ECONOMICS, SOCIETY, AND CULTURE: God, Money, and the New Capitalism by Robert Ghelardi

ECONOMICS, SOCIETY, AND CULTURE: God, Money, and the New Capitalism

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Outside of Marx this is, as far as I know, the first integrated theory of economics, society, and culture,"" states Ghelardi, a young economics writer. Religion, he says, is at the root of the liberal-conservative conflict (Ghelardi appears to be a Roman Catholic), and much of the book is devoted to attacks on liberals' ""Leviathan state"" and their own inconsistencies and evasions--attacks cast in an involuted, allusive style that mixes astringency with self-deprecation. Economic policy must become genuinely ""social""; the ""true consummation of Keynes"" would be Louis Kelso's 1950s-1960s scheme for universal stockholding and expanded credit. Ghelardi comments that Kelso's plan ""could not in the long term work without a renewed culture, because. . . workers must have a sense of responsibility to others, and this comes only from a sense of social function. . . ."" The proposed renewal of culture centers around a series of formulations prevalent in the 1930s--""culture"" versus ""system,"" ""culture"" versus ""civilization,"" as well as ""community,"" and ""wholeness."" To give a 1970s reference, the book is a compound of Michael Novak, William Buckley, Robert Vacca, and assorted critics of ""the machine society."" It is by no means a new synthesis, but a pastiche that will seem original only to the post-WW II generation, if that.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Delacorte