Ben and Joel are joined by Brink Lindsey. He is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and senior scholar at the Kaufman Foundation—he's also known for his time at the Cato Institute, where among his many roles he served as the editor of the monthly Cato Unbound magazine. He's written several books, including "The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America's Politics and Culture." And he is the author, most recently, of the short e-book discussed in today's podcast: "Human Capitalism: How Economic Growth Has Made Us Smarter--And More Unequal."
Questions contemplated in this podcast:
• How is economic growth making us smarter and more unequal?
• Is growing income inequality the "dark lining of a silver cloud?" Is economic growth good despite the growth of inequality?
• How is Lindsey's book different from Charles Murray's recent "Coming Apart," aside from a cheerier outlook? What's holding back the middle class?
• Do differences in "cognitive culture" explain differences in achievement? Do genes matter? And since can't kids can't "pick the right parents," how intractable is the problem?
• Does helicopter parenting actually work? How? Has Joel already ruined his 4-year-old son?
• Can inequality be solved by applying libertarian solutions? Will school competition help? And why urge more early child development programs when they don't seem to work?
• Has America captured all the "low-hanging fruit" of easy innovation and human capital development. Is this economy as good as it gets?
• How are zoning laws and occupational licensing in big cities inhibiting the normal flow of the economy?
• Bonus: "Human Capitalism" was released as an e-book ahead of hardcover publication. How has the e-book publication affected preparations for the hardcover book?
Next podcast: Charles Kesler discusses: "I Am The Change: Barack Obama and the Crisis of Liberalism."