Debt: The First 5,000 Years

Debt: The First 5,000 Years, by David Graeber

One of the more common grievances at Occupy demonstrations is the anger over being forced to live in a system entirely dependent on debt. Debt is not just the problem of those sloppy with their credit card payments. Debt is not only a problem for those sold into believing a $100,000 college degree guarantees them elevated success.  Debt is not only a problem for those forced into debt in order to pay for food or medical bills when they lose their job.

Money, itself, is debt, and historically, it has almost always been debt.

The theft of a few trillion dollars in today’s world is just the current tip of an economic system 5,000-years in the making, now so complex very few believe they can keep track. This book shows how living in a debt-based economy, with interest that can only be paid back by putting another person deeper into debt, is one of the larger roots of our problems.

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