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Approaching Equality

What Can Be Done About Wealth Inequality? Roger A. McCain, Professor, School of Economics, LeBow College of Business, Drexel University, US
Drawing on some recent research (especially that of Piketty and his associates) and on older ideas (particularly from Sir Arthur Lewis), Roger McCain proposes policies that, together, would aim to reverse the observed tendency towards the concentration of wealth in market economies, thus ‘approaching equality.’ The shortcomings and dangers of rising wealth inequality are discussed, both from the point of view of increasing instability and of equalitarian values.
Extent: 232 pp
Hardback Price: $120.00 Web: $108.00
Publication Date: 2017
ISBN: 978 1 78643 143 1
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  • Economics and Finance
  • Labour Economics
  • Political Economy
  • Post-Keynesian Economics
  • Welfare Economics
By combining recent research (especially that of Piketty and his associates) with established ideas (particularly from Sir Arthur Lewis), Roger McCain proposes policies that, together, would aim to reverse the observed tendency towards the concentration of wealth in market economies, thus ‘approaching equality.’ The shortcomings and dangers of rising wealth inequality are discussed, both from the point of view of increasing instability and of equalitarian values.

Drawing on Marxist concepts of class, the book clarifies both the relation of wealth to income inequality and the causal link between wealth inequality and economic instability, exploring practical issues related to the proposed policies. The role of the ‘middle class’ and the causes of the failure of much of the population to save even for retirement are analyzed. The author goes on to examine the implications for programs of distribution according to need and the role of the corporation, and the possibility of a scheme of economic planning that would retain the known advantages of the market allocation of resources.

With inequality still a rising issue for public policy, professionals and students studying policy economics will benefit from the analysis in this book and its tight focus on inequality of wealth, as will interested lay readers with a background in economics and an interest in inequality.
‘This is an important book that tackles an important problem and it could usefully inform governments' economic policies.’
– Citizen’s Income Newsletter
Contents: 1. Introduction: Plan and Scope of the Book 2. The Future of Capitalism 3. Why Be Concerned? Inequality and Instability 4. Sir Arthur Lewis’ Equalitarian Vision 5. Piketty’s Narrative and the Wealth Tax 6. Can we “Grow the Middle Class?” 7. Synthesis and Extension 8. To Each According to Need 9. Civilizing the Corporation 10. Planning from the Bottom Up Index