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Business Is One Reason For Economic Inequality – And Also For Equality

By Bill Conerly ~ Forbes ~ Is business a reason for economic inequality, or does business reduce economic inequality? I believe the answer is “Yes.” Private business both increases and decreases inequality, in conjunction with changes in the structure of the economy, technology, social attitudes and public policy. Private business does not definitively determine the distribution of income, but it influences it. (This article is based on my presentation in…

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The American middle class is stable in size, but losing ground financially to upper-income families

By Rakesh Kochhar ~ Pew Research Center ~ About half (52%) of American adults lived in middle-class households in 2016. This is virtually unchanged from the 51% who were middle class in 2011. But while the size of the nation’s middle class remained relatively stable, financial gains for middle-income Americans during this period were modest compared with those of higher-income households, causing the income disparity between the groups to grow.…

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Winter Is Coming, and Fuel Costs Will Hit the Poor the Hardest

By S.E Smith – Talk Poverty ~ Winter is coming, and it’s going to be colder for some than others. “Starting junior year,” recalls Alexis Stewart, a West Virginia-based writer and musician, “my mom said we couldn’t afford heat and I had to ‘suck it up.’ I don’t know if we didn’t qualify for [the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program] those years or if the funding ran out before…

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The benefits gap between high and low earners is widening

By The Economist I see patients every day who are going to have babies because they work at Facebook,” says Peter Klatsky of Spring Fertility clinic in Silicon Valley. Tech giants now include egg-freezing and in vitro fertilisation in their employees’ health coverage. But even as high-earning Americans have the cost of making a baby covered by their companies, many low earners cannot get paid leave to look after theirs.…

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Voters in Missouri and Arkansas just lifted pay for 1 million workers

By David Cooper ~ Economic Policy Institute ~ In yesterday’s election, voters in Missouri and Arkansas gave overwhelming approval to ballot measures that will raise their state’s minimum wage over the next several years, lifting pay for a combined 1 million workers. In Missouri, 62 percent of voters elected to raise the state minimum wage from its current $7.85 to $12 an hour in 2023. In Arkansas, 68 percent of…

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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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