For most people, the Great Crash of 2008 has meant troubling
times. Not so for those in the flourishing poverty industry. These
mercenary entrepreneurs have taken advantage of an era of
deregulation to devise high-priced products to sell to the
credit-hungry working poor, including the instant tax refund and
the payday loan. In the process they've created an industry larger
than the casino business and have proved that pawnbrokers and check
cashers, if they dream big enough, can grow very rich off those
with thin wallets.
"Broke, USA" is Gary Rivlin's riveting report from the economic
fringes. Timely, shocking, and powerful, it offers a much-needed
look at why our country is in a financial mess and gives a voice to
the millions of ordinary Americans left devastated in the wake of
the economic collapse.