The Economics of Inequality

The Economics of Inequality

Book - 2015
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"Thomas Piketty wrote The Economics of Inequality as an introduction to the conceptual and factual background necessary for interpreting changes in economic inequality over time. Piketty begins by explaining how inequality evolves and how economists measure it. In subsequent chapters, he explores variances in income and ownership of capital and the variety of policies used to reduce these gaps. Along the way, with characteristic clarity and precision, he introduces key ideas about the relationship between labor and capital, the effects of different systems of taxation, the distinction between 'historical' and 'political' time, the impact of education and technological change, the nature of capital markets, the role of unions, and apparent tensions between the pursuit of efficiency and the pursuit of fairness" -- provided by publisher.
Publisher: Cambridge, Massachusetts : Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2015
ISBN: 9780674504806
Call Number: 339.22 P637e
Characteristics: vii, 142 pages : charts ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Goldhammer, Arthur - Translator


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Feb 05, 2019

What is most useful in this work is the summary of the policy instruments for income redistribution.

It is unusual in that for background it covers pure economic theory, economic studies, and hard realities of alternative policy and programs. This is where clarity is weakest. It would help to have a summary of all the relevant theory, and a summary of the breakdowns of that theory.
To do this would require some serious editing.

Nonetheless, this book is a valuable contribution to the field.

Jan 28, 2017

Although there are numerous charts of data in the first third of the book (well, long essay), most of the book is written and argued with words (there is only one graph in the second half of the book). The work was written before his big book (Capital in the 21st Century), but some of the main objects of study are the same: labour and its income distributions, and capital and its distributions, what their balances or imbalances are, what the causes of those differences (and the distributions) are, and compares OECD countries and some of their policies, such as payroll taxes.

Jan 21, 2017

1994 , so current inequality not covered
Narrow view. No dialectic, no struggle
Simply the value of distributed income as justice
Which method would hurt the Market least
He admits that tax on capital and non-wages are small because they are hidden.
So he proceeds to ignore them.
Not an easy read.


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