Daily Digest - August 13: Fighting Poverty in the Land of Success

Aug 13, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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The Offline Wage Wars of Silicon Valley (Next City)

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The Offline Wage Wars of Silicon Valley (Next City)

Roosevelt Institute | Pipeline Fellow Nona Willis Aronowitz writes on the fight to increase the minimum wage in San Jose, where poverty exists in sharp contrast to Silicon Valley successes. This piece was published on a pay-to-read platform, and I've linked to an excerpt.

Inequality is Hindering Economic Growth (Baltimore Sun)

Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network founder Nate Loewentheil and Jacob Hacker denounce the "Big Trade-Off" between equality and efficiency. Economic inequality prevents the growth our economy needs, so people and poverty must come before the deficit.

Why the Anger? (Robert Reich)

Robert Reich suggests that income inequality is causing the polarization of our political system. People have many good reasons to be angry, from falling wages to government bailouts, but he fears that anger is pitting Americans against the wrong targets.

Your Mortgage Documents are Fake! (Salon)

David Dayen reports on a newly unsealed lawsuit, which reveals that banks faked documents to establish ownership of mortgages when trying to foreclose. He questions whether banks should control mortgages when they can't track who owns which loan

Lobbyist Secretly Wrote House Dems' Letter Urging Weaker Investor Protections (MoJo)

Erika Eichelberger reports on a letter to the Department of Labor signed by 32 Democrats opposing new regulations on retirement advisors and written by a financial services lobbyist. These regulations are meant to protect the populations the signatories represent.

The Return of One of the GOP's Dumbest Ideas (TAP)

Paul Waldman finds it strange that when proponents of the balanced budget amendment explain why the deficit is so bad, they claim it's due to draconian budget cuts that will be needed one day. Apparently, that means we should make those cuts today instead.

Remember the JOBS Act? (U.S. News and World Report)

Pat Garofolo thinks that any bipartisan jobs plan should be carefully scrutinized, considering what we got last time. The JOBS Act, signed in April 2012, reduces reporting requirements, so we're seeing more fraud and shell companies, but no new jobs.

The Workers Defense Project, a Union in Spirit (NYT)

Steven Greenhouse looks at the successes of the Workers Defense Project, which is organizing workers outside the traditional union setting for basics like workers' compensation. Their model is seen as a potential future for organized labor.

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Daily Digest - August 12: Detroit Wasn't a Market Inevitability

Aug 12, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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The Wrong Lesson From Detroit’s Bankruptcy (NYT)

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The Wrong Lesson From Detroit’s Bankruptcy (NYT)

Roosevelt Institute Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz sees Detroit as an example of the problems with our increasing economic segregation. The greater Detroit area isn't doing so badly, just the city, which the upper classes have abandoned.

In Defense of the 30-Year Mortgage (WaPo)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konzcal wants to keep fixed-rate 30-year mortgages on the table. Since these loans help maintain macroeconomic stability and keep rental rates lower, they affect even those who will never own a home.

Fannie, Freddie, and the Destructive Dream of the 'Ownership Society' (The Atlantic)

Zachary Karabell argues that our dreams of homeownership might not be possible in this economy. He wouldn't mind keeping Fannie and Freddie, which make profits for the government today, if we could recalibrate those dreams.

How Unpaid Interns Aren’t Protected Against Sexual Harassment (ProPublica)

Blair Hickman and Christie Thompson explain one of the most horrifying side effects of unpaid internships. Federal law protecting against sexual harassment and discrimination only affects employees, and interns who aren't paid aren't legally employees.

This Week in Poverty: The Expert Testimony of Tianna Gaines-Turner (The Nation)

Greg Kaufmann shares the words of activist Gaines-Turner, who was not permitted to testify at a recent House Budget Committee hearing on the war on poverty. Her written testimony demonstrates that cutting SNAP is really just a battle against the poor.

No, Walmart Doesn’t Create Jobs (Washington Monthly)

Kathleen Geier considers the factor that pro-Walmart forces in Washington, DC have been ignoring: when Walmart enters a new region, the economy doesn't gain jobs. The best result is no net change, just a shift from jobs at local retail to Walmart.

Rand Paul Doesn't Know What He's Talking About (In Charts) (TAP)

Paul Waldman gives Senator Paul a lesson on the deficit, which is not "a trillion dollar[s] ... every year." In fact, the deficit has been falling for the past few years, and is projected to continue in that pattern through 2015.

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Daily Digest - August 9: Uncertainty Isn't Holding Us Back

Aug 9, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Uncertainty Isn't Killing the Recovery The Atlantic)

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Uncertainty Isn't Killing the Recovery The Atlantic)

Matthew O'Brien draws on Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal's work to discuss why the Economic Policy Uncertainty (EPU) index is not a useful measure of recession and recovery. There is no statistically significant tie between the index and jobs.

  • Roosevelt Take: Mike wrote about the EPU earlier this week, arguing that we shouldn't look to changes in EPU to predict what is to come.

The Yellen/Summers Fight Is Important . . . and Not Just for the Reasons You Think (Blog of the Century")

Harold Pollack looks to Mike Konzcal's work for support in explaining why Larry Summers's past in politics really matters in choosing the next Fed Chair. Summers's history treating those he works with disrespectfully ought to be discussed.

Out of Work Over 9 Months? Good Luck Finding a Job (WSJ)

Ben Casselman details the concerns of economists who find that long-term unemployment dramatically reduces job interviews for low- and medium-skilled workers. Some go as far as to suggest that these workers may never work again.

Is Obamacare Forcing You to Work Part-Time? (Bloomberg)

Evan Soltas points to the data errors that conservatives are using when they claim Obamacare is causing employers to shift workers into part-time work. There have been no surges in work weeks just under 30 hours, nor drops in work weeks over 30 hours.

The Economics of a Higher Wage Floor (NYT)

Jared Bernstein strikes down the usual arguments against raising the minimum wage. The arguments make it clear that the opposition isn't interested in improving the lives of minimum wage workers at all, and instead want to maintain the status quo.

  • Roosevelt Take: Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network Summer Academy Fellow Emily Chong agrees with Bernstein, and also lays out the data for how a minimum wage increase will serve as a poverty reduction tool.

The Curse of Student Loan Debt: Owe While You're Young, Live When You're Old (The Guardian)

Helaine Olen reports on the significant struggles revealed by new analysis of student loan data, which shows that about one in five borrowers can't repay their federal student loans. This debt is slowing down the entire economy, from housing to savings to entrepreneurship.

New on Next New Deal

Mortgage Rule Debate Pits Dreams of Homeownership Against Market Fears

Jack Houghteling explains new models for mortgage standards debuted by Dodd-Frank. These rules should stabilize the market, but banks claim they won't be able to help Americans achieve their dreams of homeownership under these regulations.

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Daily Digest - August 8: Labor Working Local

Aug 8, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Veto Decision Looms for DC Retail Living Wage Bill (The Nation)

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Veto Decision Looms for DC Retail Living Wage Bill (The Nation)

Josh Eidelson speaks to Roosevelt Institute Fellow Dorian Warren, who thinks that it's fine if DC's living wage bill targets Wal-Mart, because it sets standards for its industry. He suggests that initiatives like this one are the most successful way to raise labor standards today.

More Than a Quarter of Fast-Food Workers Are Raising a Child (The Atlantic)

Jordan Weissmann looks at the details of some surprising statistics about fast food workers. The numbers show that those who claim fast food workers are teenagers or young people working for pocket change are just plain wrong.

Helping Low-Income Renters (Off The Charts)

Douglas Rice explains just how out of balance housing policies are today. More than one third of American households are renters, but less than a quarter of housing assistance funds go to those households.

Washington Steps Warily on Housing (NYT)

Binyamin Appelbaum examines the challenges that face the federal government in altering its role in the mortgage business. It's possible that without government support, the 30-year mortgages that are so common here could disappear.

Obama Bets on Private Market in Housing Recovery (MSNBC)

Ned Resnikoff reports on the details of the President's housing policy, revealed in a roundtable discussion on Wednesday. Obama calls for the private market to step into the space that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will leave, which puts a lot of trust in the banks.

The Fed Could Still Let Wall Street Sneak Back Into the Commodities Business (MoJo)

Lina Khan lays out how big banks got started in oil, electricity, and other physical commodities. This allows them insider access to industries they trade on, and she thinks it would be safest if banks were forced out of these riskier, more speculative fields.

New on Next New Deal

Debunking the Minimum Wage Myth: Higher Wages Will Not Reduce Jobs

Emily Chong discusses evidence supporting the fight to increase the minimum wage. Multiple studies show that a higher minimum wage will have no negative effects on employment, and she thinks the increase would work as an anti-poverty program.

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Daily Digest - August 7: Who Owns Your Rental?

Aug 7, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Obama Suggests Re-Examination of America's Renters Policy (All In With Chris Hayes)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal considers some of the implications of the President's housing speech. He notes that any changes to the mortgage markets also affects renters, because someone owns that home too.

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Obama Suggests Re-Examination of America's Renters Policy (All In With Chris Hayes)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal considers some of the implications of the President's housing speech. He notes that any changes to the mortgage markets also affects renters, because someone owns that home too.

The R-Word (The Daily Show)

Roosevelt Institute Engagement Editor Dante Barry appears in a segment on race relations in America. Dante (who sits on the right, in the front row) brings up the intersectionality of this issue: it's not just black people who face racial discrimination in their daily lives.

Jeff Bezos Can Make Newspapers Profitable (Bloomberg)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford bets that a single large investor, like Bezos, has the best opportunity to make a newspaper succeed in this digital era. She suggests focusing on the local needs and opportunities, which have less competition.

What Should the Minimum Wage Be? (The Week)

Keith Wagstaff speaks to Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch, who agrees with fast-food strikers that $15 an hour is necessary for a worker to do more than survive. Those who approach this question as one of profits instead of people disagree.

President Obama's Amazon Jobs Pitch is Hard to Buy with One Click (The Guardian)

Helaine Olen sees heavy irony in the President's choice to discuss good jobs at an Amazon warehouse, which creates temporary, low-income, unreliable jobs. These aren't jobs to be celebrated, no matter how hard Obama tries to pitch it as such.

  • Roosevelt Take: Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch is similarly concerned by the President's attempt to spin Amazon warehouses as good jobs.

L.A. Story (TAP)

Harold Meyerson looks at the work of the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy. He thinks that their model of organizing workers in their communities and working with municipalities could be a model for labor, or even progressives as a whole, to follow.

California Considers Ending Rule That Penalizes Low-Income Women For Having Kids (ThinkProgress)

Bryce Covert reports that California might remove a limit that prevents families on benefits from getting increases with new children. This rule puts unpleasant limits on poor women's reproductive choices, and punishes children for the sin of being born into poverty.

New on Next New Deal

Whatever Happened to the Economic Policy Uncertainty Index?

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal questions why the Economic Policy Uncertainty Index is falling to 2008 levels, but the recovery isn't speeding up. Mike suggests that this is proof of the limited effects of uncertainty on the economy.

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Daily Digest - August 6: Monopolies Won't Surprise You

Aug 6, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Warning: Time Warner-CBS Clash Points Up Big Trouble Ahead (HuffPo)

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Warning: Time Warner-CBS Clash Points Up Big Trouble Ahead (HuffPo)

Sandy Goodman credits Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford's work for predicting the dangers of allowing big cable companies near-monopoly status. The Time Warner-CBS fight is big news because swaths of New York, LA, and other cities have no other options for cable.

Seven Economic Institutions With Firmly Intact Glass Ceilings (ThinkProgress)

Bryce Covert points out just how bad the gender barriers are in finance and economics. If appointed Federal Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen would be only the eighteenth female head of a central bank worldwide.

Why I Don’t Trust Lawrence Summers’ Friends (Slate)

Matt Yglesias suggests that Larry Summers's friends are in the habit of pushing him for jobs for which his resume wouldn't necessarily qualify him. Since it's only the insiders he knows pushing Summers for Fed Chair, there's reason to be concerned.

The Pay is Too Damn Low (The New Yorker)

James Surowiecki recognizes that an increase in the minimum wage is necessary, due to inflation and the changing demographics of low-income workers. But a higher minimum wage won't solve the lack of solid middle-class jobs or other economic issues.

SEIU Backs $15 an Hour Minimum Wage (MSNBC)

Essa Yip reports that the SEIU is supporting the call for a $15 wage by fast food strikers. The SEIU president says it isn't about union memberships, since McDonald's employees are unlikely to formally organize, but about the value of work in this country.

The Free-Trade Blues (NYT)

Nancy Folbre sees a disconnect between the President's current focus on economic inequality and his support of increased free trade agreements. When calling for more middle-class jobs, it doesn't make sense to advocate for policy that reduces them.

Millennials are Hopeless, and It’s All Our Fault (Salon)

Robert Hennelly argues that policies of the past few decades have destroyed opportunities for Millennials. With vocational education being slowly dismantled and youth unemployment on the rise, it's hard to see what young people today are supposed to do.

The Three Biggest Lies about Why Corporate Taxes Should Be Lowered (Robert Reich)

Robert Reich dismantles the right-wing arguments in favor of cutting corporate tax rates. When we look past those lies, he makes it clear that we don't need to center upcoming tax reform discussions around the corporate rates.

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Daily Digest - August 5: Big Business Fighting for Public Good

Aug 5, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Can Social Impact Bonds Unlock Private Money for Public Goods? Innovation in Pay-for-Success and Social Finance (Roosevelt Institute)

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Can Social Impact Bonds Unlock Private Money for Public Goods? Innovation in Pay-for-Success and Social Finance (Roosevelt Institute)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Georgia Levenson Keohane analyzes a new model for solving social ills. Social impact bonds finance preventative programs with private funds, but raise questions about whether a return-on-investment model is best here.

Can Larry Summers Play Nice With Other Financial Regulators? (WaPo)

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal looks at how Summers worked with other regulators when he was Deputy Treasury Secretary, and concludes that Summers as Fed Chair might try to interfere with more aggressive regulators at other agencies.

For Millennials, Leaving the Nest is Hard To Do (LA Times)

Emily Alpert and Ricardo Lopez speak to Roosevelt Institute | Pipeline Fellow Nona Willis Aronowitz about how the recession has changed young adults' living arrangements. Nona says that Millennials no longer see the trends that lead them to live at home as temporary.

This Week in Poverty: Chairman Ryan and the Real World (The Nation)

Greg Kaufmann reports on testimony by Sister Simone Campbell at a congressional hearing on the War on Poverty last week. Campbell says that religious groups cannot solve poverty due to the scale of the problem, which puts government in a better place to implement solutions.

  • Sister Simone Campbell is one of the honorees at this year's Four Freedoms Awards, which will be presented at a public ceremony on Wednesday, October 16 in New York City.

Fulfilling the Promise of Medicare (HuffPo)

Representative John Conyers and Robert Weissman think that the Affordable Care Act doesn't go far enough. Medicare-for-All would save $350 billion per year, according to a recent study, and fulfill a moral obligation to provide all Americans with healthcare.

Another Reason Janet Yellen Should Run the Fed (MoJo)

Erika Eichelberger argues that gender does matter in choosing the next Fed Chair, because there aren't enough women in the senior economic policy jobs. With a well-qualified female candidate, the President should make the barrier-breaking choice.

New on Next New Deal

The Amazon Economy Undercuts Obama's Message

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch was impressed by the content of the President's speech on jobs last week, but not the setting. Amazon warehouses don't provide the good jobs that Obama was talking about, or even a living wage for a single person.

Delaying Abortions: A Harmful Consequence of the Pro-Life Agenda

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Andrea Flynn and Director of Research Susan Holmberg look at how new anti-choice laws place serious burdens on women. The unintended consequences included more unplanned pregnancies and more abortions.

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The Amazon Economy Undercuts Obama's Message

Aug 2, 2013Richard Kirsch

The president is promoting a business model that puts everything we want just a click away -- except for good jobs with decent wages.

On Tuesday, President Obama gave a great speech on why good jobs are the foundation for his middle-out economic strategy... from a huge Amazon warehouse where the workers do not have good jobs. I’m still stuck on the setting.

The president is promoting a business model that puts everything we want just a click away -- except for good jobs with decent wages.

On Tuesday, President Obama gave a great speech on why good jobs are the foundation for his middle-out economic strategy... from a huge Amazon warehouse where the workers do not have good jobs. I’m still stuck on the setting.

There is so much in President Obama’s speech that I’ve been wanting him to say. While the press focused on his announcement of a proposal on corporate taxes, the speech was almost entirely about jobs. After Obama described “what it means to be middle-class in America” as “A good job. A good education. A home to call your own. Affordable health care… A secure retirement,” he pointed out, “It’s hard to get the other stuff if you don’t have a good job.”

He told the Amazon warehouse workers, “we should be doing everything we can as a country to create more good jobs that pay good wages.”

But as The New York Times reported, “the White House came under fire because many Amazon jobs pay only $11 an hour, and the pace of the work in these warehouses has been described as exhausting.”

Mr. President, those are not good jobs. Not even for a single person. The BEST (Basic Economic Security Table) data calculates that to meet the basics of housing, food, transportation, health care, personal items, plus putting aside a little for emergencies and retirement, a single person would need to earn $14 an hour. That is if he or she gets health care at work. Add one child – and the cost of child care – and the calculation jumps to $23 an hour.

That is not what we would really call a good job. There’s no provision to save for that child’s higher education, for instance. And a vacation, even a modest one? Not in the BEST budget.

The way warehouse workers are treated represents all that is wrong with the new American economy. A new study from U.C. Berkeley found that the average wage of warehouse workers in California is $14,500 a year. But the industry also employs many temp workers, who earn on average under $10,000. You can learn more about the often abusive treatment of workers in the warehouse industry at warehouseworkersunited.org.

Of course, the president made no acknowledgement of the working conditions in the Amazon warehouse. He did call on America’s CEOs to “help get these workers back on their feet,” saying that companies who make the 100 Best Companies to Work for in America list “know if a company has employees that are motivated and happy, that business is more likely to succeed.” Amazon is not on the list.

There are so many other places the president could have chosen to speak, including one of the new manufacturing facilities he talked about. But he chose Amazon, according to the Times article, because the company recently announced that it would add 5,000 jobs at 17 warehouses around the country. The president also delighted in Amazon’s new consumer model, opening his speech by saying, “Last year, during the busiest day of the Christmas rush, customers around the world ordered more than 300 items from Amazon every second, and a lot of those traveled through this building. So this is kind of like the North Pole of the south right here. Got a bunch of good-looking elves here.” With elven paychecks, he might have added.

Amazon is a great example of how the new economy has created a crisis in good jobs, in which most of the jobs being created are low-wage: a highly-profitable information technology firm that drives local stores out of business while paying low wages to its non-union workers.

Of course, Amazon has been great for consumers, with convenience, selection, great service, and lower prices. Throughout our history, those kinds of innovations have driven the economy forward, and we are not going to stop them. But low-wages and poor working conditions do not have to be part of the story. We have also, in our history, transformed a low-wage economy to an economy that paid decent wages and created a huge middle class.

One of Amazon’s initial investors, Nick Hanauer, is the coiner with his colleague Eric Liu of the “middle-out” economics phrase, which the president has adopted. But Hanauer has a very different view of what workers should be paid than the CEO of Amazon or President Obama do. While the president has proposed a $9-an-hour minimum wage, Hanauer is proposing a minimum wage of $15 an hour.

As Hanauer wrote for Bloomberg News in a post titled "The Capitalist’s Case for a $15 Minimum Wage," “The fundamental law of capitalism is that if workers have no money, businesses have no customers.” Hanauer backs up his argument with a simple example:

My investment portfolio includes Pacific Coast Feather Co., one of the largest U.S. manufacturers of bed pillows. Like many other manufacturers, pillow-makers are struggling because of weak demand. The problem comes down to this: My annual earnings equal about 1,000 times the U.S. median wage, but I don’t consume 1,000 times more pillows than the average American. Even the richest among us only need one or two to rest their heads at night.

He concludes, “Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour would inject about $450 billion into the economy each year. That would give more purchasing power to millions of poor and lower-middle-class Americans, and would stimulate buying, production and hiring.”

Given the huge obstacles to passing any part of his middle-out economics program through Congress, it will be very tough for the president’s campaign to produce legislative results. He can educate the country about the challenges of the new economy and why we need the kind of middle-out economics he and Hanauer both describe, but he will only breed more cynicism and resignation if Americans see an Amazon warehouse job as his vision for their future.

Richard Kirsch is a Senior Fellow at the Roosevelt Institute, a Senior Adviser to USAction, and the author of Fighting for Our Health. He was National Campaign Manager of Health Care for America Now during the legislative battle to pass reform.

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Daily Digest - August 2: Higher Wages Don't Destroy Fast Food

Aug 2, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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What Happens When Fast Food Actually Pays (The Daily Beast)

Daniel Gross examines burger chains that pay their brand new employees a living wage. Unsurprisingly, high wages can lead to more prosperous companies, and those companies aren't getting the bad press about wage-related strikes.

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What Happens When Fast Food Actually Pays (The Daily Beast)

Daniel Gross examines burger chains that pay their brand new employees a living wage. Unsurprisingly, high wages can lead to more prosperous companies, and those companies aren't getting the bad press about wage-related strikes.

The Uneven Geography of America's Fast Food Jobs (Atlantic Cities)

Richard Florida breaks down data on the wages and growth of fast food jobs by city. The fast food workers who are striking aren't making the worst wages in their industry; if their wages aren't livable, what does that say for those making even less?

Why Do the People Raising Our Children Earn Poverty Wages? (The Nation)

E. Tammy Kim looks at childcare workers who accept public subsidies, which often results in poverty wages. When subsidies assume only thirty hours of care a week, these care providers don't have many options if they want to keep their clients.

How Vast Error-Prone Databases Are Trashing Our Economic Lives (TAP)

Amy Traub reports on how major databases are keeping people from opening bank accounts and preventing them from accessing credit at the right rates. These mistakes affect too many people, and on too broad a scale, to be ignored.

Wall Street Decimates Black America (Salon)

Laura Gottesdiener explains how the foreclosure crisis has disproportionately hit black neighborhoods, which were targeted by banks for predatory loans. Now, these houses remain empty, and the banks take no responsibility for the effect on the neighborhood.

Sex, Money and Gravitas (NYT)

Paul Krugman argues that the sexist campaigns against Janet Yellen for Fed Chair are also full of bad economic analysis. The Fed hasn't been causing runaway inflation, and Yellen has proven to be far better at economic forecasting then her hawkish peers.

Obama Finally has a Good Economic Idea – too Bad No One's Listening (The Guardian)

Heidi Moore thinks that Obama's grand bargain is a sign that he's ready to make allies instead of enemies in the GOP. Unfortunately, the Republicans don't seem to care either way, so they're still ignoring his ideas.

New on Next New Deal

Delaying Abortions: A Harmful Consequence of the Pro-Life Agenda

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Andrea Flynn and Director of Research Susan Holmberg point out that the results of laws restricting abortion access don't follow their proponents' intentions. These laws increase unwanted pregnancies, abortions, and abortions later in pregnancy.

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Daily Digest - August 1: Cities Can't Save Themselves

Aug 1, 2013Rachel Goldfarb

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Economists Envision Detroit Turnaround as Catalyst for Others (Detroit Free Press)

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Economists Envision Detroit Turnaround as Catalyst for Others (Detroit Free Press)

Todd Spangler reports on a teleconference with Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellows Joseph Stiglitz and Rob Johnson, who suggest that Detroit's bankruptcy case could become a new model for how local, state, and federal finances can work together to revitalize urban economies.

A Day’s Strike Seeks to Raise Fast-Food Pay (NYT)

Steven Greenhouse speaks to Roosevelt Institute Fellow Dorian Warren about the expanding fast food strikes. According to Dorian, demographics indicate the strikers could be interested in unionizing, especially since they have so little to lose.

Astroturf Book Reviews and the High-Speed Internet Debate (Marketplace)

Ben Johnson interviews Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford about the fake one-star reviews the telecommunications industry is putting on her book. That doesn't concern her as much as its ability to place op-eds of corporate talking points where they will be read by millions.

Not Much, But Better than Nothing (TAP)

Paul Waldman expected that the GOP would reject the President's so-called "grand bargain" for job creation yesterday. Since nothing would be accomplished anyway, at least the proposal demonstrated the Republican's intransigence.

Or, McDonald's Could Double Wages For Employees, Not Raise Price Of Big Macs, And Just Make Less Money... (Business Insider)

Henry Blodget makes a suggestion that the right would consider absolutely outrageous: McDonald's could consider making a smaller profit in order to pay workers more. While shareholders priorities remain first, workers won't get a living wage.

We Should be Horrified at 1.7 Percent GDP Growth (WaPo)

Neil Irwin wonders why we are celebrating the Commerce Department's latest growth numbers this week. They show nothing but mediocrity, and the cheers only demonstrate how low expectations have fallen.

The Bank-Friendly Eighth Governor of the Fed (ProPublica)

Jesse Eisinger thinks we need to spend more time considering the regulatory staff of the Federal Reserve, who remain when Chairmen and Governors terms end. The General Counsel controls what is presented to the board, and he seems friendly to banking interests.

New on Next New Deal

Summers's View on Monetary Policy Not So Hidden

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Jeff Madrick looks at Larry Summers's history of public service, and finds evidence of views of monetary policy that favor Wall Street over Main Street.

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