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Episode 16: We Demand Real Tax Reform!

Republicans in Congress say they want tax reform, but tax cuts for the rich are what they’re really pursuing. Back by popular demand, Chye-Ching Huang joins the beginning and end of the show to unpack what the GOP is trying to do, share some music from New Zealand, and crack a solid joke. Jared and Ben also interview Vanessa Williamson and Kimberly Clausing, who talk about the research on Americans’ views of taxes and what real tax reform would look like. Musical Interlude: “History Never...


Episode 15: Guaranteeing Everyone a Job

In advance of Labor Day, Sandy Darity, Darrick Hamilton, and Mark Paul join Jared and Ben to talk about their bold proposal to transform the labor market: a federal job guarantee. It would have the potential to reap huge rewards in terms of eliminating involuntary unemployment, reducing poverty, improving job quality, and allocating resources to address national needs. Musical Interlude: “Done Changed My Way of Living” by Taj Mahal https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqEZXra3keU Ben’s Podcast...


Episode 14: Walking and Chewing (Sugarless) Gum on Health Care

Health care redux! Ben and Jared revisit the health care debate with Sarah Lueck and Jon Walker, exploring where things stand, where they might go next, and the role of “path dependency.” Plus, some classic American poetry from Chuck Berry. Jon's proposal for transitioning to a single-payer health care system ("Medical Insurance and Care for All: A National Single-Payer Bill"): https://shadowproof.com/2017/07/24/medical-insurance-care-national-single-payer-bill-mica/ Sarah's recent blog on...


Episode 13: The Long-Run Benefits of Income Support

In Jared’s first episode back from China, he and Ben interview Arloc Sherman and Tazra Mitchell about the effectiveness of safety net programs. As Arloc and Tazra describe, programs like SNAP (formerly called food stamps) and the Earned Income Tax Credit, which provide poor families with income assistance, carry both near-term and long-term benefits for children in the families that receive them. Arloc and Tazra’s paper (“Economic Security Programs Help Low-Income Children Succeed Over...


Episode 12: Reducing Inequality at the Top

Few people deny inequality’s existence anymore, but its nature and causes are still hotly debated. Along with Richard Reeves and Marshall Steinbaum, Ben and Jared explore a couple theories of what’s driving income and wealth concentration among the rich and some policies that could potentially curb it.


Episode 8: The Raise the Wage Act of 2017

Senators Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Patty Murray (D-WA) and Representatives Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Keith Ellison (D-MN) recently announced their plan to introduce a bill that would raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024. The bill would also phase out the subminimum wages for tipped workers and workers with disabilities and the training wage for teenagers. Heidi Shierholz joins Jared and Ben to discuss the characteristics of the workers who would benefit from the increase, how...


Episode 7: The Many Cases for Inclusive Immigration Policy

Xenophobic rhetoric is no match for the expertise of Erica Williams and Meg Wiehe, who join Jared and Ben to discuss the economic and fiscal contributions of immigrants and explain why inclusive immigration policies, in addition to being a moral imperative, would benefit cities and states. Reports Discussed: “Undocumented Immigrants’ State & Local Tax Contributions” by Lisa Christenson Gee, Matthew Gardner, Misha E. Hill, and Meg Wiehe http://www.itep.org/pdf/immigration2017.pdf “For...


Episode 6: Trade and Trump

After Ben and Jared chat briefly about current events, Public Citizen’s Lori Wallach gives a history of trade deals in the United States and an overview of trade dynamics in the Trump Administration. In the episode’s second interview, Chad Bown from the Peterson Institute for International Economics offers context for trade deal components Jared and Ben sometimes worry about. Musical Interlude: “Starting Over” by the Frank Morgan All Stars https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANs6TbtWjUk


Episode 5: Health Care, the Economy, and Republicans’ Terrible Obamacare Replacement Plan

Millions of people lose health coverage. The rich get millions of dollars in tax cuts. It sounds like a scary movie, but it’s actually the Republican health care bill. Chye-Ching Huang and Shelby Gonzales join Jared and Ben to discuss. Musical Interlude: “Hey Now” by Red Garland https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apirVjuTAWI


Episode 4: What Does the Labor Department Do, Anyway?

Judy Conti from the National Employment Law Project (an advocacy organization whose Board Jared chairs) joins Jared and Ben to discuss the first Trump Labor Secretary nominee who had to be withdrawn, the critical role the Department of Labor can play in the fight for economic justice, and how advocates can help advance workers’ rights in the coming months and years. Musical Interlude: “Serenade in D Major” by Mozart https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MS5YCVdPxCk


Episode 3: Assessing the Labor Market and Getting to Full Employment

After Jared and Ben give an overview of what full employment is and why it’s important, Slate’s Jordan Weissmann joins them to discuss some of the Trump Administration’s comments about the labor market and how policymakers should think about increasing employment opportunities for people. Musical Interlude: “Driftin’” by Herbie Hancock https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7wcYrx4d3Jg Jared’s Reading Recommendation: “Why I Voted to Keep Rates Steady” by Neel Kashkari...


Episode 2: Why We Need to Block Block Grants

Donna Pavetti holds forth on lessons from the failed Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant while Hannah Katch and Stacy Dean explain why block granting Medicaid and SNAP (food stamps)would harm both low-income people and the broader economy.


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