This week on CounterSpin: Economic news is presented as facts and figures, but it’s also, maybe most importantly, a story, a narrative. But whether it’s an article about companies using their tax cut savings to give workers bonuses or one about how few of them are actually doing that, corporate media’s economic reporting stays within a certain mindset, in which the propriety of a small set of corporate executives and shareholders deciding how they fancy divvying up the profits of the work of employees is a given. The current US economic system, despite exorbitant health care costs and the highest infant mortality rate in the developed world, despite entrenched and increasing inequality, despite an actually declining life expectancy, is understood to be functioning essentially as it should.
With all eyes on the stock market, we’ll take a questioning look at some economic fundamentals with Richard Wolff, emeritus professor of economics at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and visiting professor at The New School. He’s also founder of Democracy at Work and host of the weekly tv and radio program Economic Update. His most recent book is Capitalism’s Crisis Deepens: Essays on the Global Economic Meltdown.