Independent in All Things, Neutral in Nothing

Archive for March 2011

Review: Chernow’s Biography of Washington

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Ron Chernow’s The House of Morgan has sat unread on my bookshelf for more than a decade.  But when I learned he had written a biography of George Washington, I purchased and read it immediately. At more than 800 pages, it took a while to finish, but Chernow does an admirable job of bringing this America giant to life. Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Russell S.

March 14, 2011 at 2:06 am

“Exorbitant Privilege:” The Future of the US Dollar

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Michael Crittenden and Barry Eichengreen had a fascinating debate over the future of the US dollar in last week’s edition of the Wall Street JournalCrittenden avers that the dollar, despite talk to the contrary, will remain the global reserve currency because nothing presents itself as a legitimate alternative to the dollar at this point.  However, the US will experience diminishing returns for the status of the dollar.  On the contrary, Eichengreen posits that the US dollar will lose its global reserve status due to long-term deficits and competition from China’s renminbi and the Euro. Read the rest of this entry »

The Importance of Institutions: Analyzing the Egyptian Case

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The Middle East, from the Persian Gulf to the Maghreb, is currently in the throes of revolution.  Western journalists, in my opinion, suffering from myopia, are celebrating these revolutions as “the next 1989,” a series of revolutions that overthrew the political order in an entire region—the Eastern Bloc—and created a new world order in its place.  Let us examine this claim, with an eye toward institutions. Read the rest of this entry »