Tag Archives: poverty

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 […]

We Only Resent Inequality When It’s Rigged

In addition to his exemplary work as a Senior Fellow for the Cato Institute, Johan Norberg narrates some great videos for Free to Choose Media. Here are some that caught my eye. The foolish and counterproductive War on Drugs .punish the rich

A grim consequence of Cuban communism.

The real lesson to learn from Sweden. But my favorite video, which I shared back in January, is his concise explanation of why policy makers should focus on fighting poverty rather than reducing inequality. I’m posting it again to set the stage for a discussion on inequality and fairness. Now let’s […]

A Tale of Two Americas: The High Costs of Being Poor in a Rich Land


Despite the long-held belief that high levels of inequality in the US signal future opportunity, a number of studies suggest that this is no longer the reality. This column examines trends in inequality from the perspective of well-being and focuses on non-economic aspects of welfare, including hope. The results reveal stark differences across people, races, and places in the US. Poor minorities – and blacks in particular – are much more hopeful than poor whites, while urban places are more hopeful than are rural ones, as are places with higher levels of diversity.

The US is as divided as […]

This is Not Your Parents’ Economy

Illustration: Jonathan Bartlett This is Not Your Parents’ Economy

Inequality is putting the American Dream in peril.

By Rebecca Beyer M elissa Agnew lives in Charlotte, N.C., a city that ranks high on affordability scales. It’s said to be one of the most desirable places to purchase a home, and a top destination for job-seeking college graduates and newlyweds.But Agnew doesn’t own a home or have a college degree. She went through a painful divorce several years ago, and, even though she was working at the time, the city was anything but affordable for her when she suddenly became […]

Meet Camille Busette, new director of the Race, Place, and Economic Mobility Initiative

Camille Busette, Senior Fellow, Director of Place, Race, and Economic Mobility

Camille Busette I’m Camille Busette , I’m a senior fellow in Governance Studies and I head up the new Race, Place, and Economic Mobility initiative here at Brookings.

Q: Where did you grow up?

A: I grew up in a variety of places actually, which I think has made me very much who I am. I was born in Los Angeles. I grew up in New York City, and then toward the end of high school my family moved to Sacramento, California where I finished up high school; and then I went on to University of California, Berkeley for […]

Our Mission

We are an organization dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity so people can live to their full potential. Established and led by Laurene Powell Jobs, we center our work on education, immigration reform, the environment, and other social justice initiatives. We use a wide range of tools and strategies—partnering with entrepreneurs and experts, parents and policymakers, advocates and administrators—to develop and execute innovative solutions that will spur change and promote equality.

Our People In one soul, in your soul, there are resources for the world.

With those startling words, Ralph Waldo Emerson enlarged our conception of the value of […]

Inequality persists among Yukoners, report confirms

When it comes to indicators such as employment, income, and voter turnout, the Yukon outperformed the other territories, and in some cases Canada overall, in a study of social outcomes by the Conference Board of Canada.

But within the territory, inequality persists between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

The Canadian economics and public policy think tank looked at a variety of indicators to evaluate equity and upward mobility in the territories, including poverty, gender and racial wage gaps, crime and suicide rates, and civic engagement.The territories scored below the national average on poverty, crime and income distribution, but performed decently on life […]

A tale of two Canadas: Where you grew up affects your income in adulthood

In Canada, geography is destiny: Your financial future, to a surprisingly large degree, depends on the place in Canada where you happen to grow up.

That reality is revealed on this map and our accompanying set of interactive graphics, produced using a new analysis of millions of Canadians’ income data , the result of years of work by economist Miles Corak.

His study charts intergenerational economic mobility – that is, the chance that people who spent their childhood in that location ended up, as adults, higher on the income and economic-status ranking than their parents. If a region is bright green, […]

A high-stakes birth lottery in the U.S., Stanford researchers say

Two woman and a young boy at the family

A new study by Stanford researchers describes how American children born into high-income families can expect far greater earnings and income over their lifetimes than children born into low-income families. This photo from 2013 shows Renee Adams, left, posing with her mother Irene Salyers and son Joseph, 4, at their produce stand in Council, Va. According to a new study by Stanford researchers, children born into low-income families are likely to earn far less during their lifetimes than children born into families with higher incomes. (Image credit: AP Photo/Debra McCown) When one wins the “birth lottery” by being born […]

Where the American Dream Lives and Dies

Rags-to-riches stories , like Benjamin Franklin’s , have always captured the American imagination. They feed the narrative of the American Dream—that from humble beginnings, a scrappy, hardworking person can become prosperous, and afford opportunities his or her parents did not have. Through booms and recessions, people have bought into this myth .

The problem is: The American Dream lives and dies at the local level. Stanford* economist Raj Chetty has shown that conditions in our neighborhoods are really what shape our ability to escape poverty and determine if we will fare better than our parents. A new analysis by the […]