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The Great Inflation and Its Aftermath
The Past and Future of American Affluence
Robert J. Samuelson
Random House, $26, 311pp.

Book publishing schedules are cruel. Robert J. Samuelson, a Newsweek columnist and self-confessed “slow writer,” most likely started on this book in 2005 or so when the economy was booming. He would have turned in the final manuscript about a year and a half ago as the yawning cracks in Wall Street’s underpinnings were first becoming clearly visible.

Samuelson’s primary topic is what he calls the “Lost History” of the great...

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About the Author

Charles R. Morris, a Commonweal columnist, is the author of The Two Trillion Dollar Meltdown (Public Affairs), among other books, and is a fellow at the Century Foundation.