The government might need to bail out the airlines for the sake of their employees and the economy as a whole, but that doesn’t mean that there should be no consequences for a decade of corporate irresponsibility.
In the midst of an unprecedented crisis, Congress is failing the American people.
As I write this, I am eating lunch in my New York City office, near the Flatiron building in Manhattan. A lot of people have offices in this neighborhood, like FanDuel and Credit Suisse. As I often do as part of my regular office day, I went to a branch of Dig Inn that normally has over a dozen workers making lunches assembly line style. … Continue reading A COVID-19 Economy: I’m Not Worried About the 1%. I’m Terrified for the Bottom 50%.
Out of all the issues and priorities that the US could and should be focusing on right now, the White House has decided the most pressing thing that could be done is yet another round of tax cuts.
As I’m writing this, it’s several days since the Iowa caucuses, our nation’s first step towards choosing a Democratic presidential nominee to face off against President Donald Trump. And it’s also several days after one of the more spectacular election night snafus in recent memory. The Iowa fiasco has already drawn widespread condemnation, and threatened to undermine public confidence in this aspect of our democratic … Continue reading Democracy Needs A Paper Trail
This New Year’s, 24 states rang in the new decade by increasing their minimum wage, giving their most vulnerable workers a well-needed pay raise.
As the 2020 presidential candidates increasingly talk about raising taxes on the wealthy, it seems like every day a new, well-paid talking head comes out of the woodwork to try and convince us all why this would somehow, actually, be a bad thing. The latest act of mental gymnastics comes to us from Lee Ohanian, an economics professor at UCLA, who desperately wants working Americans … Continue reading Actually, Taxing Capital Is A Great Idea
I met Elijah Cummings on October 14, 2014. He talked about growing up in Baltimore, as a young person with a learning disability. It sounded to me like he was describing dyslexia but I don’t recall him ever using that word – but the point is that he didn’t know. He and his family were just told that he was stupid, and he would never … Continue reading Honoring Elijah Cummings’ Legacy
There are loopholes in the laws that allow employers to take advantage of their workers and avoid paying them or giving them benefits that they by rights are owed. As our economy changes in the face of automation, the gig economy, and new corporate employment schemes, we need to focus not just on how employees are treated, but on who counts as an employee at all.
This week, barely noticed amidst all other, bigger headlines in Washington, the Senate confirmed a Labor Secretary who will be a disaster for working people. A corporate lawyer by the name of Eugene Scalia, with an anti-labor, anti-worker record longer than the list of labor complaints against the Trump organization, will be the country’s top authority on protecting workers and fighting for labor rights. In … Continue reading Meet the New (Anti) Labor Secretary
One afternoon in Georgia, a man lifted a $2 can of beer from a corner store. He was quickly caught, prosecuted, and ordered to wear a $1,000 ankle monitoring device as part of a plea deal – at his own expense. The man, already impoverished, sold his plasma to try and make the minimum payments. When he fell behind, the court jailed him for not being able … Continue reading In Revenue Shortfalls, Don’t Fine the Poor – Tax the Rich
We know that algorithms can be used to institutionalize and credentialize injustices, but just recently the Trump administration proposed new rules to allow mortgage lenders to be exempt from claims of racial discrimination if they use algorithms.
If you’ve kept pace with the news recently, then you’ve been reading a lot over the last few weeks of horrific conditions in which some people in this country are being held: babies without diapers, children without beds, parents separated from their kids. Honestly, I am having trouble typing the keys on my keyboard because I am so disgusted thinking about it. The Trump administration, … Continue reading Money Shouldn’t Buy A Different Kind of Justice
Last week, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Maryland and North Carolina’s gerrymandered district maps. More precisely, it ruled that it did not have the ability to pass judgment on whether or not a map is excessively gerrymandered along partisan lines. Chief Justice John Roberts acknowledged in the court’s opinion that the maps were “blatant examples of partisanship,” but the 5-4 conservative majority fell … Continue reading Republicans Split Votes, Supreme Court Splits Hairs
From time to time, a news story about a very wealthy individual doing something very kind with their money goes viral. Billionaire Robert F. Smith recently paid off the student debt of the entire Morehouse College class of 2019. Hamdi Ulukaya, CEO of Chobani, paid off student lunch debts for an entire Rhode Island school district. Last year, Patagonia CEO Rose Marcario pledged to donate … Continue reading Rich People’s Charity Won’t Save The World
The legacy of slavery and years of segregation have left a colossal wealth gap between white and black families that disadvantages Black Americans to this day. Slavery might be over, but millions of Black Americans are still feeling its effects.
When Donald Trump campaigned for President he promised to get rid of the carried interest loophole, saying that ‘hedge fund managers are getting away with murder.’ A year later he said he’d get rid of this loophole that’s been “so good for Wall Street investors”. Now, yet again, Trump has promised that he will close the carried interest loophole after enshrining it into law under … Continue reading When Are You Removing the Carried Interest Loophole, Mr. President?
Last week, former Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal bemoaning popular support for progressive policies that seek to expand the social safety net to support millions of Americans, arguing that these people don’t understand the “true cost” of such policies and that Republicans need to “make the case for freedom.” Let’s make that case for freedom. It starts by … Continue reading Who Has Freedom in the American Economy? Increasingly, Just the Rich
Opportunity Zones are a great idea — if your goal is to ensure that rich real estate investors never need to pay any taxes at all.
As the 2020 primaries heat up and candidates search for a way to distinguish themselves in such a large field, one issue has transformed into a key debate of the campaign: how to tax the rich to ensure a more equitable, prosperous society. Many of the candidates have bold tax plans, from Senator Sanders’s bill to expand the estate tax to Senator Booker’s baby bonds … Continue reading 2020 Contenders Embrace the Wealth Tax