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I find timelines the best way to keep history straight, and that’s what this book is, a brief annotated timeline of the financial history of the United States. I wrote it a couple of years ago when I was researching the financial mess we were in, in order to explain it to my Economic students. I kept going further and further back in order to make sense of what I was finding.

This is a book for those everyday-type people who want to understand what is going on, but don’t have a significant amount of financial/economic background. But, don’t worry, I use footnotes liberally – I had to look up many of these financial expressions, people, events, and terms, and I share that information throughout the book.

I also happened to be teaching a class on Benjamin Franklin at the time I started this study. I noticed that he had some sayings that applied to this topic – I’ve sprinkled a few of those throughout the book.

At the request of a friend, I’ve also sprinkled “Catherine’s commentary” throughout. Those appear as CC: ______It will become clear very quickly that I come at this from a fiscally conservative perspective!

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