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Wed Jun 3, 2015, 09:21 PM

 

'Scandinavian Dream' is true fix for America's income inequality

Income inequality has gotten so bad in America that it's now easier to get ahead in many other countries, says Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz.

Decades of deregulation and lowering taxes for the wealthy and businesses -- with the hope of it eventually benefiting the middle and working classes -- has created a chasm between the rich and everyone else, Stiglitz told CNNMoney.

To get back to a more equal society, he suggests we take a page from some of our European neighbors and restore the balance between government, business and labor.

"Maybe we should be calling the American Dream the Scandinavian Dream," he told CNNMoney.

The Scandinavian countries changed their education systems, social policies and legal frameworks to create societies where there is a higher degree of mobility. That made their countries more into the land of opportunity that America once was.


http://money.cnn.com/2015/06/03/news/economy/stiglitz-income-inequality/

11 replies, 1888 views

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Reply 'Scandinavian Dream' is true fix for America's income inequality (Original post)
peecoolyour Jun 2015 OP
niyad Jun 2015 #1
aspirant Jun 2015 #2
peecoolyour Jun 2015 #4
Recursion Jun 2015 #8
Omaha Steve Jun 2015 #3
daleanime Jun 2015 #5
moondust Jun 2015 #6
FairWinds Jun 2015 #7
Unknown Beatle Jun 2015 #9
The2ndWheel Jun 2015 #10
pampango Jun 2015 #11

Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 10:50 PM

1. k and r

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 11:16 PM

2. Are these Scandanavians

involved in any of these creepy trade deals and if not how can they survive?

We're told it's mandatory or China will come and gobble you up

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Response to aspirant (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 11:24 PM

4. They are no strangers to free trade, but they make the safety net stronger in conjunction with it.

 

Here we just rip it out from under our workers and tell them they're not trying hard enough.

Big difference.

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Response to aspirant (Reply #2)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 12:21 AM

8. The EU is a "big creepy trade deal"

Norway isn't a member of it but Sweden and Denmark are.

Sweden and Denmark are not, however, in the Eurozone, which has a lot to do with why they weathered the past few years better than the rest of Europe.

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 11:23 PM

3. Thanks for posting


K&R!

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 11:31 PM

5. K&R.....

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 11:47 PM

6. K/R

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 12:20 AM

7. Big Joe . .

 

Stiglitz, that is, is well worth reading. He is clear and concise, not
to mention being a Nobel Prize winner.

He was born and grew up in Gary, Indiana and not surprisingly noticed
inequality, but surprisingly, decided to devote his life to doing
something about it.

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 02:46 AM

9. Ever since the New Deal and the Second New Deal plus

the enactment of Glass-Steagall, which was one of the first acts of FDRs New Deal, the republicans have strategized and planned on how to destroy these programs. So far they're succeeding.

A couple of Democratic presidents have also been involved in dismantling our safety nets and letting Wall Street and Big Banks run wild with our tax dollars.

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 06:54 AM

10. Replace one dream with another

I think there was a movie like that.

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Response to peecoolyour (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 07:33 AM

11. Krugman posted an article showing Americans think our income equality is like Sweden's actually is.

Inequality Delusions

Via the FT, a new study compares perceptions of inequality across advanced nations. The big takeaway here is that Americans are more likely than Europeans to believe that they live in a middle-class society, even though income is really much less equally distributed here than in Europe. Ive truncated the table to show the comparison between the U.S. and France: the French think they live in a hierarchical pyramid when they are in reality mostly middle-class, Americans are the opposite.



As the paper says, other evidence also says that Americans vastly underestimate inequality in their own society and when asked to choose an ideal wealth distribution, say that they like Sweden.

Why the difference? American exceptionalism when it comes to income distribution our unique suspicion of and hostility to social insurance and anti-poverty programs is, I and many others would argue, very much tied to our racial history. This does not, however, explain in any direct way why we should misperceive real inequality: people could oppose aid to Those People while understanding how rich the rich are. There may, however, be an indirect effect, because the racial divide empowers right-wing groups of all kinds, which in turn issue a lot of propaganda dismissing and minimizing inequality.

Interesting stuff.

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/08/20/inequality-delusions/

Krugman's post was about 10 months ago. It seems like a greater public perception of inequality the US has begun to develop so maybe the results of the study would be slightly different today.

The French and most Europeans think their societies have worse income inequality than they actually have. Perhaps that motivates them to keep working for a better society. Americans think our society is much more equal than it actually is and do not work as hard to make it better.

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