Brilliantly written and argued, Concrete Economics shows exactly how the US government has shaped and directed the economy since the very inception of the country.
This book does not rehash the sturdy and well-known arguments that to thrive, an entrepreneurial economy needs a social and policy environment characterized by a broad range of freedoms. Nor does it buy into the myth of the absolutely free market.
Instead, Cohen and DeLong focus on the forgotten role played by the US government in initiating and enabling a redesign of the US economy. The government not only sets the ground rules for entrepreneurial activity but directs the surges of energy that mark a vibrant economy. It is as true for present-day Silicon Valley as it was for New England manufacturing at the dawn of the nineteenth century.
This is not an argument based on abstract truths, complex correlations, or arcane discoveries, but rather on the facts of how the US economy succeeded so brilliantly. And that provides a blueprint for how the government, established companies, and new ventures can partner to yet again successfully reshape the economy.