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Thorsten Veblen - particular market—auto manufacturers...

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THE ECONOMY AND WORK Thorsten Veblen (1857-1929)— The Theory of the Leisure Class (1899) described conspicuous consumption and conspicuous leisure and attacked the “idle rich” 1. postindustrial economies—based on tertiary sector production: the providing of services a. information replaces property as the central preoccupation of the economy b. workplace culture shifts away from factories into diverse workplace settings c. blurring of boundaries between the workplace and home—22 million people work “from home” in 2003 d. McDonaldization of the workplace Contemporary World Economic Systems Capitalism— private ownership of the means of production Corporations Unions Transnational corporations (see chart on page 409) Pursuit of personal profit, with culture of individualism (Adam Smith) Family businesses Monopoly capitalism—concentration of wealth and power Oligopoly—when several companies control and industry Shared monopoly—four or fewer companies share 50% of more of a
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Unformatted text preview: particular market—auto manufacturers and cereal companies (three control 77% of the market) Anti-trust legislation vs. ruling class political control Conglomerates Interlocking directorates Laissez-faire capitalism —advocated by Adam Smith in The Wealth of Nations (1776)—coincides with the founding of the greatest capitalist power of all times—the invisible hand—market economy and free enterprise—the “unregulated market” has never really existed, so long as there was a functioning government—subsidies and favoritism—related to social Darwinism—raises an important social issue: should some agency (like unionism or government) intervene in the workplace in behalf of the workers? Som—“pure som” and “pure capitalism” Sewer som—public ownership of certain basic functions Centralized planning and collective goals Mixed economies “Democratic som”...
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