Postwar Reconstruction.doc

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9 Apr 2012
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Course
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Postwar Reconstruction
-A remarkable accomplishment of Post World War II would be
the construction of an open world economy
-Bretton Woods (1944) agreements opened up more opportunity between the United States and
Britain
-An open and multilateral system if trade and payments, along with full employment and eco-
nomic stabilization
-Anglo-American Innovative postwar agreement was created/postwar economic cooperation
(“political miracle”)
Arguments claims:
1. Deliberations on postwar order began during the war/both US and Britain wanted different
things =
2. A community of policy specialists and economists assembled within and outside the British
and American governments during the war, leading to the putting of differences aside and mov-
ing towards an agreement
3. The ideas articulated by experts were important because they created a middle ground be-
tween old political divisions, opening up the possibility for coalition building/looked at policy that
effected the larger political environment
-Particular historical moments (i.e. WWII) can provide expert groups the opportunity to create
new policy approaches and philosophies with opportunities to shape a governments conception
of national interest
The Anglo-American Settlement
-The settlement didn’t just reestablish economic openness, it created a new open system
-Embodied a blend of laissez-faire and interventionism --> allowing a open system of trade
and payments, while still providing arrangements to support domestic full employment and so-
cial welfare
-John Ruggie’s notion of “embedded liberalism
-The establishment was made possible by the Untied States (being a hegemonic power) to
break down the barriers to global economic openness, making compromises where necessary
-Us and British interests pointed to a more open economic system
-The interest- based explanations of postwar economic order were incomplete:
a. A range of postwar “orders” was compatible with America’s broad interest in an open
world economy/ these orders were advanced within the American government --> more
concerned with safeguarding the emerging welfare state rather than looking at laissez-
faire and free trade
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