201 episodes

Any society that allows itself to become radically unequal eventually collapses into an uprising or a police state—or both. Join venture capitalist Nick Hanauer and some of the world’s leading economic and political thinkers in an exploration of who gets what and why. Turns out, everything you learned about economics is wrong. And if we don’t do something about rising inequality, the pitchforks are coming.

Pitchfork Economics with Nick Hanauer Civic Ventures

    • Government
    • 4.7 • 1.2K Ratings

Any society that allows itself to become radically unequal eventually collapses into an uprising or a police state—or both. Join venture capitalist Nick Hanauer and some of the world’s leading economic and political thinkers in an exploration of who gets what and why. Turns out, everything you learned about economics is wrong. And if we don’t do something about rising inequality, the pitchforks are coming.

    Why can’t we talk about homelessness? (with Josephine Ensign)

    Why can’t we talk about homelessness? (with Josephine Ensign)

    The number of unhoused Americans is at a historically high rate right now. This podcast is produced in Seattle, a city with the third highest homeless population in the U.S. Though many Seattleites identify as progressive, we can’t reach a consensus on how to help our most vulnerable populations—or even find agreement on the root causes of the housing crisis. Why are perspectives on homelessness, and possible solutions to it, so polarized? Josephine Ensign, a University of Washington nurse and health care provider for people experiencing homelessness, shares some of her insights from her career on the frontlines of this crisis. 

    Josephine Ensign is a professor in the School of Nursing and an adjunct professor in the Department of Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies at the University of Washington. Her most recent book is Skid Road: On the Frontier of Health and Homelessness in an American City. 

    Twitter: @josephineensign

    Skid Road: https://bookshop.org/books/skid-road-on-the-frontier-of-health-and-homelessness-in-an-american-city/9781421440132 

    Homelessness Rises Faster Where Rent Exceeds a Third of Income: https://www.zillow.com/research/homelessness-rent-affordability-22247/

    WA Department of Commerce: http://www.commerce.wa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/hau-why-homelessness-increase-2017.pdf 

    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 33 min
    How taxpayers subsidize corporate profits (with Rana Foroohar and David Dayen)

    How taxpayers subsidize corporate profits (with Rana Foroohar and David Dayen)

    Every company you can think of has benefitted from a public investment. Whether it’s direct handouts through the tax code, government research efforts, or employee reliance on programs like EITC or TANF, taxpayers are subsidizing wildly profitable companies. David Dayen, the executive editor of The American Prospect, and Financial Times associate editor Rana Foroohar join Nick and Zach to explain how we let corporate parasites get so out of control—and what we can do about it. This episode was originally recorded and released in January 2020. 

    Rana Foroohar is Global Business Columnist and an Associate Editor at the Financial Times. She is also CNN’s global economic analyst. She is the author of Makers and Takers: The Rise of Finance and the Fall of American Business and Don’t Be Evil: How Big Tech Betrayed Its Founding Principles and All of Us.

    Twitter: @RanaForoohar

    David Dayen is the executive editor of The American Prospect. He is the author of Monopolized: Life in the Age of Corporate Power and Chain of Title: How Three Ordinary Americans Uncovered Wall Street’s Great Foreclosure Fraud. 

    Twitter: @ddayen

    Confronting the parasite economy: https://prospect.org/labor/confronting-parasite-economy/

    Makers and Takers: https://www.ranaforoohar.com/makersandtakers

    How to Cure Corporate America’s Selfishness: https://newrepublic.com/article/150695/cure-corporate-americas-selfishness

    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 56 min
    How the tax system impoverishes Black Americans (with Dorothy A. Brown)

    How the tax system impoverishes Black Americans (with Dorothy A. Brown)

    We know that the tax system is set up to advantage people with money. And we know that in the U.S., people with money are disproportionately white. But what many people don’t realize is that the tax system actively advantages white families. Tax law professor Dorothy Brown explains how racial inequality is baked into tax policy in non-obvious ways, and how that affects wealth-building. 

    Dorothy A. Brown is professor of law at Emory University School of Law. She is a nationally recognized scholar in tax policy, race, and class and has published extensively on the racial implications of federal tax policy. She is the author of The Whiteness of Wealth: How the Tax System Impoverishes Black Americans — And How We Can Fix It. 

    Twitter: @DorothyABrown

    The Whiteness of Wealth: https://bookshop.org/books/the-whiteness-of-wealth-how-the-tax-system-impoverishes-black-americans-and-how-we-can-fix-it/9780525577324 

    Black families pay significantly higher property taxes than white families, new analysis shows: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/07/02/black-property-tax/ 

    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 29 min
    The free market economics of synthetic opioids (with Sam Quinones)

    The free market economics of synthetic opioids (with Sam Quinones)

    The opioid crisis in the United States is a textbook example of free market economics. The powerful lie, manipulate, and skirt regulations to make buckets of money, while innocent people suffer. Journalist Sam Quinones joins Goldy and Paul to unpack the economics behind the opioid crisis, and the new threat of synthetic opioids like fentanyl.

    Sam Quinones is a journalist best known for his reporting in Mexico and on Mexicans in the United States. He is the author of the award-winning Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic. His new book, The Least of Us: True Tales of America and Hope in the Time of Fentanyl and Meth, is out today.

    Twitter: @samquinones7

    The Least of Us: https://bookshop.org/books/the-least-of-us-true-tales-of-america-and-hope-in-the-time-of-fentanyl-and-meth/9781635574357

    What did the Sacklers know? https://newrepublic.com/article/162148/sacklers-know-patrick-radden-keefe-purdue-opioid-crisis-review 

    The 'Secret History' Of The Sackler Family & The Opioid Crisis: https://www.npr.org/2021/04/14/987195464/the-secret-history-of-the-sackler-family-the-opioid-crisis 

    State-Level Economic Costs of Opioid Use Disorder and Fatal Opioid Overdose: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7015a1.htm 

    Massive Costs of the US Opioid Epidemic in Lives and Dollars: https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/2780313 

    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 39 min
    How to stand up for voting rights (with Andrea Hailey)

    How to stand up for voting rights (with Andrea Hailey)

    Behind every aspect of the voting system that makes it harder to vote, there’s a policy that made it that way. Andrea Hailey, the CEO of Vote.org, joins Nick and Goldy to explain how voter suppression happens, and what reforms would help ensure a truly inclusive democracy.

    Andrea Hailey is the CEO of Vote.org, the nation’s largest nonpartisan digital voter engagement organization. 

    Twitter: @AndreaEHailey

    Vote.org: https://www.vote.org/ 
     
    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 35 min
    Thanks to unemployment insurance, poverty declined last year (with Amy Goldstein and Elliott Morris)

    Thanks to unemployment insurance, poverty declined last year (with Amy Goldstein and Elliott Morris)

    It’s been a little over a month since the unemployment benefits programs that were established by the CARES Act expired, so we’re taking a look at how well they worked. Washington Post writer Amy Goldstein and Elliott Morris, a data journalist at The Economist, deliver the facts to Jessyn and Paul. 

    Amy Goldstein is a staff writer at The Washington Post, where much of her work has focused on social policy. She is the author of Janesville: An American Story. 

    Twitter: @goldsteinamy

    Elliott Morris is a data journalist at The Economist. 

    Twitter: @gelliottmorris

    Further reading:
    Poverty fell overall in 2020 as result of massive stimulus checks and unemployment aid, Census Bureau says: https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/09/14/us-census-poverty-health-insurance-2020/ 

    Welfare rolls decline during the pandemic despite economic upheaval: https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/08/01/welfare-roles-during-the-pandemic/

    Why now is the time to fix the UI system: https://www.epi.org/publication/introduction-why-now-is-the-time-to-fix-the-ui-system/ 

    The racial disparity in unemployment benefits: https://www.rand.org/blog/2020/07/the-racial-disparity-in-unemployment-benefits.html 

    Unpacking Inequities in Unemployment Insurance: https://www.newamerica.org/pit/reports/unpacking-inequities-unemployment-insurance/introduction/ 

    Ending pandemic unemployment aid has not yielded extra jobs—yet: https://www.economist.com/finance-and-economics/2021/08/28/ending-pandemic-unemployment-aid-has-not-yielded-extra-jobs-yet  

    Janesville: An American Story: https://bookshop.org/books/janesville-an-american-story-9781508283966/9781501102264 

    Website: http://pitchforkeconomics.com/
    Twitter: @PitchforkEcon
    Instagram: @pitchforkeconomics
    Nick’s twitter: @NickHanauer

    • 32 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
1.2K Ratings

1.2K Ratings

Dale Biron, Citizen Poet ,

Excellent…

The whole episode was great and in particular I loved the comments about what the term moderation means in politics. So to be a moderate centrist, one needs to pass laws and policies that help the greatest number of people in the middle.

LC_50 ,

One of my favorite podcasts

I look forward for a new episode from Pitchfork Economics everyday. I love the breakdown and discussion around unions, taxes, fair pay, capitalism etc. I share this podcast quite often with friends. Thank you!

Tracy in St. Louis ,

Fantastic podcast

Keep up the great work! Thank you.

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