September 6, 2016
By Charles Wowkanech If you're someone who believes that unions are not as important as they once were, it's time to reconsider. It's not just a coincidence that the drop in union membership over the last 50 years corresponds directly with a decline in the middle class' share of national income. Whether you are a union member or not, this should be worrisome. Besides stagnant wages for most working people, the trend of rising income inequality reduces educational opportunity, stifles upward mobility, and distorts the power dynamics of our society.
April 24, 2016 |
Economists are gnashing their teeth over much of the back-and-forth about global trade in the presidential campaign. Mostly, the candidates are dissing the potential trade deal between the U.S. and other Pacific-rim nations, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and global trade in general. The candidates either didn't take Economics 101 in college, or they are ignoring what they learned - that global trade is a plus for the economy, and thus for jobs and incomes. Kiboshing trade deals is for the most part bad economics.
April 11, 2016
The perceived vulnerability of Sen. Pat Toomey in the general election, in which the Republican presidential nominee may be more liability than asset, has produced three competitive Democratic candidates to challenge the incumbent. JOE SESTAK , a former Navy admiral who served two terms in the House, has the best credentials and experience to immediately serve Pennsylvania and the nation. His unrelenting intellectual curiosity has helped Sestak, a notoriously hard taskmaster, form a deep understanding of government and foreign policy that Katie McGinty and John Fetterman cannot match.
July 23, 2015
ISSUE | ARTS ECONOMY Cultural learning Yes, Philadelphia needs more arts jobs to "enrich the lives of all Philadelphians," as an Inquirer editorial noted ("A need for more arts jobs," July 20). And it isn't much of a stretch that many of the artists enriching our lives will get their start in the city's public schools, and that the audiences who fill the galleries and concert halls begin their love of the arts in grade school. That's why continuing to remove the arts from the School District curriculum certainly won't add to the enrichment of our lives.
March 31, 2015
ISSUE | FREE TRADE With each new deal, more jobs leave What a disappointment it was to read former Gov. Ed Rendell's endorsement of yet another expansion of supposed free trade between the United States and Asia ("For the middle class, trade issues are crucial," March 20). Apparently, Rendell belongs to that group of politicians who actually believe the expansion of trade provides a net benefit to the American worker and the U.S. economy, rather than the sad truth that these moves often promote more imports than exports for our country.
January 4, 2013 |
A LOT of people in this city understand that embracing diversity isn't just about sensitivity. It's about survival. In a conversation I had with Mayor Nutter in May, he said that if Philadelphia wants to thrive, it needs to embrace its changing demographics. That includes an increasing number of new immigrants who are buying homes, opening businesses and in 2010 were a huge part of Philadelphia's first population increase in decades. The city gets it. So why don't the Mummers?
December 2, 2012
Scott Paul is executive director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing In the last decade, we've lost more than five million manufacturing jobs to overseas competitors, particularly China. Simultaneously, our trade deficit with that country has grown. The deficit with China for September was $29.1 billion - the second-highest monthly deficit yet recorded. For the whole of 2011, in fact, our trade deficit with China came to a record $295 billion, and we're on track to exceed that number in 2012.
November 6, 2012 |
A YEAR AGO, if I'd said I was worried about "sequestration," most folks would have figured I needed a doctor and wondered if it was something they could catch. But by now, just about everyone knows it means a trillion dollars in automatic budget cuts that start in January 2013. It's part of the so-called "fiscal cliff" that was put in motion when the congressional "supercommittee" collapsed last fall - a devastating package of tax hikes and spending cuts that experts say will blow up our fragile economic recovery and drag us back into recession next year.
August 20, 2012
In "The Betrayal of the American Dream," Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele revisit their 1991 Inquirer series, "America: What Went Wrong," in which they forecast a decline of the middle class. Now, they document how actions going back three decades have left millions of Americans in economic ruin. Today, the authors, in answers to questions posed by The Inquirer, outline their ideas for how the United States can solve its economic problems, the focus of the final chapter of their book.
August 17, 2012 |
Question. What would you say is the number-one policy change that would stop the drain of American jobs? Answer. A key goal should be to stop the bleeding of jobs in manufacturing. There has been a lot of talk in recent months about bringing manufacturing back from overseas and a few companies have done so. It would be a defining moment in rebuilding the middle class if a significant reversal could occur, but that seems unlikely. However, we must focus on bolstering and preserving the manufacturing sector that's left so it can survive.