Although political rhetoric and public perception continue to assume that the United States is the very definition of a free market economy, a different system entirely has in actuality come to prominence over the past half century.
This Corporate Welfare Economy (CWE) has come about as government come increasingly under the influence of corporate interests and lobbyists, with supposedly equalising factors such as regulation skewed in order to suit the interests of the privileged while an overwhelming majority of US citizens have experienced a decline in their standard of living.
James Angresano examines the characteristics of this mode of capitalism, both from the theoretical point of view but also with key reference to the different sectors of the economy – trade, manufacturing, industry and defense among them.
'How is it that Americans have become poorer and poorer over recent decades? Author James Angresano is back, relying upon his rich background in Comparative Economics to establish the roots of our decline. He establishes that the American economy has indeed evolved. Through the evolution of our institutions we are now subjects of a new regime, what Angresano describes as the “CWE.” This is short for the “Corporate Welfare Economy.” And, the emergence of this institution is what has left the earnest and hard working Americans waiting and hoping that some crumbs might fall to us from the corporate table.' — Professor John Hall, Portland State University, USA
1. The Corporate Welfare Economy 2. End of the American Dream 3. Correlation with Declining Economic and Social Indicators 4. Manufacturing 5. Transportation and Energy 6. Agriculture 7. Health Care 8. College and University Education 9. University and Professional Sports 10. National Defense 11. Real Estate 12. Finance
Social Theory is experiencing something of a revival within economics. Critical analyses of the particular nature of the subject matter of social studies and of the types of method, categories and modes of explanation that can legitimately be endorsed for the scientific study of social objects, are re-emerging. Economists are again addressing such issues as the relationship between agency and structure, between economy and the rest of society, and between the enquirer and the object of enquiry. There is a renewed interest in elaborating basic categories such as causation, competition, culture, discrimination, evolution, money, need, order, organization, power probability, process, rationality, technology, time, truth, uncertainty, value etc.
The objective for this series is to facilitate this revival further. In contemporary economics the label “theory” has been appropriated by a group that confines itself to largely asocial, ahistorical, mathematical “modelling”. Economics as Social Theory thus reclaims the “Theory” label, offering a platform for alternative rigorous, but broader and more critical conceptions of theorizing.