Browse Episodes

Revisiting the history of Middle-Out Economics (with Michael Tomasky)

We’ve lived in the shadow of trickle-down economics for over 40 years. During that time, our leaders unquestioningly embraced economic policies that prioritize the wealthiest and most powerful, with the idea that their wealth will eventually “trickle down” to everyone else, but it just hasn’t. But 2023 has been a big year in passing middle out economic policies and advancing the middle out economic narrative. In a future episode we’ll be talking about the biggest middle out research and policies that are making a real difference in people’s lives and are changing the way we think about economic cause and effect. In advance of that we wanted to revisit the history of middle out via a conversation we had with journalist and author, Michael Tomasky. At the time, he had just released a new book about the rise of progressive economics in the United States.

Working Toward a Full Employment Economy (with Arnab Datta)

In its quest to combat inflation the Federal Reserve has seemingly done everything in its power to engineer a recession, which would throw millions of people out of work. Rather than question the Fed’s actions, mainstream economists cheered them on, claiming that we need multiple months of high unemployment to bring inflation down. But do we really need to immiserate America’s working class in order to save the economy? Today’s guest, Arnab Datta, and his colleagues at Employ America are producing research that suggests we should instead be using macroeconomic policies to steer the economy to high employment and robust wage growth—which would reduce inequity, spur economic development, and expand the availability of good-paying jobs for all Americans.

Understanding the Sahm Rule (with economist Claudia Sahm)

Mainstream economists have been predicting a recession on the horizon for over a year, with some doomsayers even making up something called “a non-recession recession” to characterize the state of the economy. There’s no better person to cut through all this bluster and nonsense than the creator of one of the most reliable economic indicators created in the last few decades: the Sahm Rule, which aims to predict and track recessions in real time. Former Federal Reserve economist Claudia Sahm joins the podcast to walk us through the Sahm Rule’s methodology and explains how it utilizes timely data to provide early warnings of economic downturns, offering policymakers, businesses, and individuals a valuable tool for proactive decision-making.

Any society that allows itself to become radically unequal eventually collapses into an uprising or a police state—or both. Join venture capitalist Nick Hanauer and some of the world’s leading economic and political thinkers in an exploration of who gets what and why. Turns out, everything you learned about economics is wrong. And if we don’t do something about rising inequality, the pitchforks are coming.