Book Review The General Theory Of Employment Interest And Money by John Maynard Keynes

It seems that most editorials about John Maynard Keynes are have an tremendous political slant and are generally done by those who have never even read this book. Primarily they are against his core conclusion that broadened government participation is required in the economy for stabilization functions. The key to comprehending Keynes is the idea that at unique times in the business cycle, an economy can become over-productive (or under-consumptive) and consequently, an agressive spiral is started that results in considerable layoffs and cuts in production as businesses try to balance aggregate supply and demand.

Thus, full employment is simply one of several or multiple macro equilibria. If an economy reaches an underemployment equilibrium, something is necessary to enhance or spark demand to generate full employment. This something could possibly be business investment but The General Theory Of Employment states because of the logic and unique characteristics of investment choices, it is less likely to rapidly reestablish full employment.

Keynes logically seizes upon the public budget and government expenditures as the shortest way to restore full employment. Borrowing the money to fund the deficit from private households and businesses is a fast, direct approach to restore full employment while at the same time, redirecting or transfering off the funds from the private sector which prompted the over-production in the first place. This book is essential to understand modern economics.

There are many things The General Theory Of Employment and Keynes was right about as well as completely wrong about. However, understanding his perspective is important when weighing alternative viewpoints. It is also important to compare his ideas with the actions of governments. You will at times see massive deviations from his theory into areas that he never suported to such extent that he wrote an open letter to FDR protesting his actions while trying to recover from the Great Depression.

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