Voices from the Edge on 02-02-12 The case against austerity: A conversation with David Cay Johnston
The case against austerity: A conversation with David Cay Johnston
At last month's World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, austerity was repeated like a mantra by bankers, economists and politicians. The idea that governments, like families, must cut back when income declines is so entrenched in the public discourse that few in public office or the media are willing to challenge it. Yet the austerity mantra ignores the basic economic principle that "spending equals income and income equals spending." Cutting spending means income will fall, yet in this election year, our leaders continue to push for firing teachers, firefighters, government clerks and others without heeding the consequences on our economy.
This week, Jo Ann and Dave talk with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston about why the austerity mantra appeals to the top one percent while offering disaster for the rest of us. A 13-year veteran of The New York Times, Johnston won the Pulitzer in 2001 for uncovering loopholes and inequities in the U.S. tax code. He is the author of several best-selling books, including: Free Lunch: How the Wealthiest Americans Enrich Themselves at Government Expense (and Stick You with the Bill) and the soon-to-be released The Fine Print: How Big Companies Use "Plain English" and Other Tricks to Rob You Blind.
Jo Ann Hardesty is a former state legislator, former executive director of Oregon Action and past board president of Portland Community Media as well as a long-time leader in the struggle for racial and economic justice. Dave Mazza is a freelance journalist and former editor of The Portland Alliance who has covered and been involved in Portland's civil rights, environmental, labor and peace movements for over 20 years
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Co-Hosts: Jo Ann Hardesty and Dave Mazza
Producers: Dave Mazza and Jo Ann Hardesty
Program Engineer: Steve Nassar
Audio Editor: Alicia Olson
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