Review of How an Economy Grows and Why It Crashes

Peter Schiff, recently famous for crashing the Occupy protests while carrying a sign saying “I am the 1%”, and his brother put out this book in honor of their father who is in jail for protesting the U.S. tax system. The Schiff brothers take a unique approach to explaining basic economics. Developing on the Robinson Crusoe model (how does the economy work for one person on an island?), this small book cruises through from 3 people on an island to a modern economy in a no time. The action of the story is broken up by sections called “Take Aways” and such.

The books greatest asset is its greatest weakness. The lightheartedness of the story makes it easy to read for anyone. According the Schiff brothers, economics is a simple task that economists have made complicated. I tend to agree. However, this leaves the book vulnerable to claims of naivety and simple mindedness. It’s hard to argue with those accusations when there are pictures on every page.

All-in-all, a simple read with good economic insights. However, I was hoping for a more developed approach to Austrian economics when I picked this up…. Should have read some reviews. 3 of 5 stars.


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