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Prosperity without Greed

How to Save Ourselves from Capitalism

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Bibliografische Daten
ISBN/EAN: 9783593507583
Sprache: Englisch
Umfang: 267 S.
Format (T/L/B): 1.8 x 21.7 x 13.5 cm
Auflage: 1. Auflage 2017
Einband: Paperback

Beschreibung

It is time to leave capitalism behind. We live in a system of economic feudalism that has nothing to do with a free market economy. The innovations we need for the solution of our truly important problems are not forthcoming. How can it be that technological developments financed by the taxpayer end up enriching private companies even if their activities violate public interests? We should reward talent and real performance and promote start-ups with good ideas. Based on a clear analysis and concrete proposals, Sahra Wagenknecht launches a discussion on new forms of ownership and sketches the outlines of an innovative and just economy.

Autorenportrait

Sahra Wagenknecht holds a Ph.D. in Economics and is a journalist and politician. Since October 2015 she has been the parliamentary leader of the party Die Linke in the German Bundestag. From 2010 to 2014 she was deputy secretary of her party, from 2004-2009 she was a Member of the European Parliament.

Leseprobe

Translator's Foreword Sahra Wagenknecht is a prominent figure on Germany's political stage. Since 2009 she has been a member of the federal parliament and the party leadership of Die Linke. She appears regularly on public affairs talk shows and is frequently in the news. She is one of Germany's intellectually strongest and economically most knowledgeable politicians. While these are not the only, or even main, characteristics of a successful politician, they are all too rare in the country's political class. Like Chancellor Angela Merkel, Wagenknecht grew up in the former GDR (East Germany). She became politically active just prior to the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989. She is in the leadership of Die Linke, currently an opposition party in the German Bundestag with a feminist and socialist orientation. Wagenknecht may well earn a place in the German government, if not after the next elections in the fall of 2017, then at some future time. Prosperity without Greed is in equal parts political analysis and reform program. It explains in clear and jargon-free terms how today's capitalist economy really works, demonstrating how it runs afoul not only of basic ideas of social justice, but of the principles of a free market economy itself. She shows how today's dominant financial sector functions and how "the one percent" end up with most of society's wealth, for which they do not have to work. Most importantly, Wagenknecht sketches a vision of an alternative economy, a more genuine market economy without the dominance of private capitalists. While private wealth can still be earned in firms in which the owner remains personally liable, the ownership system of private shareholding, which she characterizes as "neo-feudalism", will be largely replaced by enterprises that are "self-owned"-employee-owned and common-good companies. Wagenknecht's brand of socialism has significant elements of "market radicalism", though clearly not of the neoliberal type which uses market ideology to disguise an anti-market and inegalitarian corporate order. It is clear by now that successful solutions for climate change-induced problems will need to transcend the capitalist logic of limitless private capital accumulation. The significance of Wagenknecht's work emerges in this context with particular force-a guide for progressive organizations, movements and activists for how the existing economy could be transformed. The book comes at what seems like an inauspicious time for radical reform ideas, with a reactionary U.S. President recently installed in office. But political dynamics tend to be unpredictable, which is why the prospects for radical change of a progressive kind cannot and should not be discounted. Andreas Pickel, February 2017 Preface The time is out of joint; O curs'd spite, That ever I was born to set it right! Hamlet, in Shakespeare's famous tragedy, surveying the state of his kingdom Hamlet's attempt to set things right ends in major bloodshed, suggesting that such attempts ought not be imitated. Yet the lesson is not that we should simply accept society's dissolution. Instead, we need to approach the problem in a way that rises to the challenge. Hamlet yearns to return to the good old days. But the future lies in what is new and has never existed before. Ideas for change should be assessed in terms of their plausibility and persuasiveness, not for whether they have a track record of success. And isn't our own time out of joint? Isn't this what the news we hear and read on a daily basis, the online flood of information, tells us? The truth is, we all feel that things cannot and will not continue the way they are. The big question therefore is: what comes next? Civilization in retreat In many regions of the world, civilization is in retreat. Wars and civil wars have turned the Middle ast and parts of Africa into a blazing firestorm. Public order is collapsing. Clan leaders, war lords, and terror militias are taking control

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