Governors all across the nation are crying poverty and demanding deep budget cuts on needed social services. But we’re not broke. We’re just keeping too much of our wealth in too few pockets.
Racial segregation dominated the American landscape for generations. We can’t afford, suggests the research of Stanford’s Sean Reardon, to let economic segregation have anywhere near as long a run.
In Adam Smith’s textbook market economy, buyers and sellers know all they need to know and never get burned. Today’s oligarchs and plutocrats have essentially burned the textbook.
You don’t have to buy the theories in Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century to use his data. And those data show that the United States has become a model for maldistribution.
The low- and middle-income families hurt most by the Great Recession are continuing to receive the least benefit from our recovering economy. So what will it take to ensure this disaster never happens again?
Modern-day conservatives like Paul Ryan seem to have discovered inequality. But don’t take that discovery too seriously. Their world views still reflect a Gilded Age contempt for society’s struggling.
At least some American businesses are realizing that a fairer economy makes eminent business sense. America’s most insightful business leaders have understood that reality for generations.
Any effort to reduce inequality must deal with the fact that inequality is a matter of conflict between the 99 percent and the 1 percent. We must address the deeper processes that permit the 1 percent to win.
Good things trickle down, cheerleaders for privilege insist, when wealth concentrates. In real life, notes economist Robert Frank, inequality makes things worse even for its ostensible beneficiaries.
Chicago is becoming a symbol of a nation crippled by the idea that the “public good” rates as an un-American notion. Other cities and states have fought privatization. Will Chicago be able to learn from them?