In the News

Due to a spate of bizarre rants from members of the 1 percent over the past two weeks, it would be easy to conclude that America’s super-rich have gone off the rails. A well-known billionaire Tom Perkins recently compared the plight of America’s economic elite to that of Jews in Nazi Germany.

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Democrats are planning a yearlong campaign against economic inequality as the midterm elections approach, and President Obama will kick it off in earnest Wednesday when he signs an executive order raising the contracting standards for workers on federal contracts.

In the last year or two, something remarkable has happened in American politics. After decades in which future deficits, mostly caused by health care costs and conservative tax cuts, were invoked by those seeking to slash Social Security benefits for reasons of ideology or pecuniary interest, the national conversation has changed.

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Salon
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Today, President Barack Obama honored his promise from last month’s State of the Union address to raise the minimum wage for some workers indirectly employed by the federal government. In a new executive order, he raised the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour, effective Jan. 1, 2015. The White House estimates the order will affect hundreds of thousands of workers employed by private companies with government contracts. [...]

If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, perhaps the same could be said about many of today’s 401K plans.  Employers craft benefit packages with the best of intentions, yet, there’s a good chance you may be administering or participating in a retirement plan not in compliance with new Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) regulations.  Last year nearly 75% of plans audited by the Department of Labor (DOL) were either fined, received penalties or had to make reimbursements fo

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The neediest Americans will be hurt by an $8.6bn cut to food aid in a bill that was approved by Congress this week and will be signed into law by President Barack Obama on Friday. But another set of welfare beneficiaries will lose out too: big grocery retailers.

The farm bill, which contains both agricultural subsidies and federal food stamps for the working poor and unemployed, is watched closely by big retailers such as Walmart because it affects a substantial number of their shoppers.[...]

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Georgia Republicans are pushing a bill that would dramatically shorten early voting for city elections. The effort is the latest to take advantage of the Supreme Court’s ruling last year on the Voting Rights Act (VRA), which made it easier for certain areas to change election rules in ways that hurt racial minorities.

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As the White House prepares to launch a major economic opportunity effort, record high unemployment among black and Latino youth underscores how essential it is to create job opportunities for young people of color.

The critical issue here is that the ages of 16 to 24 are make or break years for lifelong earning potential. With one out four blacks and 1 out of 6 Latinos under the age of 25 without work, a generation of youth of color risks falling behind.

Contentious presidential primaries are usually an opportunity for a party to take a long, hard look in the mirror and decide what it wants to be. But even if Hillary Clinton quashes a season of introspection by steamrollering any 2016 challengers, a possibility that looks increasingly likely if she decides to run, liberal Democrats are still confident they can make themselves heard.

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The most interesting criticisms of Pope Francis's apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, have come from libertarians who are closest to the economic views the pope denounced.

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