MANIFEST AND LATENT FUNCTIONS Sociology Help

MANIFEST AND LATENT FUNCTIONS

Manifest Functions

The manifest functions of all three systems communist, fascist, and mixed economy-are to maintain order, achieve consensus, and maximize economic production. No society IS completely successful in any of these functions. The totalitarian communist or fascist societies seem most"successful in maintaining order, at least temporarily, while the mixed economics have the best record in allowing political liberty, and they have also achieved higher levels of economic production [Barnett, 1982). Various American studies find per-worker productivity in the Soviet Union about half that in the United States [Schrnemarin]
1982).

Latent Functions

An analysis of the three types of societies indicates much similarity in their latent functions. One latent function of all modem governmental- economic institutions is the destruction of traditional culture: Customary forms of land tenure, religious belief, family organization, residential location, and many other established patterns of social life undergo change as industrialism develops. Social mobility is encouraged, one consequence of which is increased nominate and alienation. Another latent function is the acceleration of ecological deterioration. Unless expensive complicated precautions are taken, every Increase In production leads to an increase in environmental destruction. Sometimes capitalists are blamed for this on the grounds that they are unwilling to let anything interfere with profits. However, the communist societies, without any capitalists except the state, have, the same problem. Basically, the ,.difficulty is that under any system, environmental protection costs money [Orleans and Suttmeier, 191{); Goldman, 1972; Houck, 1980]. Pollution also costs money. A recent" calculation put the cost of compliance with the Clean Air Act of 1977 at $17 billion as contrasted to benefits of $21.4 billion [Wolcott and/Rose, 1982], aside from health and scenic benefits. However, the cost-benefit ratio is not always this favorable, and' costs may be immediate while benefits may be delayed. Also, one group may bear the cost while others gain the benefits. Neither communist. ts nor capitalists find it easy to carry pollution-reducing policies into effect.

Posted on September 4, 2014 in Political Economic Institutions

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