In November 2017, Oxford University Press published The Captured Economy: How the Powerful Enrich Themselves, Slow Down Growth, and Increase Inequality. Coauthored by Niskanen Center scholars Brink Lindsey and Steven M. Teles, The Captured Economy argues that systematic breakdowns in democratic governance have allowed wealthy special interests to capture broad domains of the policymaking process and twist the rules for their own benefit. Steadily worsening “upward redistribution” via “regressive regulation” has contributed significantly to the American economy’s twin woes of stagnating growth and sky-high inequality.
This website builds on and expands the analysis provided in The Captured Economy. In the book, Lindsey and Teles briefly examined four broad policy areas that showcase the problem of regressive regulation: financial regulation, intellectual property protection, occupational licensing, and land-use regulation. They admitted, though, that space constraints permitted them to cover “only the tip of the iceberg.” This website is dedicating to explore the phenomenon in all its murky depths.
We begin by focusing on the four policy areas covered in the book, but over time we plan to include additional, related policy and issue areas. For each covered area, capturedeconomy.com will serve as a comprehensive repository of analysis and news, including not only academic research and journalistic analysis but also the latest news on policy developments. Our goal is to make capturedeconomy.com an indispensable resource for journalists, policymakers, and concerned citizens interested in better understanding and remedying the deep structural problems that afflict American policymaking and economic performance.
For more information about the book, check out the links below: