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Professors dish on economy

Liz O'Donnell | Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Three Notre Dame professors discussed the economic crisis currently underway in America during the second session of Pizza, Pop and Politics in Reckers Hospitality room Tuesday.

David Ruccio and Jennifer Warlick, from the department of Economics and Policy studies joined Rich Williams, a professor of Sociology to cover a distinct element of the larger problem plaguing the economy.

Ruccio, the first speaker of the evening, lectured about the current economic policy. He highlighted the problems that have caused the United States’ economic woes.

“The four major problems of the economy are the financial meltdown, leading to a recession, increasing inequality and poverty, less secure middle and upper classes, and outrageous gas and home heating prices,” he said.

Warlick said these problems Ruccio laid out have contributed to the growth of poverty in the United States.

“The number of people who are visiting soup kitchens and food banks are rising dramatically,” she said.

She said the policies both John McCain and Barack Obama have detailed during their campaigns to help the impoverished aren’t very bipartisan.

“Each candidate’s proposals stay straight along their party lines,” she said.

Williams ended the session by explaining the housing situation in the country.

“If people can’t get loans for homes, the prices fall even further,” he said. “We have to get people lending money again.”

Ruccio said he was glad the event attracted a lot of students because those students show that they are trying to understand the issues.

“You are giving evidence that you care about these issues, and I am very pleased by that,” he said.

Pizza Pop and Politics is sponsored by ND Votes ’08, which is a part of the Center for Social Concerns, and the Washington Program.

The next ND Votes ’08 event will be a Debate Watch. The first Presidential Debate will be broadcast live from the University of Mississippi on Friday at 9 p.m. in the Coleman-Morse Lounge.