Book club meeting

A look at Schumpeter's theory on "creative destruction"

The book club’s March 12 meeting will focus on Joseph A. Schumpeter's theory on “creative destruction.” You can delve into this concept in Schumpeter's original work, "Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy," or you can get the segment on “creative destruction” in a book titled "Can Capitalism Survive?” These books should be available in any good library.

Schumpeter had decades of experience as a socialist scholar. It is somewhat ironic that his reputation now rests on “creative destruction,” an element of capitalist theory of primary importance.

The parts of Schumpeter's 1942 primary work covering his views on socialism and democracy and his evaluation of Karl Marx are also well worth reading. In this book, Schumpeter accurately identified and explained the social, economic and political tendencies that supported the widespread advance of socialism after World War II. Even though socialism as an administered alternative to market mechanisms has been widely tried and found wanting, those social, economic and political forces retain their relevance today as powerful supports for government enterprise market entities and entitlement welfare and industrial policy agendas.

Schumpeter expressed great admiration for Karl Marx. He provides a well-balanced evaluation of Marx, setting forth both the accomplishments of Marx as a socialist theorist and the substantial weaknesses that permeate Marx's work.

If you would like a quick overview of Schumpeter's views, check out Dan Blatt’s web magazine at and click the link to "Schumpeter on Socialism."

The meeting, which begins at 6:30 p.m., will be at the Wonderful Chinese Restaurant, 7042 Sylvan Road, Citrus Heights, CA 95610. For more information, contact Dan Blatt at

Photo:  Some rights reserved by Emily Carlin