Violent Crime’s Toll on Economic Mobility


The sad fact is that American kids today may be the first generation who do not eclipse their parents’ economic status. In fact, Americans occupy two separate worlds when it comes to moving up the economic ladder. A small minority of us, anywhere from a fifth to a third who come from advantaged backgrounds, can expect economic mobility on par with any advanced nation. But, tragically, anywhere from two-thirds to 80 percent of Americans who are in less advantaged situations will see their economic prospects be as limited as those in the developing world. And it’s not just our […]

Law firm asks court to force Plaquemines to pay its share of $45 million BP settlement

Plaquemines, BP settle for $45 million in 2010 oil spill

A New Orleans law firm that represented Plaquemines Parish in its $45 million Deepwater Horizon oil spill damages settlement with BP has gone to federal court to demand its share of the settlement, which it says is $6.4 million. Plaquemines Parish officials responded with a request that the demand be transferred to a state court in the parish, but on Monday asked the federal judge to delay a hearing on the case indefinitely as both sides discuss a settlement.

The Plaquemines Parish Council unanimously voted in April 2011 to hire the New Orleans law firm of Martzell & Bickford and […]

We Love HGTV — But It Doesn’t Address This Growing Economic Inequality


When you think about it, HGTV’s widespread popularity among everyone — from Millennials to conservative Christians — isn’t actually all that surprising. With smash-hit shows like “House Hunters” and “Fixer Upper,” the channel feels like a blissed-out collage of pristine farmhouse sinks and eye-popping down-payments — an ode to the promise of inevitable upward mobility and property ownership. After all, owning a home has always been a central element of the American Dream — the belief that each generation can achieve a little more than the one that came before it (and with a more luxurious open-floor plan, of […]

Considering New Solution to Global Income Inequality

Image: Iker Velasquez Holds US Flag in Washington on May 18th. Source: The Associated Press.

Global income inequality has gotten a lot of attention in recent years. The gap between the world’s haves and have-nots is increasing; the persistent disadvantage that some individuals face violates the fundamental intuitions of fairness and justice.

High and sustained levels of inequality, especially inequality of opportunity, can significantly undermine individuals’ ability to achieve their potential and contribute to global development. Global instability, in the form of economic turmoil, natural disaster, and war, also disproportionately impacts individuals in developed countries and contributes to global inequality. Modified immigration policies, or even temporary work programs, would do more to reduce global inequality […]

We Love HGTV — But It Doesn’t Address This Growing Economic Inequality


With smash-hit shows like "House Hunters" and "Fixer Upper," the channel feels like a blissed-out collage of pristine farmhouse sinks and eye-popping down-payments — an ode to the promise of inevitable upward mobility and property ownership. After all, owning a home has always been a central element of the American Dream — the belief that each generation can achieve a little more than the one that came before it (and with a more luxurious open-floor plan, of course).

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But if HGTV taps into a deeply aspirational part of the American identity, regardless of political or religious difference, it also breezes […]

Economic mobility


There are many different ideas in the literature as to what constitutes a good mathematical measure of mobility, each with their own advantages and drawbacks. [1] [2]

Mobility may be between generations ("inter-generational") or within a person or groups lifetime ("intra-generational"). It may be "absolute" or "relative". [3]

Inter-generational mobility compares a person’s (or group’s) income to that of her/his/their parents. Intra-generational mobility, in contrast, refers to movement up or down over the course of a working career. [4] Absolute mobility involves widespread economic growth [3] and answers the question “To what extent do families improve their incomes over […]

Americans Can No Longer Expect Their Children To Do Better

vintage suburban family

Millennials will be the first generation of Americans since the 1940s to have less than a 50 percent chance of out-earning their parents. According to a new study based on decades of U.S. census and tax data, there has been a precipitous decline in generational earning ability since the Boomers were born with a 90 percent shot of climbing the economic ladder. This data, culled and parsed by Harvard and Stanford University researchers, suggests not only that the American reality has left behind the American Dream , but that the idea of generational progress may become damaging.

The story of […]

Inequality has a major impact on a country’s wellbeing. Why?

A labourer works on ground tiles outside a stadium in Shanghai January 16, 2007. REUTERS/Aly Song (CHINA) - RTR1L8VL

I’ve been in South Africa and the US recently. From geography to development both countries are, of course, very different. But they do share some similarities. Take inequality, for example. This issue – which is by no means limited to their shores – has become a deeply rooted feature of their social and economic landscapes, one that proven stubbornly resistant to attempted remedies.

Inequality has many invidious consequences – too many to list here. This is because it is one of the few issues that spans both the micro and macro. From the parents who can no longer be confident […]

How Civil Asset Forfeiture Reduces Economic Mobility

How Civil Asset Forfeiture Reduces Economic Mobility

Income mobility in the United States has stagnated, a fact that hurts the poor most of all. If President Trump wishes to keep his promises to help low-income Americans escape poverty, he should instruct his administration to jettison, rather than expand, non-criminal asset forfeiture.

Non-criminal asset forfeiture lets government agents seize Americans’ assets (cash, but also cars and even houses) on the mere suspicion that they were involved in a crime. Asset forfeiture is intended to deprive criminals of their ill-gotten gains, but frequently enables police to take the property of Americans who remain innocent in the eyes of the […]

SR Education Group Releases Reports of the 2017 Top and Most Affordable Online Colleges for Student Economic Mobility

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SR Education Group, a leading education research publisher founded in 2004, just released its findings regarding accredited online colleges and their economic mobility rates. The organization researched factors indicative of support for student economic mobility, and analyzed schools based on mobility rate data provided by the Equality of Opportunity Project. The results were compiled into a report of the 2017 Top Online Colleges for Student Economic Mobility and published to GuidetoOnlineSchools.com.

Schools were eligible for inclusion in this report if they had a mobility rate in the top 20 percent of schools offering 10 or more fully online degrees at […]