Edited by Jonathan Michie
Chapter 17: The low road to competitive failure: immigrant labour and emigrant jobs in the US
The dominant system of ideas structuring the US productive system has been described as corporate liberalism. Corporate liberalism is a reworking of the core beliefs of liberal economics to accommodate large corporations, and is given effect by legislation and judicial ruling. Liberal economics is rooted in a utopian vision of self-regulating markets that transform the inherent selﬁshness of individuals into general good. The market is seen as providing the opportunity and incentives for individuals to exploit to the full their property (labour in the case of workers) but prevents them from exploiting any advantage they might have by throwing them into competition with others. For liberal economists, market forces deliver distributional justice and optimal economic welfare and this gives them supremacy over man-made laws and institutions. Unless these conform to the laws of the market, they risk being in restraint of trade and economically damaging.
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