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No-one Makes You Shop at Wal-Mart

The surprising deceptions of individual choice
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2nd September 2014 Darat (Lackey)
 
Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism
Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism

A book attacking the hypocrisy of developed nations on how they lecture developing countries to do as they say, not as they did, to become developed.
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24th August 2013 09:35 AM by IllegalArgument Go to last post
 
Globalization and its Discontents
Globalization and its Discontents

Not really about globalisation per se, Stiglitz instead has some highly rational "Washington Dissent" with the IMF/World Bank and its interventions in East Asia, Russia and Latin America in the late 1990s. Delivered with all the insider authority of a former Chief Economist and Nobel... Read more
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21st August 2013 07:17 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
The Price of Inequality
The Price of Inequality

This reviewer had high hopes for this book--which advertised itself as an analysis of the causes of income/wealth inequality as well as of the economic and political impacts--and is written by a Nobel laureate. It has none of the charts and estimation coefficients with which "The... Read more
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19th August 2013 09:42 PM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
Fault Lines
Fault Lines
How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten The World Economy

This reviewer never read many books about the financial crisis of 2008 (and beyond). Having been up-close to it, and working on "Lehman Sunday" (14 Sept 08) netting out derivatives positions with that institution for her then employer (it worked out just fine), she was for a long time put... Read more
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15th August 2013 11:18 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
Civilization
Civilization
The Six Killer Apps of Western Power

This reviewer always learns plenty from Niall Ferguson's books, but she feels that excessive effort is made to shape a thesis into an absorbing story, such that it usually ends up (to her) as so meticulous and precise as to strain credibility--beyond being one of several thousand... Read more
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11th August 2013 10:19 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
What Money Can't Buy
What Money Can't Buy
The Moral Limits of Markets

The opening intro to this book was deceptively pedestrian to this reviewer: providing a laundry-list of things money can buy (helpfully called commodities whenever the emphasis is supposed to be that it should not be able to)--none of which greatly surprised her or gave her instinctive cause... Read more
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6th August 2013 09:56 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
Consciousness beyond life
1 Attachment(s) Consciousness beyond life

A book on Near Death Experiences supporting a new and paranormal view of consciousness
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25th July 2013 03:04 PM by Dr B Go to last post
 
Mistakes Were Made (but not by me)
Mistakes Were Made (but not by me)
Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts

A very readable overview of self-justification and dissonance theory. Reviews the scientific research on the topic and includes many real-world examples of how cognitive dissonance works. Includes pointers on how to combat our built-in tendency towards self-justification.
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25th May 2013 10:15 PM by Natural Born Skeptic Go to last post
 
Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar
Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar
Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes

Here’s a lively, hilarious, not-so-reverent crash course through the great philosophical traditions, schools, concepts, and thinkers. It’s Philosophy 101 for everyone who knows not to take all this heavy stuff too seriously. Some of the Big Ideas are Existentialism (what do Hegel and Bette Midler ha
Last Activity
29th January 2013 12:33 PM by IllegalArgument Go to last post
 
Supernormal Stimuli
Supernormal Stimuli
How Primal Urges Overran Their Evolutionary Purpose

This wonderful book starts with a discussion of the cuckoo bird who will place one of its eggs in the nest of another bird with similar, yet smaller, eggs. The other bird will then devote its attention to the cuckoo egg since it is bigger. supernormal stimuli, such as this example can be... Read more
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19th July 2012 07:40 PM by happyskeptic Go to last post
 
Attack of the Theocrats
Attack of the Theocrats

Sean Faircloth is the past president of the Secular Coalition for America and is currently working with Richard Dawkins. His message is about activism.
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18th July 2012 11:00 AM by happyskeptic Go to last post
 
Moonwalking with Einstein
Moonwalking with Einstein
The Art and Science of Remembering Everything

The title makes it seem like a how to, but it is rather the story of the author on his one year quest to become the U.S. memory champ.
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9th May 2012 05:00 AM by Careyp74 Go to last post
 
The End of Poverty
The End of Poverty
How we can make it happen in our lifetime

Sachs’ book is ostensibly the most liberal and left-leaning of its decade’s crop of mainstream discussions of development economics. Before this reviewer read it she was more aware of the criticisms of calls to "double aid" than she was of the arguments, and to some extent it stands alone... Read more
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23rd March 2012 07:19 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
The White Man's Burden
The White Man's Burden
Why the West's Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good

"Don’t do it" seems to be the message directed at aid agencies, western governments, transnational (Bretton Woods) organisations and NGOs—in respect of the majority of all their respective efforts to help the poor. While the first tragedy of the world’s poor is poverty itself, Easterly’s... Read more
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23rd March 2012 07:15 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
The Bottom Billion
The Bottom Billion
Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It

This reviewer had to read Bottom Billion through a couple of times because she found it unusually packed with knowledge. Not to mention cool-headed, analytical in high measure, and usefully lacking in political polemic which made it all the more readable. Amid the evidence of... Read more
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23rd March 2012 07:09 AM by Francesca R Go to last post
 
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