167: James Kenneth Galbraith on Inequality, Democracy and the Impact of the Financial Crisis on Greece
James Kenneth Galbraith is the Lloyd M. Bentsen Jr. Chair in Government/Business Relations and Professor of Government at Lyndon B. Johnson School of Business Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin.
James was executive director of the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress in the early 1980s. He chaired the board of Economists for Peace and Security (1996–2016) and directs the University of Texas Inequality Project. He is a managing editor of Structural Change and Economic Dynamics.
From 1993 to 1997, he served as chief technical adviser to China’s State Planning Commission for macroeconomic reform, and in 2016 he advised the presidential campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders.
In 2014 he was co-winner, with Angus Deaton, of the Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economics. James has a PhD from Yale University.
James Galbraith‘s books include “Welcome to the Poisoned Chalice: The Destruction of Greece and the Future of Europe” (2016); “Inequality: What Everyone Needs to Know” (2016); “The End of Normal: The Great Crisis and the Future of Growth” (2014);
James is the son of the late John Kenneth Galbraith, renowned economist, public official and diplomat.
In this episode we discuss James’ views on the teachings of mainstream economics today, his work on inequality, democracy, the financial crisis of 2008 and the impact it has had on Greece as well as, of course, his father John.
In this Episode Find Out About:
- James K. Galbraith’s thoughts on the economics discipline and how mainstream economics is failing in academia.
- How academics may have lost the ‘sense of adventure’ by the time they get a tenured position.
- Does economic growth result in increasing inequality or are there other causes?
- About the University of Texas Inequality Project (UTIP).
- Does growing inequality lead to economic instability?
- Rental crisis in Ireland as a result of the property crash of 2008.
- How Iceland faired after the Great Recession in comparison to Ireland.
- The Greek economy and the Poison Chalice.
- The ‘Extend and Pretend’ approach (lend now and pretend to pay later) to fixing the Greek economy after the financial crisis which will lead to economic stagnation and removing the social fabric of the country.
- Were the loans to Greece a mistake and what happened to the money that was lent to Greece?
- Were the privatisation of Greek ports and airports the best way for Greece to overcome it’s economic collapse or was it a way of satisfying its creditors?
- If the League of Nations was never established, could there have been military consequences for those countries that endured economic collapse?
- About the ‘Democracy in Europe Movement’ and the ‘New Deal’ to maintain democracy, tackle the problems of climate change, the problem to renovate investment and stabilise the human situation across the crisis-ridden countries across Europe.
- Why the Chinese were interested in Wassily Leontief and John Kenneth Galbraith.
- University of Texas Inequality Project
- Democracy in Europe Movement
- Links to James K. Galbraith’s publications
- The Affluent Society by John Kenneth Galbraith
- The Great Crash 1929 by John Kenneth Galbraith
- The New Industrial State by John Kenneth Galbraith
- American Capitalism
- Welcome to the Poisoned Chalice: The Destruction of Greece and the Future of Europe by John Kenneth Galbraith
- Inequality: What Everyone Needs to Know by James Kenneth Galbraith
- The End of Normal: The Great Crisis and the Future of Growth by James Kenneth Galbraith
- Global Inequality: A New Approach for the Age of Globalization by Branko Milanovic
- The Haves and the Have-Nots: A Brief and Idiosyncratic History of Global Inequality by Branko Milanovic
- The Metaphysical Club: The Story of Ideas in America by Louis Menand
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