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The Philosophy and Economics of Market Socialism : A Critical Study - N. Scott Arnold

The Philosophy and Economics of Market Socialism

A Critical Study

Hardcover Published: 1st May 1994
ISBN: 9780195088274
Number Of Pages: 320

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In this closely reasoned examination of the case for market socialism, N. Scott Arnold argues that even the most defensible version of market socialism would be deeply flawed. Specifically, it would be responsible for systematic and widespread exploitation.
The charge of exploitation, which is really a charge of injustice, has typically been made against capitalist systems by socialists. This book argues that it is actually market socialism - the only remaining viable form of socialism - that is systematically exploitative. Recent work on the economics of contracts and organizations is used to show that the characteristic organizations of a free enterprise system - the classical capitalist firm and the modern corporation - are structured in such a way that opportunities for exploitation among economic actors (e.g., managers, workers, providers of capital, customers) are minimized. By contrast, Arnold argues, in a market socialist regime of worker cooperatives, opportunities for exploitation abound.
Arnold locates his comparative analysis of market socialism and the free enterprise system in the larger context of the capitalism/socialism debate. In his account of this debate - and in his contribution to it - he offers a distinctive and attractive vision of the relationship between economics and political philosophy. This vision clearly identifies the respective contributions that economics and political philosophy can make to the fundamental question of how social institutions are to be evaluated.

Industry Reviews

"N. Scott Arnold's outstanding book makes a vital contribution to the debate over socialism; ...Arnold's discussion is a first-rate achievement. He has provided the best and most carefully worked out account of market socialism that I have read. His book is a model of how philosophers can use economic theory in their work--and in this department there can be no doubt of Arnold's efficiency."--The Mises Review "The book is well-argued and comprehensively researched...offers the community of scholars a serious challenge to the entire intellectual underpinnings of the Left's critique of capitalism."--Public Choice "N. Scott Arnold's outstanding book makes a vital contribution to the debate over socialism....Arnold's discussion is a first-rate achievement. He has provided the best and most carefully worked out account of market socialism that I have read. His book is a model of how philosophers can use economic theory in their work-and in this department there can be no doubt of Arnold's efficiency. As if that were not enough, the book contains a superb assortment of sarcastic remarks about lawyers."--The Mises Review "N. Scott Arnold's outstanding book makes a vital contribution to the debate over socialism; ...Arnold's discussion is a first-rate achievement. He has provided the best and most carefully worked out account of market socialism that I have read. His book is a model of how philosophers can use economic theory in their work--and in this department there can be no doubt of Arnold's efficiency."--The Mises Review "The book is well-argued and comprehensively researched...offers the community of scholars a serious challenge to the entire intellectual underpinnings of the Left's critique of capitalism."--Public Choice "N. Scott Arnold's outstanding book makes a vital contribution to the debate over socialism....Arnold's discussion is a first-rate achievement. He has provided the best and most carefully worked out account of market socialism that I have read. His book is a model of how philosophers can use economic theory in their work-and in this department there can be no doubt of Arnold's efficiency. As if that were not enough, the book contains a superb assortment of sarcastic remarks about lawyers."--The Mises Review

Capitalism versus Socialism: An Analytical Perspectivep. 3
Defining the Termsp. 3
The Nature of the Disputep. 11
Criticizing Economic Systemsp. 16
Defending Economic Systemsp. 22
Resolution and Progress in the Disputep. 27
Why Market Socialism?p. 34
Motivating the Marketp. 34
Social Ownership in a Market Economyp. 43
The Motivations for Social Ownershipp. 56
Economic Exploitationp. 65
Exploitation as the Failure of Reciprocityp. 65
The Value of One's Contributionp. 70
Fair Exchanges and the Value of One's Contributionp. 74
The Question of Alternativesp. 85
Exploitation and the Economics of Organizationsp. 93
Comparing Types of Economic Systemsp. 93
The Foundations of the Economics of Organizationsp. 100
An Illustration: The Classical Capitalist Firmp. 106
The Empirical Preconditions for Exploitationp. 111
Opportunism, Appropriable Quasi-Rents, and Exploitative Exchangep. 117
Transactions Cost Efficiencies of Capitalist Organizationsp. 122
Some Methodological Considerationsp. 122
The Classical Capitalist Firm Revisitedp. 126
The Open Corporationp. 136
The Employment Relation in a Free Enterprise Systemp. 153
Exploitation in a Market Socialist Economy Ip. 165
More Methodological Considerationsp. 165
Exploitation among and by the Residual Claimants in the Cooperativep. 175
Other Forms of Exploitation in the Small-to-Medium-sized Cooperativep. 187
Exploitation in a Market Socialist Economy IIp. 206
Exploitation in and through the Large Cooperativep. 206
Exploitation through State Organizationsp. 218
Other Options for Market Socialism?p. 234
Equity Ownership and Market Socialismp. 234
Other Forms of Ownership and Market Socialismp. 246
The Socialist Vision of the Good Societyp. 255
Notesp. 263
Referencesp. 283
Indexp. 293
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780195088274
ISBN-10: 0195088271
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 320
Published: 1st May 1994
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 2.24
Weight (kg): 0.58

Earn 286 Qantas Points
on this Book