Martin Vander Weyer Martin Vander Weyer

The low sculduggery of high Victorian finance

A review of Forging Capitalism by Ian Klaus covers 200 years of theft and fraud in the City

The whole idea of capitalism, according to Enlightenment philosophers, was that it created a positive spiral of moral behaviour. ‘Concern for our own happiness recommends us to the virtue of prudence,’ wrote Adam Smith. ‘The profits of commerce,’ according to David Hume, carry us towards a state in which ‘the tempers of men, as well as their behaviour, refine apace.’

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