Articles, Blog

Economic Update: Capitalism and Addiction The Opioid Epidemic

December 20, 2019


Welcome friends to the latest edition of
Economic Update a weekly program devoted to the economic dimensions of our lives,
jobs, debts, incomes, ours, those looming down the road, those facing our children.
I’m your host Richard Wolff I’ve been a Professor of Economics all my adult life,
and I’m hoping that it prepared me well to present to you a kind of overview of
some major economic events of the very recent past. Let me begin today with
introducing you electronically of course to Philip Alston a gentleman from
Australia who has a very interesting title
he’s the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights he started
working for the United Nations back in 2014 he’s part of what is known
as the special procedures of the Human Rights Council of the United Nations and
in that capacity he spent much of 2017 studying poverty and particularly
extreme poverty in the United States he issued a preliminary report in December
of 2017 and will be issuing a final report sometime in the spring of 2018
but he’s already found enough to say in his interim report of last month things
that I think we as Americans and for those others around the world interested
need to know we have in the United States a very serious problem of poverty
and of extreme poverty rather than describe it in general terms let me go
over a few of the findings of mister Alston that I found especially striking
the United States spends more on health than most other advanced industrial
countries and yet it has many fewer doctors per
person and many fewer hospital beds per person than those other countries we
seem to be spending more and getting less and indeed if there’s a single
theme running through this report that’s it let me go on in 2013 the last year
for which we have statistics infant mortality in the United States the
percentage of newborn children that died in the first year is greater in the
United States than in any other advanced industrial country Wow
the US has the highest prevalence of obesity overweight conditions of any
industrialized advanced countries in a ranking of access to water and
sanitation the United States ranks 36th in the world we have the highest rate of
incarceration putting people in jail it’s a head of such countries as
Turkmenistan El Salvador Cuba Thailand and the Russian Federation
we are incarcerated people at five times the average rate of Advanced industrial
countries the youth poverty rate in the United States is the highest across the
Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development the OECD which is a
Association of about 35 advanced industrial countries one quarter of
youth live in poverty in the United States the average for the OECD 14% I
could go on but the story is the same we spend more than other people on the
quality of our health care and we get less in the way of health outcomes and
clearly associated with that across the board of in the
gaiters is the extraordinary inequality of wealth and income in the United
States the extent of our poverty problem is extraordinary
and just as extraordinary as the extent of our poverty problem is the need of
our leaders not to confront it not even to talk about it on a scale that the
problem clearly merits I want to turn next to a very brief economic update it
has to do about Oreo cookies if I get it correctly our president mr. Trump is a
fond consumer of Oreo cookies and you may remember during the campaign that he
made a point of the importance of keeping the damn Bisco company that
makes Oreos producing them here in the United States, Nabi, Nabisco is
now a subsidiary of the Mandalay corporation which is a global mega
corporation so it is with a certain sadness that I need to inform all of you
that Oreos are now going to be shifted to being produced in Mexico turns out
when all of the television lights are turned off, and the reporters on paying
attention, the promises of jobs staying here turn out not to work out so well in
the months that follow there is nothing unique about Oreo
cookies Ford Motor Company has recently announced shifting more production
likewise to Mexico and the same is happening with automobile production in
China and so on and I will from time to time bring you these sad tidings in the
interests of knowing what’s actually going on the bipartisan market watch
survey that is well known to people who are active in the stock market
reported on December 20th. Another economic update which is striking one in
five American households according to market works has zero or negative net
worth let me explain what that means you can add up what a person or a family
owns the home the car personal belongings savings accounts everything
you can add it up and call that assets and you can subtract from that amount
that a person or household as their debts and what you get when you subtract
the debts from the assets is what we call net worth how much money how much
value the monetary value of what you have minus what you owe to somebody else
one in five Americans have zero net worth that is when you subtract their
debts nothing’s left from their assets or negative and what does that mean it
means that your debts are greater than their assets that’s a condition which
means if you had to pay all your debts you wouldn’t have enough wealth to your
name homeland property business whatever you wouldn’t have enough to pay off your
debts one fifth of Americans that’s why you hear those remarkable statistics
that for half the American people maybe more an unexpected bill of four hundred
dollars for an illness for an accident is a crisis those are the people who
have no net assets at all it’s a statement and it’s a situation that we
will have a lot to say about in the years and months ahead it is a sign of
an economic system that isn’t working for the majority of
people in this society that’s what these statistics are all testimony to but when
I say it isn’t working for the majority of people I need also to remind you that
it is working for some of the people and here I recently saw a statistic also
carried by that same market watch story and by market watch as a investor
service that did an interesting thing it ended up the net worth of the 25 richest
individuals in the United States these include Bill Gates from Microsoft
Jeff Bezos from Amazon and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook they are among
these three gentlemen among the 25 richest now hold on to your hats these
three men together own with the 25 the top rich is 25
a trillion dollars in combined assets these 25 therefore hold more wealth than
the bottom 56 percent of the American people in simplest terms the 25 richest
people in America have more wealth together than the majority of the
American people that’s a level of inequality that boggles the mind and
that shapes almost everything else one can say about American society and
culture and it stands as a screaming criticism of an economic system that
would distribute its output that we all helped to produce in such an unequal way
as if to drive the point home that things could be different my next update
has to do with Germany and Germany is going to be figuring more than once
today Germany made a commitment some years ago
to sign off on nuclear energy won’t do it the aftermath of the Fukushima
disaster in Japan provoked such a revulsion in Germany that they swore off
and mrs. Merkel their leader went along with the mass feeling not for Germany no
nuclear power to be produced here and there also a leader in shifting away
from fossil fuels as the source of their energy preferring wind and Sun and so
forth natural forms of energy so successful have the Germans been in
providing energy production even to the individual household through solar
panels through wind farms and so on that over the last year 2017 repeatedly in
Germany the price of electricity was negative let me explain that means on a
particular day or maybe even for a particular week the utility companies
pay you to use electricity not the other way around that’s what a negative price
means so much energy is being produced not nuclear and not fossil fuel that
they have more than they need and can provide a rebate to people to use it
when it’s available in abundance and get paid for doing so and thereby save from
having to use it when it is costly and as a positive price remarkable something
of course that could and should be studied in other countries next economic
updates also about Germany but here it’s kind of the other side of a capitalist
economy not the efficiencies it does achieve but the inefficiency that is so
basic to it Germany like many other capitalist countries including the
United States Britain and many others has been delivering a disproportionate
amount of its increase in wealth to the richest
people at the top of this society it’s not as unequal as the United States or
Britain for that matter but it is moving in that direction and that has got the
working class highly organized in Germany very angry resentful they’ve
absorbed this inequality it is getting worse and they’ve decided to put a stop
to it starting on January 8th the largest union in Germany IG Metall is
the name of this union it has 3.9 million members in Germany they’ve
started on January 8th a series of rolling short strikes before it’s over
in the very first week they expect over 700,000 German workers will walk off the
job for longer or shorter periods of time what are they demanding three
things first an increase in wages an increase in wages specifically an openly
defend it on the grounds that it is intended to reduce the inequality
between the top 5 or 10 percent on the one hand and everybody else in Germany
the second demand of the strikes may strike you as even more bold they’re
demanding a 28 hour workweek for people who have responsibilities at home
children under the age of 15 elderly folks they’re responsible for sick
people that they’re responsible for and certain other kinds of workers under
special stress or having odd shifts of work they should be reduced and here’s
the argument productivity has grown in Germany workers have been better trained
workers have been working harder workers have been working
more intensely and the result is growing productivity and the workers want to
share in the benefits of that productivity partly by higher wages and
partly by lower working hours so there’s a better balance as they put it in
Germany between work and the rest of life among the companies being struck
Volkswagen Porsche Bombardier Otis Elevator when it’s over a hundred and
forty three firms will experience the strike because the third goal of the
German unions an old one for them is to say what we do as unions is for all the
working class we want the work week for everyone to be reduced we want wages for
everyone to be made higher so that the inequality in the society is reduced
notice its unions whose demands are for social change economy-wide change not
just changes for their members but for the society as a whole and the German
unions then can make the claim as they do that they are a social force that the
vast majority have working for them the only real serious counterweight to
the power of the large corporations and it should make all of us wonder what it
means if a society doesn’t have a labor movement organized that well militant in
that way committed to these larger social changes, it’s an important
question that I leave with you for your answers. Before continuing with my
updates, I want to remind you that we maintain two websites that are full of
this sort of information, and that provides you with many kinds of services.
Both websites are available 24/7 at no charge whatsoever, ever. The first one is democracyatwork, all one word, democracyatwork.info and the second one is rdwolff with
two Fs dot-com, democracyatwork.info, rdwolff.com through those websites
you could communicate to us, what you like and don’t about this program, what
you’d like us to cover. We look at all of these emails, you go to these websites
very easy to do, likewise you can follow us with a click of the mouse on Facebook,
and Twitter, and Instagram. We maintain these websites and indeed our social
media contacts in order to have you partner with us. You can take what we do
on this program and share it with your co-workers, with your neighbors, with your
family, that makes the reach of what we do many times larger than what we alone
could achieve. We want you as partners, and we hope you make use of what we do
on this program, and what we provide on those websites to partner with us.
Finally, let me address a word to those of you that are listeners on the radio,
if you would like to see this program as the television program, the easiest way
to do that, is to go to a website called patreon.com, P-A-T-R-E-O-N, patreon.com/economicupdate and that will allow you to see the entire program as a
television program, if that would be a preference for you. Let me return then to
the economic updates we have left I want to celebrate with you an action taken by
the small country of Iceland it has now taken leadership in something where it
was already a leader that is the gap between what men and women earn for the
same work in Iceland is smaller than in most other countries but it wasn’t
enough for the people of Iceland they recognized that even though they
like other countries have on the books laws that say you should pay equally for
equal work it wasn’t in fact being enforced in many workplaces so a new law
took effect on January 1st 2018 in Iceland every enterprise with 25 or more
employees must be annually certified by the government which is going to come in
and review statistics of the firm as to who’s getting paid how much money for
what kind of work to prove which each firm has to do that it is paying men and
women equally for equivalent or equal work it is a commitment to overcoming
centuries of unequal treatment between the two genders and it is long overdue
and it’s a recognition that merely passing a law without making sure it
gets enforced is leaving to the market forces what in fact the market forces
have done which is to maintain inequality of pay even when a majority
of people pass even the laws that make that illegal Iceland is taking the next
logical step and it is something worth noting the next economic update is a
theme I returned to because it literally cannot be said too often we are told of
our highest officials on down that we are experiencing an economic recovery
the mythology goes like this back in 2008 we had a crash second worst crash
in the history of capitalism exceeded only by the Great Depression of the
1930s it was really bad in 2008-9 even into early 2010 but since then here we
go we’ve been on a recovery well the truth of it is not so much of a
recovery depending on how you look at the economy you don’t see a recovery at
all and it is important to point out that yes some folks are recovering but
others are not not even close and here’s a statistic not to lose sight
of the median net worth of American families here’s what that means 50% of
American families do better than what I’m about to describe 50% do worse in
2007 the median net worth of an American family the assets it had – the debts it
also had worked out to a hundred and twenty thousand dollars per family in
the middle half did better half did worse fast forward to 2016 the last year
for which we have comprehensive numbers what was the median net worth of an
American family these seven eight years after the Great Crash the answer 78,000
notice the drop median 120,000 in 2007 78,000 that’s not a small drop
that’s a catastrophic drop in the wealth assets – debts that an American family
add to which the only honest answer or response would be what recovery with a
big question mark the last update we have time for has to do with a situation
in Canada but it is applicable to capitalism everywhere the largest
fast-food chain in Canada is called Tim Hortons started out as a coffee shop but
is now into many different kinds of food and in the province of Ontario the
minimum wage was raised recently to $14 an hour this year and 15 next year and
how did the Tim Hortons Stern’s respond well they responded
basically by sabotaging the whole point and purpose of the law here’s what they
did many of them not all they cut the paid breaks that they had given to their
workers they made the company’s share of the health insurance fees go down and
the workers had to pay more in other words they took away from the workers as
much as the rising minimum wage gave to those workers since the whole point of
the legislation was to improve the lives of the workers to make those at the
bottom of the income distribution not as bad off as they had been what these
companies were doing was to literally sabotage the law what is the point here
well let me read to you one statement that was made by one of the companies
involved quote unfortunately when wages rise at such a fast pace we cannot raise
our prices at the same rate to affect the cost to offset the costs and
something has to give I love that something has to give yes you know what
has to give profits those incomes the profits that go to a small minority of
the people have to be reduced so that what you pay to the vast majority of the
people is not as miserly as it has been no mystery no difficult problem no
quotation needed do the right thing or admit that this is an economic system
that puts most of the cards in the hands of the employers who do not hesitate to
use them to get around what a majority of people and their political
representatives have decided to do in the way of raising the minimum wage same
thing happens in the United States and is a shocking reminder that this system
is the problem and passing laws is never and an adequate way to change how this
system has worked continues to work and is driven to work by the very mechanisms
of profit and competition we’ve come to the end of the first half of economic
update please stay with us we will be right back you

73 Comments

  • Reply Patrick Fischer January 14, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Poverty is punished in the usa

  • Reply Sir Isaac Mormont January 14, 2018 at 7:24 pm

    YAHOO! Thanks again!

  • Reply Celso Junior January 14, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    "We all" helped Bill Gates produce Microsoft stuff??? Richard Wolff should be more clear and say exactly what he (and we) have done to help Bill gates out:)

  • Reply Alterworlds January 14, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    The rich lowering their profits? Hahahahaha not gonna happen. There's a reason the internet has that joke- EAT THE RICH. Their greed never ends, and people are LITERALLY held at the lowest possible survivable level, to maximize their profits. Any more- and believe me they ARE trying to make it worse, such as the US tax bill recently, and people won't be able to survive, thus resulting in a need to solve 2 problems, hunger, and servitude, by cannibalizing the rich. Whether economically, with their lives being taken, or literally, if people allow themselves to reach total starvation economically, before doing something.

    It's nothing new, anyone surprised is woefully ignorant of history and humanities systemically driven ego. If it literally comes down to cannibalism, don't look poorly at those people, they would have suffered to a level so harsh that no other option would solve the problems at hand. I won't even be surprised if it reaches that point either, normal people do not want to hurt others and instead suffer the way we always have, no matter the cost, until the last second.

  • Reply Henri Roggeman January 14, 2018 at 7:56 pm

    Richard, sad to say the major part of the energy needs in Germany is covered by the burning of lignite. Btw, Germany just gave up on it's clean energy goals. Look it up.

  • Reply Keith Liscott January 14, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    THAT IS NOT A SURPRISE ABOUT THE ORIO TRUMP GOT RID OF THEM BECAUSE THEY ARE BLACK.

  • Reply Night Fighter January 14, 2018 at 8:31 pm

    I love the work that you do, but get a taller chair my friend.

  • Reply Peorhum January 14, 2018 at 8:50 pm

    These Tim Hortons owners/ franchisers are the same ones that were pushing for Temporary foreign workers(TFW) to come to Canada and work at their stores, so they can pay them less then they would pay Canadians. Tim Hortons is an national icon and through out Canada, has a stable ready market for their products and to treat Canadians like this shows how much of slimes they are. Of course every conservatives/capitalist is pointing to this and blaming the Ontario government instead of the franchise owners.

    Now in their parent's company's defense they are putting down their franchisers publicly for their actions. That said the parent company is one of those big multinational corporations based in Brazil, which not long ago shut down their Heinz ketchup plant in Canada with no notice, shutting down a town that depended on it. Thankfully another company stepped in and opened a plant of their own, replacing Heinz in the town. I expect the parent company behind close doors are supporting their franchisers.

  • Reply Think Floyd January 14, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    That's such bullshit, Germany – someone else chooses to spawn, so for the same pay, they get a 12 hour shorter work week. Fuck you and your children, they were your decision.

  • Reply Hogvlog Films: Sailing January 14, 2018 at 9:00 pm

    Unsubscribed – You need to actually talk about what's in the title of your video for most of it to earn my subscription.

  • Reply bbolin711 January 14, 2018 at 9:10 pm

    Hopefully things will just get better

  • Reply tallicafan987654321 January 14, 2018 at 9:25 pm

    Could you PLEASE (I love reading documents on this stuff) link the articles, sources, documents which are discussed in the weekly/monthly updates in the description? It would make my future weeks lol

  • Reply Edward Dodson January 14, 2018 at 10:06 pm

    The situation in the United States today is no surprise to anyone who has studied the analysis provided to us in the late 19th century by Henry George. The pattern was slowed during the decades after Franklin Roosevelt's successors embraced "The New Deal" programs as a permanent part of Liberalism. This lasted until the resurgence of Conservative ideology and the successful election of Ronald Reagan to the U.S. Presidency. Ever since, the mitigating influence of social democracy has been undermined and eroded.

    Now, what is important to add here is that social democracy and the programs of liberalism were never capable of solving the problem of widespread poverty. The reason, which I have described frequently, is that our systems of law and taxation were designed to secure and protect monopoly privileges, and landed privileges most importantly.

    The Reagan Revolution started the process of dismantling the architecture of social democracy, revealing the fundamental structural injustices of "the American System."

    Professor Wolff offers a powerful analysis and voice for changing direction. I continue to hope he will come to see the real power of Henry George's analysis and the key distinction between George and Marx; namely, that George called for a labor and capital goods basis for private property, and the societal collection of the rents of nature, from all sources.

  • Reply Reginald Morton January 14, 2018 at 10:37 pm

    what about the police departments hitting these poor people with excessive fines for simple violations and when they can't pay, the police quickly seize cars or revoke their license.

  • Reply Richard Burt January 14, 2018 at 10:40 pm

    not a very flattering photo of Phil Alston.

  • Reply Green Energy January 14, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    No MOre war

    http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/warisaracket.html
    ?

  • Reply MrHigherplane January 14, 2018 at 11:01 pm

    Taxation is theft

  • Reply Mark Gigiel January 14, 2018 at 11:01 pm

    They brainwashed the proletariat to believe that Unions were just dues takers and created "right to work states" and destroyed the power of unions in the US. The right wing media has caused half the people to vote against their interests time after time. The USA is FAR from the greatest country. But if you don't read or research or never leave your county and only watch fox you believe the propaganda.

  • Reply No thankyou January 14, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    Great show:D

  • Reply Fred Lewis January 15, 2018 at 12:34 am

    In all fairness to your research Dr. Wolff, it was only a very few Tim Hortons' coffee shops which participated in this action.
    The franchise is located in Coburg Ontario.
    The Tim Hortons name now belongs to Restaurant Brands International ( A Brazilian majority owned investment company known as 3G Capital ).
    The Canadian provincial government has responded and a call by many to investigate becoming a member of a union has been prevalent.
    In addition, Tim Hortons has very coincidentally increased the prices on many of their breakfast items.
    The protests which arose around Ontario have been moderate. And many people, including my family and myself, have made a conscious effort to boycot Tim Hortons altogether. I realize this can/could have negative consequences resulting in the disemployment of people or reduction in hours worked. It might also be noted that the process of government intervention is at best very slow.
    In such a case, I would like to know how you would have handled this issue from both the citizens and the governments position.
    Great shows. Listen to all, on both YouTube cites.
    It would be incredible if you were to speak to Canadians. Particularly close to, or in, Toronto where I could attend your engagement. You're perspectives on social-capitalism are seductive and had I thought this way earlier in my life I would today, be tearing my hair out as I continue to work in a family owned capitalists business, having no power to enforce or change the standards within a non-democratic, somewhat feudal atmosphere at work while living a 'democraticaly' run country.
    An oxymoron if ever there was one.
    As it is, I lost my hair a number of years back and am now longer able to pull-out any hair. Adding to my frustration for a much needed 'release'.
    What say you?

  • Reply Paul Charles January 15, 2018 at 1:04 am

    Trump was concerned about illegal Mexican immigrants so he is doing his part by exporting jobs to Mexico. America is more communist than USSR ever was!!

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:23 am

    #mcmafia

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:25 am

    russia? youre allowed to beat your woman.

    "from russia with hate. search that at tube

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:25 am

    #secular or bu$t

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:26 am

    nestle' is taking all the spring waters…

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:28 am

    #cannabis and #hemp would end alot of econ and environ probs. heck opiod garbage total chinese and organized cath xtian mob manure

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:31 am

    #opiods #bigpharma #chemicalwarfare

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:32 am

    #corporate eat their own #system ? #fascism

  • Reply Bitsof Bytes January 15, 2018 at 1:33 am

    opiod section got cut out man

  • Reply dbc7772011 January 15, 2018 at 1:54 am

    Union Yes! The propaganda machine deceiving people is in full force in the US.

  • Reply Huai Wang January 15, 2018 at 2:07 am

    was the opioid section cut?

  • Reply Dingane 2 January 15, 2018 at 2:23 am

    The claim that he U.S. is the richest country is done by using phony statistics. Warren Buffet goes into a McDonalds then the income of the McDonalds is averaged out. Suddenly it becomes the richest McDonalds in history. How else can you explain a "median" income of 78,000.00 Most workers in this country live from paycheck to paycheck. Walmart raised pay from 9.00/hr to the princely sum of 11.00/hr plus a one time 1,000.00 bonus.  Then they promptly laid off hundreds of people.  That is how it's done, son.

  • Reply Irving Kurlinski January 15, 2018 at 3:10 am

    What happened in Canada with screwing employees over giving them wage increases has been the business model for many large and small companies in the U.S. for a long time. PS: The U.S. opioid crisis is fueled by Afghanistan's opium. Not U.S. doctors.

  • Reply Anakka Hartwell January 15, 2018 at 3:10 am

    Why is R. Wolf not a presidential candidate? What do we need to get him to run?

  • Reply Drav1212 January 15, 2018 at 3:28 am

    USA is just a bad place its a wonder why people come here

  • Reply Drav1212 January 15, 2018 at 3:33 am

    Mr wolf is a supposed economolist, but he never seems to address the situation of jobs going to Mexico and the Mexican people coming to the USA. Why is this occuring? Who are working all these jobs in Mexico? Why are. They coming here if all the jobs are in Mexico

  • Reply Lamprey Milt January 15, 2018 at 4:42 am

    13:00 we have that already. I have it on my house. Stop comparing us to Europe. They have there own problems that I KNOW you would never dare discuss.

  • Reply Lamprey Milt January 15, 2018 at 4:48 am

    Whats the size of Iceland and are they multicultural embracing barefooted Salvadorians?

  • Reply Lamprey Milt January 15, 2018 at 4:51 am

    But in 2008 we bailed the banks out with taxpayer money? Isnt that a form of Socialism/Fascism? Dont you think it would it have been better to let the free market correct the situation and let them FAIL!?

  • Reply Peter Nachtwey January 15, 2018 at 5:05 am

    Owning a Timmy's doesn't sound like much fun for anyone.
    http://forums.redflagdeals.com/typical-income-tim-hortons-alot-little-476588/
    Perhaps their should be no Tim Horton's. Then there would be no jobs.
    Look up how much money a McDonald's franchise owner makes.
    Notice that these owner must put up about $1M just to get started. The franchise owners take huge risks.

  • Reply Kamalpreet Singh January 15, 2018 at 6:58 am

    very useful information….. thanks sir……

  • Reply Greg Bystroff January 15, 2018 at 7:27 am

    Sounds like Germany has free energy now. What is your source for that information? I keep seeing that Germany's energy prices are higher now.

  • Reply Stephen Cotton January 15, 2018 at 8:08 am

    Actually if you look at the median net worth of a family it really isn't half doing better and half doing worse than the median. Some families do extremely well and have a net worth of billions, which disportionately raises the median net worth value. So I would guess that more than 50% do a lot worse than the median net worth value.

  • Reply moto2kx2 January 15, 2018 at 8:36 am

    The 400.00 is by design. People cant protest in the streets etc to fight GOV corruption when they dont have insurance nor the ability to take a day off from work.

  • Reply Peter Jolliffe January 15, 2018 at 11:21 am

    the ONLY real way for people to work any less hours is to share the jobs equally….ie…two people doing half a job each otherwise the job itself isn't getting done…you can't just reduce the job by a few hours and expect to find someone to fill in for those hours. If a job needs to be done for 40 hours a week then it needs to be done for 40 hours and the only way to work any less is to share the job equally with another person. It MUST be made financially worthwhile for people to start sharing the jobs and working LESS. That would put an end to unemployment problems.

  • Reply Peter Jolliffe January 15, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    What would create more equality ..half the people unemployed due to robots or everyone sharing the jobs and working half the time? It MUST be made worthwhile for people to share the jobs and work less.

  • Reply Renee Dodd January 15, 2018 at 3:08 pm

    Mr. Wolff. Thank You for bring awareness to a very complicated issue in a manner that it can be understood. These topics were daily at my Grandmothers and Grand-Uncle Calixtro's homes. Thirty plus years of social spoiling through technology, talent-exploring public education, and zombie written reality programming has caused the blindness that needs to be healed. I will admit that it is hard in today's society to keep my young committed to the balance of our country through humanity.

  • Reply Raymond Marti January 15, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Evil Corp profits on obesity and illness

  • Reply Mystic Chicken January 15, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    What keeps the corporations/employers that are affected by the strikes from moving their businesses to other countries? That's what they do in the U.S. That's part of the problem and the usual argument against unions and worker rebellion. Is Dr. Wolff leaving something out? How do Americans do this without risking losing our jobs all together?

  • Reply Luis Pinto January 15, 2018 at 4:44 pm

    the theme music gets me pumped up!

  • Reply Nicole January 15, 2018 at 5:04 pm

    of course all of this information about germany has almost been blacked out in this country; union strikes and solidarity are ancient history in america.  i belong to a union and whenever i talk to my coworkers about striking for better working conditions they all say that they can't cause they need the money.   totally shortsighted and self-interested…that's america in a nutshell.

    maybe we have to be a little bit hungry tomorrow so we can have a better future ten years from now.  sacrifice for the common good is nothing but words now.  the right wing destruction of the left over the past seventy years has made american society so damn selfish, the labor wars of a hundred years ago may as well have happened in a different country

  • Reply Be better HUMANS January 15, 2018 at 6:35 pm

    Thank you very for providing this for us. Your videos have, and are continuing to have a great impact on me as I hope they will with many others out here who…understand. I am one of those who only scraps by wondering is "this"… how it was supposed to be?
    Something else I found interesting from 2013
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFdYT8OI6b0
    WLT
    Watch + Learn + Teach

  • Reply Robert January 15, 2018 at 7:10 pm

    The media and the education system frame the rich as your friend. The rich are assuredly not your friends. We need a counterweight. College is a good start. My friend is taking a class right now and he says a lot of the students understand that capitalism is exploitative. However, the more elite the university the more it tends to REALLY like capitalism because rich people are tied in.

  • Reply PoliceState January 15, 2018 at 11:15 pm

    Title is wrong on this video.

  • Reply Drake Koefoed January 16, 2018 at 6:02 am

    Iceland: Men don't get pregnant. They do the most dangerous difficult jobs and get things like black lung. Women make less but if you find them doing the same job that is not so. Womens' lib has long ago moved into disadvantaging men in the workplace and still complaining

  • Reply skutch Blobaum January 16, 2018 at 1:06 pm

    Capitalism is dead. It's insufficient going forward in the long term due to increased automation, artificial intelligence, and the expansion of the labor market into developing countries. No one is going to work 120 hours a week to go broke when they can go broke staying home and growing a garden.

  • Reply haggusmcgee January 16, 2018 at 2:45 pm

    Does anyone else watch these at 1.25 speed so he speaks at regular tempo?

  • Reply Gustav January 16, 2018 at 2:49 pm

    The percentage of people with zero or negative net worth will obviously increase in the coming decade, because younger generations have fewer assets whilst drowning in debt. Neoliberalism at its finest.

  • Reply Gustav January 16, 2018 at 4:31 pm

    Regarding the statement by the canadian fast-food chain; who thinks that they have to raise the prices at the "same rate" as the rate by which the wages had increased? Mathematically, that is nonsense.

  • Reply Paul Adams January 16, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    Too few have far too much at the expense of the many. The fake president is head of a fake democracy, time for revolution. https://t.co/sloX1MhK1T

  • Reply Paul Adams January 16, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    Big new renewable projects planned across Australia as Tesla effect hits
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jan/11/big-new-renewable-projects-planned-across-australia-as-tesla-effect-hits?CMP=share_btn_tw

  • Reply Paul Adams January 16, 2018 at 5:32 pm

    Global Warming’s Worst-Case Projections Look Increasingly Likely
    https://www.technologyreview.com/s/609620/global-warmings-worst-case-projections-look-increasingly-likely/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

  • Reply AvangionQ January 17, 2018 at 10:52 am

    The profit motive should not exist where human misery is the real-world consequence … our healthcare system, our prison complex, our government as a whole ~ we need to take these back away from the corporations that have corrupted them so thoroughly for their own gains, while the people suffer and struggle in their wake.

  • Reply Lamprey Milt January 17, 2018 at 4:09 pm

    He talked shit about bitcoin. If it wasnt for Bitcoin Id be on welfare….oh wait bitcoin isnt regulated?? THE HORROR!!!!

  • Reply John Burns January 20, 2018 at 12:12 am

    Hong Hong came into British possession because of the Opium Wars. Britain pushed drugs onto China. Capitalism has no bounds.

  • Reply LaMortEtLamour January 20, 2018 at 2:26 am

    Dr. Wolff you missunderstand the Energiewende. Its a hoax. We basicly replaced Atomreactors with Wind and Solar. But we will not Switch off Fossilplants, because on the nature of Green energie. Basicly green energie production is volatile and we cant realisticly build big enough accumulators in several forms to save energie in times of overproduction to when times when green energie is below demand. So we use fossilplants to fill the gap between demand and green energie production. Means we will not close any fossilplants because we need them. Because we increased the percentage of green energie production to much, we now have situations when we produce more as we have demand. Negative electric energie prizes actually means that we either pay other countries that they take our electricity or we pay the producers of green energie 90% of what they would get if they switch their facility off. For the customer the electric prize raised ca 50% in the last 8 years per kwh and for the industry by ca 30%.
    On a sidenote, the strikes you mentioned are nearly not reported in mainstreammedia and its can be expected that they will turn against the union like they did in the lasttime.
    For information on the energiesituation:
    https://www.destatis.de/DE/Publikationen/Thematisch/Preise/Energiepreise/EnergiepreisentwicklungPDF_5619001.pdf?__blob=publicationFile
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzXAZad3TcE

    In short replacing energieproduction with wind and solar completly or in any meaningfull amount will not work because we have no idea how to build big enough accumulators

  • Reply felicetanka January 20, 2018 at 3:49 am

    business medicine usa

  • Reply EXes January 20, 2018 at 10:17 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZL1UBjlMTY my name is saaim shaffi, i have studied addiction from personal experiences and some management skills so i have bought the two togeather and wrote a manual how to stop taking heroin and deal with addiction, i just want to help one person, just to make a little contribution towads an issue i had a hand in, here my number 07450084012 i u need help stoppping ring me, id do everything in my power to help which i know i CAN, so plz change your life and lets become perople who pay into society not take out of it. im from middlesbrough so if u are good at making videos and good at tech altogeather plz get in touch

  • Reply scottthewaterwarrior January 20, 2018 at 10:52 pm

    I kind of what to see him debate someone now.

  • Reply Reality4Peace January 24, 2018 at 10:51 pm

    Thank Prof. Wolff for discussing Ontario's min. wage and the Tim Hortons fiasco. Despite the media storm Tim Hortons has caused, it's always shocking how many people loyally defend the despicable actions of the capitalist class.

  • Reply proposedsolutionsblogspot January 25, 2018 at 4:39 am

    We could have a 20 hour workweek right now and still be able to maintain our present standard of living. I show how it can be done. More job opportunities would automatically be made available. Keeping the 40-hour workweek and thinking we can have positive job growth in light of increased automation and outsourcing is foolish.

  • Reply proposedsolutionsblogspot January 25, 2018 at 4:47 am

    I demonstrate the real GDP growth properly accounting for inflation and deficit spending to be deeply negative 10 years running. Go see my 2012 article, "Negative 10% Real GDP Growth Unmasked". It would be nice if Mr. Wolff could corroborate (or even refute to some degree though I do not see what can be refuted). Apparently when you are a nobody, our non-advance culture doesn't give credence, no mater the veracity.

  • Reply Blair B February 26, 2018 at 2:58 am

    MONDELEZ

  • Leave a Reply