On our Thursday off-day (we typically publish M, W and Fr here on the Strong Towns Blog) I wanted to recommend a quick read that will help you make sense of the housing side of the current financial crisis. The book is called And Then the Roof Caved In: How Wall Street's Greed and Stupidity Brought Capitalism to Its Knees by David Faber.
Faber is a journalist with CNBC and he provides not only some unique insight but a thorough and detailed progression of the problem that literally starts on Main Street and ends on Wall Street. It takes some complex material and organizes it in a way that should make sense to the average reader, even those without a strong financial vocabulary.
What is probably most interesting to me about this book is how it reveals the many little decisions along the food chain of finance that combined to create a monster. If the greed and stupidity would have simply been confined to Main Street, we would have had a lot of greedy, stupid people lose a lot of money. It was the incremental ramp up of the Wall Street component that ultimately threatened the entire system (and a lot of people back on Main Street that were neither greedy nor stupid.)
Check out the new podcast today on Agrarian Urbanism and, when you are done, pick up this recommended book for a good weekend read.
A fresh news digest tomorrow.