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Viking Economics/Robocalls

Ralph welcomes activist, George Lakey, to discuss “Viking Economics,” about what the U.S. can learn from the Scandinavian economies and “How To Win” social progress with direct action, non-violent campaigning. Then, Ian Barlow from the Federal Trade Commission, tells us how to stop robo-calls. Plus, Ralph weighs in on Trump’s State of the Union.

George Lakey is a sociologist, author, and activist who for over six decades has led over 1500 social change workshops on five continents and led projects on local, national and international levels.  His first time arrested was in the civil rights movement; recently he went to jail in the successful campaign to stop the nation’s seventh largest bank from financing mountaintop removal coal mining. Those kinds of  experiences have informed his book “How We Win: A Guide To Direct Action Nonviolent Campaigning. He is also the author of Viking Economics: How The Scandinavians Got It Right and How We Can, Too.

“Instead of creating programs for poor people, they (the Scandinavians) understood they needed to create universal programs that provide benefits for everyone, and then everyone will defend them… and that really makes a huge difference in winning over people, first of all, and then implementing a system that provides way more equality than we can even dream of.” George Lakey, author of “Viking Economics: How The Scandinavians Got It Right and How We Can, Too.”

Ian Barlow is an attorney, who works at the Federal Trade Commission as the coordinator for the Do Not Call Program.

“The four pieces of advice we give to consumers are 1.) Go to and register for the Do Not Call Registry. 2.) Hang up on abusive or illegal calls. 3.) Report the unwanted, illegal, or abusive calls at, and 4.) Consider a call-blocking application.” Ian Barlow program coordinator for the FTC’s Do Not Call Registry.


  1. Dr. Kenneth Tennant says:

    Thank you Ralph Nader for your honest efforts and dedication to accountability. Please view and share this evidence of unaccountable State & County Officials Who continue this course of defrauding Taxpayers Of Honest Government Services by refusing to admit the evidence they concealed from jurors. You Tube: Iowa Corrupt Judges Courts Police

  2. Don Klepack says:

    Ralph, Do you think Moral Capitalism is a thing and is it an answer to Socialism that is practiced in the Nordic Countries?

    • Afdal Shahanshah says:

      The Nordic countries do not practice socialism. What they have can be described as Keynesian social democracy. It’s capitalism with social programs that attempt to dampen capitalism’s inherent tendency towards periodic crisis. Socialism is not “when the government does stuff”. Socialism is the negation of capitalism. Socialism and capitalism both refer to ways that production is arranged. Rather than economies dominated by production for profit-driven exchange in top-down totalitarian workplaces (capitalism), socialism is democratic control of the means of production.

  3. Jordan Croy says:

    Another great episode! I had a conversation with a friend the other day and he characterized the “left” as being primarily concerned with the distribution of wealth and the “right” as being primarily concerned with the creation of wealth. While there may be some merit to that characterization, I think it largely underestimates the “intangible” wealth that is created when viking economics are implemented. This episode illustrates how universal pension, healthcare, etc. leads to increased cultural and creative wealth, which is a point all too often left out of our calculations (perhaps people think it’s too “soft” and not quantitative enough; in that case, give them statistics like hours spent learning an instrument or number of concerts seen per month). This also allows a society to address social and environmental injustices (see post-materialism; once the material needs of a society are met, priorities shift towards individual improvement, citizen engagement, humanism, environmentalism; in contrast, when material needs are not met, priorities shift towards authoritarianism, safety, strong and large military, economic growth over the environment, etc.). Thanks Ralph, Steve, Dave, and guests.

  4. Max Escoto says:

    I am not sure why anyone worries about the health insurance industry who profit over the misery and death of people instead of saying that the whole industry is an immoral economic enclave?

    These people need to find retraining in a Green New Deal. And it should be a real Green New Deal like the Greens but attained by using MMT economic principles