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Thursday, November 05, 2009

158 - "We have to tolerate inequality to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all": The Right-Wing Mind's Strained Relation To Reality

Today, in a change of pace, a single subject podcast: trickle-down economics and the unsustainable economic inequality and social ills it produces.

Sometimes escaping from the mouth of a right-winger is an utterance so jaw-dropping, that it merits an entire show.

Brian Griffiths is a Goldman, Sachs international advisor. He was recently discussing Wall Street salaries and bonuses. You've probably heard that the financial industry is all set to award itself a record $140 billion in total compensation this year. Goldman, Sachs all by its lonesome will pass out $23 billion in bonuses.

Griffiths said in defense of such numbers:
We have to tolerate the inequality as a way to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all
In case your brain has the same reaction mine did the first time I heard that -- this doesn't compute, this doesn't compute -- let me repeat it.

This former advisor to Margaret Thatcher said with a straight face:
We have to tolerate the inequality as a way to achieve greater prosperity and opportunity for all
Ah, trickle down economics. Thatchernomics. Reaganomics. Right-wing economics. Let me become filthy rich, it will be better for you also, better for everyone.


I think not. As one economist summed up the available empirical evidence:
Trickle-down theory…predicts a positive correlation between inequality and economic growth, the idea being that income disparities strengthen motivation to get ahead. Yet when researchers track the data within individual countries over time, they find a negative correlation.
For more details, please do listen to the show (and you'll also hear an amazing soundbite of Bill O'Reilly at his worst).

(PS: Right-wingers, if you want to write in to me, fine, but at least do me the courtesy of listening to the podcast first. Please don't respond just on the basis of the brief preview above. Thanks!!)

Scheduling note: episodes of Blast The Right will be posted every three weeks.

Jack Clark 7:53 PM [+]
Post #2398331303810207703

Comments:  This section is for listeners. To receive a reply from Jack Clark, you should call the comment line.

Hey Jack. My Name is Jesus Lopez from Venezuela. I always listen to your show. Sometimes I do not agree with all your comments (In Venezuela the goverment entities are very ineficient, even after 11 years-yes, eleven years of Chavez. Problems with electricity and water are not part of a "sabotage") I agree however with the fact that in order to have a healthy society, we need to help the poor people with education, good services and jobs. Before Chavez, the goverments forgot the people...One of the important goals of Chavez has been to understand that persons are first.PD: Evo is the president of Bolivia, not Ecuador as you mentioned in a clear "Freudian slip" in your show, since Carlos Correa, is the President of Ecuador, and also a left wing leader.
posted by Anonymous Anonymous  7:35 AM   [+]
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Great podcast - a must listen to
Jack Clark documents the right's wars on the poor, civil liberties, the right of workers to organize at work and obtain a decent working wage and work conditions, and against other countries who refuse to accept American domination. Jack provides all the sources so that you can see for yourself how the right is out to enrich itself at the expense of everyone else. Great job, Jack!
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awesome show
Clark always backs up his statements against the right wing with fact and data, which gives him all the more credibility. As conglomerate media controlled by politics clouds the mainstream news media, Jack Clark, along with NPR and Democracy Now! have become my primary news source. Awesome podcast!
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In-Depth, Meaty, Hardcore Knowledge
This podcast is not just entertainment, humor, chimp-bashing, or gee-whiz recap of the weeks events. Instead, it hits hard and in-depth on the world economic situation and how right-wing policies impact the poor and less advantaged all over the world. He examines Americas support of the World Bank, IMF,multinational corporations, etc., and connects the dots. This is a podcast for grown-ups. He gives good reasons why the right wing is NOT living up to its precious Bible, without putting down the Bible. As a Jesus-loving Christian and moderate Democrat, I respect this podcast for its subject matter. The grown-up manner of the speaker is just icing on the cake. He IS funny, but hes not trying to be, he just has a deadpan delivery but doesnt have to make jokes to make it interesting. The facts make it interesting and devastating.
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