||This volume contains three reports delivered at distinct stages of what has developed into the most serious economic crisis of the capitalist system since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The first report, given by David North, was delivered to the membership of the Socialist Equality Party after the initial collapse of the US housing market bubble in 2007 and amidst signs of a looming financial meltdown. The second and third reports, jointly given by North and SEP National Secretary Joe Kishore are from 2009 and 2010, respectively. The second followed the financial crash of 2008, which wiped out trillions of dollars in assets, and the third was delivered after the onset of global recession in the year that followed.
Together, the material contained in this volume provides a concise account of the historical origins of the present crisis and an examination of its political implications. North and Kishore analyze the response of the US government, first under President George W. Bush and then President Barack Obama. The authors explain how the policies of the ruling classes throughout the world have exacerbated the underlying contradictions of the world economy, and intensified social and national tensions.