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Mindful Economics: how the U.S. economy works, why it matters, and how it could be different


Are the huge profits garnered by corporations each year a case of a few bad apples in the business world taking advantage of unmonitored dealings? Is this consolidation of wealth made at the expense of the overall economy and the well-being of the average citizen? Will the planet be saved by developing more "green businesses" and "green-collar" jobs?

Joel Magnuson delivers a powerful response to the current misconceptions about the US economy in his brilliantly accessible Mindful Economics. The troubles we face are not the result of a good system gone awry, but rather a system that is built to do exactly what it is doing: corporations are designed to reap profits for shareholders—at any cost. The greater welfare of society, or of the environment, will never be as important as financial gain. Magnuson shows us the relationship between the current wars abroad; rising oil prices; the recession; ballooning incomes of top CEOs; the mortgage crisis; and the health care, insurance, and auto industries, and he teaches us that the best way to understand the US economy is to think like an economist. With stunning clarity, Magnuson shows the interconnectedness of the local with the global, and offers real alternatives to this capitalist model.

"Joel Magnuson has written an excellent guide to one of the most deliberately mystified fields of human endeavor. If you ever wondered what all those words and concepts mean, this is the book to turn to. And though I don’t agree with all his prescriptions for making things better, they’re great spurs to both talk and action." –Doug Henwood, editor of Left Business Observer, and author of Wall Street and After the New Economy

Joel Magnuson, a professor of economics, writes extensively on the political economy and on environmental issues related to capitalist development. He is a member of an international research group based in Cambridge, England, which is building a new philosophical foundation for economic theory and practice, known as mindful economics.

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