What Went Wrong : How the 1% Hijacked the American Middle Class... and What Other Countries Got Right
Overview - Something has gone seriously wrong with the American economy. The American economy has experienced considerable growth in the last 30 years. But virtually none of this growth has trickled down to the average American. Incomes have been flat since 1985. Read more...
More About What Went Wrong by George R. Tyler
Something has gone seriously wrong with the American economy.
The American economy has experienced considerable growth in the last 30 years. But virtually none of this growth has trickled down to the average American. Incomes have been flat since 1985. Inequality has grown, and social mobility has dropped dramatically. Equally troubling, these policies have been devastating to both American productivity and our long-term competitiveness.
Many reasons for these failures have been proposed. Globalization. Union greed. Outsourcing.
But none of these explanations can address the harsh truth that many countries around the world are dramatically outperforming the U.S. in delivering broad middle-class prosperity. And this is despite the fact that these countries are more exposed than America to outsourcing and globalization and have much higher levels of union membership.
In What Went Wrong
, George R. Tyler, a veteran of the World Bank and the Treasury Department, takes the reader through an objective and data-rich examination of the American experience over the last 30 years. He provides a fascinating comparison between the America and the experience of the "family capitalism" countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Sweden.
Over the last 30 years, they have outperformed the U.S. economy by the only metric that really matters--delivering better lives for their citizens. The policies adopted by the family capitalist countries aren't socialist or foreign. They are the same policies that made the U.S. economy of the 1950s and 1960s the strongest in the world. What Went Wrong
describes exactly what went wrong with the American economy, how countries around the world have avoided these problems, and what we need to do to get back on the right track.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
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In his first book, Tyler, a former Clinton administration deputy assistant Treasury secretary, slams popular acquiescence to low wages, imperious CEOs, and diminished national net worth. He contrasts the pursuit abroad of “family capitalism”—a doctrine of healthy compensation, job retraining, and productivity growth—with the increasing income disparities in the U.S. that destroy economic mobility and perpetuate poverty. Tyler identifies the Reagan era and its free-market dogma as the beginning of the reversal of middle-class growth, but sees little change since then. He argues that a first step toward recovery would be to boost the wages of lower-income households; he cites Australia and Europe as examples showing that prosperity and living wages are complementary, not contradictory. Whatever the merits of his proposals, the array of data he presents justifies popular apprehension about America’s future. The key issue is not big government vs. small government, he maintains, but rather the distribution of wealth. While Tyler’s recommendations seem hard to achieve, he provokes outrage with his impassioned portrait of an America where job security is a relic of the past. Agent: Howard Yoon, Ross Agency. (July)