Why Robert Reich Is Bullish On Progressive Economic Change | KUOW News and Information

Why Robert Reich Is Bullish On Progressive Economic Change

Nov 27, 2015

Robert Reich says he’s often stopped by strangers at airports. People walk right up to him, forego any niceties, and get straight to the question: “What are we going to do?”

Reich says that makes him optimistic, because it’s not just liberals asking.

Reich’s new book is “Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few.” In it he argues that a trend toward oligarchy has created the worst income and wealth inequality the U.S. has seen in decades. He states that “the apparent arbitrariness and unfairness of the economy have undermined the public’s faith in its basic tenets.”

Reich writes that “we are lurching toward a capitalism so top-heavy it cannot be sustained.” But he says he’s optimistic that if we put ideology aside, as we’ve done historically in challenging times, we can bring about necessary change. To do so he says we have to get out of our bubble and talk to people we disagree with.

Reich served as secretary of labor in the Clinton administration. He is now a professor of public policy at the University of California at Berkeley and senior fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies. His previous books include “Beyond Outrage,” “Aftershock” and “The Work of Nations.”

This talk took place on Oct. 19. It was presented by Town Hall Seattle and University Book Store as part of the Civics series. Thanks to Anna Tatistcheff for our recording.