Enemy Targets

Ron Hauge

What I know about geography. The post Enemy Targets appeared first on The Nation.

Raising the minimum wage doesn’t hurt jobs—it improves people’s lives in ways you might not expect

Raising the minimum wage doesn’t hurt job growth. We know this because economist after economist has produced research backing up that statement, often drawing on parts of the U.S. that have increased the minimum wage. That’s why, after the Congressional Budget Office on Monday blew off its responsibility to use the best available information and offered Republicans fuel to claim that a minimum wage increase would cost jobs, economists who study minimum wage increases are lining up to explain why the CBO is just plain wrong. 

“While they are acknowledging some of the research,” the Economic Policy Institute’s Ben Zipperer told The Washington Post, “I think they are drawing on older research that the new research has pointed out is problematic.” Berkeley economist Michael Reich and UMass-Amherst economist Arindrajit Dube made similar points, with Reich saying that the CBO’s equal reliance on high- and low-quality studies “reveals an unwillingness to recognize the major differences in scientific quality among studies.”

A recent study by Dube and Zipperer, along with Dorok Cengiz and Attila Lindner, “evaluated the local effect of more than 130 minimum-wage increases since 1979 and showed the fall in jobs paying less than the new minimum wage had been fully offset by the jump in new jobs paying just over it.” One hundred and thirty over 40 years. That’s a lot of data. It’s especially a lot of data for the CBO to be more or less ignoring.

Black People Don’t Need Murals To Remember Injustice

Jennifer Wilson

Critics of a San Francisco school’s decision to paint over art forget that people of color have a bright future, not just a tragic past. The post Black People Don’t Need Murals To Remember Injustice appeared first on The Nation.

The Pentagon Will Never Have Enough

William J. Astore

For decades, the Pentagon has shored up its power and consumed too much of our national budget. Will we ever escape its pull? The post The Pentagon Will Never Have Enough appeared first on The Nation.

Civility in Crisis

Tom Tomorrow

Won’t somebody think of the border agents? The post Civility in Crisis appeared first on The Nation.

Trump’s labor secretary might lose his job, but not because he enabled sexual assault and pedophilia

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called on Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta to resign over the “unconscionable agreement” he made in 2007 to allow billionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein to escape federal charges of sex trafficking minors, a deal “kept secret from courageous, young victims preventing them from seeking justice.” But, as Pelosi noted in her tweet, Donald Trump knew about this when he appointed Acosta—and, while the renewed attention thanks to federal charges finally being filed against Epstein is not strengthening Acosta’s position, that’s not the only reason his job is in danger. If Trump forces Acosta out, it will be as much or more because he’s not anti-worker enough. Bloomberg reports that “Corporate lobbyists and some White House officials have grown frustrated that Acosta hasn’t moved fast enough on deregulation and other business-friendly initiatives.” Specifically, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney is frustrated that Acosta isn’t moving more quickly to undo Obama-era workplace protections. So Epstein could be a convenient excuse for Trump to get rid of a guy for the sin of not being enough of an extremist—after all, Trump sure doesn’t have anything but a public relations problem with Epstein. Not only did he appoint Acosta knowing about the non-prosecution deal that allowed Epstein to serve just 13 months in a county jail, with 12 hours a day of “work release,” but Trump has his own history with Epstein. 

Epstein has, of course, joined the long list of people Trump denies having ever really known—along with many of Trump’s former campaign officials—but in 2002, Trump said that “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years.