In The U.S., The Rich Get Rich, The Poor Get Poorer

By Tuesday, November 11, 2014 0 Permalink 12

The United States is approaching a level of inequality on par with the Great Depression, according to a paper by economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman.

In their paper, “Exploding wealth inequality in the United States”, the pair found that the wealth share of the top 0.1% of Americans rose greatly in recent decades, but eroded among the middle class and the poor.


According to Saez and Zucman, increased debt is the main reason the bottom 90% of American families are struggling to get ahead.

The top 1% saw their wages grow fast, while wage gains were limited for the bottom 90% of families.

The result is that the share of wealth amongst the top 0.1% was almost equal to the bottom 90%.


French economist, Thomas Picketty, is onto something.

Saez and Zucman mention Picketty’s book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, which argues income inequality is growing because of capitalism, and proposes a global system of wealth taxes to reduce world inequality.

While Picketty’s diagnosis is more persuasive than his cure, the subject demands a closer look by conservatives and liberal alike. Both sides must work together if the U.S. is to reverse a three decade trend. When it comes to income inequality, the dogmas of the past really are inadequate to the challenges of the stormy economic reality. “As our case is new,” Lincoln would say, “so we must think anew and act anew.”

And the Heisman Winner Is…

By Sunday, December 14, 2014 0 , , Permalink 0

Marcus Mariota!

Oregon’s Marcus Mariota ran away with the Heisman Trophy after leading the Ducks to a 12–1 record and the number 2 seed in the College Football Playoff. But more than the remarkable achievements the Oregon quarterback showed on the field, most associated with college football were smiling after the Hawaiian’s selection because of the life he has lived off the field.

He’s a good, good dude.

Unlike the previous two Heisman winners, Mariota’s public character has been beyond reproach, and the young man has been nothing less than inspirational. Most stories written about the Duck’s quiet leader always pay brief homage to Mariota’s athletic skills before talking about his kindness and selflessness as a football player, a college student, and a young man.

For a sport in desperate need of new heroes, Marcus Mariota may just be the perfect selection for the Heisman in 2014.

TO READ MORE: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/14/sports/ncaafootball/marcus-mariota-of-oregon-wins-heisman-trophy.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=photo-spot-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Taylor Swift Wins…Again

By Tuesday, December 9, 2014 0 , Permalink 0

Taylor Swift never doubted that her fifth album, 1989, would sell 1 million copies in its first week. But others were not so confident. “Everyone, in and out of the music business, kept telling me that my opinion and my viewpoint was naive and overly optimistic — even my own label,” says Swift, recalling the run-up to 1989’s October release in the vast living room of her penthouse loft in downtown Manhattan. -Billboard

The best part about being Taylor Swift?

She gets paid lots of money each time her heart breaks. Sure, she’s having a tough time finding a long-term partner, but, honestly, does she really need one? We’ve all benefitted from the breakups. Say what you will about her music, but I know that if you’re reading this, you have blared Shake It Off in your car on several occasions, if not frequently.

The worst part about being Taylor Swift?

She can’t go to carnivals. I mean, no carnivals?! That’s torture. She knows that if she goes somewhere with large crowds there could be a stampede. And really, do we doubt that? No. If there are stampedes to get into Best Buy on Black Friday, you can bet there will be a stampede of tween girls to get to Taylor Swift at a carnival.

But on a serious note…

In a recent Billboard interview, Swift dishes about what it was like to take the lead in her music career, all of which got her to be Billboard’s Woman of the Year for 2014. Congrats to her, and we look forward to many, many more of her catchy jams.

Check out the interview here: Read the source article at Billboard

Is Morning Joe The Most Influential News Show In The World? Jeffrey Sachs Thinks So

By Thursday, September 4, 2014 0 , , Permalink 1

Like the Beach Boys, Jeffrey Sachs gets around. As Director of The Earth Institute and Special Advisor to the United Nations Secretary-General, Professor Sachs ceaselessly travels the world in his fight against poverty. After returning from his latest trip overseas, the internationally renowned professor let Joe and Mika in on a little secret about their American news program.

“People love Morning Joe in sub-Saharan Africa, at the Vatican, and all over the world. It is unbelievable. I can be in any place in the world and I hear, “Hey I saw you last week on Morning Joe.” I heard it when I was in Ethiopia, when I was in Rwanda, and I’m just hearing it everywhere.

“I know we’re ironic around here a lot of times,” Joe joined in, “but we are shocked when we hear the same thing all the time.”

Dr. Sachs replied quickly, “No question. Absolutely. They’re watching it and they’re tweeting it out!”

That’s what you call worldwide reach. Maybe they should rename it “Morning Globe!”

“I’ve found the new face of the Republican Party. It’s not a new one, entirely, and it’s been hiding out on national television every weekday morning from six to nine.”

Read the source article at The Daily Beast

— Christopher Buckley on Joe Scarborough