The Consolidation of the ‘Liberal’ Oligarchy

  • Shelly GottfriedEmail author


The aim of this chapter is to delineate the mechanisms and strategies through which an oligarchy substantiates its power in developed democracies, focusing on Israel. For this purpose, it identifies different forms of oligarchies in democracies, and different strategies they deploy. It delves into the Israeli oligarchy, indicating other cases of oligarchies around the world—particularly the US, South Korea, and Hong Kong. Throughout a long decade, after obtaining significant shares of the privatized assets of the state, and internalizing financialization in the Israeli political economy, a group of very powerful few controlled the Israeli market, influencing policy-making and manipulating regulation for their benefit. They asserted that claims about economic concentration were excessive, and alternatively, that reducing the concentration would push away investors, including themselves. They were advocated as the entrepreneurs developing the free market, in times when they were its rival.


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.City Political Economy Research Centre (CITYPERC)City, University of LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Beit Berl CollegeBeit BerlIsrael

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