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Uneasy Partners

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Uneasy Partners

Big Business in American Politics, 1945-1990

"Businessmen are politicians in America," writes Kim McQuaid, "and politicians are businessmen." Today, in areas as diverse as home mortgages, high technology, and Smart Bombs, the private and public sectors are working together to perform tasks that each is unable to do alone. In Uneasy Partners McQuaid surveys the close ties that have formed between big business and government in the period from World War II to the present.

Government needs business, McQuaid explains, to make and implement key economic and business-related decisions. Business needs government to gain advantages over labor and markets. The defining characteristics of this business-government relationship form the focal point for each of the book's chapters. McQuaid first examines the 1945-60 transition period, discussing Eisenhower's domestic policies, foreign aid, and the oil market. He explores the rapid expansion of government under the Democratic administrations of the 1960s. He discusses the Republican retrenchment and the Reagan administration's pro-business agenda in the 1980s. Finally he assesses the legacy of the Reagan policies and evaluates the current U.S. position in the world economy.