American Promise Archive

The War On Poverty

“The official poverty rate in the United States, defined as lacking resources for life's basic needs, was 19% in 1964. It had fallen to 12.1% by 1969, the year Johnson left office. Last year, it stood at 15%.” -- USA Today. ... What would a victory in the War on Poverty look like? ...
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Upward Mobility

“Switzerland will decide on June 5 whether to pay its citizens a basic income to replace welfare benefits … Economists like it because unlike welfare benefits, basic income does not phase out if people work. As a result, there is no abrupt disincentive at various income levels the way there...
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It’s The Economy, Stupid . . .

By James Schaefer. House Budget Chairman Tom Price just released his draft for the new federal budget (WSJ, Opinion: The GOP's Budget Test, March 18, 2015).  It sets a blueprint for the federal budget in the coming fiscal year, and will reduce federal spending by $5.5 trillion over the coming decade.  If...
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Unlimited Possibilities

By John Lumbard, CFA. In 1972 the Club of Rome, a global think tank formed by “scientists, economists, heads of state, UN bureaucrats, high-level politicians and government officials” caused an international sensation with the publication of The Limits to Growth, which predicted that population growth and economic growth would exhaust all...
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Opportunity

By John Lumbard. It’s springtime, and investor doubts and fears are in full bloom.  Profit margins are too high, unemployment is too high, the Fed is printing too much money, China’s growth is slowing, Europe is never, ever going to get out of its funk, and we don’t have high speed...
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Young In America

By John Lumbard. According to The Daily Kos, 27% of recent college graduates (ages 21 to 24) are either unemployed or underemployed.  The Democratic Underground says that recent college graduates earn $3,200 less than they did 13 years ago.  Of course, it’s not just college graduates;  low starting salaries and meager...
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On Taxes and Growth

By James Schaefer. The U.K.'s Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, wrote an op-ed recently in the Wall Street Journal ("How Britain Returned to Growth", December 17, 2013), on Britain's changes to their tax rates and spending as a means of stimulating growth of the British economy.  The results were dramatic. They...
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The Bipartisan Debt Machine

By John Lumbard. Below you'll find the text of a speech that Senator Barack Obama gave in the Senate in March of 2006 (you want page S2237, if you'd rather read it there) regarding our debt and deficits---which at the time were growing rapidly under President Bush.  Now they're growing rapidly...
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Non-Partisan

By John Lumbard, CFA. When we launched this blog in January of 2010 the federal debt stood at $12 trillion.  The debt owed to the public (not including, that is, the US Treasury bonds held in the Social Security and Medicare trust funds---which Congress doesn't have to pay interest on or...
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Another Path To Solvency

By John Lumbard. The legislatures of seventeen states have recently passed a bill calling for a constitutional convention that would be focused solely on the drafting of a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.  Each of these bills explicitly states that it will be declared null and void if the Supreme...
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