Civilizing the Economy A New Economics of Provision

Nicholas Phillipson’s biography of Adam Smith and slavery

Posted Aug 21, 2011 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, No Comments

Nicholas Phillipson’s new biography of Adam Smith would have deserved all the praise it has received, if slavery had not been such a fundamental contributor to the wealth that Smith, Glasgow, and Scotland enjoyed.  Philliipson’s omission of the role of slavery in early capitalism, however, continues the legacy of an economics of dissociation that began with Smith’s The Wealth of Nations.  It is time to tell the whole truth, or at least those elements that could actually promote the integrity of economics. See my review of Phillipson’s book, Adam Smith: An Enlightened Life, in the August issue of the  Review of Social Economics

Choose your government: Civic or Commercial

Posted Aug 17, 2011 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, 3 Comments

Do you want a government run by a CEO, guided by commercial interests, that works for the wealthy; or a government run by civic leaders, guided by civic norms, that honors everyone’s basic human rights?  We need to understand this choice.

True Believers Anonymous

Posted Aug 10, 2011 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, No Comments

In light of the mess in Washington D.C, (and elsewhere) perhaps we need some sort of recovery program for “true believers”—a kind of True Believers Anonymous.  It need not follow the famous 12 steps of AA, but it would probably include the following:

Corporate Jobs vs. People’s Needs

Posted Aug 4, 2011 by Marvin Brown in Uncategorized, 2 Comments

So congress swallowed the idea that corporations are “job creators,” but they did not say much about the kinds of jobs corporations might create, or if these jobs really address our needs.  It turns out there may be a serious disconnect here.

Marvin T. Brown, Ph.D teaches business and organizational ethics at the University of San Francisco and Saybrook University in San Francisco.

This book is the culmination of 30 years of teaching and writing on business and society from a communicative perspective. Visit for more information.

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