One nonprofit organization, Redefining Progress, proposes tossing out growth as the first economic yardstick and substituting a "Genuine Progress Indicator" that, among other things, weighs volunteer work as well as the output of goods and services. By this group's measure, American society peaked in and has been declining ever since. Others think ending the fascination with economic growth would make Western life less materialistic and more fulfilling.
A Capitalist Manifesto | Gary Wolfram | | NetGalley
Modern families "work themselves to exhaustion to pay for stuff that sits around not being used," Thomas Naylor, a professor emeritus of economics at Duke University, has written. If economic growth were no longer the goal, there would be less anxiety and more leisurely meals. But would there be more social justice? During times of stagnation, they veer toward authoritarianism.
Economic growth not only raises living standards and makes liberal social policies possible, it causes people to be optimistic about the future, which improves human happiness. Instead, moral considerations argue that large-scale growth must continue at least for several generations, both in the West and the developing world.
Each American, the World Wildlife Federation calculates, demands more than four times as much of the earth as the global average for all men and women, most of this demand being resource consumption. Some think such figures mean American resource consumption must go down; to Friedman's thinking, any reduction would only harm the rest of the world by slowing global growth. What the statistic actually tells you, he would say, is that overall global resource consumption must go up, up, up -- to bring reasonable equality of living standards to the developing world and to encourage the liberalization and increased human rights that accompany economic expansion.
If by the middle of the 21st century everyone on earth were to realize the living standard of present-day Portugal taking into account expected population expansion , Friedman calculates, global economic output must quadruple. That's a lot of growth.
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Much of it is devoted to showing that in the last two centuries, periods of growth have in most nations coincided with progress toward fairness, social mobility, openness and other desirable goals, while periods of stagnation have coincided with retreat from progressive goals. These sections sometimes have a history-lesson quality, discoursing on period novels, music and other tangential matters.
And sometimes the history lesson gets out of hand, as when the author pauses to inform readers that the Federal Republic of Germany was commonly known as West Germany. More important, Friedman's attempt to argue that there is something close to an inevitable link between economic growth and social advancement is not entirely successful, a troublesome point since such a link is essential to his thesis.
For example, Friedman contends that economic growth aided American, French and English social reforms of the second half of the 19th century. Probably, but there was also a recession in the United States beginning in , yet pressure for liberal reforms continued: the suffrage, good-government and social-gospel movements strengthened during that time. It was in the midst of a depression, in , that Social Security, a huge progressive leap, was enacted. Economic growth has sometimes been weak in the United States for much of the last three decades, yet in this period American society has become significantly more open and tolerant -- discrimination appears at an all-time low.
On the flip side, the 20's were the heyday of the Klan in the United States, though the "roaring" economy of the decade was growing briskly. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :.
Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. A Capitalist Manifesto by Gary Wolfram. The Communist Manifesto of —the blueprint for modern totalitarian government—promises utopia but delivers dictatorship, poverty and misery everywhere its tried. Yet many of the tenets of this ideology endure among leftist thinkers, despite repeated and universal failure.
The question is why? In A Capitalist Manifesto, Gary Wolfram answers that question with a clear expl The Communist Manifesto of —the blueprint for modern totalitarian government—promises utopia but delivers dictatorship, poverty and misery everywhere its tried. In A Capitalist Manifesto, Gary Wolfram answers that question with a clear explanation of the only economic system compatible with individual liberty, social justice and freedom: Capitalism.
From barter to free markets, Wolfram explains the nature of money, the creation of wealth and the brilliance of a system based not on the state but rather on millions of unique individuals deciding what is best. Get A Copy. Kindle Edition , pages. Published November 27th by Dunlap Goddard first published November 6th More Details Other Editions 2. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
A capitalist manifesto
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I am also taking his class, Economics at Hillsdale College on line. I would recommend it to everyone. View 1 comment. May 26, Jeff Launiere rated it it was amazing. A very enjoyable and quick read on economics and how the economy works best in the free market. I am so thankful that it also covers, though briefly Austrian Economics. Highly recommend. Mar 27, Soda Pop rated it it was amazing Shelves: economics. A surprisingly good intro economics book.
A short read that covers supply and demand, business cycles, and even open market operations.
Markets remain our best hope for a better future.
One of the three featured speakers was Gary Wolfram. I was unfamiliar with him before the seminar. He was entertaining, articulate and insightful. Economics has never really been an area of interest for me. But since the quality of our lives are so tied to our livelihood, and since more and more of our economy is controlled by the governme A Capitalist Manifesto —Understanding the Market Economy and Defending Liberty by Gary Wolfram In March, I attended a 2 day seminar put on by Hilldale College.
But since the quality of our lives are so tied to our livelihood, and since more and more of our economy is controlled by the government, I bought this book.
The Capitalist Manifesto
If you do read this book, be prepared to review some of the basic economic lectures you had in college. Demand, supply and pricing are the stuff of economics.
At first, I was a bit bored with the book. But as I continued on, Wolfram began to paint a picture of the economy from an historical perspective. He incorporates writings of many of the economic thinkers and philosophers of the past years. My comments… In the simplest terms, as we permit government to control more and more of the economy, we reduce incentive for risk taking and capital formation.
Even our basic urges for charity become corrupted in a way that we depend on Big Brother to care for the needs of the less fortunate. There are large disparities in the free market system.