Public Choice

, Volume 180, Issue 3–4, pp 501–503 | Cite as

Randall G. Holcombe: Political capitalism: how economic and political power is made and maintained

Cambridge University Press, New York, NY, 2018, vii + 294 pp, USD 34.99 (paperback)
  • Bryan P. CutsingerEmail author
Book Review

Political capitalism: how economic and political power is made and maintained sets out to convince the reader that a new economic system has emerged in countries like the United States. This system, which Holcombe refers to as political capitalism, is defined by cooperation between the political and economic elite for their mutual benefit at the expense of the masses. While there is widespread agreement across the political spectrum about the symptoms of political capitalism—cronyism, clientelism, etc.—the underlying structure of the system is not well understood and thus there remains substantial disagreement surrounding what, if anything, can be done to reform it. Holcombe’s goal is to identify the causes of political capitalism in order to provide a framework for understanding which reforms can effectively limit its negative effects.

The book consists of three parts. In the first part Holcombe introduces the concept of political capitalism, arguing that it is a unique economic...



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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA

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