Joseph Stiglitz has written a great book, Freefall: America,
free markets and the sinking of the world economy.
It is about the financial meltdown which took place after a huge capitalist scam called 'the housing bubble' came tumbling down during 2007-2008.
In a few words here is what happened:
1) The housing bubble is created by capitalist banks and mortgage companies. They invent something called 'sub-prime mortgages.' They collect high transaction fees in the process.
2) Wall Street financial institutions 'securitize' those mortgages and begin selling the shares of the new securities all over the world.
3) Extremely complex financial instruments (i.e. credit default swaps and other 'derivatives') are created by Wall Street. It is all part of the same capitalist scam.
3) Real estate prices continue to go higher and higher, which is a perfect example of the bigger sucker theory. The interest rate on those sub-prime mortgages go up substantially later on and people realize that they can no longer afford to continue making the mortgage payments on their houses. Millions of Americans default and lose their homes.
4) Real estate prices tumble and the housing bubble explodes. The securities created by Wall Street become practically worthless. The stock market heads south.
5) The biggest recession since the Great Depression hits the United States. 8.4 million Americans lose their jobs. The unemployment rate would reach 10% in 2009.
6) The second part of the scam: Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke go to the U.S. Congress and tell them that the banks and Wall Street need to be 'bailed out.' The U.S. Congress says 'much obliged' and hands them $700 Billion dollars.
7) Main Street America has been shafted by the Wall Street crooks and criminals. End of story.