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America 2018: Even More Gilded Than America 1918

By Bob Lord ~ Other Words ~ Wealth is more concentrated now than it was in John D. Rockefeller’s day. It took 100 years, but America has returned to its unequal past. With a vengeance. The year many consider the height of the Gilded Age, when John D. Rockefeller’s wealth was at its peak, was exactly a century ago, in 1918. By that time, Rockefeller had amassed about $1.2 billion…

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It’s Time to Speak About the Economic Cost of Sexual Assault

By Sheetal Dhir ~ Common Dreams ~ The Kavanaugh scandal is an opportunity to finally talk about the economic toll sexual assault takes on our society I recently did a straw poll of the women in my life and realized that I know more survivors of sexual assault than I do mothers. The national statistics are staggering – according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, “one in three women…

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Rich teeth, poor teeth – addressing the clearest indicator of economic class in America

By Kellen Squire ~ Daily Kos ~ We can do so much better. While the struggle for Medicare For All is ongoing at the federal level, here in Virginia, we should expand Medicaid to cover dental services. We should be giving state income tax breaks to dental professionals, from hygienists to DDSes, of up to 100% if they operate and practice in “dental care deserts”. We should lower bureaucratic red tape to open…

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How women in rural India turned courage into capital

By Chetna Gala Sinha ~ TED ~ When bankers refused to serve her neighbors in rural India, Chetna Gala Sinha did the next best thing: she opened a bank of her own, the first ever for and by women in the country. In this inspiring talk, she shares stories of the women who encouraged her and continue to push her to come up with solutions for those denied traditional financial…

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Separate is still unequal: How patterns of occupational segregation impact pay for black women

By Madison Matthews and Valerie Wilson ~ Economic Policy Institute ~ August 7th was Black Women’s Equal Pay Day, the day that marks how long into 2018 an African American woman would have to work in order to be paid the same wages her white male counterpart was paid last year. On average, in 2017, black women workers were paid only 66 cents on the dollar relative to non-Hispanic white…

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A Decent Standard of Living For All

By The Rainforest Alliance The Rainforest Alliance believes that workers around the world should be paid enough money to provide a decent life for themselves and their families. That’s why we co-founded the Global Living Wage Coalition (GLWC), a group of NGOs working with two leading researchers to identify how much money workers need to afford a decent standard of living for themselves and their families. Because costs can vary…

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Why wages are going nowhere

By Robert Reich ~ Nation of Change ~ The combination of high corporate profits and growing corporate political power has created a vicious cycle. The official rate of unemployment in America has plunged to a remarkably low 3.8%. The Federal Reserve forecasts that the unemployment rate will reach 3.5% by the end of the year. But the official rate hides more troubling realities: legions of college grads overqualified for their…

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CEO compensation surged in 2017

By Lawrence Mishel and Jessica Schieder ~ Economic Policy Institute ~ What this report finds: This report looks at trends in chief executive officer (CEO) compensation, using two different measures. The first measure includes stock options realized (in addition to salary, bonuses, restricted stock grants, and long-term incentive payouts). By this measure, in 2017 the average CEO of the 350 largest firms in the U.S. received $18.9 million in compensation,…

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The resurgence of a culture of makers: re-localizing production

By Daniel Christian Wahl ~ Hackernoon ~ One way to empower local communities and their regional economies to manifest their visions of a better future is to re-localize production and consumption and thereby strengthen regional economies. There is an important role for international trade and global exchange of goods and services, but not when it comes to meeting basic regional needs. Wherever feasible we should meet our needs as locally…

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Can a Cap Be Placed on the Incomes of the Super-Rich?

By Sam Pizzigati, Polity Books ~ Truthout ~ Is there a means to eliminate the financial class of the super-rich? Would this help reduce income inequality were it come to pass? Sam Pizzigati makes the case that the answer is “yes” in his book, The Case for a Maximum Wage. The following is an excerpt from the book. Economists and epidemiologists, psychologists and political scientists: Researchers from multiple disciplines have…

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