeatedly throughout US history.

The authors show that just as financial bubbles are an unfortunate mix of mistaken beliefs, market imperfections, and greed, political bubbles are the product of rigid ideologies, unresponsive and ineffective government institutions, and special interests. Financial market innovations--including adjustable-rate mortgages, mortgage-backed securities, and credit default swaps--become subject to legislated leniency and regulatory failure, increasing hazardous practices. The authors shed important light on the politics that blinds regulators to the economic weaknesses that create the conditions for economic bubbles and recommend simple, focused rules that should help avoid such crises in the future.


The first full accounting of how politics produces financial ruptures, Political Bubbles offers timely lessons that all sectors would do well to heed.

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About the author

Nolan McCarty is the Susan Dod Brown Professor of Politics and Public Affairs and chair of the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Keith T. Poole is the Philip H. Alston Jr. Distinguished Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Georgia. Howard Rosenthal is professor of politics at New York University and the Roger Williams Straus Professor of Social Sciences, Emeritus, at Princeton University.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Princeton University Press
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Published on
May 21, 2013
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Pages
368
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ISBN
9781400846399
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Language
English
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Genres
Business & Economics / Economics / General
Political Science / History & Theory
Political Science / Political Economy
Political Science / Political Ideologies / Democracy
Political Science / Political Ideologies / General
Political Science / Public Policy / Economic Policy
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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