The Editors

Recent Articles

Looking Backward

Robert Kuttner has been unmasking the fallacies of neoliberalism for decades. The following are a few excerpts: The time is overdue to reclaim liberalism, without prefixes, qualifiers, or apologies. My neoliberal friends are right to ask hard questions and to search for creative new approaches. We can certainly debate which strategies make most sense. But that effort needs to begin with a set of clear convictions and a sense of political realism. Liberalism will not gain in persuasiveness by abandoning its past achievements, its key constituencies, or its core ideas. — The Poverty of Neoliberalism , 1990 The market solution does not moot politics. It only alters the dynamics of influence and the mix of winners and losers. The attempt to relegate economic issues to "nonpolitical" bodies, such as the Federal Reserve, does not rise above politics either. It only removes key financial decisions from popular debate to financial elites, and lets others take the political blame. .....

Credit Facts and Fallacies

T he following information was culled from an interview with Ricki Lowitz, a former fellow at the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., and executive director of Working Credit, a nonprofit organization that offers credit-building education and counseling in seven states. FALLACY: Medical collections don’t hurt your credit score as other collections do. FACT: While this is changing with FICO 9, a new credit-scoring model, the most widely used credit scores continue to count medical collections against your score just like any other collection. FALLACY: No credit score is better than a bad credit history. FACT: Lack of a credit score is just as damaging as a bad credit score. “If you have no score,” Lowitz said, “it’s like having a terrible score, because whenever you need to do something like borrow money you will pay the highest interest rates for everything.” FALLACY: You need to pay a credit repair company to fix your credit. FACT: You can take...

Debate: Making American Democracy Representative

Two knowledgeable commentators respond to Benjamin Page & Martin Gilens’s argument in the Prospect for ranked-choice voting, proportional representation, and the abolition of primaries.

starr_headshot.jpg I n their article in the Fall 2018 issue of The American Prospect , “ Making American Democracy Representative ,” Benjamin I. Page and Martin Gilens argue that the way we vote for Congress has contributed to a highly polarized and unrepresentative government. In place of the current system, they call for three reforms to elections for the U.S. House of Representatives: ranked-choice voting, the abolition of primaries, and proportional representation in multi-member districts. This is a big, long-term agenda. Do Page and Gilens have the right ideas about how to reform voting? And do they have their priorities right? Two commentators address these questions. Drew Penrose is the legal and policy director of FairVote. Miles Rapoport is a long-time democracy advocate who served as Connecticut’s secretary of state and president of both Dēmos and Common Cause. He is the Senior Practice Fellow in American Democracy at the Ash Center of the Kennedy...

Event: On the Global Crisis of Democracy

Cal Sport Media via AP Images
On October 5 and 6, the Albert Shanker Institute is hosting a conference, co-sponsored by the Prospect and other progressive publications and organizations, on the global crisis of democracy. Intellectuals and activists from the United States, China, South Africa, Germany, Israel, Hungary, and Austria will discuss the rise of the nationalist-populist right, the growth of economic inequality and the shrinking legitimacy of political institutions, the rise of nativism and racism, and how best to counter these threats to democracy and decency. Prospect editors Bob Kuttner and Harold Meyerson are among the speakers. THE CRISIS OF DEMOCRACY Thursday, Oct. 5, 3:00 p.m. to Friday, Oct. 6, 5:00 p.m. Washington Court Hotel, Atrium Ballroom 525 New Jersey Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001 The conference is free, registration is required. REGISTER HERE More information about the conference is available here .

The White Working Class

An American, and a Democratic, dilemma

AP Photo/Eric Gay
wwc_homepage_logo-3.jpg With our partners at The Democratic Strategist , The American Prospect is co-publishing this series of articles on one of the most contentious topics in today’s political discourse, and one of progressives’ and the Democratic Party’s most vexing problems: the white working class (WWC). The need for such a discussion is both obvious and twofold. First, the white working class—the bedrock of the long-vanished New Deal Coalition—has largely and increasingly been abandoning the Democratic Party, even when that has meant voting against some of its economic interests. While Hillary Clinton’s loss of such presumably blue-wall states as Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania dramatized the extent of the Democrats’ problem, it was also just the latest stage of an epochal shift. Wisconsin, after all, has a wall-to-wall reactionary state government, with Scott Walker having won three elections placing and then keeping him in the...