Confronting Capitalism: A new book by Kotler

I will publish my new book, Confronting Capitalism: Real Solutions for a Troubled Economy (AMACOM, 2015). I wrote this book to take a larger view of Capitalism and its successes and problems. Capitalism, like any other system, has its shortcomings. But as Winston Churchill observed, it still beats the other systems.


As a trained economist, I have identified 14 shortcomings of Capitalism. Each shortcoming is discussed in a separate chapter regarding its sources, causes, and solutions. The book is 238 pages and it presents a penetrating discussion of the major problems and opportunities facing the American economy and society.

The fourteen shortcomings are: listed here.

  1. Lets politicians and business interests collaborate to subvert the economic interests of the majority of citizens.
  2. Encourages high consumer debt and leads to a growing financially driven rather than producer-driven economy
  3. Emphasizes individualism and self-interest at the expense of community and the commons
  4. Creates business cycles and economic instability
  5. Exploits the environment and natural resources in the absence of regulation
  6. Doesn’t charge businesses with the full social costs of their activities
  7. May not provide enough human jobs in the face of growing automation
  8. Fails to pay a living wage to billions of workers
  9. Generates a growing level of income and wealth inequality
  10. Proposes little or no solution to persisting poverty
  11. Favors short-run profit planning over long-run investment planning
  12. Should have regulations regarding product quality, safety, truth in advertising, and anti-competitive behavior
  13. Tends to focus narrowly on GDP growth
  14. Needs to bring social values and happiness into the market equation

“With the fall of the Berlin Wall, one economic model emerged triumphant. Capitalism – spanning a spectrum from laissez faire to authoritarian – shapes the market economies of all the wealthiest and fastest-growing nations. But trouble is cracking its shiny veneer. In the U.S., Europe, and Japan, economic growth has slowed down. Wealth is concentrated in the hands of a few; natural resources are exploited for short-term profit; and good jobs are hard to find. With piercing clarity, Philip Kotler explains 14 major problems undermining capitalism, including persistent poverty, job creation in the face of automation, high debt burdens, the disproportionate influence of the wealthy on public policy, steep environmental costs, boom-bust economic cycles, and more. Amidst its dire assessment of what’s ailing us, Confronting Capitalism delivers a heartening message: We can turn things around. Movements toward shared prosperity and a higher purpose are reinvigorating companies large and small, while proposals abound on government policies that offer protections without stagnation. Kotler identifies the best ideas, linking private and public initiatives into a force for positive change. Combining economic history, expert insight, business lessons, and recent data, this landmark book elucidates today’s critical dilemmas and suggests solutions for returning to a healthier, more sustainable Capitalism – that works for all.” 

Praise for the book:

Those who have even the remotest connection to the levers of power should be locked in a room and forced to digest Kotler’s analysis and act upon it. – Darren Ingram Media (Read more)


Confronting Capitalism does something I have not seen before. It takes economics and puts it on a practical human scale. – Evil Cyclist (Read more)

Confronting Capitalism will be published in April 2015, which can be pre-ordered on:


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