The History of US Economics
Slavery and Capitalism

Slavery and Capitalism

February 26, 2019

What is the price of a human being? This episode explores the darkest stain on the history of US economics; slavery. 

The American south was one of the richest regions on the planet in the 1850s.  Yet, despite their cash, many historians consider the American south economically backwards. This episode describes the industry of slavery, the make up of the South's economy and how a division in economic, political, and cultural ideals  sent the country careening towards the Civil War.

Economics of Division: Lead up to the War

Economics of Division: Lead up to the War

December 9, 2018

We pick up our narrative in the 1850s, while the US was on the brink of the bloody Civil War.  What was the economic situation that preceded the war? And what economic variables caused the war to happen?  This episode explores the effect of the Panic of 1857, which sucked national wealth out of the South and into Northern cities.  As well as the international trade and tariff environment which pitted Northern interests verse Southern ones.  Lastly, this episode exposes some the eerie similarities between economics of the 1850s, and that of the early 2000s.  

 

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Marxism vs Capitalism: A War of Ideas

Marxism vs Capitalism: A War of Ideas

November 4, 2018

The mid 19th century was a period which inaugurated Marxism and the Neoclassical Revolution, opposing ideologies which set the stage for economic battle for the next 150 years.  This episode explores the origins of both school of thought and how they contended against one another. 

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War, Gold and Expansion

War, Gold and Expansion

October 7, 2018

During the 1840's the US expanded by nearly 66%. What happens to an economy when the landmass it oversees expands by that much in just 3 years? Also, what happens to an economy which is on a gold standard, when a gold rush dumps millions of dollars of gold into circulation? 

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The Free Banking Era

The Free Banking Era

September 9, 2018

In the years before the Panics of 1837 and 1839, the US economy experienced an economic system remembered as the Free Banking Era.  It was a time when the Jacksonian Deomcrats, and their Laissez Faire ideals were in power.  How did the economy perform when the federal government decided it would go hands-off in terms of economic regulation? Listen in to find out. 

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The Bank Was Saved and the People Were Ruined

The Bank Was Saved and the People Were Ruined

August 19, 2018

The Second Bank of the US was formed to help stabilize the inflationary environment following the War of 1812.  This episode explores the inflation that helped to derail the economy leading up to the Panic of 1819 as well as the outcome of the nation's third attempt at a central bank. 

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From Plenty to Ruin

From Plenty to Ruin

July 24, 2018

This episode is about the Panic of 1819, America's first (post-Revolutionary War) financial crisis.  We pick up with the economically vibrant years following the War for Independence and learn what it takes to derail a healthy economy.  We'll talk about Jefferson's Embargo, and how the government promoted dangerous banking practices through the War of 1812.  Finally, we explore how those dangerous practices came to a tumultuous head in 1819 when the nation's economy collapsed.  

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The US and Tariffs Part 1; The Pre-Civil War Era

The US and Tariffs Part 1; The Pre-Civil War Era

July 14, 2018

This episode takes a break from the chronological narrative we've been following thus far to consider the tariff history of the US from the signing of the Constitution to the Civil War.  We'll explore what tariffs are, the good sides and the bad sides of them, and see how the US approached trade policy from 1789 to 1861. 

Part 2 will come at a future date once the narrative catches up. 

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The Constitution through an Economic Lens

The Constitution through an Economic Lens

July 14, 2018

The Articles of Confederation failed to create the economic infrastructure needed to run a country. In response, a Constitutional Convention was called which set the course for the US economy. The episodes considers the Constitution through an economic lens.

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Hamilton to the Rescue

Hamilton to the Rescue

July 14, 2018

The Revolutionary War left Americas economy in mountains of debt. Alexander Hamilton had a daring plan to solve that problem without defaulting or paying a cent for it.

In this episode we profile the American economy following the war and explore Hamilton's attempt at a National Bank.

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