Tag Archives: political economy

2018/08: Bichler & Nitzan, ‘CasP’s ‘”Differential Accumulation” versus Veblen’s “Differential Advantage”‘

November 30, 2018

This paper clarifies a common misrepresentation of our theory of capital as power, or CasP. Many observers tend to box CasP as an ‘institutionalist’ theory, tracing its central process of ‘differential accumulation’ to Thorstein Veblen’s notion of ‘differential advantage’. This view, we argue, betrays a misunderstanding of CasP, Veblen or both. As we show, CasP’s … Read More

Bichler & Nitzan, ‘With Their Back to the Future: Will Past Earnings Trigger the Next Crisis?’

September 25, 2018

ABSTRACT As these lines are being written (April 2018), the The U.S. stock market is again in turmoil. After a two-year bull run in which share prices soared by nearly 50 per cent, the market is suddenly dropping. Since the beginning of 2018, it lost nearly 10 per cent of its value, threatening investors with … Read More

Kim, ‘Propertization: The Process by which Financial Corporate Power has Risen and Collapsed’

September 19, 2018

ABSTRACT Elsewhere I argue that the legal concept of property was created in the image of money in the late Roman Republic. Since then, the division of property and contract has been an underlying structure of Western law. The paper argues that a main way of structuring financial corporate power, especially money market funds (MMFs), … Read More

McMahon, ‘Is Hollywood a Risky Business? A Political Economic Analysis of Risk and Creativity’

September 19, 2018

ABSTRACT This paper seeks to explain why Hollywood’s dominant firms are narrowing the scope of creativity in the contemporary period (1980–2015). The largest distributors have sought to prevent the art of filmmaking and its related social relations from becoming financial risks in the pursuit of profit. Major filmed entertainment, my term for the six largest … Read More

Francis’ Updated Buy-to-Build Indicator

September 5, 2018

Joe Francis, who written on the buy-to-build indicator before, has updated his data for the USA and the UK. Below is his post entitled ‘An Open Source Update of the Buy-to-Build Indicator’: The tendency toward buying other companies more than building new productive capacity continues in the United States In a past life I had … Read More

2018/07: Fix, ‘The Trouble with Human Capital Theory’

August 20, 2018

Human capital theory is the dominant approach for understanding personal income distribution. According to this theory, individual income is the result of ‘human capital’. The idea is that human capital makes people more productive, which leads to higher income. But is this really the case? This paper takes a critical look at human capital theory … Read More

2018/06: Fix, ‘Capitalist Income and Hierarchical Power’

August 20, 2018

This paper offers a new approach to the study of capitalist income. Building on the ‘capital as power’ framework, I propose that capitalists earn their income not from any productive asset, but from the legal right to command a corporate hierarchy. In short, I hypothesize that capitalist income stems from hierarchical power. Based on this … Read More

Fix, ‘Economics from the Top Down: Does Hierarchy Unify Economic Theory?’

August 17, 2018

ABSTRACT What is the unit of analysis in economics? The prevailing orthodoxy in mainstream economic theory is that the individual is the ‘ultimate’ unit of analysis. The implicit goal of mainstream economics is to root macro-level social structure in the micro-level actions of individuals. But there is a simple problem with this approach: our knowledge … Read More