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The United States Is More Socialist Than You Know

Compared to other wealthy countries, large sectors of the US economy are more socialized than is realized. From energy to water to transportation, land and more, and from cities and states to the nation, there is public ownership and control. The neo-liberal era of privatization is winding down. This has particularly accelerated following the 2008 financial crash. We speak with Thomas Hanna, author of “Our Common Wealth: The Return of Public Ownership in the United States,” about reclaiming public goods and how to prepare for the next financial crash. Plus, we put the current news in the context of the bigger picture.


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Thomas M. Hanna joined The Democracy Collaborative in 2010 as a research assistant to Gar Alperovitz and became Research Director in 2015. He received his M.A. and B.A. degrees in History from Virginia Commonwealth University. Thomas’ areas of expertise include public ownership, privatization, local government, democratic ownership, and banking, among others. He is the author of Our Common Wealth: The Return of Public Ownership in the United States (Manchester University Press, 2018), co-editor the e-book Scaling Up the Cooperative Movement, and has published articles in popular and academic journals including The New York TimesThe NationTruthoutYes! MagazineAlternetOpenDemocracyRenewalIPPR Progressive ReviewThe Independent, and The Good Society. He has provided research support for various Democracy Collaborative and Next System Project reports as well as the 2011 second edition of America Beyond Capitalism and 2013’s What Then Must We Do? Straight Talk About the Next American Revolution

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