Political Economist Gordon Lafer: ‘How Corporations Are Remaking America One State at a Time’

Lafer’s book, 'The One Percent Solution,' shows how corporate lobbies are endangering democracy.


Thorne Dreyer’s guest on Rag Radio is political economist Gordon Lafer, author of The One Percent Solution: How Corporations Are Remaking America One State at a Time, which we discuss on this show.

Gordon Lafer is Associate Professor at the Labor Education and Research Center at the University of Oregon. He also wrote The Job Training Charade, and both books were published by Cornell Press. Lafer has served as Senior Policy Advisor for the U.S. Congress and has been called to testify as an expert witness before multiple state legislatures.

Rag Radio host Thorne Dreyer.

In the aftermath of Citizens United, it’s become commonplace to note the growing political dominance of a small segment of the economic elite. But what exactly are they doing with their newfound influence? Gordon Lafer’s The One Percent Solution is a comprehensive account of legislation promoted by the nation’s biggest corporate lobbies across all 50 state legislatures and encompassing a wide range of labor and economic policies.

One of the main reasons life is becoming harder for American workers is a relentless — and concerted — offensive by the country’s best-funded and most powerful political forces: corporate lobbies empowered by the Supreme Court and its Citizens United  ruling to influence legislative outcomes with an endless supply of cash. Lafer shows that the corporate legislative agenda has come to endanger the scope of democracy itself.


ragradio250x250Rag Radio is produced in the studios of KOOP 91.7-FM, an all-volunteer, cooperatively-run community radio station in Austin, Texas, in association with The Rag Blog and the New Journalism Project, a Texas 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The host and producer of Rag Radio, Thorne Dreyer, is a prominent Austin-based activist and writer who was a pioneer of the ’60s underground press movement. The show’s engineer and co-producer is Tracey Schulz and the staff photographer is Roger Baker. The syndicated show is broadcast (and streamed) live Fridays, 2-3 p.m. (Central) on KOOP in Austin, is streamed live at Radio Free America, and is later rebroadcast and streamed on WFTE-FM in Mt. Cobb and Scranton, PA., on Houston Pacifica’s KPFT HD-3 90.1-FM, and by KKRN, 88.5-FM in Round Mountain, CA — and is a featured podcast at Veterans Today. All Rag Radio podcasts can be found at the Internet Archive. Contact: ragradio@koop.org.

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