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Power: Why corporations have so much and workers have so little. Class 5
Friends, good morning.
Our fifth class begins our focus on power — and on the relative weakness of workers and the relative power of big corporations. Just double-click below, and you’re in the class.
Background: It’s one of the oldest struggles inside the American economy and within capitalism worldwide: between labor and capital. And it has a direct effect on inequality.
The way we’ll approach it today is by looking at two sides of the same coin: antitrust laws designed to contain the market power of corporations, and labor laws designed to allow workers to organize.
Both sets of laws have been changed over the last 40 years — giving corporations greater market power, and dramatically reducing the power of organized labor. We’ll examine why these changes have occurred.
Questions: What happened to antitrust in the United States over the last 50 years? What happened to labor unions? Why are antitrust (anti-monopoly) laws stronger in Europe than they are in the United States? Why is a higher percent of the European (and Canadian) workforces unionized than in the United States? What’s the relationship between degrees of monopolization, levels of unionization, and inequality, and why?
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P.S. Apologies for the technical error today as the video link was not included in our original email.