Capitalizing on Crisis
Capitalizing on Crisis offers a political sociology of the rise of finance in the U.S. economy over the last three decades. Krippner’s core argument is that successive U.S. administrations embraced policy choices that heightened financialization as a way to escape direct confrontation with the pressing issues of fiscal crisis and legitimation crisis that emerged in the late 1960’s, rather than as a policy goal of its own. This is an extremely important argument for understanding the last forty years of U.S. politics and social development and it helps reconnect economic sociology to political sociology. Krippner focuses on state actions that were crucial to creating a macroenvironment conducive to financialization: (1) the deregulation of financial markets during the 1970s and 1980s; (2) policies that encouraged foreign capital inflows into the U.S. economy in the context of large fiscal imbalances in the early 1980s; and (3) changes in the conduct of monetary policy following the shift to tight monetary policies (high interest rates) in 1979.
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