Blog Post by: Jeffrey Laurenti, on June 17, 2013
After seven years' absence from the panel, in May the United States won back a seat representing the Western group on the United Nations committee on program and coordination. When the committee reorganized on June 3, the United States took its seat -- and announced it would boycott all meetings of the committee.
The reason: The chairmanship of the committee this session had passed to Iran.
"Countries that are under Chapter VII sanctions for not meeting their international obligations with regard to their nuclear program should not hold formal or ceremonial positions in U.N. bodies," declared U.S. representative Joseph M. Torsella. "Allowing Iran -- a country that is in flagrant violation of its obligations under multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions and that expresses flagrant disregard for international terrorism, human rights, and disarmament -- to chair this committee diminishes the standing and effectiveness of this institution."
Blog Post by: Richard D. Kahlenberg, on June 14, 2013
Today’s New York Times includes a passionate op-ed by Sherrilyn A. Ifill, the president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund Inc., in defense of race-based affirmative action. The future direction of such policies is likely to be decided at some time in the next two weeks when the U.S. Supreme Court issues its ruling in a challenge to racial preferences in the case of Fisher v. University of Texas.
In particular, Ifill is concerned that “an alarming number of scholars, pundits and columnists—many of them liberal—have declared that economic class, not race, should be the appropriate focus of university affirmative-action efforts.” As a longtime proponent of class-based affirmative action (author of a 1996 book, The Remedy: Class, Race and Affirmative Action, coauthor a 2012 Century Foundation report, A Better Affirmative Action: State Universities that Created Alternatives to Racial Preferences) and a liberal, to boot, let me explain why I disagree with the four central arguments Ifill advances in favor of racial preference policies.
Blog Post by: The Century Foundation, on June 14, 2013
Last month, The Century Foundation released its recommendations for improving community colleges. The report noted that while 81.4 percent of students entering community college say that they want to get a four-year degree, only 11.6 percent actually do so. We've asked several community college graduates to share their real-world experiences. This piece comes from Lindsay Moore.
I have a master’s degree from the University of Cambridge. This fall, I will be returning to graduate school at Harvard University. But there was a time not long ago when I never imagined having these opportunities.
As with many community college students, my circuitous path to a four-year degree started long before I set foot in a college classroom.
Blog Post by: Andrew Fieldhouse, on June 14, 2013
Since the late 1970s, the United States has experienced a sharp divergence in the distribution and growth of market-based income, with gains overwhelmingly skewed toward the very top of the income distribution and away from the bottom. This era of widening income inequality represents a sharp break from the first three decades following World War II, when the gains from growth were shared fairly equally across the income distribution, even tilted somewhat favorably towards lower-income over upper-income workers. The increasingly lopsided concentration of income growth at the top of the distribution comes at the expense of stagnant or falling living standards for working families.
Policymakers have lately taken more of an interest in curbing income inequality growth, and to that end, it is critical to understand the impact and scope of tax policy. Changes in tax and transfer policies are one of the more easily quantifiable contributors to income inequality, say compared with policies (or lack thereof) related to labor protections, collective bargaining, minimum wage erosion and trade.
Blog Post by: Moshe Marvit, on June 14, 2013
Brad Plumer’s recent analysis in the Washington Post’s Wonkblog is spot on. Taking a look at Richard Yeselson’s recent article on “fortress unionism” in Democracy, Plumer recognizes that labor organizing alone is not enough to reverse a half-century’s history of declining union membership.
Yeselson’s article is well worth a read. It begins with a legislative story and ends with a conclusion on organizing. Along the way, it provides a glimpse of labor’s immense postwar power, the fights over Taft-Hartley, and the failure of comprehensive campaigns to keep labor from hemorrhaging.
Blog Post by: Michael Cassidy, on June 14, 2013
Father’s Day is Sunday.
If reading that induced momentary lack-of-gift panic, you’re probably white. And not just because your first two thoughts were “necktie” and “golf balls.”
Relax. There’s still time to get 24-hour shipping on that Kindle Fire.
But while you’re at it, you should probably do a victory lap – because you’re one lucky son-of-a-dad (or daughter-of-one).
It’s been nearly 50 years since Daniel Patrick Moynihan released his provocative report on “The Negro Family” and its implications for social and economic equality. His major finding? The decline of the two-parent family in African American communities imperiled blacks’ prospects for progress.
Blog Post by: Jason Renker, on June 13, 2013
The Center for America Progress recently released a lengthy report that seeks to grow our economy through policies that would strengthen America’s middle class. There seems to be a consensus, at least among progressives, about what is needed to move the U.S. economy forward to a healthier recovery.
Blog Post by: Benjamin Landy, on June 13, 2013
After several years of slow growth, the percentage of Americans earning a bachelor's degree or higher has surged in the last five years, the result of both higher enrollment and improving completion rates. That's according to the National Center for Education Statistics, a research division of the Department of Education, which released a comprehensive report last month on the state of U.S. education.
But don't break out the champagne just yet.
Blog Post by: Benjamin Horowitz, on June 13, 2013
Lately, conversations about unions tend to be rather broad in scope. It isn’t uncommon to come across an article questioning whether unions are disappearing altogether. Lost in such an impossibly huge question is a much more interesting one: How are unions changing, and what should the unions of the future look like? This January, TCF’s Rick Kahlenberg brought me on as an intern to look into this question.
(For those who are unfamiliar with Rick and Moshe Marvit’s work, or the bigger TCF contribution to discussions about labor, check out Rick and Moshe writing on labor as a civil right in the New York Times and The Century Foundation’s blog posts on labor.)
My research has not focused on the debates about the economic or sociological causes or results of our national decline in traditional union membership. As interesting as those conversations can be, I have been much more interested in how individual unions are finding new ways to reverse the national trend of declining densities in their own particular pocket of the universe.
Blog Post by: The Century Foundation, on June 13, 2013
Century Foundation fellow Edward Kleinbard testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday, June 13. Kleinbard appeared as part of a hearing on “Tax Reform: Tax Havens, Base Erosion, and Profit-Shifting.” The hearing follows on news that American corporations—such as Apple—have been using tax loopholes to avoid paying corporate taxes on billions of dollars in profits.
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