Cover image for The great American economy : how inefficiency broke it and what we can do to fix it
The great American economy : how inefficiency broke it and what we can do to fix it
The great American economy : how inefficiency broke it and what we can do to fix it
Slavin, Stephen L., author.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Amherst, New York : Prometheus Books, [2017]
Physical Description:
414 pages ; 24 cm
Many Americans feel that the economy is no longer working for them and that "the American Dream" has become a sham. This book explains the underlying reasons for this gloomy outlook and lays out a clear plan for making the American economy work for everyone, not just the top 1 percent. The heart of the problem, says economist Steve Slavin, is gross inefficiency. Since the end of World War II, America has been wasting vast amounts of its resources. As examples he cites the following key sectors: Healthcare--we spend nearly twice as much as other industrialized nations but achieve no better results; Education--just half of our eighteen-year-olds can function at an eighth-grade level, while many European and Asian countries do far better educating their young people; Transportation--by relying on cars instead of mass transit, we spend much more than comparable nations; The military--several decades after the Cold War our military budget continues to be almost 40 percent of the world's total military spending, while few politicians ever question the necessity for such massive outlays. In these areas and other sectors of the economy, Slavin proposes sweeping changes to eliminate inefficiency. These would include a restructuring of our healthcare system to make it affordable for all, a major push toward public transportation, increased emphasis on quality results from our education system, ways to eliminate waste throughout our vast military-industrial complex, and a renewed emphasis on manufacturing.--
General Note:
Includes index.
Part I. Losing our economic bearings. Is our economy fundamentally sound? -- What went wrong? -- Part II. Six cataclysmic events. Depression and war -- Suburbanization -- The Cold War -- Globalization and global warming -- Part III. The deindustrialization of America. The rise and fall of American industrial power -- Innovation, infrastructure, and industrial policy -- Part IV. Jobs, wages, and the job shortage. Jobs and wages -- The job shortage -- Part V. Wasting our resources by using them inefficiently. Our wasteful transportation system -- Our failing public schools -- Our sick healthcare system -- Part VI. Wasting our resources by overproducing. The military-industrial complex -- The criminal justice establishment -- Our bloated financial sector -- Part VII. Wasting our resources by producing useless goods and services. The Internal Revenue Code and the tax preparation industry -- Telemarketers, ambulance chasers, and other make-work occupations -- Part VIII. The economic, social, and political consequences of wasting our resources. The economic consequences of wasting our resources -- Our twin deficits -- Our unraveling social contract -- Growing income inequality and the shrinking middle class -- Poverty and the growing permanent underclass -- Part IX. Restoring the American economy. How we are wasting our resources : the big picture -- Solving our economic problems and saving the American economy -- The great job switch : placing tens of millions of Americans in useful jobs -- A long-term strategy to save the American economy.
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