A Quiet Revolution in Welfare Economics- by Michael Albert and Robin Hahnel


This book contains a lot of technical terms that are not explained in this glossary. Look them up in a dictionary, for example http://www.xrefer.com/

ANARCHY OF CAPITALIST PRODUCTION: One element of Marx's critique of capitalist economies. The driving impetus of capitalist enterprise is the pursuit of profit, through the sale of goods on the market. Market mechanisms relate producer and consumer without a regulated mechanism which would relate production to human needs.

CYBERNETICS: The study of communication and control systems in machines, animals, and organizations (Oxford Paperback Encyclopedia).

COMMODITY FETISHISM: Marx distinguished between goods produced for one's own use and commodities which are created solely to be exchanged (for money or other commodities). Since the producers do not come into contact with each other until they exchange their products, they have no direct social relationships except in the act of exchange of objects. People's thinking about the social relations involved in their work therefore comes to be characterized by a fetishism, whereby beliefs about the physical products of labor and their exchange substitute for, and mask, the social relations themselves.

DEMAND-REVEALING MECHANISMS: Mechanisms for the provision of public goods and the allocation of externalities that induce accurate revelation by charging consumers as a function of the declared evaluation of other consumers rather than their own declared evaluation.

ENDOGENOUS PREFERENCES The idea that consumer tastes that are not fixed as a matter of personal character, but are dependent upon the experiences and choices of of the consumer. See also chapter 4

EXTERNALITY: A side-effect on others following from the actions of an individual or group. This effect is not bought by those affected and may be unwished for. Thus, while the acquisition of a car may benefit one household by improving mobility, it generates pollution and creates congestion for others (A Dictionary of Geography,Oxford University Press)

FREE-RIDER PROBLEM: The problem, arising in the context of public goods, that no individual is willing to contribute towards the cost of something when she hopes that someone else will bear the cost instead.

LAW OF EVER-INCREASING CONCENTRATION OF CAPITAL: Marx's prediction that firms in a capitalist system would continue to grow in both size and market power (portion of the total market that a firm controls).

PARETO OPTIMALITY, THE PRINCIPLE OF : Evaluative principle according to which: "The community becomes better off if one individual becomes better off and none worse off"

PIVOT MECHANISMS: Mechanisms for the provision of public goods that attempt to sever the link between an individual's reported willingness to pay and his or her evaluation of the good. Each agent is charged for the sum reported willingness of all others to pay for substituting the public good supply that would have resulted had the agent reported complete indifference to all supplies of public goods for the public good supply resulting from the preferences the agent actually reported.

PrEMEs Private Enterprise Market Economies.

PUBLIC GOOD: A good that has the property that all consumers can enjoy it jointly, without any one individual's consumption reducing others' ability to consume. Thus no one need be excluded from consuming it.

PuECPEs Public Enterprise Centrally Planned Economies

PuEEMMEs Public Enterprise Employee-Managed Market Economies. An economy in which publicly owned, employee-managed production units engage in free market exchange of goods and services with one another as well as with final consumers

PuEMEs Public Enterprise Market Economies

PuESMMEs Public Enterprise State-Managed Market Economies. An economy in which publicly owned, state-managed production units engage in free market exchange of goods and services with one another as well as with final consumers.

UTILITARIANISM: The ethical theory that the conduct which, under any given circumstances, is objectively right, is that which will produce the greatest amount of happiness of the whole; that is, taking into account all whose happiness is affected by the conduct. See chapter 1