Pierre Lemieux wrote an indispensible book (Somebody in Charge: A Solution to Recession) for anyone who wishes to understand the before, during, and immediate aftermath of the “Great Recession.”
The book’s importance is greater than just his analysis of the crisis. He thoroughly exposes the underlying weaknesses and fallacies of the whole Keynesian policy-activism agenda driven by the “animal spirits,” the irresistible urge to action of those who wrongly deem themselves in charge.
Lemieux concludes, “[t]he causes and legacy of the economic crisis of 2007–2009 reveal a deeper underlying crisis, which is a crisis of authority” (p. 162). As I concluded in my detailed review essay of Lemieux’s book, “If this book were widely read in and out of classrooms, it might be very useful in awaking more of the public to the fact that we do not need somebody in charge.” A free economy will do just fine if left to its own devices, and if agents are left relatively unhindered by government actions. Such economy-impairing actions include — but are not limited to — Fed and fiscal mis-direction of production, regulatory burdens, and misguided policies that distort incentives.