Reviving the Invisible Hand is an uncompromising call for a global return to a classical liberal economic order, free of interference from governments and international organizations. Arguing for a revival of the invisible hand of free international trade and global capital, eminent economist Deepak Lal vigorously defends the view that statist attempts to ameliorate the impact of markets threaten global economic progress and stability. And in an unusual move, he not only defends globalization economically, but also answers the cultural and moral objections of antiglobalizers.
Taking a broad cross-cultural and interdisciplinary approach, Lal argues that there are two groups opposed to globalization: cultural nationalists who oppose not capitalism but Westernization, and "new dirigistes" who oppose not Westernization but capitalism. In response, Lal contends that capitalism doesn't have to lead to Westernization, as the examples of Japan, China, and India show, and that "new dirigiste" complaints have more to do with the demoralization of their societies than with the capitalist instruments of prosperity.
Lal bases his case on a historical account of the rise of capitalism and globalization in the first two liberal international economic orders: the nineteenth-century British, and the post-World War II American.
Arguing that the "new dirigisme" is the thin edge of a wedge that could return the world to excessive economic intervention by states and international organizations, Lal does not shrink from controversial stands such as advocating the abolishment of these organizations and defending the existence of child labor in the Third World.
"Deepak Lal has provided us with a stirring, even vehement, argument for the restoration of classical liberalism."--Tim Worstall, Daily Telegraph
"If Deepak Lal did not exist, I have no doubt it would be necessary to invent him. A highly accomplished technical economist with an excellent reputation, Lal is also the most formidable and forthright champion of classical liberal economic thinking."--David Smith, World Business
"Deepak Lal's book reviews modern development economics from a free market perspective. . . . Mr. Lal demonstrates that in spite of the defeat of communism, many Western special interests still introduce rheumatism into the invisible hand of the free market."--Martin Hutchinson, Washington Times
"Deepak Lal gives us a fiery refresher course not just in the virtues of the free market, but on the classical liberal outlook on life."--George Walden, Sunday Telegraph
"Lal covers an immense amount of ground, from the theory of international trade to the differences between Michael Oakeshott's conservative opposition to the 'enterprise state' and that of the classical liberal Friedrich Hayek."--Samuel Brittan, Financial Times
"Deepak Lal effectively points out that just about every goal held dear by those who call themselves radicals and progressives is best reached by exactly the opposite policy prescriptions that they put forward. Indeed, we can go further and point out that the best methods of reaching those goals are in fact the truly liberal ones, those laid out all those decades ago by Adam Smith, David Hume and David Ricardo. . . . [T]his book can and should be a rallying point for those of us who are indeed liberal, radical and progressive."--Tim Worstall, Technology Commerce Society Daily
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