Free Market Missionaries: The Corporate Manipulation of Community Values

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Routledge, 2006 - Business & Economics - 260 pages
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In her recent book Suiting Themselves, bestselling author Sharon Beder exposed how the global corporate elite have brazenly rewritten the rules of the global economy to line their pockets. In this new book she trains her sights on the insidious underbelly of this global trend to show how they have also orchestrated a mass propaganda campaign to manipulate community values and convince us that their interest - co-opting and controlling all of us in the name of the free market - is in our interest. During the 20th century, business associations coordinated mass propaganda campaigns combining 20th century American PR methods with revitalized free market ideology from 18th century Europe. The aim was to persuade people to eschew their own power as workers and citizens, and forego their democratic power to restrain and regulate business activity. Sophisticated corporate-funded think tanks augmented these campaigns in the 1970s and 1980s, promoting free enterprise and business-friendly policies. These free market missionaries now seek to change individual and institutional values through bolder strategies such as expanding share ownership and manipulating wider public concerns. In each case the goal is the same: the triumph of business values over community values. Beder s is an intellectual call to arms: challenge the ideology of the free market missionaries or be converted to it.
  

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Contents

1 The Free Market Gospel
1
2 Promoting Business Values
12
3 Advertising Free Enterprise
29
4 Free Market Education
45
5 Economic Education in the 1970s
63
6 Exporting Free Market Education
79
7 ProBusiness Policies as Ideology
93
8 Disseminating ProBusiness Policies
109
10 Economic Advisers
144
11 Peoples Capitalism
171
12 Shareholder Democracy
191
13 Fiddling with Kiddy Minds
208
14 Conclusion
229
Bibliography
233
Index
251
Copyright

9 Think Tanks Down Under
127

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About the author (2006)

Professor Beder is a qualified professional engineer and worked in this field until a career shift into researching and teaching environmental politics. She has held a number of appointments at Australian universities over the past two decades - most recently as professor in the School of Social Sciences, Media and Communication at the University of Wollongong in Australia. Her previous books include Global Spin: The Corporate Assault on Environmentalism.

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