David Cay Johnston on the Perils of Our Growing Inequality

David Cay Johnston is a clear and lively conversationalist, and I anticipate readers will enjoy his discussion of his work over the last 20 years on inequality. Johnston stress that inequality is primarily a result of political and economic arrangements, including anti-trust policy and how much investment society and parents make in their children’s health and education. He also points out that shifts in who is in newsrooms (blue collar intellectuals have over time been displace by scions of the wealthy) has led to more flattering coverage of our elite-favoring status quo and neglect of its failings, like high levels of hunger.

Johnston also discusses the role of the financialization of corporations and the changing and expanded role of limited liability corporations, specifically, that historically profit-making ones were regarded with great suspicion, and on explosive levels of executive compensation. This is a wide ranging discussion, and includes the rise of oligarchical thinking, the various policy choices that serve squeeze workers, governmental capture, and the loss of faith in democracy.