Low-Wage Workers Are Finding Poverty Harder to Escape

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — At 7 in the morning, they are already lined up — poultry plant workers, housekeepers, discount store clerks — to ask for help paying their heating bills or feeding their families. And once Metropolitan Ministries opens at 8 a.m., these workers fill the charity’s 40 chairs, with a bawling infant adding to […]

50 years after the Kerner Commission

The year 1968 was a watershed in American history and black America’s ongoing fight for equality. In April of that year, Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis and riots broke out in cities around the country. Rising against this tragedy, the Civil Rights Act of 1968 outlawing housing discrimination was signed into law. […]

Taxpayers, You’ve Been Scammed

So you go out for dinner with a wealthy acquaintance. “I’ll take care of everything,” he says, and orders you a hamburger. Then he orders himself an expensive steak and a bottle of wine, which he doesn’t share. And when the waiter comes with the check, he points at you and says, “Charge it to […]

Why Is It So Hard for Democracy to Deal With Inequality?

In theory, in a democracy, the majority should influence — some would even say determine — the distribution of income. In practice, this is not the case. Over the past few decades, political scientists have advanced a broad range of arguments to explain why democracy has failed to stem the growth of inequality. Most recently, Thomas […]