Through the Eyes of Yankelovich

Through the Eyes of Yankelovich

Tokyo 5

In the coming months, people in America and Japan should expect a lot of discussion on a topic that may at first glance seem like technical economics, but is in fact a red-hot political issue whose consequences are hard to exaggerate.

The topic is whether or not our capitalist systems are undergoing a lasting structural change. Are we inadvertently shifting from forms of capitalism that are compatible with political democracy to forms that are undemocratic?

Through the Eyes of Yankelovich

Tokyo 5

In the coming months, people in America and Japan should expect a lot of discussion on a topic that may at first glance seem like technical economics, but is in fact a red-hot political issue whose consequences are hard to exaggerate.

The topic is whether or not our capitalist systems are undergoing a lasting structural change. Are we inadvertently shifting from forms of capitalism that are compatible with political democracy to forms that are undemocratic?

The American public is most familiar with the “rising tide raises all boats” form of capitalism – the most democratic of its forms. Economic growth benefits the majority of participants. Income levels rise for all demographic groups. Political stability prevails.

This form of capitalism has proven successful in the United States because average Americans are not opposed in principle to gross inequalities of income, as long as they have a fair chance to improve life for themselves and their families. 

However, there is mounting evidence that this necessary condition for public approval no longer prevails in the United States. Those at the top are doing extremely well. But incomes at all other levels, especially at the bottom, are stagnant or declining. It has become a truism that the American middle class is being hollowed out. tj

The complete article can be found in Issue #274 of the Tokyo Journal. Click here to order from Amazon.

Written By:

Daniel Yankelovich

Tokyo Journal columnist Daniel Yankelovich is a renowned social researcher and public opinion analyst who was born in 1924 in Boston, Massachusetts. He earned both his bachelor's degree (1946) and M.A.(1950) from Harvard University, and carried out post-graduate studies at the Sorbonne in Paris. He also holds honorary doctorates from Washington University and George Washington University largely for his work in the public sector.

He has served in the following roles: Founder, The New York Times/Yankelovich Poll now known as the New York Times/CBS Poll; Chairman, Educational Testing Service (ETS); Founding President, the Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics; Trustee, Brown University; Trustee, The Kettering Foundation; Fellow, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; Member, Council on Foreign Relations, and Director of a number of corporate boards, including CBS; USWEST; the Meredith Corporation; Loral Space and Communications; Diversified Energies and ARKLA.

He has taught as a Research Professor of Psychology at New York University, a Professor of Psychology in the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research, and a Visiting Professor at the University of California at San Diego. He was named a Distinguished Scholar at the University of California at Irvine and served as a Senior Fellow at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government.

In addition to authoring hundreds of articles and speeches, Daniel Yankelovich is the author, editor or co-author of twelve books, the most recent being Toward Wiser Public Judgment (Vanderbilt University Press, 2011). Others include Profit with Honor: The New Stage of Market Capitalism; The Magic of Dialogue; New Rules: Searching for Self-fulfillment in a World Turned Upside Down; Coming to Public Judgment; Ego and Instinct: The Psychoanalytic View of Human Nature-Revised; Beyond the Beltway: Engaging the Public in U.S. Foreign Policy; and Making Democracy Work in a Complex World, Starting with the People.

He is the recipient of The Parlin Award for his pioneering work in marketing research, the Dinerman Award of the World Association of Public Opinion Research and the Outstanding Achievement Award from the New York Chapter of the American Association of Public Opinion Research.



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