In the News

What does it take to scare a CEO? It’s a question that two smart writers raised implicitly in recent articles. The eventual answer will say a lot about the future of American politics—and the planet.

There are few more important moments in a person’s life than when a family member needs care — whether a new baby is born or adopted or a parent, child or spouse falls seriously ill or has an accident.

Sharon Lerner, a senior fellow at the public policy organization Demos, has spent the past year interviewing a diverse sample of New Jersey employers about the effect of paid leave. Those who admitted they’d feared being deluged by workers abusing the policy said they’d learned such fears were unfounded. None of the employers in the survey reported that paid leave had negatively affected their company’s productivity, profitability, or turnover, and some reported improved morale.

The stock market is banging out record highs this summer. So why isn't America celebrating?

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed above 17,000 for the first time Thursday, boosted by strong job gains. It's been a remarkable summer for stocks, but many people don't feel like they're seeing any benefit.

“Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism & Wrecked the Middle Class,” by Ian Haney Lopez. When I returned to West Virginia earlier this year to write about its particular brand of conservative politics, I consumed a lot of talk radio and came to recognize a subtext that is charged with fear and resentment about the loss of some kind of America. Lopez, a Berkeley law professor, digs into the new vocabulary of racism."

 

“Room to Grow” is the new GOP manifesto to win middle-class voters.  We’ll drill down on its content.

Political maneuvers are often by the political class, for the political class. There are winners and losers, but nothing much changes other than which smiling face appears on TV.

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Another major retailer in the United States is giving a boost to its base salary, although the size of the increase will vary from state to state. On Thursday morning, the Swedish furniture retailer IKEA announced that it would be adopting a new wage structure which is expected to increase pay for about 50% of its American employees. The change in company policy will take effect on January 1, 2015.

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Joanne, a food service worker at the federal Ronald Reagan Building near the White House, took time off from her job Monday to join fellow federal contractor employees at a protest outside the Smithsonian National Zoo. As she explained her monthly budget, it was clear she had nothing much to lose.

“I make just around $1,000 a month,” she said, “and I pay $500 for child care, and $250 just to ride the Metro to go to work. After that, I have nothing.”

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To Bene’t Holmes, the White House Summit on Working Families was personal, not just another event designed by President Obama and his fellow Democrats to draw a policy or political contrast with Republicans this election year.

“I believed everything he said,” the 25-year-old single mom said of the president’s pitch.