Robert Reich, who served as U.S. secretary of labor for four years under Bill Clinton, is currently a public policy professor at the University of California, Berkeley.
He took time off from his hectic schedule of teaching exactly one course this fall to excoriate American CEOs and Harvard Business School for allowing “a pay gap between CEOs and ordinary workers that’s gone from 20-to-1 fifty years ago to almost 300-to-1 today.”
“[S]uch a divergence is unsustainable,” Reich wrote in the Harvard Business Review’s blog.
This week, Reich reprinted his criticisms on his blog at AlterNet, where he flamboyantly refers to himself in the third person: “Robert Reich Calls Out Harvard Business School for Its Role in Widening Inequality.”
The ultra-progressive economist — inasmuch as a mere law school graduate can be called an economist — raked in an impressive income of $242,613 from taxpayer-funded Cal Berkeley in 2013, an amount which puts him in the top four percent of all Americans.
Like Harvard-educated CEOs, Reich’s $20,217 monthly take-home pay is very divergent from the salary of most Americans. It is 363 percent more than the typical monthly salary of a plumber ($4,366), 509 percent more than the monthly salary of an average locksmith ($3,318) and 865 percent more than the average monthly salary of a baker ($2,093), according to federal statistics.
For his sweet salary of $20,217 per month, Reich is slated to teach one course this fall. (RELATED: Robert Reich Sticks It To Poor People With $242,613 Salary For Teaching ONE CLASS This Semester)
He appears to be using his ample time off to instruct business leaders and future business leaders.
“Without a large and growing middle class, Americans won’t have the purchasing power to keep U.S. corporations profitable, and global demand won’t fill the gap,” Reich writes, eerily paraphrasing the economic warnings of Karl Marx in the nineteenth century. “Moreover, the widening gap eventually will lead to political and social instability.”
“Can an enterprise be truly successful in a society becoming ever more divided between a few highly successful people at the top and a far larger number who are not thriving?” he asks.
Reich, who served on the economic advisory board of then-President-elect Barack Obama in 2008, has a lengthy history of criticizing his fellow rich people.
The front page of the hardly-working professor’s Facebook page is currently festooned in all-capital letters with an appropriate motto: “INEQUALITY FOR ALL.”
The phrase relates to a 2013 documentary film of the same name starring the lavishly-paid professor. The flick examines income equality, the recent financial crisis and the failed Occupy movement.
In a nutshell, Reich argues that income gains over the last three decades threaten the American social fabric because they have gone to the top one percent of all earners, which meaning he just missed out on the mega-gains as a four-percenter.
Reich will teach a more normal course load of four courses during the spring semester, according to EAGnews.org.