"If you laid all of the (PhD) economists end to end, to tell you which way to go, they would look like the spokes of a wheel."
This book should be very popular because recently Wikipedia said that the two most looked-up words in the English language were socialism and capitalism. There is much confusion about exactly what socialism means and the more one looks into it, the more it becomes apparent that the meaning of socialism rests, to some degree, in “the eye of the beholder.” Most Americans fear socialism more than the plague. But that is changing. Americans know that something is very wrong with the kind of capitalism we have been practicing. They know that the rich are getting richer and the poor, poorer at an astonishing rate. Socialism used to be a “dirty word” but now more and more, capitalism is being seen that way. People are beginning to wonder why we worship at the altar of capitalism to the point that we just accept recessions and depressions as though they are a necessary by-product of capitalism. The author does not buy that argument. The book explains in simple English how it is possible to eradicate recessions. A PhD in economics is not necessary to understand the common sense nature of the points made. Some years back, a man named Harry once said “If you took all of the economists and laid them end to end to tell you which way to go, they would look like the spokes of a wheel.” His last name was Truman. The book makes a strong case for how certain aspects of socialism can be combined with capitalism to make a better economic system. Pure socialism doesn’t work very well. And laissez faire capitalism doesn’t work very well either. Laissez faire capitalism should be as dead as communism. Karl Marx and Fidel Castro did not understand the beneficial power of regulated greed. And Herbert Hoover and George W. Bush did not understand the destructive power of unregulated greed. Pure socialism and capitalism are polar-opposite concepts. But to use a trite example, lemon juice and sugar are also polar opposites. However if they are” unified” just right, they make a delicious drink. The book explains how to unify capitalism with the right kind of socialism.
We simply can do better than the kind of capitalism we have been practicing, which enriches the few at the expense of the many; and that trend is getting worse. There is a general feeling that America needs systemic change in our politics, the economy, and our collective consciousness. We seem to have swerved from the better angels of our nature. We are moving contrary to the long arc of human history which is slowly bending towards empathetic equality. And as John F. Kennedy said “If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few that are rich.”
This book is not just another litany of complaints; it offers a plan that will solve many of our economic problems and explains how we can keep the unemployment rate below five percent, indefinitely.
We can unify capitalism with the right kind of socialism.
If we do not do that, we may be headed towards some kind of a revolution!