Grace Blakeley

(S1E67)

  
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English economics and politics journalist and author Grace Blakeley discusses her latest article, “How Corporate Welfare Props up the Billionaire Class” and the larger issues surrounding class politics today and the increase in wealth of the billionaire class is not a fluke but is very much part of the architecture of capitalism and the “direct intervention of capitalist states all over the world.” Discussing the Global Financial Crisis, Blakeley maintains the response to the crisis could be considered a form of “corporate welfare” noting how central bank policies are creating an even richer billionaire class through “quantitative easing” where banks create new money to purchase assets from the private sector (eg. government and corporate bonds) which have led to an explosion in stock and property prices. Blakeley covers the housing crisis and the “evictions ban” during the pandemic and the “fundamentally irrational” features of capitalism noting how the private landlord class contributes to an upward, intergenerational transfer of wealth within the context of massive disparities in wealth and income between the older and younger people. Noting the end result of the rentier system is that huge amounts of wealth are transferred from those who must work and who are struggling to those who monopolise necessary resources (eg. land, housing, capital), Blakeley argues quite effectively that this is making our economies work less well.