This course provides a working foundation in the core concepts of Marxian economic theory – necessary and surplus labor, labor power, surplus value, exploitation, capital accumulation, distributions of the surplus, capitalist crises, and the differences between capitalist and other class structures. In addition, these core concepts will be systematically used to understand current social problems (including political and cultural as well as economic problems).
Watch as Professor Richard Wolff breaks down the root causes of today's economic crisis, showing how it was decades in the making and in fact reflects seismic failures within the structures of American-style capitalism itself. Wolff traces the source of the economic crisis to the 1970s, when wages began to stagnate and American workers were forced into a dysfunctional spiral of borrowing and debt that ultimately exploded in the mortgage meltdown.
Updates on Mexican farm exploitation, Grenoble takes down advertising, US teachers underpaid, and cutting workers' pensions. Responses to listeners on Harvard and Yale as full participants in capitalism's defects. Analyzing modern "economics" as a discipline from Adam Smith to Karl Marx and since.
Links for radio program are posted below:
Professor Wolff says every capitalist tries to systematically reduce wages, then can't sell what those wage workers have produced.
Economist Richard Wolff compares the stagnation of wages in the U.S. for the past 30 years to the increase in wages in emerging markets and explains why capital left America.
Updates on Ferguson and Portland as symptoms of economic decline, critic rejections of profit-driven business, Sen. Bernie Sanders for worker coops, homeless in New York City, and rising political lefts in Greece, Spain and now Ireland. Responses to listeners on supply-demand economics and "capturing" government regulators. Interview with Steve Early, activist and author, on the present and future of US labor movement.