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The Culture of Contentment$
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John Kenneth Galbraith

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691171654

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691171654.001.0001

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The Economic Accommodation, I

The Economic Accommodation, I

(p.61) Chapter 7 The Economic Accommodation, I
The Culture of Contentment

John Kenneth Galbraith

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the ability of economics to accommodate its view of economic process, instruction and recommended public action to contentment. It begins with a discussion of the broad commitment to the doctrine of laissez faire as economic accommodation, arguing that it is general but not a confining force in the culture of contentment. It then considers how the most serious general threat to contentment arises from the intrinsic tendency of capitalism to instability—to recession or depression. It also explores three lines of government intervention in economics: fiscal policy, monetary policy, and direct restraint on costs. The chapter distinguishes between monetary policy and monetarism, the latter of which used to have a prominent role in the political economy of contentment.

Keywords:   economics, laissez faire, economic accommodation, contentment, capitalism, depression, fiscal policy, monetary policy, costs, monetarism

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