The Invisible Plight of Homelessness In The Middle Class

photo of tent city in Santa Ana (Orange County, California)

by Dena Leichnitz   The blight of homelessness is hitting the middle class.  WE THINK OF HOMELESSNESS as a problem of poverty, but every year in California due to wildfires, homelessness hits the middle class. Homes burn down and people lose everything. Of course, that is not the only way people end up homeless; sickness in the family and the piling medical bills can drive them to the streets. Some lose their jobs like David Raether, (video below), and in California especially, losing your job can be an one way…

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The Economics Quarterly: 2018Q1

bulls and bears

by Wes Walker via libertyisftw.org GDP GROWTH DATA The preliminary estimate for the first quarter of 2018 was 2.3%, which extended the period of time the GDP growth rate has been 2.0% or higher to over a year. The final growth figure for the fourth quarter of 2017 was 2.9%. There has not been a negative GDP growth rate since the first quarter of 2014. GDP Growth Rate (1/1/2002-05/4/2018) INFLATION RATE DATA The inflation rate rose to 2.4% in March, the seventh month with an inflation rate above 2%. The…

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Here’s The Problem With Trump’s Trade War: Trade Deficits Aren’t Necessarily Bad

WPA poster titled First Foreign Trade Zone - artist Jack Rivolta. Produced 1937 during New Deal trade initiative.

by Tony Wyman Trade War Between Trump And Credible Economists You could hit an imported Chinese golf ball into a room full of economists and have a pretty good chance of not hitting one who agrees with President Trump‘s trade kerfuffle with China.  Why?  Because, unlike the president, most economists think trade deficits aren’t a bad thing.  In fact, some even think they are good. How can that be?  Doesn’t it make sense that we are losing against China if they are selling us more than we are selling them? …

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Trump’s New Tariffs Set To Drive Up Cost Of Living

By Lynda Work Canadian lumber tariffs imposed in 2017 are already having an impact on the housing and paper industries and the new steel tariffs will make the crunch even worse. Home prices are set to be driven up making it difficult for young buyers and even the middle-class buyer to purchase a property. The steel tariffs tack on 25 percent to steel, which is used in home foundations, floors and high-rise construction, and 10 percent for aluminum from foreign suppliers. The Trump administration levied tariffs of more than 20…

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Trade Wars: Rarely Won And Costly To Americans

Illustration of ocean cargo and the words, "Trade War"

by Lynda Bryant-Work “Trade wars are good, and easy to win.” So President Trump tweeted after announcing the United States would impose steep tariffs on imported. This after already imposing other tariffs that are directly affecting other American businesses and industry. But the Great Depression years would indicate that nothing could be farther from the truth. Trade wars are bad – call it the tariff trickle-down theory –  like real wars, they hurt people. Those who remember the last trade war or have even read about it know the damage…

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Omnibus Spending Bills Avoid Meaningful Debate and Solutions

photo of American flag laid out flat and stacks of $100 bills piled on top of it

by Lynda Bryant-Work The passage of the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill as signed yesterday by Donald Trump represents a shortcut to everything that is wrong with Washington, D.C. By avoiding any semblance of the regular order budget process in favor of funding by crisis and failing to perform an important function: oversight. Congress opted instead for wasteful, inefficient and inappropriate funding of tens of billions of dollars in additional funding, with no meaningful reforms. In the simplest of terms, the omnibus is a spending bill that collects ALL the appropriation…

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Rex Tillerson Dumped By Trump For Not Following Trump’s Line On Russia

photo of now former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at a foreign diplomatic mission.

by Richard Cameron   Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was fired this morning (Tuesday) by Donald Trump.  Trump’s manner of communicating the dismissal was via Twitter around 8:44 a.m. Eastern Time.       . Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job! Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 13, 2018 The State Department issued…

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The Economy in Context

by Wes Walker via libertyisftw.org The most recent job numbers released on March 9th by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, represented a strong preliminary number for February that, should they hold, could be a solid piece of good economic news since the tax reform bill passed last year. It remains likely that the numbers will not survive the tariffs put into place last week, assuming they aren’t revised downward next month, and, despite the bump in the stock market from the positive preliminary jobs numbers, it’s important to keep in…

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Tariffs – Retuning Another Engine that isn’t Broken

By Janice Barlow “Many people want the government to protect the consumer. A much more urgent problem is to protect the consumer from the government” – Milton Friedman   AS OUR NATION ROLLS ALONG, it seems that not a day goes by without some new drama hitting the airwaves from Washington. If it isn’t someone being fired or resigning, it’s a knee-jerk reaction to a horrific event, like modifying the Second Amendment because of a school shooting in Parkland, Florida, or a tweet-storm from the Commander-in-Chief about North Korea. We…

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Trump’s Self-Destructive Nature Is Why His Administration Was Doomed From The Start

by Tony Wyman We have witnessed this month the spiralling descent of a presidency doomed from the start.  The media proclaimed recent revelations and departures to be “astounding” and “shocking,” but they are neither. Instead, what they are is inevitable.  From the start of his campaign for the presidency, Donald Trump made it abundantly clear that he was little more than a political vandal, a man intent upon creating as much conflict, discord and destruction as possible, and that he would leave in his wake lives wrecked and institutions weakened,…

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