“The place where most adults spend most of their life is at work, and there is no democracy at work”
Much like Bernie Sanders, Richard Wolff (1942) has spent his entire adult life saying (and writing) many of the same things. Until not so long ago, his fierce critique of capitalism, voiced in his radio show Economic Update and articulated in countless papers and books, found little resonance beyond the fringes. And yet, like the Vermont Senator, he has seen a spectacular renewed interest in those ideas lately. When Wolff, a Marxist economist who was trained at Harvard, Yale and Stanford, sat down with CTXT at a coffee shop near his office in Manhattan’s New School for Social Research a couple weeks ago, he was preparing for a trip to Kentucky, where he would give a series of lectures in public and state universities. “I’ve never even been to Kentucky. And they’re paying to have me tell them about the disaster that capitalism is and what we can do to change it!” he joked, pointing to Occupy Wall Street as the force that brought theories like his –and Bernie Sanders’- onto the discussion table. In his idiosyncratic tone –combining the didactic with the forceful – Wolff spoke about the current situation of the American economy, the forces driving global competition, and the intricacies of the solution he proposes in his bookDemocracy at Work: A Cure for Capitalism (Haymarket Books, 2012), which turns to the Basque Mondragón Corporation for inspiration.