About the BookDebate held May 30, 2013, Toronto, Ontario.
As middle-class incomes stagnate in advanced economies while the rich experience record income gains, the eleventh semi-annual Munk Debate pits wealth redistribution supporters Paul Krugman and George Papandreou against Newt Gingrich and Arthur Laffer to debate taxation -- should the rich pay more?
For some the answer is obvious: redistribute the wealth of the top income earners who have enjoyed, for almost a generation, the lion's share of all income gains. Imposing higher taxes on the wealthy is the best way for countries such as Canada to reinvest in their social safety nets, education, and infrastructure while protecting the middle class. Others argue that anemic economic growth, not income inequality, is the real problem facing advanced countries. In a globalized economy, raising taxes on society's wealth creators leads to capital flight, falling government revenues, and less money for the poor. These same voices contend that lowering taxes on everyone stimulates innovation and investment, fuelling future prosperity.
In this edition of the Munk Debates -- Canada's premier international debate series -- Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman and former Prime Minster of Greece George Papandreou square off against former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich and famed economist Arthur Laffer to debate if the rich should bear the brunt of higher taxes.
For the first time ever, this stimulating debate, which will take place in front of a sold-out audience, will be available in print. With advanced countries facing overextended social services, crumbling infrastructure, and sluggish economic growth, the Munk Debate on economic inequality tackles the essential public policy issue: Should we tax the rich more?
About the AuthorPaul Krugman is an American economist, professor of economics and international affairs at Princeton, centenary professor at the London School of Economics, and an op-ed columnist for the New York Times. He won the Nobel Prize in 2008. He lives in Princeton, NJ. George Papandreou was the prime minister of Greece from 2009 to 2011. He is the current president of the Socialist International. He was named one of Foreign Policy's "Top 100 Global Thinkers" in 2010 for "making the best of Greece's worst year." He lives in Athens, Greece. Newt Gingrich is the former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, a New York Times bestselling author, and Time magazine's 1995 Man of the Year. As an author, Gingrich has published 23 books, including 13 New York Times bestsellers. He lives in McLean, VI. Arthur Laffer is known as the "father" of supply-side economics. He was economic adviser to Ronald Reagan for both of his terms (1981-1989) and adviser to Margaret Thatcher on fiscal policy. A co-author of The End of Prosperity: How Higher Taxes Will Doom the Economy -- If We Let It Happen, he invented the Laffer Curve, a representation of the relationship between possible rates of taxation and the resulting levels of government revenue. He lives in Nashville, TN. Rudyard Griffiths is the co-organizer and moderator of the Munk Debates. He's also the co-founder of the Dominion Institute, co-director of the Grano Speakers Series, and author of Who We Are: A Citizen's Manifesto. He lives in Toronto.