Download Capitalism and Its Economics: A Critical History (2004) by Douglas Dowd PDF

By Douglas Dowd

This vintage booklet is a perfect advent to fiscal idea and the dominance of capitalism, perfect for college students of financial concept and historical past. Now completely revised and up to date, this new version encompasses a new preface and an extra bankruptcy via the writer. Analysing the connection among fiscal notion and capitalism from 1750 to the current, Douglas Dowd examines the dynamic interplay of 2 procedures: the ancient realities of capitalism and the evolution of monetary idea. He demonstrates that the research of economics celebrates capitalism in ways in which make it essential to classify financial technological know-how as natural ideology. A completely smooth background, this booklet indicates how economics has develop into ideology. an intensive critic of capitalism, Dowd surveys its damaging effect around the globe and all through background. The e-book contains biographical sketches and short analyses of the main proponents and critics of capitalism all through historical past, together with Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill, Karl Marx, Thorstein Veblen, Rosa Luxemburg, John Maynard Keynes, Paul Samuelson, Milton Friedman, and Eric Hobsbawm.

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Sample text

The ubiquitously small firms of a “Smithian” competitive market perforce would strive always to reduce costs and would be powerless to set their prices above those sufficient only to meet labor and materials costs, “managerial wages,” and interest payments. Today, in sharp contrast, the rivalry between giant firms (GM, Ford, Chrysler, amongst others) is manifested largely in costly advertising and equally costly product differentiation (including “deliberate obsolescence”). 25 Smith’s critical focus was appropriately on the misuse of State power; he did not anticipate the baronial power that would be sought and gained by the enormous companies industrialization facilitated – and that a compliant State has allowed.

Whoever says Industrial Revolution says cotton,” began Hobsbawm in his chapter on the period (1968, 40); and whoever says cotton must also note the role of the State in taking Britain along that path. 12 The English wool trade was a mighty political force, for it included merchants, the woolen cloth producers, and those raising the sheep. 13 Though initially meant to serve the woolen industry, and given relevant matters earlier noted, it was the chief element in insuring that the infancy and early developments of the cotton industry would be fully protected from competition.

He declares of Britain that In the age of laissez-faire the role of government in economic affairs was a passive one ... The social evils in town and countryside that followed in the wake of the Industrial Revolution might have been alleviated at an earlier date if the governing classes had been better informed about the great changes that were taking place in the mines and factories ... 6 The “passivity” and “inactivity” of the “government” and “governing classes” are the key terms here. They stand in most minds for the role of the British “State” in the industrial revolution, as they did in Henderson here (and elsewhere in his writing).

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