Free, unregulated financial markets serve the vital function of providing capital to the producers. Yet, through the ages, banking and other financial activities have been viewed as corrupt and exploitative. From the money-changers of the Middle Ages to the investment bankers of today financiers have been crippled by the hostility of looters.

In this course, given at the 1996 Second Renaissance Conference, Dr. Brook defends these victims. He methodically describes how financiers serve a vital role in the economy. Using the stock market to illustrate this principle, Dr. Brook explains the important economic role of speculators, the harmony of interest between short-term and long-term investors, and the objective nature of stock prices. In addition he defends hostile takeovers, leveraged buyouts, “junk” bonds and other financial innovations used extensively in the 1980s.

In the process, he delineates the philosophical ideas that make the attacks on financial markets possible. He defends the profit motive as the only moral and practical motive for financial transactions.

This course was recorded at the 1996 Second Renaissance Conference.

(MP3 download; 7 hrs. 57 min., 345.80 MB)

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