We are one of the world's wealthiest democracies, and yet the people who make up the fabric of our population -- who serve our food, stock our warehouses, and take care of our loved ones -- barely make enough to survive.
As the nation's largest employer with 1.3 million workers and $15.8 billion in profits in 2012, Walmart occupies the unique position of being able to make a positive contribution to the lives of its workers and to our overall economy, and yet the company refuses to give up its exploitative ways.
Listen up all you laborers and "workers of the world!" Aren't you insulted to find out that your big boss -- the one who runs the company that owns your company -- now makes 500 times more than the people who do the actual work; people like you?
What if America was a banquet, and at this banquet the servings were fair wages, just trials, civil rights and liberties, but offered by invitation only? According to those who "March(ed) on Washington," this was exactly the case.
A common explanation is that the bad jobs are coming back first and the good jobs will follow. But let me suggest another explanation: the good jobs are here among us right now -- it's just their wages, their benefits, and the long-term security that have vanished.
The economic arguments against moderate increases in the minimum wage lack robust empirical support. Most importantly, the majority of studies looking for the job-loss effects that opponents assert will be large enough to offset the benefits to low-wage workers come up short.
Speaking to power through song was a common practice among the prophets of Israel. In Isaiah 5:1-5, the prophet who writes switches to the role of ballad-singer, introducing his listeners to a song titled "My Dearest Friend's Vineyard."
When opponents talk about who's earning the minimum wage, they're often referring to the demographics of those at today's minimum. But that's not the relevant sample when you're evaluating a proposed increase in the wage floor.
What started out last fall as a one-day walkout at fast-food restaurants to protest poverty-level wages and stand up for basic human dignity has transformed into a movement that has captured the public interest.
At the bottom of the globalization debate is a fundamental error by the policy, political, and punditry community: the assumption that people are first and last consumers, not workers. But when trade effects prices, it also effects jobs and wages.
For four long years after the recession officially ended, conservative austerity policies have sabotaged America's economic recovery, condemning millions of Americans to unemployment and poverty. But conservative spending cuts still dominate policy.