The United States economy has come a long way from a free market capitalistic economy to a mixed economy as seen today. These changes were necessitated by several historical events such as the Great Depression. Prior the Great Depression, the American economy was a free market capitalist economy. However, after the economic downturn, the general opinion suggested that capitalism was untenable.
John Maynard Keynes suggested managed capitalism as the solution to the economic woes facing the country. Basically, he supported increased government involvement and regulation of some aspects of the economy. However, the economy still features some core capitalist aspects including freedom of individual choice, protection of private property and healthy competition. Over time, the government has increased its involvement in the national economy and provides products and services that are deemed too sensitive to be left to the free market.