Posts Tagged ‘economy’

Healthcare Reform & Jobs

November 12, 2012

Healthcare Reform & Jobs

Will “ObamaCare” kill jobs? The new Affordable Care Act healthcare reform law is modeled after the Massachusetts healthcare law, “RomneyCare,” and the Urban Institute recently studied the situation there. So has RomneyCare killed jobs in Massachusetts?

No.

“Will the Affordable Care Act Be a Job Killer?” Lisa Dubay, John Holahan, Sharon K. Long, and Emily Lawton, Urban Institute Health Policy Center

But beware. ObamaCare will affect your job if your boss is a lunatic, right-wing, GOP ideologue:

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GOP ‘Cranks & Crazies’

September 21, 2012

GOP 'Cranks & Crazies'

The Republican Tea Party loons of the U.S. Congress have become world famous, and no wonder, since their capture of the GOP endangers the entire global economy. The most recent observation of this was by Australia’s deputy PM and finance minister, Wayne Swan:

“Let’s be blunt and acknowledge the biggest threat to the world’s biggest economy are the cranks and crazies that have taken over a part of the Republican Party. Global markets are nervously watching the positioning of hardline elements of the Republican Party for signs that they will dangerously block reasonable attempts at compromise.”

“Swan: GOP ‘Cranks and Crazies’ Threaten Growth,” Edward Johnson, Businessweek

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Ain’t Got No Home

August 24, 2012

Ain't Got No Home

The ProPublica team has researched the causes of the foreclosure crisis. You can read about it here, but there’s a video that explains it all, and you can dance to it:

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Mexican Immigration to USA: Net-Zero

April 10, 2012

“The population of undocumented immigrants in the US fell from 12 million to approximately 11 million during the height of the financial crisis (2008-09) …. And since then, Mexicans without documents aren’t migrating at rates to replace the loss, creating a net zero balance for the first time in 50 years.”

“Home again in Mexico: Illegal immigration hits net zero,” Sara Miller Llana, Christian Science Monitor (citing Douglas Massey, Mexican Migration Project, Princeton University)

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What They Want for Christmas: Jobs

December 12, 2011

What They Want for Christmas: Jobs

Excerpts from “The Book of Jobs,” Joseph E. Stiglitz, Vanity Fair:

“There are 6.6 million fewer jobs in the United States than there were four years ago. Some 23 million Americans who would like to work full-time cannot get a job. Almost half of those who are unemployed have been unemployed long-term. Wages are falling—the real income of a typical American household is now below the level it was in 1997.”

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Small Business Saturday: Shop Local

November 26, 2011

Small Business Saturday: Shop Local

Yesterday, on “Black Friday,” millions of Americans spent billions of dollars with the multi-national corporations that sell imported products in U.S. shopping malls. Some resisted this retail feeding frenzy and bought nothing. Today people from both camps will buy local, shopping with neighborhood shops on Small Business Saturday.

$100 spent with local businesses returns $68 to the community vs. $43 spent at big box stores. So think outside the big box and shop local.

More:

“Gift buyers like local mom-and-pop shops’ unique choices,” Erin Kutz and Jayne O’Donnell, USA Today

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Image (“Small Business Saturday, after Edward Hopper”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Thanksgiving 2011

November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

As Americans enjoy food and family at Thanksgiving dinner today, many will have an image of a Norman Rockwell painting in mind, an image of domestic warmth and plenty. But that painting was commissioned as a magazine illustration for a 1943 Saturday Evening Post issue based on one of President Franklin Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms. The painting’s name: “Freedom From Want.” It was paired with an astounding essay by poet and novelist Carlos Bulosan, whose work and life deserve more attention.

FDR’s speech had been delivered two years earlier, while the country, still emerging from the Depression, was burdened with the expense of providing support for allies in a war the U.S. had not yet entered. Today the speech is remembered for the Four Freedoms, but it also recognized that “there is nothing mysterious about the foundations of a healthy and strong democracy.”

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Berlusconi on Facebook

November 8, 2011

Berlusconi on Facebook

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is in the news again, but for his economic policies, not his romantic escapades. The Italian economy, third largest in Europe, is starting to tank. The P.M.’s allies are jumping ship, urging him to quit. “That Silvio Berlusconi is about to resign is clear. It is a question of hours, some say of minutes,” wrote one long-time friend. The Prime Minister issued a denial:  “Le voci di mie dimissioni sono destituite di fondamento” (“The rumors of my resignation are groundless “).

Silvio Berlusconi, third richest man in Italy, controls the country’s commercial television stations and newspapers and magazines. As PM, he controls RAI, the Italian government broadcasting network. So how did Mr. Berlusconi make his defiant announcement?

On Facebook.

Related:

“Quick Primer On Chances Of Italy Destroying The World Economy,” Seeking Alpha

“Politicans and Business Close Ranks Against Berlusconi,” Fiona Ehlers, Spiegel Online

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Image (“Berlusconi on Facebook, after François Gabriel Lepaulle”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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(un)Employment Report

November 6, 2011

(un)Employment Report

In a regular monthly exercise in statistical flim-flam, the Bureau of Labor Statistics has released the jobless numbers for October 2011.

The meaningless unemployment rate in the headlines: 9% , down a whopping 0.1%. The real unemployment rate: 16.2% (includes people who no longer get unemployment benefits, need work but have stopped looking because it’s futile, or have only found part-time work). Learn more here.

There was a net gain of 80,000 jobs in the past month, not all of them at McDonald’s (some were at Wendy’s). At that rate, all of America’s 13.9 million unemployed should be working by about 2030.

Related:

“Most unemployed Americans are no longer receiving unemployment benefits,” Christopher S. Rugaber, AP via New York Daily News

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Occupy Appropriate Technology. And Yachts.

November 3, 2011

Occupy Appropriate Technology. And Yachts.

Occupy Wall Street protesters in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park had their gasoline-power generators confiscated by the NYFD as potential fire hazards. How to power life’s basic necessities, computers and cell phones? Bicycle-powered generators.

Further south, 300 Florida protesters marched on the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. The chief oppostiton to the good-natured and well-tanned marchers was a torrential downpour.

Related: Appropedia.org Appropriate Technology Portal

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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