Edward Kleinbard explores empathy in the most difficult circumstances imaginable: empathy for folks you do not know, and if you did know, you may not like…ie your fellow Americans. All of them. On the heels of a long career as tax accountant to some of the country’s most wealthy, and service to the congressional committee on taxation, Edward makes the surprising claim that we need more taxes, not less, to have a happier, healthier society. He makes the case that government programs and spending are how we actualize the values that we care enough about to pay for, as citizens. Our national shame is having the highest adult poverty rate of all 34 countries of the OECD while being the richest large economy in the world. Yet we can institutionalize empathy through our fiscal system. Infrastructure, research, education - all yield big financial, social, and individual outcomes. He makes the bold claim that the economic pie gets bigger when government and private markets work together.
Edward is the Johnson Professor of Law and Business at the University of Southern California's Gould School of Law, and is a former Chief of Staff of Congress’s nonpartisan tax resource, the Joint Committee on Taxation. Kleinbard’s scholarship focuses on political economy and business taxation. His book, We Are Better Than This: How Government Should Spend Our Money, analyzes contemporary U.S. fiscal policy through the prisms of public finance economics, technical tax and budget rules, and moral and political philosophy.
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx