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How the very things we create to protect ourselves, like money market funds or anti-lock brakes, end up being the biggest threats to our safety and wellbeing. We have learned a staggering amount about human nature and disaster -- yet we keep having car crashes, floods, and financial crises. Partly this is because the success we have at making life safer enables us to take bigger risks. As our cities, transport systems, and financial markets become more interconnected and complex, so does the potential for catastrophe.How do we stay safe? Should we? What if our attempts are exposing us even more to the very risks we are avoiding? Would acceptance of danger make us more secure? Is there such a thing as foolproof? In FOOLPROOF, Greg Ip presents a macro theory of human nature and disaster that explains how we can keep ourselves safe in our increasingly dangerous world.



About the Author

Greg Ip

I am the U.S. Economics Editor for The Economist magazine, based in Washington, DC. I've spent two decades in financial and economic journalism, including 11 years at the Wall Street Journal in both New York and Washington and before that stints at The Financial Post and The Globe and Mail in Canada. I've appeared on television and radio, including National Public Radio,PBS, CNN, CNBC, and MSNBC. I've won or shared in several prizes for reporting. I graduated from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, with a degree in economics and journalism, and now I live in Bethesda, Maryland.I was introduced to economics as a child. My mother, a practicing economist, now retired, delighted in trying to apply what she knew about the dismal science to her four children's upbringing. We must have been the only kids in town whose weekly allowance was indexed to inflation. I took economics in college, though not intending to write about it; I just wanted a fallback in case journalism didn't work out. Right out of college, I joined a metropolitan daily newspaper that put me on the night shift covering local politics, crime, and the like, a lot of which never made it into the paper. The business section, however, had lots of space in it and regular hours, so I got a transfer. Soon, I was writing about the economy and the markets, and loving it.In the process, I discovered a chasm between the economics taught in college and the real world. Textbooks go on about the money supply but it turns out central banks ignore it. Simple questions like "how big is the national debt?" have complicated answers. I learned about fiscal policy but not about debt crises. So I wrote The Little Book of Economics with those lessons in mind.



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