90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Should The Wealthy Worry About Inequality?

Multi-millionaire Nick Hanauer says he and his fellow super-rich are killing the goose — the American middle class — that lays the golden eggs.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, right, speaks with Ady Barkan of the Center for Popular Democracy as she arrives for a dinner during the Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium at the Jackson Lake Lodge in Grand Teton National Park near Jackson, Wyo. Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014.  (AP)

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, right, speaks with Ady Barkan of the Center for Popular Democracy as she arrives for a dinner during the Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium at the Jackson Lake Lodge in Grand Teton National Park near Jackson, Wyo. Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014. (AP)

Nick Hanauer is a millionaire many times over.  An entrepreneur.  An investor.  He was one of the first investors in Amazon.com.  Has started more than 30 companies.  Sold just one to Microsoft for $6 billion, cash.  He’s got a pile of fancy homes.  The plane.  The yacht.  His own bank.  And a message for his fellow American super-rich:  If we don’t figure out how to re-balance the wealth in this country and save the middle class, it’s all coming down.  The country.  The plutocracy.  The works.  This hour On Point:  Nick Hanauer, multi-millionaire, and his message for the super-rich.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Nick Hanauer, entrepreneur and venture capitalist. Co-author, with Eric Lui, of the book “The Gardens of Democracy.” (@NickHanauer)

From Tom’s Reading List

POLITICO Magazine: The Pitchforks Are Coming… For Us Plutocrats — “The divide between the haves and have-nots is getting worse really, really fast. In 1980, the top 1 percent controlled about 8 percent of U.S. national income. The bottom 50 percent shared about 18 percent. Today the top 1 percent share about 20 percent; the bottom 50 percent, just 12 percent.

US News & World Report: Census Bureau: The Rich Got Richer — “Overall household wealth declined by $5,046, or 6.8 percent, between 2000 and 2011. But not everyone experienced the decline: While the bottom 60 percent of households saw decreases in their overall net worth, the richest 40 percent saw sizably bigger increases. The ratio of median net worth of the highest 20 percent of households to the second highest 20 percent increased by more than double, a sign the wealthiest Americans became even richer over a little more than a decade.”

Forbes: Nick Hanauer’s Latest Near Insane Economic Plan — “Nick Hanauer has gone public with another stage of his plan for the US economy. Essentially, raise wages for everyone and she’ll be fine. The problem with this is that Hanauer is simply factually wrong in a major example that he uses to bolster his case and then remarkably uninformed about the economics of the situation. So much so that it’s entirely fair of me to call this latest iteration of his plan ‘near insane’, as I did an earlier version of it. “

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Oct 23, 2014
Specialist Ronnie Howard, center, calls out prices as he works at his post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014. Beyond the turmoil shaking financial markets, the U.S. economy remains sturdier than many seem to fear. (AP)

The global economic wobble. Europe weakness. China fears. Wild markets. We’ll lay out the global economy now.

Oct 23, 2014
A screenshot from the interactive game, "Depression Quest," the game at the root of the ongoing #GamerGate controversy. (Courtesy  "Depression Quest")

#GamerGate. Sexism, misogyny and rough stuff in a video game world culture clash.

RECENT
SHOWS
Oct 22, 2014
Authors Nicholas Kristof and wife Sheryl WuDunn attend the premiere of "Meena" at the AMC Loews Theater on Thursday, June 26, 2014 in New York.

Author and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof says regular folks like us can change the world. He explains how. Plus: we remember the late, great Washington Post editor, Ben Bradlee.

 
Oct 22, 2014
Health workers carry the body of a woman suspected of contracting the Ebola virus in Bomi county situated on the outskirts of Monrovia, Liberia, Monday, Oct. 20, 2014. (AP)

We’ll go to Liberia, and hear from a pastor and a physician at the epicenter of the Ebola crisis.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Introducing The Explicast: A New Podcast From On Point Radio
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Confused about the news? Don’t worry: so are we sometimes! Introducing a new On Point Radio podcast: The Explicast. You can find Episode One right here.

More »
3 Comments
 
Two LIVE Tracks From Jazz Violinist Regina Carter
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

Regina Carter shares two live tracks — one arrangement, and one original composition — with Tom Ashbrook in the On Point studio.

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: October 17, 2014
Friday, Oct 17, 2014

We talk Facebook mishaps, whether Katy Perry was actually right and the glory of architectural giants and their iconic windows.

More »
Comment