The Rise of Planning in Industrial America, 1865-1914
Routledge – 2011 – 260 pages
Central economic planning is often associated with failed state socialism, and modern capitalism celebrated as its antithesis. This book shows that central planning is not always, or even primarily, a state enterprise, and that the giant industrial corporations that dominated the American economy through the twentieth century were, first and foremost, unprecedented examples of successful, consensual central planning at a very large scale.
Introduction: The Tripod of Power Part 1: Islands of Conscious Power 1. Organizing Production 2. Planning 3. Contracts in Performance. Interlude: Choosing the Future Part 2: Redwoods in the Garden 4. Taylor's Bargain 5. Antitrusts 6. Deciding for Bigness 7. Contracts at Liberty. Epilogue: 'War is the Health of the State'
Richard Adelstein is Woodhouse/Sysco Professor of Economics at Wesleyan University, USA.