Political Economy and Evolution
The King is dead. Long live the King!
—Traditional proclamation on the death of an English monarch
IN THE WINTER OF 2008-09, twenty years after the collapse of communism, capitalism also seemed on the brink of collapse. Karl Marx’s prediction that capitalism would be destroyed by its own internal contradictions appeared to be coming true. The result was the intellectual equivalent of a nervous breakdown. As all the major banks of America, Britain, and Europe suddenly required government support for their survival, as General Motors was nationalized, and as the personal wealth accumulated in the decade of capitalism’s global triumph went up in smoke, believers in free-market ideology were intellectually ...