(More on) GOVERNMENT’S ROLE

No longer can contemporary capitalism operate on autopilot as in Adam Smith’s time. Now, extra-market-oriented choices by citizens are becoming essential to circumscribing the market with public priorities for health and welfare, education, environmental stewardship and much more. The “new” capitalism ahead will steer around the false dichotomy of only two choices: laissez-faire or Marxism. […]

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WHAT’S GOVERNMENT’S ROLE?

Barak Obama’s graduation speech seems to call listeners to ask this question: What should be government’s role? So, let’s look at the intricate interface between government and capitalism. How can capitalism be fixed, patched, put back together? It begins with refurbishment of mission. What do we want and what are we willing to sacrifice in […]

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AND NOW, PSEUDO-CAPITALISM

We’ve described a hypothetical scenario in which an 18th Century farmer removes a plow horse from the field, then tethers it near his door solely for the pleasure of his children. Farm output and productivity slip. Then we linked the scenario to contemporary American capitalism. We call this pseudo-capitalism. It has evolved to include all […]

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MAKING CAPITALISM ?GREAT? PRETTY GOOD AGAIN

Now our scenario changes from “good-guy capitalism” to something else. Our farmer removes one plow horse from the field and tethers it near his door, solely for his children’s pleasure. Productivity slips with only one horse left in the field. How does this relate to American corporate capitalism in the 21st Century? Of course our […]

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MAKING CAPITALISM GREAT AGAIN

Adam Smith, a contemporary of America’s Founding Fathers, would conclude today’s culture of faux-capitalism is running off the rails. We’ll use a hypothetical American farmer from that period to illustrate what worked well then, but no longer works. Later, we’ll pull back the curtain to view the world from an economist’s perspective and also ask […]

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AFTER DIVISIVENESS, WHAT?

David Brooks explains why Donald Trump’s attack dog isn’t hunting well amid Covid-19 meltdown. One wonders then, what will come on the heels of flagging Trumpian culture warfare? Brooks’ New York Times colleague Michelle Goldberg ruminates about big culture shifts paving the way for big, yet-unknown political changes. The grinding scenario she foresees: looming economic […]

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ADAM SMITH’S “TAKE” ON MICK MULVANEY?

Adam Smith was a moral philosopher. Two centuries ago he asked and answered questions about “right action;” about how moral individuals ought to act and what moral societies ought to do. Mick Mulvaney? Well, he’s a Republican politician who represented South Carolina in Congress, then served in Donald Trump’s cabinet and as acting Chief of […]

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HAVE YOU NOTICED THE LATEST PSEUDO-CAPITALIST SCAM?

Check out the links below. You’ll learn about a tax break bonanza tucked inside the Covid-19 economic rescue package. It’s the price rank-and-file Americans are paying to get our share of the bailout pie. Their share? $174 billion in temporary tax breaks for financial elites, according to New York Times journalist Jesse Drucker. One break […]

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