WAR AND GOLD

WAR AND GOLD                                       KWASI KWARTENG
Posted:  July 16, 2014

War and Gold: A 500-Year History of Empires, Adventures, and DebtIn the sixteenth century, Spanish conquistadors discovered the New World. The vast quantities of gold and silver would make their country rich, yet the new wealth, which was plunged into multiple wars, would eventually lead to the economic ruin of their empire. Here, historian and politician Kwasi Kwarteng shows that this moment in world history has been echoed many times, from the French Revolution to both World Wars, right up to the present day, when our own financial crisis saw many of our great nations slip into financial trouble. Kwarteng reveals a pattern of war-waging, financial debt and fluctuations between paper money and the gold standard, and creates a compelling study of the powerful relationship that has shaped the world as we know it, that between war and gold.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
This book starts with the explorers and the discovery of gold and silver from the South American Indians who were killed. He later explains how silver at one time was more valuable than gold and how all of these explores really were doing were looking for riches for their country or government for their next war. It seemed that early on that is what most countries were doing was fighting or trying to take over one another. He then explains how banking got started and how some of the biggest banks of today were started over 100s of years ago based on who was going to win a war or a big battle. They would send people out to observe and then report back so the bank could such money before the rest of the population knew the outcome. The Battle of Waterloo was one example. He then goes into how taxes came about and how after gold was discovered in California, it started to replace silver as the more valuable commodity. Things really started to change for at the beginning of World War one, or better the day the Prince and his Wife were assonated. The stock exchange in London and Germany closed and the one in London stayed closed for the rest of the year. This is when the U.S. had extreme growth from 1915 to 1917 over 1 billion dollars’ worth of gold was deposited into American banks while loans that Germany had taken out were not paid back and were never going to be. He then goes into how by the beginning of the 20s credit started not just by the banks but also GM. This is just one reason for the crash there are many others. But the U.S. still by then was a big player in the world and Europe was now feeling as well. After WWII he goes into another period of growth and how we got off the gold standard and then he leads us into today with China being a big player in the World. Overall a good big lots of information some parts drag a little but not all of history kind be exciting. A good book. I got this book from net galley.

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