How to bridge the growing wealth gap

How to bridge the growing wealth gap

Non-fiction: The Great Divide. By Joseph E Stiglitz. Allen Lane, €34. Reviewed by Andrew Lynch.

At the height of the Celtic Tiger in 2004, Minister for Justice and future tánaiste Michael McDowell caused political outrage by declaring that nobody should worry about the gap between Ireland’s rich and poor. “A dynamic liberal economy like ours demands flexibility and inequality in some respects to function,” he said in an interview with the Irish Catholic. “It is the inequality that provides incentives.”

Today, McDowell’s argument would be unfashionable even with most...

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