As news of the complete devastation across the island of Puerto Rico is released, I find myself incessantly hitting refresh on my Internet browser. With each click, my emotions and tears overwhelm me. A deep feeling of desperation follows. This has become an unintentional daily ritual since “natural disaster" Hurricane Maria struck the island.
I know I am not alone.
-Eroc Arroyo-MontanoRead more
UFE's popular education team held a series of successful workshops at the United Association for Labor Education's 2018 Conference.Read more
UFE’s support for the Raising Wages NC coalition continues with a series of popular education trainings on wages. Raising Wages NC and the Communication Workers of America (CWA) are partnering to train individuals and organizations to become popular education trainers in the CWA Runaway Inequality curriculum. After completion participants become trainers themselves, able to run their own Runaway Inequality trainings.Read more
United for a Fair Economy is sponsoring the launch of the Living Wage Network. The network is composed of living wage certification programs that recognize employers who pay a living wage, significantly impacting the lives of tens of thousands of low-wage workers across the country. Currently, seven of the network’s members actively certify employers in locations nationwide. Go to www.livingwagenetwork.org for a list of programs and their locations.Read more
A Statement from United for a Fair Economy Executive Director Jeannette Huezo regarding State of the Dream 2018 (Jan 14, 2018):
Every year, United for a Fair Economy (UFE) issues a “State of the Dream” report, in honor of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., that looks at the state of racial economic inequality in the US. Each year, the report has a different theme (see http://www.faireconomy.org/reports for a compilation of past reports). For 2018, we decided to focus on the effects of the recently-passed Trump/GOP tax bill, particularly the likely effects on different racial groups. While we believe this will be an important and under-reported aspect of the new tax legislation, we need more time to research the issue, find racial data, and learn more about likely Congressional budget decisions in the wake of the lost revenue from the bill.Read more
More than 400 wealthy and upper-income taxpayers have signed a letter calling on Congress to reject the Republican tax plan that gives tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires, especially any plan that is not revenue neutral, which would lead to deep cuts in services and critical investments, such as Medicaid, Medicare, and education.Read more
Tax reform is hard. It can be complicated, dull, and politically difficult. But that doesn’t change the fact that taxes are one of the most important issues facing Americans today, and progressives should take an active role in the debate. Closing loopholes, reforming rules, changing rates, creating and abolishing taxes- all of these matters play a huge and defining role in economic inequality, poverty, and social mobility. With the Republican congress taking up this issue, the time to push for progressive tax reform is now.Read more
In a previous post, we at United for a Fair Economy took a look at state preemption laws: laws passed by state governments which override the policies of city governments, especially progressive policies like raises in the minimum wage. These policies are in direct conflict with the ideals of a democracy, but their negative effects are concentrated among one specific group: people of color.Read more
Federalism- the division of decision-making power between different levels of government- is one of the foundational features of American government.
The United States Constitution provides state governments with significant political power. States are considered to be “closer” to the people than the federal government and are therefore better suited to customize policies that meet local needs. But Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis made another argument in his dissent to New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann that: “It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system that a single courageous state may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.”
Last year, Raising Wages NC joined workers rights organizations from around the state in our first ever #RaisingWagesNC week of action during the labor day holiday.Read more
Many of us have come across the term "neoliberal," or "neoliberalism" before, but for all its use, few have ever taken the chance to actually explain what it is. An inadequate popular definition has allowed the term to be abused and misrepresented in a variety of ways. Despite these misrepresentations, however, "neoliberalism" is a concept that is very useful for understanding the world we live in today.
In simple terms, neoliberalism is a broad ideology that became popular in political, economic, and governmental circles in the 1970’s and reached its peak in global popularity in the 1980’s. Neoliberalism describes the political paradigm we are in right now, the political conditions of modern society. As the name suggests, it calls for a revitalization of the classical liberal view of economic policy. It's important to understand that "classical liberal" here refers to an older understanding of the word liberal than the one it has in modern America- it is referencing the liberalism of the Enlightenment era, represented by thinkers like Adam Smith and John Locke, not modern social liberalism as embodied by Barack Obama and much of the rest of the Democratic Party. In concrete policy terms, neoliberalism means free trade, low taxes, deregulation, privatization, and balanced budgets.
Neoliberalism represents a shift in the way we look at the world: it entails seeing every aspect of society, even those typically considered civic or community affairs, in the terms of the market economy.
We are saddened and outraged by the display of white supremacist violence in Charlottesville this weekend. It is no coincidence that we see the far-right mobilizing while corporate interests continue to strip poor and working class people of their healthcare and their right to organize; that this happens while cutting public services and giving away massive tax cuts to the rich; that this happens while the budget prioritizes increases to an out-of-control war machine and climate deniers threaten to move us quicker towards a world that is increasingly unlivable for poor and working people. We are saddened, but we are not fooled.Read more