Nobel-laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz on income equality in America


Hour 2

In a recent USA Today opinion piece, Nobel Prize winning economist JOSEPH STIGLITZ took on Mitt Romney’s accusations against the “47%” by saying the real freeloaders are not those who rely on some kind of government support like Social security, Medicare and financial aid.  Instead, he says, the freeloaders are more likely the 1% of the wealthiest Americans who pay taxes at a far lower rate than those with less money and whose successes have been built on the services government provides like education, the legal system, infrastructure, etc.   The growing income inequality in America is one of Stiglitz’s greatest concerns and the subject of his new book The Price of Inequality:  How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future.  In it he warns that if  the divide between rich and poor continues to grow, even the richest Americans will pay a price and offers a plan for a more just and prosperous future.  Stiglitz currently is a professor of at Columbia University.  He served in the Clinton Administration as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors as senior vice president for development policy and chief economist at the World Bank.  In 2001, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics for his analyses of markets with asymmetric information, and he was a lead author of the 1995 Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.

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[audio: 100212_110630.mp3]
Photo Credit: AP Images / Alessandro Della Bella

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