Collection • May 4, 2020

Rebooting the American System

The comprehensive, conservative case for a return to robust national economic policy

Podcast: The Return of Conservative Economics

American Compass’s Oren Cass and Wells King join the Bill Walton Show to discuss Rebooting the American System.

Planning for When the Market Cannot

The fact that government planners are not omniscient is obvious, but it does not automatically follow that planning is always ineffective. Perfect information is simply not a precondition of successful planning in either the private or the public sectors.

Foreword: On Security

The American system of innovation, combining strategic investment and private enterprise, made our nation’s industry the envy of the world. It can pave the way for widespread prosperity and security again today.

Rediscovering a Genuine American System

Economic stability, national security, widely shared prosperity, strong families, a pluralistic society—in short, the American way of life—are achievements plainly worth conserving. So is the only approach to economic policy that has ever proved capable of producing them.

Foreword: On Resilience

America’s ability to meet the challenges of tomorrow rests on our conviction to turn a new economic page today.

Removing the Blinders From Economic Policy

Remove the blinders of economic fundamentalism, and it is impossible not to see the social, legal, historical, and institutional scaffolding that buttresses a growing economy, and the role that public policy must play in its construction and maintenance.

Overview

After decades of looking away as America’s supply chains migrated overseas, policymakers are finally facing the reality that dependence on foreign producers has weakened the nation’s resilience, its security, and its economy. When factories leave, not only the jobs but also the suppliers, the customers, the expertise, and the innovation go too. When a crisis strikes, vital supplies are unavailable. When productivity growth and innovation are needed, they are nowhere to be found.

This symposium gathers experts in many fields; working in think tanks, universities, and industry; starting from points across the political spectrum; to delineate and describe the levers available to policymakers in pursuit of reshoring supply chains and to offer concrete policy proposals for using each lever. Some proposals emphasize investments that the United States can make to improve its competitiveness—in people, in infrastructure, and in research. Others consider how better laws could attract or even force firms toward domestic production. Still others advocate reform for institutions themselves, from the federal government to the WTO.

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