Timeline of Economic Thought

The Timeline of Economic Thought

The differences in the economic philosophies of different time periods can be attributed to the main ideas or mentalities prevalent during those times, as the effect of new experiences or 'impressions' on the mind. We chronologically list the main events that may have caused people to have those new experiences from which they developed new ideas.

Proto-Mercantile (1204-1420)
Essence: Rise of the MerchantsThe Venetians give Europe the first taste of commerce and manufactures
1204 Constantinople is sacked during the Fourth Crusade and treasures are brought back to Venice, which becomes a European power
1271 Marco Polo, a Venetian, leaves for Asia
1300 The Travels of Marco Polo is published, describing the East
1368 Start of the Ming Dynasty
1405 The Ming show off its power through its Treasure Fleet

Pre-Mercantile (1420-1600)
Essence: Discovery and Conquest for Gold and Silver The Portuguese want to join in the Italians' business through exploration and colonization. Soon the Spanish enter the picture with their lust for gold. 
1425 Henry the Navigator develops the caravel to be used to seek a sea route to the East
1488 Portuguese Bartolomeu Dias reaches Cape of Good Hope
1492 Italian Christopher Columbus reaches the Americas through Spanish support
1498 Portuguese Vasco da Gama reaches India
1577 Venice suffers from the Black Death while having lost its Eastern trade to the Portuguese
1588 Spanish Armada defeated by the British

Mercantile Period (1600-1799)
Essence: Trade and the Mercantile Company for High ProfitsWith the Spanish defeated, other Europeans join in the colonization game with their own merchants through the invention of companies, paper financial products, and commodities trading. 
1600 English East India Company established
1602 Dutch East India Company established
1609 Bank of Amsterdam established
1660 Royal African Company established
1694 Bank of England established
1695 Bank of Scotland established
1711 South Sea Company established
1752 Royal African Company dissolved
1755 Richard Cantillon publishes Essai, contributing to monetary theory
1759 Adam Smith publishes The Theory of Moral Sentiments, advocating a new system of morality.
1776 Adam Smith publishes The Wealth of Nations, creating maxims on societal wealth
1789 Start of the French Revolution

Pre-Capitalist Period (1800-1889)
Essence: Utility and Money for Pleasure and Industrial DevelopmentThe too-big-to-fail mercantile company model proves unsustainable. The Industrial Revolution peaks, leading to new material experiences to gratify the senses. The word 'scientist' replaces 'natural philosopher'. Big non-corporate companies are established to build steel plants and railroads.
1800 Dutch East India Company dissolved
1803 JB Say publishes A Treatise on Political Economy, advocating utility, the cause of producers, and removing ethics from the Political Economy
1850 South Sea Company dissolved
1874 English East India Company dissolved
1848 John Stuart Mill publishes Principles of Political Economy
1861 John Stuart Mill publishes Utilitarianism corrupting the Political Economy with utility, something that Smith argued against in The Theory of Moral Sentiments
1867 Karl Marx publishes Capital: Critique of Political Economy, arguing against an economic system originating from England and France (espoused by Mill) that would eventually evolve to become Capitalism
1870 John D. Rockefeller establishes Standard Oil
1871 William Stanley Jevons publishes The Theory of Political Economy, adding Calculus to the Political Economy, also based on utility
1872 Andrew Carnegie enters the steel business
1871 Carl Menger publishes Principles of Economics
1874 Leon Walras publishes Elements of Pure Economics with the General Equilibrium Theory

Capitalism (1890-1944)
Essence: Microeconomics and Big BusinessThe 'firm' picks up what the mercantile company has left off. Economics is formalized. By now Western moral philosophy has died, leading to world wars. 
1890 Alfred Marshall publishes Principles of Economics, turning the Political Economy into Economics. By now, moral philosophy is totally alien to Economics.
1892 Irving Fisher publishes Mathematical Investigations in the Theory of Value and Prices
1895 J.P. Morgan and Company established
1913 Federal Reserve System established
1914 World War 1
1929 Start of Great Depression
1936 John Maynard Keynes publishes The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money, establishing macroeconomics. Moral philosophy is still nowhere, proven by his reference to 'animal spirits.' He merely puts economic moral obligation on governments instead of properly putting it back into the science.
1939 World War 2

Global Capitalism (1944-)
Essence: Macroeconomics and the Rebirth of CapitalismThe US emerges from the ashes of both world wars and the Cold War to impose its own system of global capitalism. The firm evolves into huge corporations, a type of which is the too-big-to-fail bank which can crash the global economy by itself.
1944 Bretton Woods established; The US becomes a superpower after World War II
1947 The Cold War begins leading to sub wars such as Korean, Vietnam, and Afghan wars.
1948 Paul Samuelson publishes Economics, standardizing Economic science
1971 Nixon shock makes currencies pegged to nothing. Oil prices spike as petrodollars get pegged to oil instead. Inflation follows.
1981 Reaganomics
1998 Repeal of Glass-Steagal. Banks awash with fiat cash, which is pegged to nothing, combine long-term and short-term cash to get employed and make even more money.
2008 Start of Financial Crisis in the US. The combined fiat cash of banks runs out of employment and crashes.
2016 Brexit + Trump. Stagnation caused by Economic Science, plus the lack of moral philosophy, makes the British go on their own and allows Trump (our super mercantilist) to be the most powerful person in the world.
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