Economic Update Episode List: Season 9

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SEASON 9

Season 9 ran from January through December of 2019, totaling 47 half hour episodes.  


Libertarianism, Capitalism and Socialism

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 47

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Libertarians defend capitalism by saying its many current flaws/faults flow from the state's economic interventions, not from the system itself. Libertarians oppose socialism as even more state-dominated. We criticize libertarians based on capitalism's long history of strong state interventions and socialism's long-standing anarchistic components. We conclude by inviting consideration of possible agreements between some libertarians and some socialists.


Competition and Monopoly in Capitalism

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 46

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Capitalism's growing problems (inequalities, instabilities, unsustainability, etc.) lead some defenders to argue that the cause is monopoly displacing competition in many industries. We disagree: capitalism's history is oscillations between competition and monopoly, each causing the other. Capitalism is the problem, not its oscillating forms.


Teaching Economics: A Revolutionary Approach

Guest Dr. Amy S. Cramer, Prof of Economics, Arizona

Season 09 - Episode 45

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Updates on Sawant victory in Seattle City Council election, the US obesity problem's costs and causes, critiquing libertarian arguments for capitalism. Interview Dr. Amy S. Cramer, Prof of Economics, Arizona, on her accessible education project "Voices on the Economy.


Political Strategy for Transition

No guest.

Season 09 - Episode 44

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Today's program discusses a political strategy for transition beyond capitalism to an economy based on democratic worker-cooperatives. The first half explores the history of how transition was achieved from feudalism to capitalism. The second half draws lessons from that history to provide a strategy for a transition now beyond capitalism.


US's Profit-driven Medicine

Guest Dr. Michael Magee, author of Code Blue: Inside America's Medical Industrial Complex

Season 09 - Episode 43

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Updates on Berlin, Germany's law freezing all rents for 5 years, over-indebted corporations threaten world economy, prisoners' slave labor in Los Angeles, French inequality and yellow vests, Bernie's push to put workers on corporate boards. Interview with Dr. Michael Magee on US medical-industrial complex.


The Human Agenda

Richard Hobbs, Director of Human Agenda 

Season 09 - Episode 42

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Updates on costs of NBA offense to China, worsening global inequality, poverty mocks Nobel prize for 3 economists working on "incremental solutions" to poverty, why Google donated to global warming deniers, and latest crisis in defaults on US auto loans. Interview Richard Hobbs, Human Agenda Director, San Jose, CA, expert on worker coops.


Making Critical Arguments

Prof. Ben Burgis, author of Give Them an Argument: Logic for the Left

Season 09 - Episode 41

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Updates on US housing crisis as systemic failure (the homeless LA opera singer), Greta Thunberg's critics exposed, Europeans gain from US-China trade war, Sackler family "donations" to museums, universities, capitalists take over Sports Illustrated. Interview on Left's critical arguments with Prof. Ben Burgis of Georgia State University.


The Capitalist Corporation

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 40

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This program examines the structure and functioning of the large capitalist corporation dominating modern economies. We discuss their basic economics and influence on politics. We criticize rationales for corporate profits such as "risks" and "entrepreneurship" and explore parallels between corporate structures and monarchies.


Worker Co-ops, Socialism's Future

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 39

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The first half of this show focuses on how, why socialism has changed from what it meant in the 19th and 20th centuries (public enterprises + state planning vs capitalism's private enterprises + markets). Second half explores why 21st century socialism aims to democratize capitalist workplaces, replacing their top-down undemocratic organization with worker cooperatives.


A Growing US Left

Guest Michael Brooks, host of Michael Brooks Show

Season 09 - Episode 38

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Updates on California events (LA Times labor union, 80,000 Kaiser workers to strike, new state public banking law), gross inefficiency of private car industry, anti-left politics in US labor history, wide global use of wealth taxes vs "conservative" claims. Interview: Michael Brooks, host of Michael Brooks Show podcast.


Capitalism and Mental Health

Guest Harriet Fraad, psychotherapist

Season 09 - Episode 37

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Updates on ICE raid in Mississippi, global comparisons of gun violence, conservatives on Dem's wealth tax ideas. Interview With Dr Harriet Fraad on how capitalism affects mental health in US.


US Economy and the Market

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 36

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Analysis of the state of the US economy at summer's end, 2019: a decidedly mixed picture. Critique of the institution of the market that focuses on its structure, social effects, and particular beneficiaries: a counter to the imaginary 'free market'.


Capitalism in Denial

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 35

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Updates on parallel declines of UK and US capitalisms; denials of their systemic problems worsens them. Longer segments on (1) political economy of immigration, and (2) why the basic problem of Central and South America is 2-3 centuries of capitalism producing and reproducing extreme inequality, staggering poverty, and corrupt government elites. That is the crucial context for the Cuban and Venezuelan efforts, however imperfect and against US opposition, to break out of that capitalism.


Homelessness in the US

Guest Rob Robinson, global advocate for the homeless.

Season 09 - Episode 34

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Updates on politicians' "blame game" of scapegoating to avoid blaming capitalism, middle class squeezed by prices, limits of workers on corporate boards of directors, lessons from a courageous Puerto Rican people. Interview Rob Robinson, global advocate for the homeless.


Injustice, Race and Class

Guest Bob Hennelly, investigative reporter

Season 09 - Episode 33

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Updates on 3 deadly failures of capitalism, DOJ investigation of hi-tech monopolies, worker coops franchised, how income inequality breeds social inequalities. Interview with Bob Hennelly, investigating reporter on Garner, Epstein and Kushner cases.


Working Class History and the 2020 Election

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 32

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This special program discusses how the history of the US working class shaped US politics. We start with how and why the 1930s Great Depression married the US working class to FDR's Democratic Party (New Deal Coalition). We next show how and why after 1945, US business leaders and Republicans broke up that marriage to undo the New Deal. By re-building working class divisions - especially around race and gender - males and whites moved toward the GOP. A weakened Dem party responded by appealing to (and thereby dividing) business interests to support them. The two parties thus became almost identically pro-capitalist and both presided over growing inequalities in income, wealth and political power between the richest 10% and the working class. Building to 2016, working class disgust with both parties showed in disinterest, ambivalence, and the growing role of "cultural" differences in place of working class solidarity. It boiled over when an "outsider" (Trump) defeated first the Republican and then the Democratic establishment candidates, an expression of the working class's history since 1929. We end on the implications of this history for the 2020 election.


Reparations and Forgiving Student Debts

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 31

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Updates on economics of 2 million home health aides, extreme Uber inequalities, Alaska universities 41% budget cuts, Michigan governor during Flint Water Crisis says his critics are "uncivil," a British district's labor party proposes a worker-coop sector to UK Parliament using resources from our "Economic Update" programs. Major topics discussed: economics of reparations for African-American slavery and economics of Bernie et al proposal to cancel student debts.


Win-win for Womens' Soccer

Guest Harriet Fraad, psychotherapist

Season 09 - Episode 30

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Updates on Trump as distraction vehicle, Macron's corruption, coffee price collapse drives immigrants to US, why rightists oppose free tuition and student loans, and why Trump/GOP do not stop jobs exodus from US. Interview Dr. Harriet Fraad on implications of US women's soccer victories.


A Socialist Politician Wins

Guest Lee Carter, elected socialist from 50th District to Virginia Legislature.

Season 09 - Episode 29

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Depriving non-white students, fast food made worse for profit, Wayfair workers demand power, more scapegoating of immigrants, firms' promises of gain to workers from Trump 2017 tax cut proved false. Interview Lee Carter, elected socialist from 50th District to Virginia Legislature.


Socialism & Worker Co-ops

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 28

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20th century socialism is now behind us. Socialists continued to evaluate both its achievements and failures via extensive self-criticism. A changed socialism has emerged, focused on a transition of workplaces from top-down hierarchical capitalist structures into democratic worker cooperatives. The powerful appeal of worker coops as grounding a new 21st century socialism is presented.


Worker Co-ops Rising

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 27

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Updates on "regulatory capture" in the US vs EU, IMF report on the US economy today finds major negatives, and how Trump's desperation for re-election shapes his aggressive policies toward the Federal Reserve, China and Mexico. Interview with John Duda from the Democracy Collaborative and one of the founders of Red Emma's Bookstore Coffeehouse, a 30-member worker cooperative in Baltimore.


Is US Capitalism in Decline

Guest Prof. Ric McIntyre

Season 09 - Episode 26

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Updates on inequalities in pay for CEOs vs average workers; economics of mega-mergers; billionaires' idea of "charity;" economic consequences of attacking Huawei Corp; Bernie leads on two new bills in Congress to expand and provide loans to employee-owned businesses and worker coops. Interview Prof. Ric McIntyre on basic problems of US capitalism today.


China's Economic Record and Strategy

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 25

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As follow-up to earlier parallel program on the USSR, this program seeks to offer (1) an overview of China's economic development mostly over the last 25 years (GDP, real wages, etc.), and (2) its economic strategy: learning but also differing from Soviet strategy. Some historical context is also provided.


Rise and Fall of the USSR

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 24

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Here we try to go beyond simplistic, sterile Cold War debates of demonizers vs celebrants of the USSR. USSR's strengths and weaknesses, successes and failures are examined from revolutionary beginnings in 1917 to its 1989 implosion. Second in 2-part series will do same for the People's Republic of China.


A New Labor Movement Rising

Guest Neha Mathew-Shah, Pres., Progressive Workers Union

Season 09 - Episode 23

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Updates on US church membership and its tax subsidies, Toyota and Merkel slam US economic nationalism, 40 US states sue price-gouging pharma firms, Trump ("self-described "tariff man") does not understand that Americans pay all tariffs he imposes, Mothers' Day and the minimum wage, capitalism and politicians' corruption. Interview Neha Mathew-Shah, Pres., Progressive Workers Union.


3 Basic Kinds of Socialism

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 22

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As ever more people become anti-capitalist and look toward socialist alternatives, it is important to grasp key differences among the alternative kinds of socialism. This program explains those differences among (1) the moderate or "democratic" socialism ( a la Scandinavia), (2) the communist kind of socialism (in the USSR and People's Republic of China, and (3) the new socialism focused on democratizing the work place. Doing better than capitalism will require deciding which of these three kinds of "socialism" (or what combination of them) will be the better economic structure.


Understanding Marxism

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 21

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This special edition of "Economic Update" is devoted to Understanding Marxism, the title of a short new book just published by Democracy at work. Today's program, like the book, explains Marxism's systemic insights into capitalism now. We discuss Marxism's basic criticisms of capitalism and also its complex relationship to socialism. Finally, we offer a survey of the last century of Marxism's huge, diverse influences on modern economics, politics and culture around the world.


Living in a Socialist Economy

Guest Victor Grossman

Season 09 - Episode 20

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Updates on the US "bribing for college admission" scandal, how lobbyists reflect and worsen inequality, So. and No. Carolina teachers strike for better education, how NDAs (non-disclosure agreements) reflect and worsen workplace inequalities across global capitalism. Interview Victor Grossman, American who lived and worked in socialist Germany across the entire history of the GDR.


Social Movement for Economic Democracy

Guest Rebecca Lurie, Director of Community and Worker Ownership Project, CUNY.

Season 09 - Episode 19

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Updates on 60 megacorps who paid no 2018 Federal taxes, GM's CEO gets $29.1 million while GM fires thousands, wrecks communities, etc., Notre Dame tragedy exposes French inequality as billionaires suddenly find money for a church, not for people, rising wave of US worker strikes reflect militance and unity. Interview with Rebecca Lurie, Director of Community and Worker Ownership Project, CUNY.


Lawyers vs the System

Guest Michael Steven Smith, author of Lawyers for the Left

Season 09 - Episode 18

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Updates on US college students as share-croppers for investors, on conservatives' fake opposition to gov't intervention in the economy, on deepening inadequacy of retirement savings of US baby boomers, and on how fading US middle class leads many first to blame/scapegoat foreigners, then fellow citizens. Interview Michael Steven Smith on new book, Lawyers for the Left.


Capitalism versus Socialism

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 17

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This over 200-year debate and struggle has become confused and confusing. Too many different definitions make honest, balanced discussions and evaluations of these alternative systems difficult. Because socialism is rising yet again to challenge capitalism, the debate now must take account of the terms' new and different meanings. We do that here in arguing for a new way to understand and engage "capitalism versus socialism."


The #MeToo Movement

Guest Dr. Harriet Fraad, psychoanalyst

Season 09 - Episode 16

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Updates on Chicago in change, decline of world trade, New York's "congestion pricing, IMF on Trump trade war and hi-tech monopolies, 7 states sue Ag Dept over school lunch deregulations, Trump cautions audience "Don't underestimate "the power of socialism to get a vote." Interview with Dr. Harriet Fraad on causes of the MeToo# movement.


Venezuela

Guest Prof. George Ciccariello-Maher

Season 09 - Episode 15

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On this week's show, Prof. Wolff presents updates on Brexit and Mueller Report, Chicago is new site of labor upsurge, how income shapes education and thus "merit," why objections to Green New Deal and Medicare for All are mistaken, how a fascistic "punish the poor" mentality rises in US. In the second half of the show, Prof. Wolff interviews Prof. George Ciccariello-Maher on the crisis, foreign intervention. and resistance in Venezuela.


Employer vs employee: capitalism's endless conflict

Guest Bob Hennelly, journalist

Season 09 - Episode 14

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Updates on LA strippers strike, Trump fails to end US trade deficit, UN reports on protests against capitalist inequality and gov't repression of those protests, GM closes Lordstown, Ohio factory with tragic social effects, Trump and FED reduce bank regulation after 10 years of massive bank misdeeds. Interview with journalist Bob Hennelly on underpaid EMTs and right-wing hostility to Green New Deal's proposal for a universal right to a job.


Beyond Universal Basic Income

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 13

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In-depth analysis of UBI shows its advantages over most welfare, safety net systems. An even better alternative would avoid capitalism's unnecessary production of unemployment because it utilizes technical progress (rising productivity) for profits. The alternative benefits workers' leisure rather than profits. It is more democratic and avoids splitting people into unemployed vs employed, non-poor vs poor. population.


Fascism: An Analysis for Today

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 12

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An in-depth analysis of fascism as massive government intervention to protect and save a crashing capitalism. We focus on today's examples, historical parallels (in Germany and Italy), and how "strong men" leaders push fascist agendas. We discuss how fascism and socialism differ and how nationalism serves as fascism's social "disguise.


Political Activism's Revival

Guest Eleanor Goldfield, creator and host of Act Out! TV show

Season 09 - Episode 11

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Updates on International Women's Day, UC to make all research free, Cuomo begs and bribes Amazon again, US denounces UK protectionism, Spain = #1 healthiest country vs US at #35, how Trump/GOP raised taxes and thereby cut refunds. Interview with Eleanor Goldfield, creator and host of Act Out! TV show on political activism today.


Renewing Labor's Movement

Guest Larry Williams, Jr., labor union activist and co-founder of UnionBase.org.

Season 09 - Episode 10

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Updates on striking Oakland school teachers, dangers of declining pensions, bank fined for helping clients evade taxes, in tariff war over black olives US vs EU, stagnant real wages in US explain rising inequality. Interview with Larry Williams, Jr., labor union activist and co-founder of UnionBase.org.


Fighting the System

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 09

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Updates on the economics of immigration, France's yellow vests join union-called general strike, demonstrations against Sackler family's profiting from oxycontin, and New York City Council considers giving priority to fast-food workers (majority) over employers (minority). Major discussions of: (1) successful strikes by Mexican workers and their collaboration with progressive new Mexican government, and (2) Trump/GOP's inheritance tax cut benefits richest, worsens US inequality of opportunity.


Fantasy, Comedy, Tragedy: Delivering News Today

Guest Lee Camp, host of Redacted Tonight

Season 09 - Episode 08

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Updates on million-person Communist demonstration in India, subsidized "development" by Foxconn and Amazon, merger making big banks bigger, delusion of "bringing back manufacturing" US. Interview with Lee Camp of "Redacted Tonight" on comedy, news and analysis.


Economics of Conflicted Mothers

Guest Julianna Forlano, journalist

Season 09 - Episode 07

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Updates on the government shutdown's very important lessons, US teachers oppose a declining capitalism imposing its costs on the people, and firing the big banksters leaves our big bank problems unsolved. Interview with journalist Julianna Forlano on economic costs and effects of a working mom in US capitalism today.


Police and Policing in the US

Guest Professor Alex Vitale, author of The End of Policing

Season 09 - Episode 06

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Prof. Wolff presents updates on (1) the US public education crisis (teacher strikes, declining quality, insufficient resources) and how it undermines the US's economic future, (2) the absurdity of the government shutdown over an ineffective wall and a tiny portion of the government's budget, and (3) how the schools crisis and the shutdown signal a larger social decline. The second part of the show features an interview with Professor Alex Vitale on his book, The End of Policing, and why US police have grown and changed their functions so drastically in recent decades.


Socialism: From Past to Future

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 05

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On this episode of Economic Update, Prof. Wolff begins with socialism's history especially in the US: from being widely discussed up to 1945, then repressed in the Cold War, and now vigorously revived since 2008. He then examines socialism's basic economic criticism of capitalism in the 20th century. And finally, he shows how and why the socialism emerging now is new and different.


Yellow Vests and Tax Reform

No guest

Season 09 - Episode 04

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Updates on "yellow vests" spread to UK, book Dying for a Paycheck, the bail-in scam, paying for airplane seat assignments, and postal banking. Major discussions of tax reforms needed and deserved and gentrification as a market injustice.


Politicians Faking It

Guest Bob Hennelly, journalist

Season 09 - Episode 03

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Updates on Luxembourg making all public transport free, Europe evading US sanctions on Iran, Saudi Arabia sleaze deals with Trump, Deutsche Bank corruption massive, Pompeo's anti-China strategy contradicts Trump "nationalism." Interview with journalist Bob Hennelly on politicians betraying workers' and local citizens' needs.


Ecosocialism

Guest Victor Wallis author of Red-Green Revolution: The Politics and Technology of Ecosocialism.

Season 09 - Episode 02

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Updates on New York City council votes minimum wage for ride-hailing drivers (Uber, Lyft, etc.), Trump store is 85% goods made abroad, charter school teachers strike in Chicago, contradictions in US-China trade war, VW ends gas car production in favor of electric in evasion of need for mass transit. Interview Victor Wallis author of Red-Green Revolution: The Politics and Technology of Ecosocialism.


Capitalism: Slow-motion Implosion?

Guest Harriet Fraad, psychoanalyst

Season 09 - Episode 01

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Updates on Canada cutting corporate tax rates in a race to the bottom, Macron pleases big business while outraging the French people, Italy's new gov't budget provides for its people. Hillary Clinton joins the right in scapegoating immigrants, and how "quantitative easing" policy after the 2008 crash made the rich richer. Interview with Dr Harriet Fraad on the psychological implications of the US mid-term elections.



Other Seasons of Economic Update


Season 10   |   Season 9   |   Season 8

To view older seasons, please visit our YouTube channel. 
 



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