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China's Looming Class Struggle

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Westerners tend to identify China’s coming political crisis with developments such as the brave, educated, and often English-speaking protests in Hong Kong. Although they undoubtably pose an annoyance to Xi Jinping’s regime, the real existential challenge to the regime derives not from China’s middle orders but from the very classes that gave birth to the Communist regime.  read more »

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Defending Assisted Living As a Long Term Care Option

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Chances are at some point in your life you have been turned off by a discourteous hotel receptionist, an indifferent server at a restaurant, or a poorly trained salesperson at a clothing store. As a result, we might complain to our friends or on social media – or possibly notify the management of our bad experience. We may take our business to competitors with the expectation of receiving better service. However, we would rarely indict all hotels, restaurants, and clothing stores as deficient and needing reform as a result.  read more »

Even Before the Blackouts, Most Californians Considered Leaving

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For virtually all of its history from statehood in 1850 to 2000, California was a magnet drawing households from the rest of the United States for better lives. Indeed, in a nation that had its "American Dream," California had its own "California Dream."  There was no Oregon dream, despite its mountains , seashore and proximity to California, nor was there a Maine or South Carolina dream.  read more »

On the State of Illinois

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Although there is a perception by some that the state of Illinois is in decline, the reality might not be quite so bad, at least at the moment. Estimates indicate that the population of Illinois has declined by about 1% since 2013. However, the population of the state is still larger than it was in 2000.  read more »

Los Angeles County Approves Plan to Sunset the California Economy - OpEd

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A California Regional Sustainability Plan for the 88 cities of Los Angeles County to be carbon neutral by 2050 includes a sunset to the oil and gas industry. That 220-page plan will also sunset the 5th largest economy in the world. Sunsetting, as used here, means bringing it to a slow and untimely death.  read more »

The Progressive Era Reform That Doomed Detroit

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About a month ago, I came across a paper via Twitter in which the authors, Michael Hankinson of the City University of New York and Asya Magazinnik of MIT, studied the impact of at-large and district representation in local government on the "trade-off between the efficient production of collective goods and the equitable distribution of costs."  read more »

Dreaming of an America Where Solutions Trump Ideology

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In the ever-intensifying battle between red and blue, the consultants, fixers and self-serving media thrive, but America suffers.

Now we seem destined to face a graphic battle of extremes between Donald Trump and Elizabeth Warren, two self-styled populists best suited to exacerbating polarization while both sides toss around charges of “treason” and embrace the idea of an inevitable civil war.  read more »

Middle Class Racism

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What do you picture when someone refers to the “Trump’s base”?  read more »

Down Payment Takes Half a Century in Vancouver: Report

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As a recently released Organization for International Cooperation and Development (OECD) noted, house prices have been generally rising far in excess of incomes in a number of nations (Under Pressure: The Squeezed Middle Class). OECD finds that these rapidly rising house prices have been a principal contributorto rising cost of living that has already resulted in economic reversals for the middle-class.  read more »

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