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Digital Subscriptions > Boston Review > Economics After Neoliberalism (Summer 2019) > ECONOMICS AFTER PARTISANSHIP

ECONOMICS AFTER PARTISANSHIP

A DEFINING FEATURE of Naidu, Rodrik, and Zucman’s essay is its close alignment with the Democratic Party. Indeed, its initial set of policy proposals would fit comfortably within the platforms of many candidates seeking the party’s presidential nomination.

This congruence is not an indictment per se. Perhaps one of the nation’s political parties did stumble upon just the right economic outlook despite a fatally flawed neoliberalism dominating academic and popular economic thinking. But two other explanations seem more plausible. First, that their essay restates economic views widely held during the period they want to transcend. And second, that the changes proposed are less economic than political in nature and the values chosen are ones that reinforce a particular set of political preferences.

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Economics After Neoliberalism offers a powerful case for a new brand of economics—one focused on power and inequality and aimed at a more inclusive society. Three prominent economists—Suresh Naidu, Dani Rodrik, and Gabriel Zucman—lead off with a vision “for economic policy that stands as a genuine alternative to market fundamentalism.” Expanding on “the state of creative ferment” they describe, Boston Review has commissioned responses to their essay from economists, philosophers, political scientists, and policymakers across the political spectrum as well as new essays that challenge the current shape of markets and suggest more democratic alternatives. Lenore Palladino explores the misguided logic of shareholder primacy and points to more equitable approaches to corporate governance—such as employee ownership funds. Amy Kapczynski examines how the courts have developed a new, anti-democratic First Amendment that protects corporate speech at the expense of regulation designed to protect public health and safety. And Robert Manduca explores the importance of public discussion about economics by revisiting Chester Bowles's remarkable book, Tomorrow Without Fear, which explained Keynesian ideas to the public after World War II.