This is really a report on faddish Accounting, because it drives so much else. Including retirement. Or, given there is a shortage of workers in the country, de-retirement.
Jacob Soll’s book The Reckoning: Financial Accountability and the Rise and Fall of Nations provided some of the impetus for the ideas herein.
Soll’s next book, Free Market: The History of an Idea will be released in early September, perhaps just in time for collapse this fall. Free markets are a good idea, but when jobs go offshore – and when vulture capitalism reigns – let alone when we live with a U.S. central bank that “makes up bonds” and they buys those bonds itself? Well, let’s just say that the “free market idea” gets complicated to say the least.
Which has no doubt been set-up by an excessive focus on pure financializations.
As his first book, Soll points out with genuine historical pedigree, that Accounting wasn’t supposed to be that way. CDO’s and Enron and whoever will be along shortly…
Instead, accounting was once used in Rome to really imbue excellence in government and in a People. Behind economic cycles, Soll nails changes in accounting. FASB notions aside, we think of Accounting in the same light as the Supreme Court. Not supposed to change with fads, but what’cha going to do?
All useful grist for understanding today’s world. Though we’ll warm up to it slowly to avoid sudden thinking shock. Some headlines and this morning’s ChartPack should be the right tonic for that.