Daily Digest - July 29: Prisons in a Recession

Jul 29, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Prisons are Shrinking. That Won’t Necessarily Last. (WaPo)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Prisons are Shrinking. That Won’t Necessarily Last. (WaPo)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal questions whether the Great Recession has had an effect on our incarceration system. It seems that the slow decline in incarceration rates started before the recession, but we could use this moment to continue that trend.

Why Progressives Hate the Idea of Larry Summers for Fed Chair (MSNBC)

Ned Resnikoff speaks to Mike Konczal about all the reasons Larry Summers isn't the right choice for the next Federal Reserve Chair. Mike points out that Summers has never shown any great interest in monetary policy to begin with.

The Cost of Austerity: 3 Million Jobs (MoJo)

Kevin Drum reports that Republican austerity policies since 2011 have reduced employment by nearly 3 million. The unemployed aren't any better off with this obstructionist, anti-growth behavior, but with a Democrat in the White House, he says Republicans don't care.

Helping America’s Renters (Reuters)

David Abromowitz questions how much profit Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac need to make before we can fund the National Housing Trust Fund. The fund was created to support low-income housing just before the crash, but has never had actual funds to work with.

Fighting Back Against Wretched Wages (NYT)

Steven Greenhouse looks at the low-wage workers nationwide who have decided they are tired of corporations who refuse to pay a living wage. But as one CEO quoted says, there is no such thing as too-high profits, and apparenty there's no need to pass that on to the workers.

Fast Food Strikes Intensify in Seven Cities (Salon)

Josh Eidelson looks at the expansion of fast food worker strikes that is coming today. The short-term strikes in seven cities are aimed to decrease risk for strikers, because fast food corporations haven't taken well to employees who dare to mention unions.

How to Ease Inequality on the Cheap (Pacific Standard)

Michael Fitzgerald appreciates the sentiment behind President Obama's call for universal Pre-K, but there may be a cheaper option in the short run. A World Bank working paper finds that weekly hour-long sessions with a childcare aid can have a massive effect on the child's adult income.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 26: The Trouble with Summers's Silence

Jul 26, 2013Tim Price

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via e-mail.

Should Obama pick Larry Summers to head the Fed? (Politico)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via e-mail.

Should Obama pick Larry Summers to head the Fed? (Politico)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal writes that while Ben Bernanke led the Fed through a crisis, his successor will need to build consensus and establish the central bank's new normal. That's a problem given that Summers hasn't said a word about the biggest debates he'll have to settle.

Even as economy rebounds, income inequality festers (MoneyWatch)

Charles Wilbanks notes that most American remain deeply dissatisfied with an economy in which workers at the bottom see their wages fall while those at the top are making money hand over fist. And to add insult to injury, taxpayers are forced to subsidize their bosses' raises.

The day the right lost the economic argument (Salon)

Michael Lind argues that President Obama's Knox College speech offered a strong and broadly appealing summary of progressive economic theory focused on manufacturing, innovation, infrastructure, and education, while the House Republicans' alternative plan offered nothing in particular.

Some Democrats Look to Push Party Away from Center (NYT)

Jonathan Martin writes that as Democrats contemplate their future post-Obama, many are advocating for a populist approach to economic policy, financial reform, and rising inequality rather than the murky middle ground that the party's leaders have settled for since the '90s.

White House hardens stance on budget cuts ahead of showdown with Republicans (WaPo)

Zachary Goldfarb and Paul Kane report that the Obama administration may force a government shutdown come September if Republicans in Congress refuse to undo sequestration and continue to demand deeper cuts to a budget they've already carved to the bone.

Congress to Fed: End Too-Big-to-Fail Already! (MoJo)

Erika Eichelberger notes that Dodd-Frank requires the Fed to implement rules to scale back its emergency lending powers, but three years since the law was passed, the central bank still just says it's working on it. Things like this don't happen overnight. Or even over 1,095 nights.

Why 17 liberal senators voted against the student loan "deal" (MSNBC)

Suzy Khimm writes that while the Senate finally passed legislation to address the doubling of federal student loan interest rates, progressives weren't willing to swallow a compromise that lowered students' rates now while guaranteeing they'll have to pay even more in the future.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 25: Minimum Wage Doesn't Pay the Bills

Jul 25, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Barely Making Ends Meet (All In With Chris Hayes)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Dorian Warren corrects commonly held misconceptions of the minimum wage. Half of minimum wage workers are over 25, and studies show that increasing the minimum wage will not affect employment.

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Barely Making Ends Meet (All In With Chris Hayes)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Dorian Warren corrects commonly held misconceptions of the minimum wage. Half of minimum wage workers are over 25, and studies show that increasing the minimum wage will not affect employment.

The ‘Obamacare Is a Job Killer’ Myth (U.S. News & World Report)

Pat Garofalo argues that the employer mandate isn't harming employment, no matter how often the GOP makes that claim. Changes in employment practices would have been noticeable this year, but there has been no increase in part-time employment.

The Depressing Reality of ‘The Recovery’: Americans Aren’t Getting Jobs. They’re Retiring. (WaPo)

Dylan Matthews agrees with the Century Foundation's argument that the decrease in unemployment in the recovery is almost all due to retirement, not job creation. The employment-population ratio, which shows the proportion of working adults, hasn't changed.

Are the Suburbs Where the American Dream Goes to Die? (The Atlantic)

Matthew O'Brien looks at the ties between sprawl, race, and income mobility. He argues that when suburbs sprawl, wealthy, mostly-white suburbanites have little desire to support public goods that help everyone succeed, like mass transit, due to racist fears of blacks in their neighborhoods.

More Americans Living in Others' Homes (WSJ)

Josh Mitchell looks at the increase in so-called missing households, which occur when adults do not own or rent their own homes. A large proportion of this phenomenon can be tied to Millennials who are living with parents, because it's just more affordable.

New on Next New Deal

Where's the Beef?: The First Thing Obama Can Do By Himself to Create Good Jobs

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch thinks that the President's speech ignored the structural changes that have caused a decline in good jobs. He suggests that Obama could starting by ensuring all federally subcontracted employees get a living wage, via executive order.

Yellen, Summers and Rebuilding After the Fire

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal looks at the important questions to consider in choosing a new Federal Reserve chair, and makes his own recommendation.

Why the Right Doesn’t Really Want Euro-Style Reproductive Health Care

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Andrea Flynn points out that when right-wing pundits call for European-style abortion laws, they're forgetting that those come along with a full range of progressive reproductive health care policies.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 24: Don't Copy the U.S. Telecoms Model

Jul 23, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Cable Companies Try to Take Over Europe, Too (Bloomberg)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford thinks that the leaked European Commission proposal for data communications copies all the worst features of the U.S. model. Encouraging monopoly behavior doesn't increase high-speed access.

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Cable Companies Try to Take Over Europe, Too (Bloomberg)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford thinks that the leaked European Commission proposal for data communications copies all the worst features of the U.S. model. Encouraging monopoly behavior doesn't increase high-speed access.

Why CEO Pay Exploded Over The Last 20 Years (HuffPo)

Caroline Fairchild looks at the Roosevelt Institute's latest white paper to discuss how the performance pay loophole has contributed to the explosive growth of CEO pay. Changes in the tax code under President Clinton encouraged a rise in options-based compensation.

  • Roosevelt Take: Read the white paper, "Fixing a Hole: How the Tax Code for Executive Pay Distorts Economic Incentives and Burdens Taxpayers," by Roosevelt Institute Director of Research Susan Holmberg and Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network Senior Fellow for Economic Development Lydia Austin here.

Part-Time Work On The Rise, But Is That A Good Thing? (NPR)

Michel Martin questions whether the rise in part-time work could be a positive change. His discussion with Amere Graham, a minimum-wage part-time McDonald's employee, makes it clear that these are in no way good jobs or careers.

The American Dream: Survival is Not an Aspiration (Al Jazeera)

Sarah Kendzior argues that the American dream of upward mobility is dying. In the low-wage service economy, there isn't money to spare for education, while higher-wage industries require unpaid or low-pay short-term positions, blocking out those without money.

Is the US Economy Good, Bad, or In-Between Right Now? (On The Economy)

Jared Bernstein compares the economy to a standard transmission car - we're currently in second gear, but we need policies that will help us to accelerate the economy by reconnecting growth and middle-class prosperity.

The Budget Crisis in Congress's Head (Bloomberg)

Evan Soltas asks why Congressional Republicans are still seeking spending cuts when according to Congressional Budget Office estimates, the crisis is past us. The cuts aren't needed anymore, but the GOP continues to hold fiscal measures hostage to these demands.

Economy: Without Congress, All Obama Can do is Talk (MSNBC)

Suzy Khimm suggests that President Obama is kicking off a series of speeches on the economy because he can't do anything else. Congress isn't taking action, so the President can only point to the issues and assure voters that someone is paying attention.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 23: Your Internet Access Isn't So Great

Jul 23, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

What Verizon's Op-Eds Won't Tell You About America's Slow, Costly Internet Access (Next New Deal)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

What Verizon's Op-Eds Won't Tell You About America's Slow, Costly Internet Access (Next New Deal)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford responds to two recent New York Times op-eds that claimed the U.S. has great high-speed internet access - and criticized her work. She says the U.S. is paying more for lower speeds and lower quality access.

Rush Limbaugh on Slavery in America (The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Dorian Warren speaks about the right-wing response to President Obama's Friday speech on race. He argues that when the right complains about discussions of race, they ignore facts and history in a way that is dangerous for the black community.

Inequality, Mobility and the Policy Agenda They Imply (NYT)

Jared Bernstein argues that when Miles Corak pushes for accessible healthcare and high-quality early childhood education to improve income mobility, he doesn't go far enough. Education can't overcome the inequalities that require structural change.

Mr. President, Have Pity on the Working Man (Bill Moyers)

Bill Moyers and Michael Winship contend that President needs to do something about the millions of federally subcontracted jobs that have very low pay and no benefits. With an executive order, he could mandate a living wage for these government employees.

Subsidizing Poverty (TAP)

Harold Meyerson explains the problem with enterprise zones, which subsidize the wages of jobs that businesses might have created anyway. In San Bernadino, CA, the subsidized jobs were almost all low-wage, to the point where residents were subsidizing workers' poverty.

Why Won’t Obama Pay His Interns? (Buzzfeed)

Evan McMorris-Santoro reports on the work of Mikey Franklin, who is pushing back against the federal government's unpaid internship culture. Franklin can't accept a White House that pushes minimum wage increases without paying interns minimum wage.

Here’s how Goldman Sachs is making your beer more expensive (WaPo)

Lydia DePillis gives a step-by-step explanation of how Goldman Sachs's involvement in the aluminum market is raising prices. Goldman owns aluminum warehouses, and the cost of rent to store aluminum is eventually passed to buyers, inflating the price of the commodity.

New on Next New Deal

Delaware Welcomes Corporations That Put People Ahead of Profits

Roosevelt Institute Research Intern Suzanna Fritzberg explains how new legislation creating benefit corporations in Delaware could mean a major expansion of this form of social entrepreneurship, thanks to Delaware's corporation-friendly atmosphere.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 22: CEO Pay Problems Aren't Just in Dollars

Jul 21, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Fixing A Hole: How the Tax Code for Executive Pay Distorts Economic Incentives and Burdens Taxpayers (Roosevelt Institute)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Fixing A Hole: How the Tax Code for Executive Pay Distorts Economic Incentives and Burdens Taxpayers (Roosevelt Institute)

Roosevelt Institute Director of Research Susan Holmberg and Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network Senior Fellow in Economic Development Lydia Austin analyze the ways the performance pay loophole harms taxpayers, companies, and the economy.

If Dodd-Frank Doesn’t Work, Here are Four Things That Could (WaPo)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal outlines some ideas that were rejected during the debates over Dodd-Frank. He suggests that if aspects of Dodd-Frank aren't working, we should remember these proposals, which favored strong lines over regulatory micromanagement.

Coming Home for the Recession (TAP)

Roosevelt Institute | Pipeline Fellow Nona Willis Aronowitz continues her series on Millennials and the new economy, this time focusing on young women of color for whom the recession has enforced traditional living patterns, because living with family is cheaper.

Detroit, and the Bankruptcy of America’s Social Contract (Robert Reich)

Robert Reich suggests that Detroit's bankruptcy is an indication of the problems that come from increased class segregation. By fleeing to the suburbs, Detroit's middle and upper classes untied themselves from the needs of the city.

In Climbing Income Ladder, Location Matters (NYT)

David Leonhardt reports on a new study that looks at income mobility across regional lines. One of the most interesting findings is that mixed income neighborhoods, where many classes live together, are a strong indication of better income mobility for children.

Deception in Counting the Unemployed (The Atlantic)

Steve Clemons looks at the work of Leo Hindery, Jr., a former CEO who has fought for better deals for workers for many years. Hindery's focus is on "real unemployment," and he claims the government's use of the U-3 numbers obscures the facts facing workers.

Mapping the Sequester's Impact on Low-Income Housing (The Nation)

Greg Kaufmann discusses the ways that sequestration is affecting the people who rely on Section 8 housing vouchers. He maps out story after story of cuts that the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities says will lead to a rise in homelessness.

A Shuffle of Aluminum, but to Banks, Pure Gold (NYT)

David Kocieniewski explains how banks have started buying physical commodity trading assets, like aluminum, to gain market intelligence for that commodity. This translates to miniscule increases in the cost of products, and billions in profits to the banks.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 19: Shouldn't Students Like a Student Loan Deal?

Jul 19, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Senate Strikes Student Loan Deal; Not Good Enough, says U.S. Student Association (USA Today)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Senate Strikes Student Loan Deal; Not Good Enough, says U.S. Student Association (USA Today)

Sean McMinn reports that the Senate has reached a deal on student loans, but the plan would allow rates to rise over time, even above the 6.8% that caused this fight. Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network's partner on this issue, USSA, finds that to be an unacceptable compromise.

The Student Victims of Washington's Deficit Obsession (The New Yorker)

James Surowiecki argues that the student loan fight is really about the differences in fiscal and monetary policy desires in the U.S.. The obsession with cutting the deficit calls for higher rates and lowers growth, while the Fed wants low interest rates that help pump money into the economy.

Get a Clue, McDonald’s: The Other Insult No One’s Talking About (Salon)

Paul Campos argues that the most offensive part of McDonald's new budget website for their employees isn't that it calls for two nearly full-time jobs, but that it even exists. Poor people, he claims, know how to budget better than anyone, because otherwise they cannot buy necessities.

The Lessons of Belle Glade (NYT)

Cindy Hahamovitch worries that Congress has forgotten lessons of the past regarding abuse of migrant farmworkers. The House Republican alternative to the Senate immigration bill is particularly concerning, because it entirely lacks protections for migrant workers.

Why the Gender Pay Gap Is Worse for Whites Than Blacks (National Journal)

Niraj Chokshi explains why the gender pay gap is so much smaller for blacks and Hispanics. They earn less overall, and the jobs at that end of the labor market have less room for men to pull ahead.

New Class Of Businesses Look To Boost Support For Pro-Worker Policies (ThinkProgress)

Katherine Richard looks at benefit corporations, a new corporate legal status that requires third party evaluation of social and environmental performance. This structure encourages worker-friendly policies, like flexible scheduling and paid sick leave.

Obamacare a Boon to Entrepreneurs (TAP)

David Callahan argues that the Affordable Care Act is great for small businesses. Reports from New York show that the law is bringing down insurance premiums in that state, so potential entrepreneurs and small business owners will have access to better, more affordable plans.

Detroit Just Filed for Bankruptcy. Here’s How It Got There. (WaPo)

Brad Plumer breaks down the problems the city faced that led to bankruptcy. Between population decline, high unemployment, and low tax revenue, it's clear how Detroit reached this state, but solutions aren't yet apparent.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 18: Welcoming the Regulators

Jul 18, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Finally, Bank Regulators Have Had Enough (ProPublica)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Finally, Bank Regulators Have Had Enough (ProPublica)

Jesse Eisinger looks at the new rules regulators are finally pushing through, which place more stringent capital ratio requirements on U.S. banks. He argues that this higher standard will advantage U.S. banks in the international market, because it will protect them from crises.

Elizabeth Warren’s New Fight: Why Even the Tea Party Backs It! (Salon)

David Dayen explains why Senator Warren's 21st Century Glass-Steagal Act is drawing such broad bipartisan support. Everyone, left and right, is tired of seeing big finance put people's money at risk for the sake of profit.

High Profits Signal Danger for Big Banks (NYT)

Simon Johnson argues that it's hard to accept the notion that regulation will harm the financial industry's business model when banks continue to report such high profits. That's encouraging to reformers as further regulations come down the pipe.

A New Season for Reform (The Nation)

William Greider sees the possibilities of real financial reform emerging in the current Congress. No one has ended too big to fail yet, but a coalition is forming that might be willing to fight back against Wall Street.

Bernanke Builds In Leeway on Bond Buying (WSJ)

Jon Hilsenrath and Victoria McGrane report that in his first of two days of congressional testimony, Ben Bernanke stated that the Fed's timeline for tapering its bond-buying program is flexible and will change if growth, inflation, and the markets call for it.

Sorry, Deficit Hawks: The Debt Crisis Ended Before It Could Begin (The Atlantic)

Matthew O'Brien points out that the deficit no longer needs fixing, much to the dismay of those pushing austerity policies. New Congressional Budget Office figures cut short-term concerns, and he argues that the long-term changes needed can wait.

Will Immigration Reform Protect Workers? (Reuters)

Josh Eidelson questions whether immigration reform might have the side effect of protecting workers whose employers have used their immigration status against them when they try to organize. Comprehensive reform should reduce some of the risks of retaliation.

New on Next New Deal

Brooks’s Recovery Gender Swap

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal looks at how men and women are doing in the search for employment in the weak recovery. He finds that men are not suffering in the manner David Brooks suggested in his recent column.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 17: Wall Street's Election Day Fears

Jul 17, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Why Spitzer’s Return Terrifies Big Finance (Naked Capitalism)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Why Spitzer’s Return Terrifies Big Finance (Naked Capitalism)

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Thomas Ferguson argues that Eliot Spitzer as New York City Comptroller would be a threat to the political power of Wall Street. With control of the public pension funds, Spitzer could change how the city does business with the financial industry.

The Consumer Watchdog’s Work Will Last–For Now (MSNBC)

Adam Serwer speaks to Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal on why the Senate GOP spent so long opposing Richard Cordray's nomination to direct the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau. Mike says they opposed any nominee, in an attempt to weaken the CFPB.

Reminder: Don’t Pay Attention to Wall Street’s Whines About Regulation (NY Mag)

Kevin Roose looks at Wall Street bank profits over the past ten years, and concludes that we should ignore their complaints about regulation. It turns out that the financial industry is resilient and will find a way to increase profits no matter the restrictions.

McJobs Are the Future: Why You Should Care What Fast Food Workers Earn (The Atlantic)

Jordan Weissmann refutes the claim that no one is making a career or supporting a family off a minimum wage fast food job. Most fast food jobs aren't minimum wage - but making another fifty cents per hour doesn't get a person above the poverty line.

OECD Doesn’t See Unemployment Falling Until Late 2014 (WSJ)

Paul Hannon reports that the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development predicts that it will be some time before unemployment begins to drop. Like many others, it recommends avoiding austerity policies because they will slow growth.

Charles Koch on the Poor: Let Them Eat 'Economic Freedom' (The Nation)

Leslie Savan explains the problems with a new ad put out by Charles Koch that claims anyone making over $34,000 a year is part of the 1%. That's true on a global scale, but doesn't mean anything for people living in poverty in the U.S..

New on Next New Deal

Why Trayvon Is Inspiring America to Put Stand Your Ground Laws on Trial

Roosevelt Institute | Pipeline DC chapter Director of Programming Naomi Ahsan argues that the Zimmerman verdict is a sign that Americans need to challenge Stand Your Ground laws. Beyond the collective anger at that decision, these laws contribute to systemic racism.

The Egyptian Coup Isn't the End of Democracy. It's a Demand for Justice.

Former Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network Policy Director Reese Neader breaks down the current situation in Egypt. He explains why this is not the "death of democracy," but a push for better democracy than was achieved in 2011.

Share This

Daily Digest - July 16: Missing Mortgage Modifications

Jul 16, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Bank vs. America (U.S. News & World Report)

Click here to receive the Daily Digest via email.

Bank vs. America (U.S. News & World Report)

Pat Garofalo pulls from Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal's work to explain why the failure of the Home Affordable Modification Program matters. Areas with more mortgage debt have higher unemployment and weaker recoveries, making mortgage modifications essential.

This Week in Poverty: Confronting Congressional Hunger Games (The Nation)

Greg Kaufmann discusses the coming cuts to food stamps, which are currently up in the air thanks to the SNAP-less farm bill the House passed on Thursday. He looks at other coalitions to work on hunger and food insecurity, but they can't fill the gap.

Prepare for the New Permanent Temp (Harvard Business Review)

Michael Schrage looks at the jump in part-time and temporary employment in recent years. He suggests that while many are grateful for any employment, since employers don't invest in the people in these categories, the trend is bad for workers.

In Labor Board Filibuster Fight, Republicans Kindly Offer To Take Over Agency (HuffPo)

Dave Jamieson examines at the Senate's fight over filling the National Labor Relations Board, and the GOPs recently proposed deal. That deal would shortly give Republicans control of the board, which would not be good for workers and organized labor.

McDonalds Tells Workers To Budget By Getting A Second Job And Turning Off Their Heat (ThinkProgress)

Annie-Rose Strasser reports on McDonalds' new budgeting website for its employees. Apparently employees should have no trouble paying all of their expenses - if they have a second job, and a heating bill of $0.

How to Fearmonger About the Fed (In 2 Easy Steps) (The Atlantic)

Matthew O'Brien is frustrated by inflation hawks' continued insistence that the Fed's bond-buying policies are destroying our economy. The data shows that the Fed's policies are working, but by just mentioning the 1970s the fearmongers get attention.

Share This

Pages