A Growing Burden on the Workers  

A central problem of the American economy has been its cyclical volatility. Swings of widening magnitude have dogged it since the mid-1960s. Industrial production—to take but one indicator— fell 12 percent in 1981-82, somewhat less than in 1974-75, but it …







Limits to Social Growth or Limits to Privilege?  

I will offer here some thoughts about a recently published book by Fred Hirsch, Social Limits to Growth. The title seems to place the book in the framework of debates over the physical “limits to growth,” but its subject bears …



Poverty  

Poverty in the United States remains a widespread and persistent problem. In 1975 the Census Bureau reported that nearly 26 million persons had incomes, or were living in households having incomes, that fell below the so-called poverty threshold ($5,500 for …



The Myth of a Capital Shortage  

The idea of a potential capital shortage has been insistently argued by Administration officials and given academic respectability by Harvard professors and Brookings Institution researchers. It has also gained wide currency by alarming projections and been the subject of inquiry …



The Problem of Full Employment  

The central employment problem of our society today is the disparity of employment opportunities among blacks and whites, among skilled and unskilled, among young and experienced. —Otto Eckstein Twenty-nine years after the Employment Act was signed into law, a new …



A View of Wage-Price Controls  

Wage-price controls are not currently on the political agenda—partly because of a widespread ideological abhorrence of direct government intervention, but mostly because wages and, to an extent, prices as well are now being restrained by the rapid decline in the …



Inflation in the Welfare State  

Inflation has presented an intractable problem for post-Keynesian aggregate demand management. It has not responded to direct intervention through wage-price controls. A failure of policy has been reinforced by a failure of explanation. Neither high employment and “low” unemployment rates …



Nixon and Social Immobilism  

Not only has President Nixon failed to tackle any major problem, he has not even defined one. As Max Frankel has written: By this stage in their administrations John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson were forging new designs for European …



A Mirror of Our Crisis  

Much of the federal budget presented to Congress last January is already outdated. Expenditures for defense will considerably exceed the amount originally provided, while budgeted civilian outlays, as well as appropriation requests to support future expansion of civilian programs, will …