A Journey Through Economic Time: A Firsthand View by John Kenneth Galbraith

By John Kenneth Galbraith

A popular economist offers an obtainable, far-reaching historical past of the century's economics from global battle I and the Russian Revolution, throughout the melancholy and Keynesian concept, to colonialism's cave in and the increase of the 3rd international.

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For them the modest, even meager, living standards of the urban worker, as well as the new social ambience of the city, were quite wonderful as compared with the rural privation and oppression and the social isolation from which they had come. ) In the great dynamic of capitalism, basic industry moves relentlessly to the new, eager and economical labor force and, as will be later noticed, is retained in the older country only when that labor force is internally reinforced, as by the poor mountain whites and southern blacks in the United States or, especially in Europe, by workers recruited from foreign lands.

And capitalism was making its appearance, also in competition with feudal power, in Japan. In our own day it has continued on to South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, mainland China and, plausibly, to India. Just as with the beginnings of the new system in Britain, part of this development came from the simple, straightforward fact that goods and highly organized services such as transportation, communications and electricity can be supplied in far greater abundance at far lower cost and with ultimate economy of human effort by capitalist organization.

Nor was there in the United States. Capitalism, tempered by democratic process, was showing itself to be a relatively secure economic system; the vulnerability that Marx and Engels had fore- Page 22 seen did not materialize. The eventual threat it would face would be not from an angry, motivated proletariat but, as the later years would reveal, from its own internal tendency to inequality in economic reward and a pattern of speculative excess, followed by general economic deprivation and the inevitable political and social response.

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