Ask your economics professor this:
If economic growth is supposed supposed to make everyone better off, how do you explain the dramatic rise in income and wealth inequality over the last 30 years?
As, Thomas Piketty explains in a recent talk on his best-selling book Capital in the Twenty-First Century, the orthodox response is to chalk the income problem up to shifts in “supply and demand for skills.” In other words, the rise in demand for higher-skilled labor in developed countries has left those without access to top-tier education to languish in economic limbo while skilled workers race further and further ahead. It’s nothing but the market at work.
But before you join the cohorts of those ready to swallow such blatant reductionism, you’d do well to listen to Piketty’s talk at the New School. In the talk as well as the book, Piketty draws on meticulously collected data to provide an unsurprisingly more complex explanation which places the inner workings of capitalism itself squarely in the crosshairs.
It’s hardly the standard textbook take on things. But as Piketty so wisely admonishes his audience, one should “be careful with economic textbooks.”
Take a look at the talk and share your thoughts: