Review: The Price of Inequality:How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future

5 Star, America (Founders, Current Situation), Banks, Fed, Money, & Concentrated Wealth, Capitalism (Good & Bad), Congress (Failure, Reform), Corruption, Crime (Corporate), Crime (Government), Economics, Executive (Partisan Failure, Reform), Future, Impeachment & Treason, Misinformation & Propaganda, Nature, Diet, Memetics, Design, Peace, Poverty, & Middle Class, Politics, Power (Pathologies & Utilization), Priorities, Public Administration, Threats (Emerging & Perennial), True Cost & Toxicity, Values, Ethics, Sustainable Evolution, Voices Lost (Indigenous, Gender, Poor, Marginalized)
Amazon Page
Amazon Page

Joseph Stiglitz

5.0 out of 5 stars Ethical Economist Confronts Two-Party Tyranny — Defines 70% of the Way Forward, November 26, 2013

I have admired this economist, one of a tiny handful who are not bought and paid for by the banks, for quite a long time. I’d like to see him at Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), with a Deputy Director for Management that actually has authority for Whole of Government strategy and management. Of course that would require an honest president and an honest congress, so I am not holding my breath on this one.

In passing, I ran for President as an accepted candidate for the Reform Party in 2012 — it only took six weeks to recognize that neither Occupy nor any of the other candidates (there are EIGHT accredited parties in the USA, only 2 of which are allowed to actually run for office) were in the least bit interested in a universal demand for electoral reform and a coalition cabinet. See the six big ideas at bigbatusa.org, where you will also find the author of this book listed as the ideal member of the Cabinet for the OMB function.

There are so many other excellent reviews, I am using my contribution to list his specific recommendation for economic reform, and point to a few other related books that support this extraordinary work. My comments added below are in brackets.

THE ECONOMIC REFORM AGENDA

01 Curb excess at the top

(a) Curb excessive risk taking and too bit to fail and too interconnected to fail
)b) Make banks more transparent
(c) Make the banks and credit card companies more competitive and ensure the act competitively
(d) Crack down on predatory lending and abusive credit card practices
(e) Curb the bonuses that encourage excessive risk-taking [to which I would add, and outright fraud] (f) Close down the offshore banking system

02 Enact stronger and more effective enforced competition laws

03 Improve corporate governance — especially limit power of CEOs to loot their own companies

04 Enact comprehensive reform of bankruptcy laws with special attention to derivative, underwater homes and student loans

05 End government give-aways [generally secured with 5% kick-backs to the dishonest two-party tyranny drones]

06 End corporate welfare — including hidden subsidies [again with the 5% kick-backs to dishonest members of Congress]

07 Enact legal reform — democratize access to justice and diminishing the arms race

08 Tax reform

(a) Create a more progressive income and corporate tax system with fewer loopholes [I disagree with this – we need to ELIMINATE all taxes with one new tax, the Automated Payment Transaction (APT) tax

(b) Create a more effective and effectively enforced estate tax system to prevent the creation of a new oligarchy

09 Helping the rest [the 99%]

(a) Improve access to education

(b) Help ordinary Americans save [start with a living wage, stop inflation]

(c) Health care for all [a public service — if the French can do it, so can we]

(d) Strengthen other social protection programs [legalize marijuana and shut Bloomberg and the NYPD down, gut the FBI and start over, this time focusing on the elite pedophilia rings and government-sponsored and protected illegal and legal drug programs]

10 Temper globalization [keep most money local]

11 Restore and maintain full employment

(a) Have a monetary policy and monetary institutions to maintain full employment

(b) Correct trade imbalances [stop dumping — half the crap we buy is not allowed in Europe because it is so toxic]

(c) Have active labor market policies and improved social protection [stop business visas based on lies by Bill Gates and others]

12 Establish a new social contract

(a) Support workers’ and citizens’ collective action [labor leaders in the USA are traitors to their members; employee owned enterprises should be the norm, not the exception]

(b) Restore affirmative action to eliminate the legacy of discrimination [but hold it to very high standards of earned performance]

13 Restore sustainable and equitable growth

(a) Fund a growth agenda based on public investment [but first get true cost economics established as “root”]

(b) Redirect investment and innovation to preserve [and create] jobs while protecting the environment [get off fossil fuels — Sweden did it, all it takes is integrity

(c) [This one is all mine: make localized resilience

I deeply admire this author. He does not have all the answers — none of us do — but his voice and his integrity are in my view priceless.

Thinking about this book, I have realized that listing ten books, the limit allowed by Amazon, would not do this work justice. So instead, below I list some lists of lists that are easily found by searching for them online, these are many of my reviews (I read in 98 categories accessible at Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog), and each leads back to the respective Amazon page for each book within each list:

Worth a Look: Book Review Lists (Positive Future-Oriented)

Worth a Look: Book Review Lists (Negative Status-Quo)

Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Intelligence (Most)

Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Corruption 2.0

Worth a Look: Book Reviews on Democracy Lost & Found

Afterthought: The author is an economist and thinks in those terms.  I am a political scientist and my lifelong passion is the observation of revolutionary potential. Revolutions happen for three reasons: concentration of wealth, loss of balance, and loss of legitimacy across the government. Today most of the preconditions of revolution exist in the USA, all we are lacking is a precipitant — a soccer mom torching herself on the steps of Capitol Hill after denouncing the two-party tyranny and having her denouncement and self-immoliation posted to the web would do nicely. See the following easily found link with references:

Graphic: Preconditions of Revolution in the USA Today

With best wishes to all,
Robert David STEELE Vivas
THE OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING MANIFESTO: Transparency, Truth, & Trust

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