Every day, Americans benefit from public structures that contribute to our quality of life. When we walk into a clean, well-maintained post office; drive on federal highways; send our kids to school knowing they’ll get a hot lunch; or call the Social Security benefits office with a question, we see...
Young adults are in a critical period of change and choices, as they confront the decisions that will pave the way to their futures. But the generation coming into its own in the aftermath of the Great Recession faces challenges that threaten to undermine even the best laid plans. Demos...
Executive Summary The conventional wisdom about Social Security is profoundly misguided. According to today’s mistaken consensus, the U.S. as a society cannot afford to allocate the money to pay for the present level of Social Security benefits for retirees in future generations. The solution, it...
On March 15, 2013, the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations held hearings on the London Whale scandal. The indomitable and indefatigable Chairman Carl Levin, ably supported by the brilliant committee chief of staff, Elise Bean, took on six JP Morgan Chase (“JPMC”) current and former...
This is the second of a series of articles, entitled “The Financial Pipeline Series”, examining the underlying validity of the assertion that regulation of the financial markets reduces their efficiency. These articles assert that the value of the financial markets is often mis-measured. The...
Today, it is common for employers to look at job applicants’ personal credit history before making a hiring decision. According to a survey of human resources professionals, nearly half of employers check an employee’s credit history when hiring for some or all positions The practice is hardly...
Stacked Deck: How the Dominance of Politics by the Affluent & Business Undermines Economic Mobility in America
This paper offers an overview of the interplay between declining upward mobility and growing political inequality.
Background Maine, Minnesota and Wisconsin adopted the practice of Election Day Registration (known as EDR) in the early 1970s. After a two-decade lull in reform activity, Wyoming, New Hampshire and Idaho passed EDR laws in the early ‘90s. We are now seeing a third wave of interest in EDR. Montana...
The first presidential election since Citizens United lived up to its hype, with unprecedented outside spending from new sources making headlines. Demos and U.S. PIRG Education Fund analysis of reports from campaigns, parties, and outside spenders to the Federal Election Commission found that our...
Middle-income Americans age 50 and older are carrying more credit card debt on average than younger people, according to Demos’ 2012 National Survey on Credit Card Debt of Low- and Middle-Income Households.1 That is a reversal of findings from a survey conducted by Demos in 2008. AARP’s Public...