КНИГИ

Capitalism, Democracy, and Ralph's Pretty Good Grocery

  • ISBN / UPC:9780691001142

John Mueller (автор)

 

Издателство:   Princeton University Press
Език: английски език
РАздел: Социология и политология

 

Твърда корица с обложка, голям формат  |  336 стр.  |  657 гр.

(неизползвана книга - отчислена от библиотека, без заглавна страница, закъсани предния и задния форзац /белия лист в началото и в края/ чисто книжно тяло, леко захабен външен вид.)

 

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Democracy is overrated. Capitalism, on the other hand, doesn't get enough credit. In this provocative and engaging book, John Mueller argues that these mis­matches between image and reality create significant political and economic prob­lems—inspiring instability, inefficiency, and widespread cynicism. We would be far better off, he writes, if we recognized that neither system is ideal or disastrous and accepted instead the humdmm tmth that both are "pretty good." And, to Mueller, that means good enough. He declares that what is tme of Garrison Keillor's fictional store "Ralph's Pretty Good Grocery" is also tme of democracy and capitalism: if you can't get what you want there, "you can probably get along without it."

 

Mueller begins by noting that capital­ism is commonly thought to celebrate greed and to require discourtesy, deceit, and callousness. However, with examples that range from car dealerships and cor­porate boardrooms to the shop of an eighteenth-century silk merchant, Muel­ler shows that capitalism in fact tends to reward behavior that is honest, fair, civil, and compassionate. He argues that this gap between image and reality hampers economic development by encouraging people to behave dishonestly, unfairly, and discourteously to try to get ahead and to neglect the virtuous behavior that is an important source of efficiency and gain.

 

The problem with democracy's image, by contrast, is that our expectations are too high. We are too often led by theo­rists, reformers, and romantics to believe that democracy should consist of egali-tarianism and avid civic participation. In fact, democracy will always be chaotic, unequal, and marked by apathy. It offers reasonable freedom and security, but not political paradise. To idealize democ­racy, Mueller writes, is to undermine it, since the inevitable contrast with reality creates public cynicism and can hamper democracy's growth and development.

 

Mueller presents these arguments with sophistication, wit, and erudition. He combines mastery of current political and economic literature with references to figures ranging from Plato to P. T. Bar-num, from Immanuel Kant to Ronald Reagan, from Shakespeare to Frank Capra. Broad in scope and rich in detail, the book will provoke debate among economists, political scientists, and any­one interested in the problems (or non-problems) of modern democracy and capi­talism.

 

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 About the Author

 

John Mueller is Professor of Political Science at the University of Rochester. His previous books include War, Presi­dents, and Public Opinion, Retreat from Doomsday: The Obsolescence of Major War, and Quiet Cataclysm: Refections on the Recent Transformation of World Politics. He is a regular contributor to numerous academic journals and has written edito­rial page columns in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Los An­geles Times. Outside the field of political science, Mueller has written the prize-winning Astaire Dancing: The Musical Films (Knopf) and cowritten A Foggy Day, a musical presented at the Shaw Festival in Ontario.

 

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Contents

 

 Acknowledgments        xi

 

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Chapter 1

Capitalism and Democracy: Images and Image Mismatches      5

 

Capitalism             6

Democracy       7

Ralph's Grocery     10

The Plan of the Book     12

 

 

CAPITALISM

 

Chapter 2

Capitalism's Image          21

 

The Capitalist Virtues        22

The Capitalist Virtues and the Monopolist    38

The Essential Insincerity of Capitalist Morality   38

Why Nice Guys Finish First           42

Extrapolating the Capitalist Virtues      43
Capitalist Culture, Capitalist Inequality and Unfairness, Capitalist Competition    45
The Profound Irrationality of Capitalism: Investors as Unintended Altruists   54

 

Chapter 3

Sources of Capitalism's Negative Image      57

 

Socialists and Communists      57

Storytellers        58

Intellectuals     61

Religion            65

Aristocrats and the Honorable      66

Ineffective Capitalist Propaganda          68

Capitalists          70

 

Chapter 4

The Consequences of Capitalism's Image for Economic Development   72

 

The Unequal Rate of Economic Development      73

Superimposing the Capitalist Virtues    75

Virtue as a Business Innovation     77

The Rise of Business Virtue         83
The Relative Importance of Business Virtue in Economic Development 93

The Relevance of an Effective Legal System to Economic Development    95

 

Chapter 5

Development, Happiness, and the Rise of the Politically Incorrect One-Handed Economist    99

 

One-Handedness        100

Political Incorrectness   104
Four Economic Propositions That Have Become Increasingly Accepted   106

The Prospects for Massive Economic Growth     122
Economic Development, Professed Happiness, and the Catastrophe Quota    123

Development and the Quest for Happiness     132

 

 

DEMOCRACY

 

Chapter 6

Images and Definitions        137

 

Defining Democracy: Responsive Government   138

Elections: Useful, but Not Essential        140

Political Inequality        145

Democracy in Practice: Coopting the Wealthy         147

Minority Rule and Majority Acquiescence     152

Democracy in Comparison     153

Democracy and Real People        161

 

 

Chapter 7

Consequences of the Democratic Image          164

 

Cynicism about the Democratic Process     166

Hyperdemocracy       185

 

The Rebellion of Minorities    187

The Trouble with Transitology          189

 

 

Chapter 8

The Rise of Democracy     192

 

A Democratic Dialogue    193

The Historical Movement of Ideas    195

The Correlates of Democracy         197

The Marketing of Democracy      202

Examining the Third Wave      212

The Future of Democracy       222

 

 

CONCLUSION

 

Chapter 9

Democracy and Capitalism: Connections and Disconnections      231

 

Capitalism without Democracy, Democracy without Capitalism  231

Democracy's Connection with Capitalist Prosperity      234

Democracy's Connection to Capitalist Growth      235

The Connection of Democracy and Capitalism with Crime     238

Conceptional Connections between Democracy and Capitalism   240

 

 

Appendix

An Inventory of Propositions     243

 

Notes    255

References        289

Index    317

 

 

 

Характеристики +
В наличност:
Да
Език
английски
Автор
John Mueller
Издателство
Princeton University Press
Град
New Jersey, United States
Година
1999
Страници
336
Състояние
неизползвана книга
ЗАБЕЛЕЖКА
отчислена от библиотека, без заглавна страница, закъсани предния и задния форзац (белия лист в началото и в края) чисто книжно тяло, леко захабен външен вид.
Националност
американска
Корица
твърда
Формат
голям
Ширина (мм)
165
Височина (мм)
240
Дебелина (мм)
23
Тегло (гр.)
657
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