capitalism abridged

capitalism abridged - Capitalism An Introduction to History...

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Capitalism An Introduction to History of Thought Professor Jeffry Netter
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06/06/11 2 Capitalism has changed over time 17 th and 18 th centuries import to Europe new goods from overseas and new means of production – cottage industry and division of labor 18 th century financial revolution, international trading companies, market for government bonds, consumer revolution (England) 19 th and 20 th industrial factories 19 th century limited liability, bureaucratic corporation, trade unions labor parties 20 th and 21 st rise of services .
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06/06/11 3 Capitalism The term capitalism is relatively new Originally a political slogan used by socialists to stigmatize the phenomenon 20 th century more neutral and scientific But “The enormous dynamic and creative, as well as destructive energy of capitalism… is written up with more praise and more respect by Marx and Engels in the 1848 Communist Manifesto than probably by anyone since. I don’t think anyone has ever said so precisely and with such awed admiration how great capitalism is, how inventive, how innovative, how dynamic, how much force of creativity it unleashes.” Heaven on Earth: The Rise and Fall of Socialism, PBS (June 2005)
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06/06/11 4 Capitalism Definition Capitalism is an ideal type, abstraction from experience, which also applies to Communism, Socialism and so on Other terms: Smith Commercial society Hegel Civil Society Several elements 1) Private property usually depends on existence of government to protects, not absolute 2) exchange between legally free individuals opposed to serfdom slavery where labor is extracted by political superiority 3) production and distribution of goods operate mainly through the market mechanism, rather than by custom or common decision of any sort Other definitions? See Sherman p. 45
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5 Capitalism Capitalism,” a term of disparagement coined by socialists in the mid-nineteenth century, is a misnomer for “economic individualism,” which Adam Smith earlier called “the obvious and simple system of natural liberty” ( Wealth of Nations). Economic individualism’s basic premise is that the pursuit of self-interest and the right to own private property are morally defensible and legally legitimate. Its major corollary is that the state exists to protect individual rights. Subject to certain restrictions, individuals (alone or with others) are free to decide where to invest, what to produce or sell, and what prices to charge. There is no natural limit to the range of their efforts in terms of assets, sales, and profits; or the number of customers, employees, and investors; or whether they operate in local, regional, national, or international markets. Source:
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This note was uploaded on 06/06/2011 for the course FINA 4210 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '08 term at UGA.

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capitalism abridged - Capitalism An Introduction to History...

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