The Case for Expanding Social Security

Social Security

Our friends at Democracy for America and posted this infographic that we want to see shared far and wide. The mission is to “combat this growing retirement security crisis and tell Congress that Americans support expanding Social Security — not cutting it.”

On this site we’ve commented about this issue repeatedly; we note that when politicians talk about cutting so-called “entitlements” they neglect to note that if a person has worked and contributed to the system, s/he is ‘entitled’ to receive funds back from that system because it’s actually an earned benefit.… [Read more]

Diagnosing the Causes of Medical Debt in the U.S. (Infographic)

medical bills

With the rollout — and consequential fallout — of Obamacare, the real importance of healthcare reform had been temporarily swept aside to clear the stage for politics. While the dust settles on the budget battleground, we are revisiting the initial reasons behind the reform. As the average age and weight of the people in the United States increases, health issues become more pressing.… [Read more]

Janet Yellen nomination for Fed Chair set for today

Janet Yellen

It was a good day when Larry Summers, former Secretary of the Treasury and economic advisor to President Obama withdrew his name for consideration as new the Chairman of the Federal Reserve. It’s an even better day now that Janet Yellen has been nominated for the position. If confirmed, Ms. Yellen will make history as the first female chair of the Federal Reserve, the nation’s central banking system.… [Read more]

How Excessive Paperwork Can Stunt Small Business Growth

small business owner paperwork

Small businesses help fuel the nation’s economic growth. Small business owners are already busy juggling plenty of challenges. Between tasks such as managing employees, keeping tabs on the industry, and striking a balance between operating expenses and turning a profit, small business owners have their work cut out for them. The last thing any small business owner needs is to heap on an unnecessary burden – such as excessive paperwork.… [Read more]

Retirement Saving: Steps for the Sandwich Generation

Saving for retirement for the sandwich generation

Maybe you’re one of those people who has two major responsibilities right now – your kids and your aging parents. Of course, your folks can probably depend on Social Security and their personal retirement funds for a little while longer, but your children are wholly defenseless. At the same time, you have to start seriously considering your own future savings.… [Read more]

College Tuition Costs and You

College tuition costs

Politics has its hands in everything. It even affects college and who attends and who doesn’t. Schools are inherently biased about who they will and will not accept as admissions is a selectivity game. As a result, prospective college students often feel as though they must throw everything noteworthy about themselves in their applications and, still, there is a possibility that they won’t be admitted to their higher education institution of choice.… [Read more]

Ending the “Doctor Shortage”


We Americans do not have the world’s “best” health care, just the most expensive.

Health Care reform must consider skyrocketing costs if any progress is made. We walk a tightrope between cost and quality.

When I slung gin over the bar, one learnt rather quickly from frazzled nurses that “M.D.” too often stood for “Me, Doctor!”  The human body is a complex beastie, but we need choices other than which expired medico to raise from the dead, Dr.… [Read more]

Criminal Charges and Civil Inquiries for JP Morgan? No surprise…

JP Morgan Chase

Banks behaving badly (now referred to as BBB) should be the title of an on-going saga with the nation’s largest financial institutions. It’s also the reason why harsh penalties and strict regulations are needed to keep Wall Street from running amok.

In the latest episode of ‘BBB’, J.P. Morgan Chase, the nation’s largest bank based on its asset size, is back in the news again. … [Read more]

Another stop on the state of the economy road trip

President Obama

“How about a ‘grand bargain’ for middle-class jobs?” Indeed, that is the question. While Congress spends its time on the time-wasting activity of yet another ‘down with Obamacare‘ vote (does this latest vote make 40 attempts to snatch healthcare coverage from the country’s previously uninsured citizens?), President Obama spoke at a another stop on his ‘state of the economy’ road trip.… [Read more]

Banks *still* behaving badly

Energy Markets and JP Morgan Chase

Yesterday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) — the independent agency responsible for  assisting consumers in “obtaining reliable, efficient and sustainable energy services at a reasonable cost through appropriate regulatory and market means” — released a notice on the allegations against a J.P. Morgan Chase affiliate. JPMC has been accused by  federal energy regulators, after a investigation that began approximately one year ago, of using ”eight manipulative bidding strategies” to garner what the regulators deem to be “excessive payments” from electricity markets.… [Read more]

Municipal Debt and Congressional Hypocrisy

GOP Hypocrisy

Since the City of Detroit made history by declaring the largest municipal bankruptcy in the nation’s history, there has been much talk about credit ratings, debt burdens and the legalities of bankruptcy, which allows those who declare it to take time to restructure their financial obligations and, often, to repay less than what was previously owed.… [Read more]

How to Weaken Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform…One Bill at a Time

Dodd-Frank Act: How to weaken it

H.R. 1105, the Small Business Capital Access and Job Preservation Act, was introduced by Congressman Robert Hurt (R-Virginia). The purpose of the Act is to exempt advisers to certain private equity funds from the new registration requirements required by Title IV of the Dodd-Frank Act, the Wall Street reform act that is supposed to regulate the practices of Wall Street to prevent another financial crisis. … [Read more]

Fifty years and counting for paycheck fairness

pay check fairness?

Fifty years ago, President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act of 1963 as part of his New Frontier program. The federal law amended the Fair Labor Standards Act that was directed at abolishing wage disparity based on gender.

Today, 50 years to the day, President Obama marked the anniversary of the Equal Pay Act.… [Read more]

Flogging the Taxman Redux


Congressional Republicans are trying to keep alleged White House “scandals” simmering well past al dente doneness. As facts unfold, it’s more like vainly trying to keep a wave upon the sandy beach.

Let’s remember last year’s GOP presidential primaries. Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) made a seemingly intoxicated tirade about a tax return the size of a postcard.… [Read more]

The next big financial bubble can be popped.

Senator Elizabeth Warren

Education can be an individual’s or a nation’s greatest investment. We talk about the disparity between the  public education provided to students with fewer economic resources and those who have greater financial means. We also talk about gender differences in that young women are often steered away from  Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields of study.… [Read more]


Immoral Budget Cuts

Religious leaders have called it immoral; some have even suggested that Jesus himself would oppose it. Various leaders of the Republican party have opposed it and even David Stockman, Ronald Reagan’s budget director, called it a fairy tale. Many on the left have referred to it as ‘austerity on steroids.’

What has all of these different people so upset?… [Read more]

Budget Bargaining

Obama Budget

Many of us are watching the next move in the political game of financial chess. Today, President Obama will submit his long-awaited budget proposal. Keeping focus on deficit reduction in the face of a slowly recovering economy and unemployment figures that hover in the upper end of the 7 percent level, the president’s proposal includes $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade, which is expected to bring in total deficit savings to $4.3 trillion.… [Read more]

Can anyone imagine Congress taking a pay cut?


President Obama’s salary and pension may be exempt from sequestered cuts but that hasn’t stopped him from taking the same cut that other federal employees are being subjected to due to budget sequestration. Today, it was announced that the POTUS plans to return 5% of his $400,000 annual salary in response to and in support of federal workers who are going to be furloughed.… [Read more]

Paid Sick Leave: Approved.

Paid Sick Leave Deal Made

A few days ago, the issue of earned sick days for workers was in the news. Its was noted that, for example, more than a million residents of New York who do not have paid sick days and that suffering an illness means losing out on a pay check at best and a job at worst. … [Read more]

Earned Sick Days for Workers – Will the idea catch on?

Christine Quinn

Legacies. If or when elected officials think about how their constituents will remember them once they’re out of office, what thoughts cross their minds? Do they think about how they could have left their jurisdictions better than they found them? Do they give thought to how they could have reached back a little bit more to help those who were most in need of their support?… [Read more]