Coronavirus infection levels are climbing all around the country again. As more and more Americans stay home to avoid infection, those rising infection rates will likely bring with them another serious economic downturn, just like they did in the spring. The drop in consumer spending will harm the bottom line of small businesses, which will […]Read More New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy Explains Why He Passed a Millionaire’s Tax
We talk a lot in this space about the three central tenets of trickle-down economics: wage suppression for workers, tax cuts for the wealthy, and deregulation for the powerful. We usually refer to these three tactics in terms of policy, like campaigns against minimum-wage laws and regulations lifted by presidential executive order. But the truth […]Read More Robert Reich explains “the dangers of an economy that is too out of whack.”
Back when Harvard Business School professor Rebecca Henderson was pitching her latest book to publishers, she recalls, the conversation didn’t get much further than the book title before cynicism kicked in on the other side of the desk. In the latest episode of Pitchfork Economics, Henderson recalls sitting in a big New York City editor’s […]Read More Maximizing Shareholder Value Is Killing the Planet
If words are used too often, they start to lose their meaning. Try saying the phrase “deep discount” to yourself sixty times in a minute, for example, and it turns into a disjointed collection of consonants and syllables with no connection to any existing concept or experience. The technical term for this psychological experience is […]Read More The Economy Is the American Middle Class. It’s That Simple.
A recent episode of Pitchfork Economics features listener questions from around the world about a broad array of topics, from the motivation of trickle-downers to the effectiveness of divestment as a strategy. Hosts Nick Hanauer and David Goldstein recommend books to convert economic skeptics away from neoliberal economics, and they discuss the core fundamentals of […]Read More This Recession Is Worse for Women Than It Is for Men
Last week, in response to my column about the outsized power employers have over their workers, a Twitter user named Jim Drinkwine pointed out a glaring omission. To my comment that underpaid workers can’t simply quit and find a better job, Drinkwine added: “Don’t forget if they quit, they lose health coverage.” That’s absolutely correct. In fact, health insurance […]Read More The healthcare debate has reached a ‘fever pitch’ in America
Bainbridge Island has always been an affordable and easy escape for frazzled Seattleites who need a break from the annoyances of city life. Less than 10 bucks gets you aboard one of the frequent, relaxing half-hour ferry trips from downtown, and a 10-minute walk from the ferry terminal puts you in the heart of the […]Read More Happy 50th birthday, Eagle Harbor Book Company!
Economics as we know it has been around since the late 18th century, but the field still barely acknowledges the existence of power dynamics as a motivating force in the labor market. Trickle-downers who oppose raising the minimum wage, for instance, will often suggest that workers who want a higher wage should simply quit their […]Read More Your Boss Controls More Than Just Your Time
In a Pew poll conducted last fall, 61% of all respondents agreed that there was too much income inequality in America these days. Virtually everyone can feel that the difference between the wealthiest Americans and the poorest is growing out of control, but we don’t understand how big that gap is, or how fast it’s […]Read More If It Feels Like You’re Working Longer for Less Money, It’s Because You Are.
Summer 2020 was the opposite of what we’ve been told a summer should be: it wasn’t carefree, it wasn’t fun, it wasn’t restful or rejuvenating or rehabilitating. From the pandemic to the clamoring hoards of aggrieved white supremacists in our streets to the wildfire smoke that’s clotting the air over the Northwest as I write […]Read More What I read on my summer vacation (2020 edition)