Ten years ago this week, a group of activists pitched tents in New York’s Zuccotti Park. They said they were protesting against economic inequality and the gap between the people who hold the top 1% of wealth in this country and the rest of us.
Soon, people in cities all over the globe launched their own Occupy Wall Street protests, and while police broke up the original protest in New York two months later, Occupy Wall Street went a lot longer and a lot further than many expected.
“There were experts, people in the social sciences who had been studying inequality, and were very well aware of its explosive growth in the period since the 1970s. But it wasn’t really on the radar of the general population until Occupy. I think that was one of the major impacts,” said Ruth Milkman, a sociology professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center, who has studied the Occupy Wall Street movement.
Milkman said while Occupy Wall Street may not have done much to close the growing income inequality gap in this country, it made the issue part of the national political conversation. She also draws lines between Occupy, the Fight for $15, the rise of Bernie Sanders and other social movements that followed, including Black Lives Matter.
On today’s show, we’ll talk with Milkman about the legacy of Occupy Wall Street.
In the newsfix, we’ll talk about Facebook and a new project from The Wall Street Journal that reveals troubling information about what’s happening inside company. Plus, we’ll hear from one of our favorite listeners and one of best low-key answers to the Make Me Smart question we’ve received in a while.
When you’re done listening, tell your Echo device to “make me smart” for our daily explainers. This week we’ll explain why hit songs are getting shorter, why child care is so expensive and how drive-in movie theaters made a comeback. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter! You can find the latest issue here.
Give now to support the show you love and to get the “Make Me Smart” banana pants and ringtones! Marketplace.org/givesmart.
Here’s everything we talked about today:
“Changing the Subject: A Bottom Up Account of Occupy Wall Street in New York City” co-authored by Prof. Milkman
“It’s Been Another Decade Of Income Inequality In The U.S.” from NPR
“Occupy Wall Street Did More Than You Think” from The Atlantic
“The Facebook Files” from The Wall Street Journal
“Amazon hikes starting pay to $18 an hour” from Reuters
“Climate change to change behavior, 80% of respondents tell Pew” from CNBC
Imagine what it would be like if you didn’t have to wait days for your paycheck to be processed by the bank. Or getting a loan without having to go through a bank loan officer.
That’s finance, decentralized. Fans of decentralized finance believe DeFi has the potential to make our current...
Here’s a sign that we need action on climate change. Water levels in one of the world’s most iconic lakes, Lake Tahoe, have plummeted. That’s not good. Federal climate legislation could help, but basically the entire GOP and Democrat Joe Manchin are opposed. We’ll discuss what means for our...
This week, Apple and Netflix fired employees who also happened to be involved in speaking out against their respective employers. What does this all mean for how we think about work? We’ll discuss it. Plus, it turns out Americans want smaller government and we end the week with a round of our...