THE WELFARE STATE: U.S.A.: An Exploration In and Beyond the New Economics by Melville J. Ulmer

THE WELFARE STATE: U.S.A.: An Exploration In and Beyond the New Economics

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ulmer, an economics professor and government consultant, accepts the welfare state as a fact of life for more than a generation, appraises the ""New Economics"" and Keynesian theory for what they're worth and what they're not worth, and offers a modest but provocative three-point program to cure the instability still inherent in the ""New"" economy. His dissection of the problems of inflation, unemployment, and poverty isolates the structural imbalance between the demand and supply of labor as the root factor and presages his proposals on how to sustain full employment and stable prices in an environment of lively economic growth. Ulmer calls for (1) a National Services Administration responsible for all activities bearing on unemployment, welfare and poverty and concerned mainly with full employment, (2) a refundable tax program, a new technique for flexible fiscal controls aimed directly at avoiding inflation, and (3) a National Incomes Board to reflect the public's interest in price stability. The style of presentation is generally clear and straightforward textbookese, with occasional diversionary tactics: explaining a point through a question-and-answer dialogue; dropping an unexpected analogy--""The charge (that modern fiscal policy inevitably creates debt, and that debt creates ruinous inflation) is innocuous and irrelevant-more or less like jailing a notorious gangster for burping in public. ""Not revolutionary but well reasoned, it should interest economists both lay and lettered.

Pub Date: Nov. 13th, 1969
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin