Capitalism is in crisis. Overripe Economy uses a historical view to explain how we got here and why. Taking readers through the history of American capitalism–from the ruthless competition of the nineteenth century to the maturation of industrial capitalism in the early part of the twentieth and on into today’s finance-ridden decline–Alan Nasser lays out here in damning detail why the persistent austerity of financialized capitalism is the inevitable outcome of the evolution of the American economy.Capitalism, he argues, ultimately presents us with two alternatives: persistent austerity, declining democracy, and a privatized state, or a polity and economy characterized by genuine economic democracy .