Sunday, May 24, 2015

Betting The Farm On A Lie

Few things sell ideas in American politics like a good farm story.

Just ask Representative Dave Reichert. He held a hearing recently on the impact of the estate tax on farms and small businesses.

An outspoken critic of the tax, Reichert was inspired by a recent story featuring the McBrides — an old farming family from the town of Issaquah in his suburban Seattle district.

The McBrides first got noticed over the summer, when The Seattle Times reported that they had sold the last farm in Issaquah, a sign of the changing economy and demographics of the community.

The McBride family had farmed the land for over a hundred years and over the course of six generations.…

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Q & A: How The Great Recession Affected Children

By Teresa Wiltz, Stateline.org (TNS)

WASHINGTON — Five years after the Great Recession ended, many Americans are still reeling from its effects. Perhaps no group was harmed more by the downturn than children.

Roughly two million more children live in poverty today than at the start of the recession, according to a new study by First Focus, a bipartisan children’s advocacy group, and PolicyLab at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

The study analyzes four areas affecting children’s well-being: health, hunger, housing, abuse, and neglect. In most ways, children are worse off than they were in 2007, the beginning of the economic contraction.…

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The Student Debt Time Bomb

There’s a generational time bomb ticking — and the student debt crisis is the trip wire.

Adults under 35 disproportionately bear the brunt of escalating inequality.

America’s educated youth are graduating into an economy with stagnant wages and a torn safety net. Federal and state budget cuts, meanwhile, have spiked tuition costs and cut public services that aid young workers, such as transportation and affordable housing.

A rumble of legitimate discontent is mounting from the 40 million Americans saddled with student debt totaling $1.16 trillion — a number expected to increase to $2 trillion by 2022. College debt now touches 1 in 5 U.S.

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