- p. 56, Stealth of Nations by Robert Neuwirth
I'm really excited to read this one because I totally know about this underground economy, for real. It;s not only fascinating but also the "way of the world" so to speak. I first heard about the book through Christiane Amanpour's video:
Here's the synopsis:
When we think of the informal economy, we tend to think of crime: prostitution, gun running, drug trafficking. "Stealth of Nations" opens up this underground realm, showing how the worldwide informal economy deals mostly in legal products and is, in fact, a ten-trillion-dollar industry, making it the second-largest economy in the world, after that of the United States.
Having penetrated this closed world and persuaded its inhabitants to open up to him, Robert Neuwirth makes clear that this informal method of transaction dates back as far as humans have existed and traded, that it provides essential services and crucial employment that fill the gaps in formal systems, and that this unregulated market works smoothly and effectively, with its own codes and unwritten rules.
Combining a vivid travelogue with a firm grasp on global economic strategy--along with a healthy dose of irreverence and skepticism toward conventional perceptions--Neuwirth gives us an eye-opening account of a world that is always operating around us, hidden in plain sight.
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Oh, I ended up buying this book on Book Depository because they have an awesome deal until February 29. Book Depository is offering an 10% off already heavily reduced books. If you're interested in getting a 10% off coupon, give me your email address and I'll send off your coupon right away! (Disclaimer: I referred a friend and that friend ended up buying her own book and I got an additional 10% off the book price - which I used to buy this. So if you end up buying something with the coupon code, you're also giving me a coupon code for 10% off, so we both win! :) )