In January, my nephew Judah informed me that he planned to get married this year and told me that he will time the wedding so I could participate. I arrived in Israel to join the wedding last week, after being vaccinated in late February. Israel is now in transition to a post-pandemic reality, as most … Continue reading »
I’ve loved sports since I was young. My parents were both religiously traditional and not well off, so taking me to watch professional sports events on the Sabbath wasn’t an option. In high school, I got a job at a nearby basketball arena so I could watch professional basketball games. After I finished setting up … Continue reading »
Trump has left Republicans badly fractured and on the defensive. The party is imploding. Big business no longer has a home in the crackpot GOP. This political void is allowing Biden and the Democrats, who control the White House and both houses of Congress, to respond boldly to the largest social and economic crisis since the Great Depression.
Let’s be honest. The real reason Republicans don’t want Biden’s plan is they fear it will work. This would be the Republican’s worst nightmare: All the anti-government claptrap they’ve been selling since Ronald Reagan will be revealed as nonsense.
Politicians rarely want to raise taxes on the rich. Joe Biden promised to do so but a closely divided Congress is already balking. That’s because they’ve bought into one of the most dangerous of all economic ideas: that economic growth requires the rich to become even richer. Rubbish.
The divvying up of the “wealth pie” portrays a picture of profound inequality. In 2019, the Top 1% held one-third of all wealth. The next 9% controlled another 38%. Together they make up the Top 10%—a small group with a very large slice (71%) of the wealth pie. This left less than one-third (29%) to … Continue reading »
If America’s contemporary leaders are serious about reducing racial inequality, they must push for simple, bold measures, such as doubling the federal minimum wage. Otherwise, the country may miss an opportunity, after the largest protests for racial equality in U.S. history, to improve the lives of millions of people of color.
The COVID-19 crisis thrust the US higher education system into virtualized instruction, essentially overnight. Despite the limitations inherent in online education — including the revenue impact on institutions from reduced tuition — it brings students both access and scalability. Further, the combination of online and in-person education into “blended learning” can extend the reach of higher education, without compromising efficacy as a number of academic studies have shown.
How can we assess COVID-19 policies? For example, how much should we restrict economic activity in light of the pandemic? How do we balance health risks with the costs of shutting down the economy? Living requires taking risks. To guide choices, it is useful to translate benefits, costs and risks into monetary terms. An early … Continue reading »
The pandemic offers a teachable moment in which we can evaluate the moral underpinnings of our economy — and give more value to low-income workers who provide essential human care.
Lately, the press has had a field day pointing out just how wrong epidemiology models can be. This shouldn’t be news, especially since most modelers never hid the fact that they had made some very bold assumptions. But it’s still important to ask just where the estimates went wrong. Most of the errors, it turns … Continue reading »
The coronavirus pandemic is putting America’s deepening class divide into stark relief. Four classes are emerging. All need protection or sickness and death will continue to spread indefinitely.
The US economy is in a free fall. Businesses have closed and people have been laid off. Unemployment could reach 30 percent in some parts of the country, and if it does there are predictions that an additional 15 percent of the population will fall into poverty. Inequality may grow with a significant impact on … Continue reading »
The debate over whether to save lives or save the economy should not be presented as a binary choice. What are some reasonable tradeoffs?
Following the COVID-19 economic freeze, the governor should aggressively restructure consumer contracts for loans, rent and utilities to provide relief to consumers.
A bold, creative solution is required in order to keep the labor market as close to intact as possible. The government should guarantee payrolls and benefits. The unemployment insurance system simply is not prepared, nor built for such a catastrophe.
We are in an unfortunate period where ideology is attempting to overrule knowledge, handicap our economic security, and personal safety with underinvestment in public goods like health care and science.
The impact of reduced earnings through layoffs, loss of employer sponsored health insurance and displacement due to the COVID-19 pandemic will fall disproportionately on low-wage workers, immigrants and workers of color, who are least able to absorb financial and health shocks.
During an unprecedented health crisis, Congress must bring urgency, energy and resources to support the early care and education industry.
For consumers, buying a gift certificate is a means to support their hairdresser, nail salon, restaurant or other local service. At the same time, if a business goes under, the consumer would have donated to a local business owner during their time of need.