Lindsey, Brink

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Lindsey, Brink


Education: Princeton University, A.B.; Harvard Law School, J.D.


Office—Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Ave. N.W., Washington, DC 20001-5403. E-mail—[email protected]


Attorney, political scientist, and author. Regulation (magazine), former senior editor; Cato Institute, Washington, DC, former director of regulatory studies, director of Center for Trade Policy Studies, 1998-2004, vice president for research. c. 2004—.


Against the Dead Hand: The Uncertain Struggle for Global Capitalism, Wiley (New York, NY), 2002.

(With Daniel J. Ikenson) Antidumping Exposed: The Devilish Details of Unfair Trade Law, Cato Institute (Washington, DC), 2003.

The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America's Politics and Culture, Collins (New York, NY), 2007.

Contributor to periodicals, including the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New Republic, National Review, Weekly Standard, and Journal of World Trade. Contributing editor, Reason.


Brink Lindsey is an attorney and political scientist among whose areas of expertise is international trade regulation. He has spent more than a decade at the Cato Institute, a nonprofit public policy research foundation based in Washington, DC; in 2004 he became the institute's vice president for research, helping to oversee its research agenda and develop new programs. Lindsay is also the author of several books, focusing primarily on both American and international economic issues.

In his first book, Against the Dead Hand: The Uncertain Struggle for Global Capitalism, Lindsey takes an in-depth look at globalization and the expansion of free markets, highlighting what he sees as its many benefits. The author also writes about potential problems that may hinder the growth of globalization. In the process, he takes a historical look at what he sees as the first instance of free-market globalization following the Industrial Revolution of the 1800s. He points out that an antiglobalization movement began just a few decades after the Industrial Revolution began, typified by the writings of Karl Marx and the rise of the socialist state in Germany, which led to World War I and World War II. During the period between these wars, explains the author, the gains made by globalization were essentially nullified. Lindsey points out that modern globalization faces somewhat similar threats in the form of statism (centralized political control) and collectivism.

"Challenging, contrarian, and meticulously researched, Against the Dead Hand will convince readers that the greatest rewards of globalization are still in the future and that those who profit most will be those who understand and respond to today's realities,’ wrote a contributor to M2 Presswire. Remarking that the author's ‘thesis is grounded in extensive knowledge of the economic history of the modern era,’ John R. Hanson II, went on to write in the Independent Review: ‘I judge this book a qualified success because of its fresh and carefully argued perspective on economic globalization."

Lindsey also collaborated with Daniel J. Ikenson to write Antidumping Exposed: The Devilish Details of Unfair Trade Law. The book examines what the authors perceive as the United States' untenable opposition to meaningful reform in trade policy via its antidumping law. For his next book, The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America's Politics and Culture, Lindsey looks at the latter half of the twentieth century and presents his theory about how and why left- and right-wing ideologies emerged in response to sweeping mass prosperity in the United States and the subsequent new challenges that developed from this prosperity. Referring to the book as ‘constantly stimulating,’ in a review in the New York Times, George F. Will added that the author presents ‘his thesis … that in the second half of the 20th century, America left the ‘realm of necessity’ and entered the ‘realm of freedom.’ Americans ‘live on the far side of a great fault line’ separating them from all prior human experience.

In The Age of Abundance, Lindsey provides a political and economic history of the United States, from its establishment until the end of World War II, which, according to Lindsey, marks the beginning of a time of superabundance among the American people. He then takes readers through the 1950s when this abundance burgeoned and would ultimately lead to a radical change in the social conventions of America. For example, he writes about the Civil Rights Movement and the drug scene of the 1960s, both of which he feels were partly a result of this abundance. He goes on to explore the sexual revolution of the 1970s, followed by the emergence of conservatism as the dominant force in American politics in the last two decades of the century. In addition, Lindsey delves into what he perceives as the negative effects of abundance, from an almost uniform complacency in the 1950s to the lackadaisical Generation X of the 1990s. The author ends his book on a positive note as he writes about America in the twenty-first century as a country that has more freedoms in both the economic and cultural realms than it did at the end of World War II.

"Lindsey is no mere cheerleader of contemporary America, indiscriminately praising the society in which he lives,’ noted Bradley Doucet on the Le Quebecois Libre Web site. ‘Rather, he recognizes that it is often crass and vulgar in its obsession with serving the youth market; that ever-present advertising and political spin often display a contemptuous disregard for the truth; and that religious and New Age superstitions are ubiquitous.’ Other reviewers also praised the author and The Age of Abundance. ‘Readers from a broad spectrum of beliefs will appreciate the breadth and ardor of Lindsey's analysis,’ predicted Vanessa Bush in Booklist. A Kirkus Reviews contributor viewed The Age of Abundance as ‘a thoughtful attempt to explain—and claim—the broad center in the middle of our political squabbling."



Booklist, April 15, 2007, Vanessa Bush, review of The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America's Politics and Culture, p. 8.

Independent Review, spring, 2003, John R. Hanson II, review of Against the Dead Hand: The Uncertain Struggle for Global Capitalism, p. 617.

Journal of Economic Literature, June, 2003, review of Against the Dead Hand, p. 651.

Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2007, review of The Age of Abundance, p. 209.

M2 Best Books, August 8, 2002, Rebecca Sanderman, review of Against the Dead Hand.

M2 Presswire, February 5, 2002, review of Against the Dead Hand.

New York Times, June 10, 2007, George F. Will, ‘Land of Plenty,’ review of The Age of Abundance.

Publishers Weekly, March 19, 2007, review of The Age of Abundance, p. 55.

Wall Street Journal, April 4, 2002, William McGurn, ‘Why the Siren Song of Central Planning Can Still Be Heard,’ review of Against the Dead Hand, p. 16.

World Economy, January, 2005, review of Antidumping Exposed: The Devilish Details of Unfair Trade Law.


Brink Lindsey Home Page, (November 1, 2007).

Le Quebecois Libre, (November 1, 2007), Bradley Doucet, ‘Claiming the Center: A Review of Brink Lindsey's The Age of Abundance."

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