Robert Reich Debunks Three Economic Myths by Drawing Cartoons

Robert Reich met Bill Clinton when they were both Rhodes Scholars during the 1960s. In the 70s, Reich attended Yale Law School with Hill and Bill. And then, decades later, he served in the Clinton administration as Secretary of Labor. Somewhere along the line, the political economist picked up some drawing skills (putting him in good company with Winston Churchill and George Bush) that work nicely in our age of whiteboard animated videos. Now a professor at UC Berkeley, Reich visually debunks three economic mythologies in two minutes. This clip follows a rapidfire 2012 video, again featuring his cartooning skills, called The Truth About the Economy.

ht @sheerly

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Comments (10)
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  • Kieren says:

    This is the worst economics video I have ever watched. This guy is seriously deluded.

  • Robert says:

    Agreed. This guy couldn’t run a Burger King; he has utterly no idea of economics, other than gods/elitists like himself should run things in a magical way that guarantees everyone acts independently and in spite of their meddling.

  • Tracy Kolenchuk says:

    The purpose of a democratic government is to enable the freedom of citizens.

  • Craig says:

    Wow, the man from utopia. He should move to Venezuela.

  • Hanoch says:

    I have to agree with Kieren. This presentation does not even deserve a seat at the economic debate table; it is utterly vapid and non-substantive. I’ll admit it was good for a chuckle, though, when Reich attempted to persuade that governments create free markets! This has got to be the pinnacle of silliness.

  • Sinead says:

    Please post your counter arguments, figures and statistics in more detail if you disagree with this .. throwing around insults and saying it’s rubbish means absolutely nothing

  • steven i Boldish says:

    Giving money to the rich and corporations through tax reduction is stupid and self defeating. It will just make the corporations richer, more powerful and will not create jobs. Trickle down is BS. It wasn’t true when Reagan embraced it through Robert Laugher and is still not true. Why would anyone in a corporation pay more for labor. Even if these corporations have a boat load of money they will not give it away easily. You must believe in a benevolent dictator. New industries when created and higher wages beget higher wages. The more people spend the more there is a demand for workers and the higher wages will be. So money given to the top does very little. Managers of companies pay as little as possible. Low skill set and an overabundance of workers leads to low wages. A Burger King is a perfect example where all you need to know is how to flip burgers and how to do it fast. A good government works to equalize the playing field. Good government prevents monopolies. Your ignorance is astounding. You have no knowledge and you show it by not countering Reich’s arguments. You should read about Theodore Roosevelt and monopolies. Markets without some regulations do not work. It would be a mistake to not have some regulations because then it would be the law of the jungle. Your ignorance when combined with the collective ignorance will lead us to a bad end.

  • GhostRider2001 says:

    This has to be the dumbest video on economics I’ve ever seen. It is nothing sort of propaganda.

  • Chris says:

    As much as this is not Robert Reich’s most compelling work, nothing he said in this video is incorrect. I’m assuming none of the commenters here have the kind of credentials that a former Secretary of Labor has, myself included. If any of you Rhode Scholars and former Harvard Professors want to point me in the direction of of your numerous New York Times best-selling books are, I’ll buy one. I would come take your class at Berkley too but I probably can’t afford the tuition since I’m a member of the middle class… like most people.

  • Bill M says:

    While Reich’s contention that Governments create free markets sounds rediculous on the surface, some deeper thought is required to understand his point. I believe he is referencing that government, especially a democracy, provide a structure that define what ‘free markets’ look like via laws and regulation.
    As I listened I feel that the demise of the middle class may be the undoing of ‘free markets’ as we know them. Taxing the wealthy is way too cliche and oversimplified. Perhaps a sliding corporate tax scale that gets lower as employee wages get higher would provide incentive for corporations to pay more in wages to achieve lower taxes.
    It’s hard to disagree with Reich assertions that the middle class purchasing is the economic engine that drives the economy. Corporations require the dynamic of production for a consuming public. I believe responsible corporate leaders understand this and would consider higher wages a significant part of their responsibility. I this regard, ultimately we as a society will arrive at a homeostasis which rewards corporate need for profit while contributing to a strong buying public through higher wages.
    Hard to relay those complex ideas in a three minute video but it certainly was provocative and interesting.

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