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How Capitalism Saved America

The Untold History of Our Country, from the Pilgrims to the Present

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Whether it’s Michael Moore or the New York Times, Hollywood or academia, a growing segment in America is waging a war on capitalism. We hear that greedy plutocrats exploit the American public; that capitalism harms consumers, the working class, and the environment; that the government needs to rein in capitalism; and on and on. Anticapitalist critiques have only grown more fevered in the wake of corporate scandals like Enron and WorldCom. Indeed, the 2004 presidential campaign has brought frequent calls to re-regulate the American economy.

But the anticapitalist arguments are pure bunk, as Thomas J. DiLorenzo reveals in How Capitalism Saved America. DiLorenzo, a professor of economics, shows how capitalism has made America the most prosperous nation on earth—and how the sort of government regulation that politicians and pundits endorse has hindered economic growth, caused higher unemployment, raised prices, and created many other problems. He propels the reader along with a fresh and compelling look at critical events in American history—covering everything from the Pilgrims to Bill Gates.

And just as he did in his last book, The Real Lincoln, DiLorenzo explodes numerous myths that have become conventional wisdom. How Capitalism Saved America reveals:

• How the introduction of a capitalist system saved the Pilgrims from starvation
• How the American Revolution was in large part a revolt against Britain’s stifling economic controls
• How the so-called robber barons actually improved the lives of millions of Americans by providing newer and better products at lower prices
• How the New Deal made the Great Depression worse
• How deregulation got this country out of the energy crisis of the 1970s—and was not the cause of recent blackouts in California and the Northeast
• And much more

How Capitalism Saved America is popular history at its explosive best.

From the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

17 May 2004 – Don't be misled by this book's subtitle: rather than a work of history, it's a work of ideology cross-dressing as history. Its value lies in its lively polemic rather than its claims to novelty or historical depth. DiLorenzo (The Real Lincoln) aims to counteract what he believes is the "anticapitalist mentality" among other historians by showing how capitalism has permeated American history since the Pilgrims, how the role of marketplace entrepreneurs has been lost to historical view, and how all government regulation has been injurious to the national welfare. These arguments he presents via brief sketches of some of the major eras of the nation's history. He argues, for example, that the monopolistic robber barons are incorrectly made to stand in for their era's other forgotten great entrepreneurs, and that it wasn't the excesses of the 1920s that caused the Great Depression but rather Herbert Hoover's mild pre-crash attempts at government regulation. What's beguiling is DiLorenzo's single-mindedness. The book ought to prove bracing for those similarly minded and to those of contrary views whose arguments have grown flaccid for want of energetic attack. But the author's notes and bibliography give the game away. There are scarcely any references to works of history. Instead, he cites the great theorists of capitalism, such as Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek. There's nothing wrong with that, but it leads one to suspect that the book aims less to enrich historical understanding than to score points. (On sale Aug. 10)
How Capitalism Saved America
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  • 12,99 €
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: United States
  • Published: 10 August 2004
  • Publisher: The Crown Publishing Group
  • Print Length: 304 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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