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“I started off as a libertarian economist, but I’ve come full circle”—Gregory Clark on social mobility

By Jonathan Derbyshire  

In his State of the Union address in January, President Obama observed that those at the top of the income distribution were doing better than ever before. But at the same time, he said, “average wages have barely budged. Inequality has deepened [and] upward mobility has stalled.” And in the land of opportunity, that is unconscionable.

One often hears British politicians, of all stripes, saying the same thing: that social mobility has slowed, if it hasn’t stalled completely, and that policymakers (especially those designing education and training policy) ought to…

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