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Eric Lotke has cooked in five-star restaurants and flushed every toilet in the Washington D.C. jail. He has filed headline lawsuits and published headline research on crime, prisons, and sex offenses. His most recent book is Making Manna.
A Vote for Justice Over Money at the FCC
"In my sixteen years as a regulator," said FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, "this is the clearest, most egregious case of market failure I have seen."
On Thursday the FCC voted to set it right, and to limit the exploitative pricing of phone calls between people in prison and their families.
The Private Prison Industry: Resistance isn't Futile
The private prison industry is on the march. In recent months the industry moved to take over 24 state prisons in southern Florida and buy five prisons in Ohio. Now it's making moves in Michigan.
But the industry doesn't always win. Resistance isn't futile.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
The Dream That Drives The Occupations
I've been spending evenings and weekends recently with the Occupy protestors in DC. I can't stay full time because, unlike many protestors, I have two children and a full-time job. But I clearly share their interests and I'm glad they're making the ruckus. Plan or not, I know what they want, too.
New Unemployment Data: No news. Clear conclusions.
Today's new unemployment report contains no news, just decimal point changes. It tells us what we already know, that times are bad. The question is whether our great nation can rise to the challenge.
The Progressive Movement: Out of Work and Losing Hope
This coalition of blacks, Hispanics, youth and women worked to elect democrats a few years ago. They might be willing to work to keep them in office -- especially if they see that it did them any good. Right now they're sitting at home, out of work and low on hope. The Republicans have won the message war. Democrats don't even seem to be fighting.
The Census and Democracy: Maryland Fixes a Major Error
In the wake of the 2010 Census, Maryland passed a law yesterday that fixes a major problem. Maryland will now count people in prison where they actually live, not where they are confined. This first-in-the-nation law will improve the fairness and accuracy of Census data used to draw legislative boundaries.
Monday, April 12, 2010(1 comments)
Tax Audits: IRS Gives Big Corporations a Pass
A stunning new analysis by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University shows how the IRS targets smaller corporations, while larger corporations that would yield more unpaid tax dollars go unaudited.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010(2 comments)
Good Obama Middle Class Help. But What About Jobs?
The White House announced its economic initiatives for middle class families, described as a preview of the State of the Union Address. They're all good ideas and I hope every one of them passes. But what about jobs?
Thursday, January 21, 2010(1 comments)
It's Official. Corporations Rule.
People have been wondering for years who runs our country. People or wealthy corporations? Today the Supreme Court settled the debate.
The President Asks for Help. From Us.
At his Brookings speech today the president outlined his economic plan. It has all the right pieces and it points in the right direction. But something is missing.
Bernanke Breaks the Law. His Own.
Thursday December 3 is the date of both the President's Jobs Summit and the reconfirmation hearing of Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke. We should seize the opportunity to examine the statute that creates the Federal Reserve.
Building a Smart Grid, Smartly
President Barack Obama announced today $3.4 billion in government grants to help build a "smart" electric grid. Like many Obama initiatives, it's a smart first step. But much more is needed and one piece is rarely mentioned at all.
Monday, October 19, 2009(1 comments)
Bernanke solves the wrong deficit
Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke recognized today that America's trade deficit played a central role in the global economic crisis. Then after he recognized the problem, he went on to solve a different one.
Friday, October 16, 2009(2 comments)
Time to Take on the Banks
The American people didn't bail out banks that were too big to fail so they could take over banks that were smaller and did.
Steel City: Forgotten But Not Gone
The G-20 summit is an opportunity to reexamine world trade. And the new economy most worth exploring is one that's more balanced and less dependent on overstretched U.S. consumers.
Monday, September 21, 2009(2 comments)
The G-20 Summit: Lessons from Pittsburgh
At the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh later this week, people will hear about the city's slump and rebirth. That's good as far as it goes, but it dodges the ultimate question. Can the United States remain the world's consumer forever? Or will the G-20 chart the process by which the global economy after the crisis is more balanced, less dependent on U.S. consumption, and sustainable in Pittsburgh as well as Beijing?
Building a Clean Energy Economy: The IMPACT Act
The Waxman-Markey Clean Energy and Security Act squeaked through the House of Representatives late last week (219-212). One unheralded addition in the closing hours makes the bill even stronger and more important - the IMPACT provision to support clean energy manufactur
Saturday, July 4, 2009(3 comments)
Madoff: Fall Guy or First of Many?
Bernard Madoff has been sentenced to 150 years in prison for one of the biggest investment frauds in Wall Street history. But there is no closure here. We can't let Madoff's sentence distract us from the underlying problems. This isn't just about Madoff. This is about the system in which Madoff's scam took place.
Saturday, June 13, 2009(3 comments)
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce: Threat To Capitalism
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched yesterday "a sweeping national advocacy campaign ... to defend and advance America's free enterprise values in the face of rapid government growth and attacks by anti-business activists." The Chamber of Commerce doesn't get it. They aren't defending capitalism and free enterprise. They are all but destroying it.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009(2 comments)
2044: Big Brother Inc.
A new novel, "2044," starts where George Orwell's 1984 left off. The problem is Big Brother Inc., not Big Brother. The government didn't take over. It got taken over. 2044 follows the pattern to the endpoint.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009(3 comments)
The media still calls America a "center-right" nation, but "center-left" is closer to the truth. On issues ranging from health care to energy, the public is more progressive than people think. A new report documents the trends and challenges the mainstream media to recognize reality.
Tuesday, March 18, 2008(1 comments)
CPAC: Conservatives Pout and Complain
Three days at the 2007 I just spent three days at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the preeminent national gathering of the conservative movement.