A damning indictment of American capitalism, as exposed through the failures of the government, private sector and overall economic resilience throughout the COVID pandemic.
From the author of the modern business classic The Smartest Guys in the Room comes a damning indictment of late-stage capitalism-and the leaders that were brutally unprepared for a global pandemic.
In 2020, the coronavirus pandemic made it painfully clear that governments across the world could not adequately protect their citizens. Millions of people suffered and died in just two years, while administrations around the globe blundered; prize-winning economists overlooked devastating trade-offs from the collapse of trade; and elites escaped to isolated retreats, unaffected by - and worse, even profiting from - the worst healthcare crisis to hit humanity in decades.
In this page-turning economic, political and financial history, veteran journalists Bethany McClean and Joseph Nocera analyse the American response to the pandemic as a case study, to offer fresh and provocative answers. With laser-sharp reporting and deep sourcing, they investigate what really happened when governments ran out of PPE due to snarled supply chains; and the shock to the financial system when the world's biggest economies stumbled. They zero in on the effectiveness of wildly polarised approaches across states, and they trace why thousands died in hollowed-out hospital systems and nursing homes run by private equity firms, all in the name of "maximising shareholder value".
The Big Fail is an expansive, gripping narrative account on what the pandemic did to one economy, and how it forced us to question the fundamental principles of our society