Retirement Security

No Social Security Increase in 2016

From JustCareUSA.org: In every year but two for the last 40 years, people have seen a cost-of-living increase in their Social Security checks. But they will see no increase at all in their Social Security benefit in 2016. To make matters worse, a new report from the Center for Retirement Research reveals that, unless there is a work-around, some people with Medicare will see almost a 50 percent increase in their Medicare Part B monthly premium. And most people with Medicare will have less disposable income for non-health care related expenses. (The rest is here.)

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Health

High Drug Prices Are Killing Americans

All across the country, Americans are finding that the prices of the prescription drugs they need are soaring. Tragically, doctors tell us that many of their patients can no longer afford their medicine. As a result, some get sicker. Others die. A new Kaiser Health poll shows that most Americans think prescription drug costs in this country are unreasonable, and that drug companies put profits before people. Want to know something? They’re right. Americans pay the highest prices for prescription drugs in the world – by far. Drug costs increased 12.6 percent last year, more than double the rise in …

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Justice, Equality and Voting Rights

Support Journey for Justice as it Marches Through Raleigh

Fifty years after passage of the Voting Rights Act, it shouldn’t be necessary to rally Americans on behalf of our right to vote, but it is. On Aug. 1, the NAACP began leading an 860-mile march from Selma, Alabama, to Washington to demand justice, equality and voting rights in a historic event called America’s Journey for Justice. As the march makes its way through the Deep South to our nation’s capital, the NAACP will lift up the call for equitable schools, sustainable jobs and voting rights. The Democracy Initiative – a dynamic network of labor, civil rights, voting rights, environmental …

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New Orleans

Hurricane Katrina and Bernie Sanders: From Neoliberal Disaster to ‘Political Revolution’

The 10th anniversary of the devastation of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina has been an occasion for reflection on that horrific event and the state of the city’s recovery. Much of that commemoration, especially locally, has centered on the theme of resilience. This is understandable; in many ways the city has recovered, and many people have sacrificed much to make that recovery happen. In a city so dependent economically on tourism it is important to stress that New Orleans remains a desirable destination. It also makes sense that local officials, and New Orleanians generally, would want to celebrate …

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On the Issues

Why Bernie is Best on Women’s Issues

Women’s Issues are taking center stage in the lead-up to 2016, as they should. The conservative war on women’s health and reproductive rights has raged on for far too long. And in all measures of social and political inequality, we remain what number-crunchers coolly term “disproportionately affected.” Many people believe that electing a woman president will help. I’m not so sure. Does breaking glass ceilings constitute a real political strategy–that’s capable of improving women’s lives? And does voting one’s gender really translate to voting one’s interest? Let’s consider the issues: On women’s right to choose, Republican state legislators from Florida …

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In These Times

The Real War on Families: Why the U.S. Needs Paid Leave Now

Most people are aware that Americans have a raw deal when it comes to maternity leave. But most Americans don’t realize quite how out of step we are. It’s not just wealthy, social democratic Nordic countries that make us look bad. With the exception of a few small countries like Papua New Guinea and Suriname, every other nation in the world—rich or poor—now requires paid maternity leave.

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The American Prospect

Sanders Unveils Women’s Rights Policy Initiatives

Sanders’s new plan for fighting for women’s rights is expansive, and the most detailed in the Democratic field.

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The Economy

In Troubled Times, the Federal Reserve Must Work for Everyone

Activist groups are working to change the Fed’s governing boards, which are heavily dominated by big banks and other major financial interests, and have called for policies that focus on improving the economic lives of most Americans. Those policies could take a number of forms. One idea comes from Jeremy Corbyn, the populist politician who’s on track to become the next leader of Great Britain’s Labour Party. Corbyn’s economic plan includes “quantitative easing for people instead of banks.”

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Civil & Human Rights

The NAACP: A New Journey for Justice

The NAACP’s “Journey for Justice” began in Selma, Alabama on August 1. The march is scheduled to arrive in Washington, DC on September 15, followed by an “advocacy day” at the Capitol on September 16. NAACP national president Cornell Brooks has walked much of the first 330 miles himself, inspiring hundreds to join in the march for at least a day. The journey is designed to focus on four key issue areas—our votes, lives, jobs and schools. On one level the Journey’s goals are modest—reenactment of the Voting Rights Act, criminal justice reform that addresses the killings of unarmed African …

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An Economy for All

The Smoke and Mirrors Behind Balanced-Budget Rhetoric

By covering up for a budget shortfall this year, governors are dragging their states into a vicious cycle of crippled budgets and expensive coverups at the expense of their constituents.

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New York Times

Republicans Against Retirement

What’s puzzling about the renewed Republican assault on Social Security is that it looks like bad politics as well as bad policy. Americans love Social Security, so why aren’t the candidates at least pretending to share that sentiment?

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Economic Policy Institute

6.9 Million Women Would Directly Benefit from Raising the Overtime Salary Threshold

From the Economic Policy Institute (EPI): Because their pay tends to be lower than men’s, women are especially likely to benefit from the Department of Labor’s proposed change to the rules governing overtime pay, which would require all salaried workers earning less than $50,440 a year in 2016 to be automatically entitled to time-and-a-half pay if they work more than 40 hours in a week. Currently, only workers paid a salary of $23,660 or less have this guarantee—workers paid more than $23,660 can be denied overtime pay under the current rules if their primary job duty is determined to be …

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