40 percent of American college students go to community colleges. And among the poorest 40 percent of Americans, only 12 percent of young people born in the 1980s earned a bachelor’s degree by age 25

A college degree is not optional for most good jobs in today’s economy, so more and more students from low-income backgrounds are pursuing higher education, and they are most likely to end up at community colleges. Despite President Trump’s recent comments that “We do not know what a ‘community college’ means,” these institutions comprise more than 40 percent of the country’s undergraduate …

Ranked Choice Voting: One reform to save America

By David Brooks, 1 June 2018 NYTimes.com There are a bunch of different ways to do democracy. In Western Europe, most countries have proportional representation and a lot of different parties representing voter interests. In this country we’ve gone with a two-party system and winner-take-all elections. During the middle of the 20th century, it seemed like we’d chosen the right …

Basic US political reform

Americans elected Trump under the terms set forth in the Constitution. Americans created the Electoral College, which allows a candidate with a minority of popular votes to become president. Americans were those who gerrymandered electoral districts to rig them in favor of a given political party. The Supreme Court issued the infamous Citizens United decision that allows corporate financing of candidates for …

Social Housing for the US: Homes for All

By Jimmy Tobias, the Nation, 2018 These developments could not be bought or sold, nor could landlords raise the rents at will, so they remained consistently affordable. However, this made them a threat to the real-estate industry. David Walsh, a US senator at the time, complained that the PWA-constructed houses “in New York, Cleveland, and Boston and elsewhere are really in …

How a Small City Is Taking on the Big Power of Dark Money: Dispatches from the Urban Resistance

By Jimmy Tobiasm 30 March 2018, The Nation Voters enter and exit from their polling station early, November 8, 2016, in Tempe, Arizona. (AP Photo / Matt York) Late in January, a small army of right-wing oligarchs and political operatives gathered in Southern California for the Koch Network’s annual winter seminar. They were there to learn about the network’s plans for the 2018 midterm …

Deliberative democracy in action delivers a success

Illustration by Mark Long In all the excitement of what happened in Ireland’s referendum on abortion, we should not lose sight of what did not happen. A vote on an emotive subject was not subverted. The tactics that have been so successful for the right and the far right in the UK, the US, Hungary and elsewhere did not work. …

Seattle wins $275 per person tax on companies making over $200 million, to address homelessness

Friday, May 25, 2018, by Sonali Kolhatkar on Truthdig, Amazon Battles Seattle—and Loses: In the game of chicken between democracy and corporatism, Seattle demonstrated that people power can prevail . A “Pay Your Fair Share” projection created by the Neighborhood Action Coalition & Transit Riders Union to support the Seattle head tax appears in this May 10 photo. (Photo: Flickr / Jennifer Durham, Backbone Campaign, CC …

Takings Will Coloradans vote away their peaches and plums? Their bees?

  A bee pollinating an apple blossom. Within six months, the European Union will ban all outdoor use of the class of pesticides known as neonicotiniods. Neonics (for short) have been linked to bee kills, are toxic to birds, and even threaten the health of aquatic ecosystems. While neonics are under attack from environmental activists in the US as well, anti-regulatory ideology at the Federal level …

How To Steal The Populists’ Clothes: Be Bold, Signal Your Goals, Offer Transformation, Learn What People Want

By Ngaire Woods, Social Europe, 19 April 2018 Ngaire Woods “Don’t get mad, get even.” That aphorism needs to become the new norm in democratic politics across Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa. Rather than complaining about populist successes, established political parties should take a page from the populist playbook. Three lessons, in particular, cry out for attention. The first lesson is …

Guaranteeing a job and a living wage to every American: young people are frustrated by a system whose cracks were etched into place by preceding generations, but have only fully metastasized for theirs

April 23, 2018 by Common Dreams Embracing ‘the Sort of Bold Thinking We Need,’ Sanders to Introduce Plan to Guarantee Every American a Job “Proponents trace the idea back to the New Deal Era, when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt pitched a ‘Second Bill of Rights’ to Congress in 1944. First on the list: the ‘right to a useful and remunerative job.’” By Jake Johnson, …