THE PRICE OF INEQUALITY by Joseph E. Stiglitz
Kirkus Star

THE PRICE OF INEQUALITY

How Today's Divided Society Endangers Our Future

KIRKUS REVIEW

From one of the world's leading economists, a political call to action in defense of equality and human rights.

Nobel laureate Stiglitz (Economics/Columbia Univ.; Freefall: America, Free Markets and the Sinking of the World Economy, 2010, etc.) insists that increasing inequality in the United States stems from a breakdown of the country's political and economic systems. The failure to hold any banker accountable for actions that contributed to the recent economic crisis is a prime symptom of the case. The current level of inequality, writes the author, “increases instability, reduces productivity, and undermines democracy.” Stiglitz concedes that there is merit in the arguments of those who point to the effects of technology, greed or the absence of bank regulation as contributing factors, and he agrees that corrective measures are needed. He goes further, arguing that inequality is a by-product of the ability to exploit consumers through monopoly power, and borrowers through shady practices. He shows that the consequences include a monopolistic redistribution powerful enough to have caused massive distortions in the U.S. financial system. This is still not the deeper problem, however. More fundamentally, people underestimate the problem of inequality; as a result, they fail to perceive the changes that are already underway. Stiglitz presents the situation as “the bigger battle over perceptions and over big ideas,” a battle being fought through persuasion, framing, misrepresentation and obfuscation. Changing course requires winning this battle for truth. In this way, he argues, equality, the rule of law and accountability can be reestablished.

An impassioned argument backed by rigorous economic analysis.

Pub Date: June 11th, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-393-08869-4
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Norton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2012




NEW & NOTABLE NONFICTION: JUNE 2012:

Nonfiction AS TEXAS GOES... by Gail Collins
by Gail Collins
Nonfiction CITY by P.D. Smith
by P.D. Smith
Nonfiction THE COST OF HOPE by Amanda Bennett
by Amanda Bennett
Nonfiction DARWIN'S GHOSTS by Rebecca Stott
by Rebecca Stott

MORE BY JOSEPH E. STIGLITZ

NonfictionMAKING GLOBALIZATION WORK by Joseph E. Stiglitz
by Joseph E. Stiglitz
NonfictionTHE ROARING NINETIES by Joseph E. Stiglitz
by Joseph E. Stiglitz

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

Nonfiction"THEY'RE BANKRUPTING US!" by Bill Fletcher Jr.
by Bill Fletcher Jr.
NonfictionFORECAST by Mark Buchanan
by Mark Buchanan
NonfictionBEYOND OUTRAGE by Robert B. Reich
by Robert B. Reich