The second part of the book demonstrates how the need for higher profits and endless growth has intensified environmental destruction, resource depletion, instability, social and political inequality, and even global warming. These problems have become systemic and solutions therefore require long-term systemic change.
“Mindful Economics is an excellent book for students and just about anybody who wants to understand, as Magnuson says, “the [cataclysmic] consequences of capitalism.” He does a wonderful job of providing the historical and institutional context of capitalism for students and in doing so, lays bare the myth of laissez faire and the wonders of the free market. Particularly outstanding are the chapters on financial market instability and causes of inequality in the U.S. economy. What is also nice about the book is that he also suggests concrete alternatives ‘community centered co-ops’ for students so they leave with a sense of hope and vision for the future.”
“I must say that I never thought I would enjoy reading an economics book, but one has come to my attention that is just that – an enjoyable and interesting read. The book is Mindful Economics by Joel Magnuson… If you want to learn more about the development and functioning of U.S. capitalism, and an interesting approach to a different economic focus and organizations, take the time to read “Mindful Economics.”
“[Magnuson] offers a systemic and historical view of economic development, unearthing the reasons why institutions have manifested in their current state, and thereby shedding acute and much-needed light on the problems of our current world, and how the capitalist system that has come to dominate it is reaching a crisis. I am not an economist, and this volume provided a valuable theoretical framework for understanding economic institutions and a fascinating story of the unfolding of human organisational activity. While the modest aim of Mindful Economics is ‘an educational resource for people concerned about these consequences of capitalism,’ the depth and implications of the analysis, and the underlying assumptions that he unearths with relentless acuity, provide both an educational tool for understanding modern economic institutions and their interplay, and a gentle challenge to the world view that upholds capitalism as the only economic alternative, that has come to dominate Western, if not global economic activity. The implications of this book have a disciplinary significance in the areas of ontology, ethics, philosophy, sociology, economics and business studies.”
“This is an invaluable resource for individuals and organizations wanting a comprehensive understanding of the way U.S. capitalist systems and institutions operate. Dr. Magnuson provides an extensive overview of some of the devastating consequences of capitalism (environmental degradation, economic inequality, and financial market instability) and offers suggestions for adopting a more mindful economics, one ‘rooted in democratic institutions, socially controlled by an active citizenry, and shaped the values of people in their communities.’ Magnuson admits that creating economic alternatives that challenge the status quo are extremely difficult yet acknowledges that the attempt is not impossible. This is a great guide for cooperatives, small businesses, and anyone dedicated to sound economic practices.”
“After I started using Mindful Economics a student wrote this to me: ‘I view everything differently now after your class.’ That must be the best comment an author can get for writing a book. Dr. Magnuson was able to accomplish that. Mindful Economics enabled my students to understand our economic system, its problems and the solutions for those problems. Thanks Dr. Magnuson for a great contribution.”
“An excellent text to counterbalance the sacred scriptures by Samuelson et al…
This is an important book about a vast and important subject –economics –which, except for hermits and recluses living in the wilderness, affects just about everyone, every single day, in more ways than most people realize. Mindful Economics by Joel Magnuson does the job brilliantly and comprehensively. Not since the 1970s, when we saw the last crop of “Goliath slayers,” had we seen an introductory text to economics so well organized, comprehensive, accessible, and conscientious in its unorthodox analysis of the subject as to merit an unqualified hurrah. While presenting all the essential topics that students and the public at large might expect from an overview of economics, he “upends” the mainstream approach, while adding to it, and thereby turns a misleading, unnecessarily abstruse, and largely sterile brew into an enlightening journey of new appreciation for the untapped potential of humankind. In that sense, Mindful Economics is a demystifying tool, a mind detoxifier that also makes economics fun to read. And Mindful Economics helps the reader vaccinate the mind against the blandishments of false consciousness, showing that, in economics, at least, the unorthodox view may be far closer to the truth… [A] book like Mindful Economics performs a signal service to society, as it arms people with the kind of knowledge they need… this book could be a turning point for many readers and the beginning of a robust understanding of a previously chaotic situation.”