JUDY WOODRUFF: The tariffs on imported metals
announced today play into a much larger economic narrative from the president and others about
United States, competitiveness in the world, and where the U.S. has fallen behind. Part of that bigger picture is what’s happening
as developing nations improve their economic conditions. And that’s the focus of tonight’s Making Sense
story, with Paul Solman as our guide. PAUL SOLMAN: So your book is about education
and particularly the education of women. SURJIT BHALLA, Author, “The New Wealth of
Nations”: And that’s the new wealth of nations. PAUL SOLMAN: And you’re his wife and an academic. RAVINDER KAUR, Sociologist: Who came up with
the title of the book. PAUL SOLMAN: Indian economist Surjit Bhalla
and his wife, sociologist Ravinder Kaur, in the U.S. recently to spread the message of
“The New Wealth of Nations.” SURJIT BHALLA: The key thesis of the book
is that education and the spread of education has transformed the world and has transformed
relationships, inequalities between countries and, finally and most importantly, between
the sexes. PAUL SOLMAN: And the cost? What’s the cost? SURJIT BHALLA: The cost is that people in
the West are going to lose out relative to the people in the East, the East meaning the
rest of the world, the West meaning the advanced countries. What happens, when the world is filled with
everybody graduating from high school, then the Western people will lose their advantage
over the rest of the world. PAUL SOLMAN: And so that’s why the person
with a high school diploma in the United States has seen her or his, usually his, earnings… SURJIT BHALLA: Decline, yes, in real terms,
by something like 10 percent or 15 percent over the last 25 years. The real wage of those who went to college,
but didn’t graduate has stayed the same. And the real wage of college graduates, the
creme de la creme, has risen by only 0.5 percent per annum. PAUL SOLMAN: But it’s not the creme de la
creme anymore, because you can go beyond college. SURJIT BHALLA: Well, no, this includes beyond
graduate. Whether it’s doctors or it’s lawyers, everything
is transferable now. Even surgery can be done transatlantic by
the use of technology. Where is the real advantage left for an American
or a British or German or Western professional? PAUL SOLMAN: Isn’t that why there’s a reaction
against immigration? RAVINDER KAUR: Yes. You know, there’s always a scapegoat when
things are not going well for you. And it always tends to be somebody we think
of as the other. You know, it could be a person of a different
color. It could be a person of different religious
persuasion. SURJIT BHALLA: Different sex. RAVINDER KAUR: Of different sex or whatever. So, today, maybe men are resentful of women. SURJIT BHALLA: Previously, there were always
the bottom 20 percent who lost out, but they could come home and feel superior to or dominate
their wives. Now they come home, and the women are the
major breadwinners, or are more educated than them, or more able than them. PAUL SOLMAN: Or at least are competing with
them. SURJIT BHALLA: Or competing. From where they were here, now they’re equals. That can mess up the psychology of men. RAVINDER KAUR: I think it is a threatened
masculinity issue. Why do you see more, you know, such crime
in places where the gender gap is closing? PAUL SOLMAN: According to the World Health
Organization, for example, violence against women surged in both Nicaragua and Uganda
following public information campaigns promoting women’s rights. And then there’s the so-called Nordic paradox. Though Iceland Norway, Finland and Sweden
take the World Economic Forum’s global index of gender equality — the U.S. ranks 49th
— they are also among the worst in Europe for domestic violence and sexual assault. RAVINDER KAUR: So, for quite some time, my
argument has been that if you see more violence and if you see more gender crime, it’s a backlash. How dare this woman be in the public space,
and you know how dare she aspire… SURJIT BHALLA: Be equal. RAVINDER KAUR: … to the same things? PAUL SOLMAN: And compete with me. RAVINDER KAUR: And compete with me. And the women are competing, because, if you
look at high school results, if you look at college graduation results, the girls are
performing way better. SURJIT BHALLA: So while we had the protests
against globalization earlier was against men and women in general from the emerging
world who were threatening the jobs and the livelihoods and the rate of growth of livelihood
in the Western world, I think the new element is about the emerged and emerging equality
between women and men. PAUL SOLMAN: And you see that as happening
both in the West and in the… SURJIT BHALLA: Oh, yes, absolutely. PAUL SOLMAN: In the developing world. SURJIT BHALLA: Absolutely. Equality is going to be threatening to a lot
of men. PAUL SOLMAN: And that, say Bhalla and Kaur,
helps explain the rise of repressive regimes around the world. SURJIT BHALLA: So, the Taliban is a very — and
ISIS is a completely male-dominated and enslavement of women even. And this one is a lot more, in my view, as
anger and resentment against women. PAUL SOLMAN: Part of the reaction in the world
is farmers, and they’re reacting against modernity a bit, against globalization. Why? RAVINDER KAUR: The value of the kind of livelihood
that people get from agriculture is nowhere what it used to be. It’s not highly profitable anymore. And the point is that this is where, for the
first time, women have gained from not inheriting property, because they flee to the cities,
to the towns. They can leave, because they’re not going
to inherit the land. And it’s the men who are left with the land,
and, in fact, they are facing in many places what people call — are calling a bride drought. They cannot find women who will marry them,
because those women are departing. PAUL SOLMAN: Another reason for the bride
drought, the high ratio of men to women in places like India, after decades of selective
abortion of female fetuses, as the “NewsHour”‘s Fred de Sam Lazaro has reported, with the
help of Ravi Kaur. RAVINDER KAUR: You have 111 men to 100 women
in India. And so that’s… SURJIT BHALLA: That’s at birth. RAVINDER KAUR: At birth. PAUL SOLMAN: And what’s driving the demand
for sons? RAVINDER KAUR: It’s the son who’s expected
to support the parents in old age. But as more and more women get educated, they
discriminate against daughters less, because now daughters are as capable as sons of providing
you with old age care or support. PAUL SOLMAN: So you’re saying, as education
has increased and certainly with respect to educating women… SURJIT BHALLA: Male privilege and male advantage
has decreased, and I absolutely think it is a better world than what we have seen. RAVINDER KAUR: I agree with the fundamental
proposition that, you know, male privilege will decrease with female education, but it’s
still going to take time. PAUL SOLMAN: For the “PBS NewsHour,” this
is economics correspondent Paul Solman in New York.