Study Finds Millennials Earn 20 Percent Less Than Boomers Did at the Same Age

Study Finds Millennials Earn 20 Percent Less Than Boomers Did at the Same Age

Josh Boak and Carrie Antlfinger at the Associated Press reported on a new study about generational earning this morning: With a median household income of $40,581, millennials earn 20 percent less than boomers did at the same stage of life, despite being better educated, according to a new analysis of Federal Reserve data by the advocacy group Young Invincibles. …Education does help boost incomes. But the median college-educated millennial with student debt is only earning slightly more than a baby boomer without a degree did in 1989. This is important stuff. When we talk about inequality, it’s important to remember that we’re not just talking about a disparity in earnings from the top one percent to the other 99 percent. We’re also talking about a disparity between generations, an income gap that grows over time. It is part of the reason why, though President Obama’s policies did begin to shrink the traditional measures of inequality (link PDF) , many Americans don’t feel as though the economy is improving. This report should serve as a warning to Democrats in the midterm elections and the 2020 presidential election: just because you’re not young enough to feel this inequality, you should understand that it exists. This is a big reason why Senator Bernie Sanders enjoyed the success that he did during the 2016 Democratic primary: he was speaking to a serious problem that most candidates, and most media outlets, didn’t even recognize was a problem. I realize that I’m not delivering some new insight here. Lots of people—including my colleagues at this here blog—have written extensively about student debt and other economic damages delivered exclusively onto millennials. But this new study is another solid piece of proof that inequality comes in a multitude of varieties, and Democrats need to be able to recognize and address all of them. The future of the party—and the future of this country—is at stake.

Daily Clips: January 13, 2017

Daily Clips: January 13, 2017

Chicago police regularly engage in excessive force, says Loretta Lynch In a scathing review, investigators with the justice department found that police violated both the fourth amendment of the constitution and department policy in the use of deadly force. Investigators faulted poor training and accountability systems for contributing to the department’s unconstitutional policing practices. Truth and politics But Trump’s latest remarks demonstrate the malleable boundaries of the charge, leading even establishment outlets to take umbrage now they’ve been forced to defend themselves — not against other journalists, but the president-elect of the United States. Amazon to Create More Than 100,000 New Jobs in U.S. in 18 Months Tweet of the day Black youths in Chicago told DOJ that officers called them "nigger," "animal," "piece of shit."Chicago officers told DOJ that this is true. pic.twitter.com/HklJ8OdmKF — Brad Heath (@bradheath) January 13, 2017

Daily Clips: January 11 2017

Daily Clips: January 11 2017

Thomas Piketty finds half of the American population hasn’t shared in economic growth since the 1970s   A young scientist compared gun deaths to other leading causes, and found a billion dollar research deficit “To me as a physician and as a research scientist, the idea that knowledge dissemination and knowledge generation was being systematically prevented, that was a pretty strong statement,” Stark recalled. Paul Ryan blocked Planned Parenthood signature gatherers from delivering 87,000 petitions Barack Obama gives a farewell address for the ages Not sure I agree with this piece, but it’s worth a read. I was frustrated with Obama’s perma-optimism. It’s his greatest strength but also his greatest weakness. It makes him appear disconnected from lived experiences. Again, we saw that he touted the stock market and job creation, but only vaguely admitted “we still have work to do.” That’s not good enough, in my opinion.

When It Comes to Economics, Incoming Labor Secretary Andrew Puzder Is a Raging Elitist

When It Comes to Economics, Incoming Labor Secretary Andrew Puzder Is a Raging Elitist

A particularly damning quote from Donald Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Labor, Andrew Puzder, is making the rounds again. Puzder, in his role as CEO of the Carl’s Jr fast food chain, published an editorial in the Wall Street Journal in 2014 against the idea of raising the overtime threshold: …Workers who aspire to climb the management ladder strive for the opportunity to move from hourly-wage, crew-level positions to salaried management positions with performance-based incentives. What they lose in overtime pay they gain in the stature and sense of accomplishment that comes from being a salaried manager. This is hardly oppressive. To the contrary, it can be very lucrative for those willing to invest the time and energy, which explains why so many crew employees aspire to be managers. Of course, we came very close to raising the overtime threshold last year, until an Obama-appointed judge from Texas shot it down and the incoming Trump administration — with Puzder in charge of the Department of Labor — crushed the hope of a lawsuit to save the threshold. Here at Civic Ventures, we have made no secret of our efforts to promote overtime. Civic Ventures founder Nick Hanauer published a very influential piece in Politico back in 2014 about overtime, and then Hanauer and former Labor Secretary Robert Reich co-authored a piece for the New York Times explaining why overtime was so essential to America’s financial success in the 1950s, and why we sorely need to increase the threshold: Today, if you’re salaried and earn more than $23,600 dollars a year, you don’t automatically qualify for overtime: That means every extra hour you work, you work free. Under the new proposed rules, everyone earning a salary of $50,440 a year or less would be eligible to collect time-and-a-half pay for every hour worked over 40 hours a week. Reich and Hanauer call increasing the overtime threshold “a minimum wage hike for the middle class,” and that’s about right. It ensures either that workers are compensated for their time, or that workers
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Daily Clips: January 10, 2017

Daily Clips: January 10, 2017

Tweet of the week (I’m already calling it). It’s really that amazing.  Facebook nitwit celebrating Obamacare repeal finds out Obamacare is another name for the ACA he depends on. pic.twitter.com/ehStqChXqq — Helen Kennedy (@HelenKennedy) January 9, 2017 Mexico again says they will not pay for the wall Many mass shooters have a history of domestic violence. We need to start focusing on this. Small business optimism shoots up Optimism among America’s small businesses soared in December by the most since 1980 as expectations about the economy’s prospects improved dramatically in the aftermath of the presidential election. The National Federation of Independent Business’s index jumped 7.4 points last month to 105.8, the highest since the end of 2004, from 98.4. While seven of the 10 components increased in December, 73 percent of the monthly advance was due to more upbeat views about the outlook for sales and the economy, the Washington-based group said.

My Dentist, the Free Market, and Moral Cavities

My Dentist, the Free Market, and Moral Cavities

When my dentist handed me a teeth-whitening pamphlet before I had even reclined in the dental chair, I thought of Michael Sandel. Not because the Harvard professor has particularly memorable choppers, but because Sandel has spent a considerable amount of time questioning pursuits like this. Specifically, highlighting the drawbacks of a society where market values infect all areas of our life. “Today,” Sandel writes, “the logic of buying and selling no longer applies to material goods alone. It increasingly governs the whole of life.” My experience with the dentist is a perfect example. There is something deeply troubling about medical professionals treating patients, first and foremost, as consumers. This runs counter to the very promise made in The Dentist’s Pledge , the dental version of the Hippocratic Oath, whose first point reads: …Let each come to me safe in the knowledge that their total health and well-being is my first consideration. Yet, in that dentist’s office, dentistry’s primary responsibility had been displaced by profit motive. The norms of the profession have been commercialized—health isn’t the primary goal anymore; rather, making money drives all decisions. While “ economists often assume that markets are inert: that they do not affect the goods they exchange ,” this assumption is naive. Market values are some of the most powerful forces on earth. They most certainly reconfigure priorities, and to my mind, they often do so in suboptimal and intangible ways, as dentistry proves. When there is no respite from being sold something, people are forced to doubt the true motivations behind everything. Intent, from politicians to the dentist, becomes questioned. That’s an undesirable way to live. Furthermore, in a market society, “ where everything is for sale, life is harder for those of modest means .” Inequality is exacerbated, as money becomes the “ sole value on which all choices are based .” And in 2017, that reality hits too close to home for most Americans—the majority of whom  have less than $1,000 in savings . When you perceive the world through this lens, you begin to understand why both political parties endlessly spoke about the economy
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Daily Clips: January 9, 2017

Daily Clips: January 9, 2017

Ft. Lauderdale mass shooting shows need for guns in airports, GOP lawmaker says The sloooooow collapse of imperial republics For the next four, maybe eight, years, we will have a president who half the country thinks is the Manchurian Candidate, Russian-born. I can’t think of a greater symptom of the weird fever dream that is the American empire, whereby the most powerful state on earth imagines, over a twelve to sixteen year period, that its elected leaders hail from the far reaches of its various antagonisms. How to stop short-term thinking in American companies Short-termism has been called, “the tyranny of shareholder value” and our boss, Nick Hanauer, thinks that this myopic vision plays a huge role in our current economic malaise. Here is a blog post which deals with this pervasive financial perspective. Trumponomics=trickle down In other words, we will re-run a version of the economic experiment previously conducted in the 1980s under Reagan and again under George W. Bush.

Daily Clips: January 6, 2017

Daily Clips: January 6, 2017

Tweet of the day Private sector job growth, final tally… Under W Bush: ↓ 396,000 Under Obama: ↑ 11,606,000 — Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) January 6, 2017 In a critical time in American history, David Brooks uses his NYT column to discuss…the psychology of buying a home. Brooks retreat from sticky political questions continues to astonish me. Trump is going to double-down on trickle-down economics US is paying for border wall because Mexico will pay ‘later’, Trump says

Daily Clips: January 5, 2017

Daily Clips: January 5, 2017

January 5, 2017 Nick Cassella
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How to not make America great again Bringing back the widely-shared prosperity of the time when America was Trumpianally Great requires a great deal more than bringing back a factory or two or 200 or 2000—even if those factories aren’t as automated as nearly every factory is these days. It requires giving workers the right to demand their fair share of the revenues they produce. It requires a tax code that rewards work rather than speculation. American won’t be “great again” until ordinary Americans regain the power that Trump and the Republicans are determined to keep far from their grasp. Obama: ‘We simply cannot afford to spend $80 billion annually on incarceration’ While I understand the call to action, I wish he would’ve complained more about this issue…I dunno…when he wasn’t a lame duck. The sanctuary solution Sanctuary cities could provide “one of the strongest bulwarks against Trump’s inhumane immigration agenda.” I have no more news stories to add. Frankly, it’s depressing out there. Breathe in, breathe out.

The Biggest Problem for Seattle Restaurants in 2017? Too Much Competition.

The Biggest Problem for Seattle Restaurants in 2017? Too Much Competition.

On January 1st, the minimum wage for some, but not all, Seattle workers increased to $15 per hour. Seattlish explains the ins and outs of the law , but the gist is that large employers (defined as businesses that employ more than 500 people nationwide) who don’t provide health insurance for their employees are up to $15. Other large employers are at $13.50, and small employers range from $11 to $13 per hour, depending on the benefits they provide. And so where are we now? Well, before the minimum wage became law, restaurant owner Tom Douglas estimated that “we would lose maybe a quarter of the restaurants in town.” Now, as Working Washington noted , Douglas has done an about face. The Puget Sound Business Journal interviewed Douglas about the competition he’s facing as a Seattle restaurateur staring down a new year. Douglas replied, “Almost 400 restaurants have opened in the last year. It is a challenge.” Huh. So which is it? Will increasing the minimum wage kill a quarter of all restaurants, or does Seattle have way too many restaurants since raising the minimum wage? Douglas, who has previously recanted his opposition to the $15 minimum wage , seems to be entirely on the other side of the fence now: the minimum wage isn’t a problem for restaurants, he’s saying, aggressive competition is the problem. Of course, some folks can promote two opposing ideas at the exact same time. Over the holiday break , conservative talk radio KIRO’s website published a story about the closure of Louisa’s Café on Eastlake. Louisa’s owner, Alcena Plum, is asked about her business’s closure. “I don’t want to put this all on the minimum wage,” Plum told KIRO, “but it was definitely a factor.” But another factor that Plum says led to the decline of her business is “the huge labor shortage for kitchen staff in this city.” The article says when she placed help-wanted ads, she would get “zero response.” Again: which is
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