October 1, 2012 |
Robert W. Patterson is editor of the public-policy journal the Family in America When Sen. John Kerry sought to unseat President George W. Bush eight years ago, journalist Thomas Frank thought he could help the challenger from Massachusetts. In a 2004 bestseller, What's the Matter With Kansas? , Frank claimed Republicans were playing dirty tricks by leveraging cultural "wedge" issues to dupe voters in his native state from voting their economic interests - in other words, for Democrats.
September 27, 2012
Basics of American democracy We are coming up on the anniversary of one of the greatest speeches in American history, Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, Nov. 19, 1863. In just over two minutes, Lincoln laid out the basics of American democracy, calling it government "of the people, by the people, for the people. " Now that we have heard Mitt Romney say to wealthy donors that it's not his job to worry about 47 percent of the American people, might we say that he thinks of American democracy as government "of the rich, by the rich, for the rich"?
September 18, 2012
VICE-presidential candidate Paul Ryan often gets big applause when he pulls out his line about the safety net. "We don't want to turn the safety net into a hammock," Ryan famously says, "that lulls able-bodied people to lives of dependency and complacency, that drains them of their will and their incentive to make the most of their lives. " Before Bill Clinton brought it up at the Democratic National Convention, squeamishness about caring for the poor (as opposed to the "middle class")
September 9, 2012 |
It's rare that the monthly jobs report doesn't elicit some kind of response on Wall Street. But that happened Friday after the U.S. Labor Department reported that the nation's payrolls added 96,000 jobs in August, and that the unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent - both statistics only barely positive. The markets hardly blinked, and major indexes stayed at their highest levels in more than four years after Thursday's surge. The 96,000 jobs continued the upward trend of growth, but at a rate that will do little to bring employment to pre-recession levels any time soon.
September 8, 2012 |
CHARLOTTE - Mayor Nutter used his moment on the national stage at the Democratic convention Thursday night to focus on education, which he called essential to "grow the middle class. " And he used a moment earlier in the day to say the Democrats should meet in Philadelphia next time. Greeted by a loud ovation from the Pennsylvania section, Nutter said in five minutes' remarks from the convention podium that Obama has saved 400,000 educators' jobs - an apparent reference to the stimulus act, which provided funds to avoid teacher layoffs.
August 31, 2012
I AM WRITING this letter in response to an encounter my family recently had with two members of the Philadelphia Police Department. I am a resident of Los Angeles but I grew up in Philadelphia and my mother and sister still live in the Northeast. On a recent visit my son - who is 13 years old and has developmental and emotional challenges - became confused and agitated and he ran off and could not be located. A nearly two-hour search had no luck in locating him. We did not contact the police, even though we were concerned, because my son is somewhat autistic and he has reacted negatively to uniformed authority in the past.
August 27, 2012
Robert W. Patterson is editor of the public-policy journal the Family in America On the eve of its Tampa convention, the Grand Old Party is as pumped as a young lady who just accepted an engagement ring from the man of her dreams. Conservatives may have reluctantly embraced Mitt Romney, but his running-mate choice, Paul Ryan - the wunderkind House budget chairman - has injected needed testosterone into the campaign. Still, excitement over the youthful Wisconsin congressman may not generate enough energy to win in November.
August 24, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - The middle class is receiving less of America's total income, its smallest share in decades, as median wages stagnate and wealth concentrates at the top. A study released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center highlights diminished hopes, too, for the roughly 50 percent of adults defined as middle class, with household incomes ranging from $39,000 to $118,000. The report describes this mid-tier group as suffering its "worst decade in modern history," falling backward in income for the first time since the end of World War II. Three years after the recession technically ended, middle-class Americans are still feeling the economic pinch, with most saying they have been forced to reduce spending in the last year.