“Milton Friedman really did say that the basis of a free society is companies making as much money for their shareholders as possible. Thatcher adviser Brian Griffiths really did say inequality would achieve ‘greater prosperity for all’.
And it was nonsense. Economic growth in the UK has slowed – just over 2% per annum between 1980 and 2009, compared with 3% between 1950 and 1973. Productivity growth is lower and real wages have fallen for the vast majority of the population. Wages now account for 45% of GDP compared with 60% in 1979.
While the majority have got poorer, the rich have got richer. In the US, for example, in 1976 the top 1% of the population accounted for 8.6% of income. Today it is 23%.”
This is a quote from Chris Hind’s review in Red Pepper magazine, of Stewart Lansley’s book, The Cost Of Inequality: Three Decades Of The Super-Rich And The Economy.
And yet everyday we hear in the Anglo-American media that businesses operating in free markets are our only hope to escape this crisis created by businesses operating in a free market.