Preview: What Has Capitalism Done for Us Lately?

March 20, 2013

This week, Sheila Bair, the longtime Republican who served as chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) during the fiscal meltdown five years ago, joins Bill to talk about American banks’ continuing risky and manipulative practices, their seeming immunity from prosecution, and growing anger from Congress and the public.

Also on the show, Richard Wolff, whose smart, blunt talk about the crisis of capitalism on his first Moyers & Company appearance was so compelling and provocative, we asked him to return. This time, Wolff — who taught economics for 35 years at the University of Massachusetts — dives further into income inequality, analyzing the widening gap between a booming stock market and a population that increasingly lives in poverty. He also takes questions sent in from around the world by our viewers.

Watch a short preview above.

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  • Geoff Strauss

    Mr. Wolf,

    You indicated that regulations do not work because they are weakened, evaded or eliminated. But you also mentioned how income taxes are also weakened, evaded or eliminated. Do you advocate doing away with income taxes as well? It would seem to me that regulations DO work IF good ones are made and enforced. The same is true with taxes. Your comments on this would be appreciated.

    Thanks for your time.

  • Russell Spears

    I think Mr Wolff’s view is that Corporatist will eventually circumvent regulations and corrupt the law makers: Thus new or good regulations matter not and why we need to rethink capitalism.

  • Paul J Violand

    Mr. Wolf,
    I just watched your interview with Mr. Moyers on Capitalism. Im curious- have you ever started a small business or been in business? I started a small business with 5k$ in my pocket in Austin, TX in 1983. I went on to save 50K$ largely because Texas did not have a bunch of laws holding me back, like there were in Cincinnati. I took that money, went back to graduate school and became a certified registered nurse anesthetist. I have since bought 4 properties and have become a successful landlord. On paper Im a multi millionaire. I have invested in the stock market. So I feel that I am example of what capitalism is all about. I worked hard, saved, invested, took risk. My parents didnt give me money (but my first BA degree and a car). I created it all. Your views seem to be socialist. You say let the government fund a cooperative if a company move out…But where does the money come from? The taxpayer? With all due respect, have you ever created a business and reaped the rewards of success? What is ethically wrong with my model? I have followed Bill Moyers for years…And he is a Texan! He knows exactly what Im talking about. Texas allowed me to create my wealth from my own bootstraps…Please, I would like your comments.
    Paul Violand, CRNA, MS

  • Anonymous

    Read “The Trouble with Billionaires”, or, “Billionaires’ Ball: Gluttony and Hubris in an Age of Epic Inequality”.

  • David Woo

    How is our political democracy supposed to work if we don’t have economic democracy?

  • chokyalva

    Some idiots will dare to call Mr.Wolf a socialist.But the true is this type of capitalism will destroy our democracy

  • Judy Guskin

    Let’s not forget another good voice on these issues. I am reading Al Gore’s new book. How about Moyers and Company inviting him to speak? Judy Guskin