Commentary

Economic Opportunity Program Director Tamara Draut outlines in Strapped how the debt-for-diploma system is a pernicious beast, stunting young adults' economic progress as they try to start their lives — draining precious dollars out of their paychecks for more than a decade.

America prides itself on its unlimited opportunity. So why are fewer and fewer young people able to attend college, find jobs and reach the middle-class promised land?

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Tamara Draut, Economic Opportunity Program Director, and Cindy Zeldin, Federal Affairs Coordinator for the Economic Opportunity Program, address the stark fact that, with a looming national health crisis, young adults are more likely than any other age group to be uninsured — and the shifts in economic policies behind why this is so.

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Distinguished Senior Fellow Robert H. Frank comments on the work of John Kenneth Galbraith, who died last month at 97, and why he never received a Nobel prize as an economist who recognized a bad allocation of resources when he saw one.

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Senior Fellow David Callahan comments on cheating as the antithesis of equal opportunity — the notion that we all should have a fair shot at success and that the people who get rewarded are the people who deserve those rewards because they worked the hardest. Callahan calls for faculty to cast the issue of cheating on campus as a matter of justice, and empower students to take action, so that perhaps some day they won't have to spend so much time playing cop.

Senior Fellow Sasha Abramsky details the confusion and misinformation that deprives ex-prisoners of the right to vote damages American democracy, as outlined in his new book Conned: How Millions Went to Prison and Lost the Vote.

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In this excerpt from his new book, Sasha Abramsky reveals what really happened during the 2000 Election voter 'purge.'

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Senior Fellow Jennifer Wheary discusses how gaps in homeownership and equity levels are due to serious flaws in the opportunity infrastructure — namely lending practices that create barriers for African-Americans and Latinos who want to buy homes.

The HUD report says race-based discrimination makes up nearly 40 percent of housing complaints. Housing discrimination in any form is unacceptable. But continuing discrimination with regard to race could cost the country its future.

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Distinguished Senior Fellow Robert H. Frank highlights how recent state actions may not be the most efficient ways of dealing with our most pressing problems. But they are an unmistakable signal of voter impatience with ineffective government at the federal level.

In most of the world, for example, the primary responsibility for ensuring access to health care, regulating environmental quality and supporting basic scientific research is exercised by national governments. But in this country, these tasks are increasingly managed by state, and even local, governments.

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Senior Fellow Rich Benjamin exposes how ventures in faith-based politics cannot conceal the president's attention and policy deficits on young people's issues. Benjamin demonstrates how "Helping America's Youth" belongs to a string of White House maneuvers that fake substantive commitment to effective reform.

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Omaha World Herald

Economic Opportunity Program Director Tamara Draut discusses how more and more 18-to-34-year-olds are realizing there's a big difference between the right to vote and a reason to vote. Though surely it was unintended, our policy-makers have provided this generation with a big reason to vote: economic insecurity.

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