David P. Goldman

David Paul Goldman (born September 27, 1951) is an American economist,[1] music critic, and author, best known for his series of online essays in the Asia Times under the pseudonym Spengler. The pseudonym is an allusion to German historian Oswald Spengler, whose most famous work, Decline of the West (1918), asserted that Western civilization was already dying. Goldman says that he writes from a Judeo-Christian perspective and often focuses on demographic and economic factors in his analyses; he says his subject matter proceeds "from the theme formulated by [Franz] Rosenzweig: the mortality of nations and its causes, Western secularism, Asian anomie, and unadaptable Islam."[2] On March 14, 2015, Goldman and longtime Asia Times associate Uwe Von Parpart took control of Asia Times HK Ltd.

Early life and education

Goldman was born in the United States, in a non-religious Jewish family. He earned his bachelor's degree at Columbia University in 1973, and a master's degree in music education at the City University of New York. He completed his doctoral studies in economics at the London School of Economics in 1976.


From 1976 to 1982, Goldman was responsible for economic publications in the quasi-leftist Lyndon LaRouche movement.[3] Goldman has described himself during that period as a radical and an atheist. After leaving LaRouchism he became a conservative, and worked for the Reagan administration and later on Wall Street.[4]

Since 1984, Goldman has been employed as an economist and CEO of investment funds and investment policies in senior positions in bodies such as Credit Suisse,[5] Bank of America, Cantor Fitzgerald, Asteri Capital,[5] and SG Capital. After leaving Wall Street, he became an editor for First Things magazine.[5] In September 2013, Goldman became a Managing Director and head of the Americas division of the Reorient Group investment bank based in Hong Kong.

As an economist, Goldman published hundreds of articles and studies on various economic subjects, in professional journals as well as journals and dailies such as Wall Street Journal, Commentary, and Bloomberg Businessweek. He was a columnist for Forbes from 1994 to 2001.[5]

Alongside his work as an economist and analyst, he has published articles in musicology journals and other publications and written several books. Between 2002 and 2011, Goldman served as a member of the board of directors of Mannes School of Music, where he was formerly a teacher.


According to the Claremont Review of Books, the "Spengler" columns in the Asia Times have attracted readership in the millions.[6] His analyses of global events have become highly regarded. Former C.I.A. National Intelligence Council Vice Chairman Herbert E. Meyer said, "Ask anyone in the intelligence business to name the world's most brilliant intelligence service, and we'll all give the same answer: Spengler. David P. Goldman's 'Spengler' columns provide more insight than the CIA, MI6, and the Mossad combined.” [7] Goldman concealed his identity under the "Spengler" pseudonym until 2009, when he revealed his identity in the Asia Times article, "And Spengler is…" and the First Things article "Confessions of a Coward".

Goldman regularly appears as a guest on CNBC's Larry Kudlow Program, where he has been an outspoken critic of Federal Reserve efforts to resuscitate the American economy.

In "Dumb and Dumber", a widely commented upon piece for Tablet Magazine in May 2013, Goldman argued how both Republican and Democratic foreign policy elite in the United States have wrongly put their faith in the so-called Arab Spring.[8] In Goldman's view, economic and demographic realities could condemn many Arab states to state failure.[8][9]

In "Deplorably, Trump is going to win", published in Asia Times about two months before the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election, Goldman correctly predicted Donald Trump would win the presidency.[10]


As "Spengler", Goldman wrote about a wide range of topics, varying from music theory and mathematics to culture and religion (Goldman himself is a Modern Orthodox Jew), but his main focus was geo-economic and geo-political issues. In his 2011 book How Civilizations Die Goldman described his worldview at length, inspired by Franz Rosenzweig and his "The Star of Redemption".

According to Goldman, following in Rosenzweig's footsteps, a people's beliefs about its past and future decide its fate, since the propagation of one's culture is an imitation of immortality, the desire for which is so strong that it shapes history. So a nation's future is heavily influenced by what provides it with a vision of life after death: religion. Goldman thinks that the true strength of a nation is exposed during the encounter with the modern age, with globalization and an open and changing array of perceptions and ideas. The common tendency, especially in Europe, to nationalize religion by adding to it a pseudo-Hebraic belief that the nation is the divinely 'chosen people' condemns peoples to downfall when their nationalism (and the religion it is entwined with) is ruined by political circumstances. When religion and patriotism are thus destroyed, a people loses hope for the future and therefore ceases to bear enough children to prevent demographic collapse.

Personal life

Goldman is married and has two daughters. He is the Wax Family Fellow at the Middle East Forum, a Senior Fellow at the London Center for Policy Research, and a member of the Board of Advisors of Sino-Israel Government Network and Academic Leadership (SIGNAL).[11]

Works by Goldman


Journal articles

Online articles


  1. Keene, Thomas R., ed. (2005). Flying on One Engine: The Bloomberg Book of Master Market Economists (Fourteen Views on the World Economy). Wiley. ISBN 1576601765.
  2. "And Spengler is..." Asia Times Online. 18 April 2009.
  3. Goldman, David Paul (May 7, 2009). "Confessions of a coward". First Things. I have good reason to believe it to be true, having spent some years — from 1976 to 1986 — in a gnostic cult under the leadership of a man named Lyndon LaRouche.
  4. "David P. Goldman". RVP. He consulted for the National Security Council during the Reagan administration, advised the post-Communist governments of Russia and Nicaragua, and ran major research groups at several Wall Street firms.
  5. 1 2 3 4 "Profile: David Goldman". CNBC.
  6. Rogachevsky, Neil (2 May 2012). "Losing Their Religion". Claremont Review of Books. Archived from the original on 20 October 2012.
  7. https://www.amazon.com/Its-Not-End-World-Just/dp/1614122024
  8. 1 2 Goldman, David P. (20 May 2013). "Dumb and Dumber: When Neocons and Obama Liberals Agree". Tabletmag.com. Retrieved 6 June 2014.
  9. Read, Walter Russell; Staff (20 May 2013). "Middle East Mess: When Dems and GOPers Agree, Be Afraid". The Feed. The American Interest. Retrieved 6 June 2014.
  10. Goldman, David P. (11 September 2016). "Deplorably, Trump is going to win". Asia Times. Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  11. SIGNAL, Board of Academic & Expert Advisors
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