New Blog Post: The man whose story inspired BlacKkKlansman, on the complicated reality of black cops

New Blog Post: Todd VanDerWerff, The man whose story inspired BlacKkKlansman, on the complicated reality of black cops, Vox.com, August 17, 2018.

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News Coverage of Poverty: America’s prisoners are going on strike in at least 17 states

News Coverage: German Lopez, America’s prisoners are going on strike in at least 17 states, Vox.com, August 17, 2018.

“Incarcerated Americans are often forced to work for cents an hour. So they’re launching what could be their biggest protest ever.”

News Coverage of Poverty: New York City cracks down on Uber and other ride-hailing apps

News Coverage of Poverty: 

New Report: Examining Extreme and Deep Poverty in the United States

New Report: Jamie Hall & Robert Rector, Examining Extreme and Deep Poverty in the United States, Heritage.org, February 20, 2018.

News Coverage of Poverty: Why Paid Sick Leave Is Important for Your Financial (and Physical) Health

News Coverage of Poverty: Susannah Snider, Why Paid Sick Leave Is Important for Your Financial (and Physical) Health, USNews.com, August 9, 2018.

 

News Coverage: Fixing Public Housing: A Day Inside a $32 Billion Problem

ny housing projectNews Coverage: Luis Ferré-Sadurní, Fixing Public Housing: A Day Inside a $32 Billion Problem, NYTimes.com, July 26, 2018. “The agency faces a daunting backlog of more than 170,000 open work orders for repairs, almost double the number housing officials say they can actually manage.”

New Blog Post: Betsy DeVos’s summer home deserves a special place in McMansion Hell

New Blog Post: Kate Wagner, Betsy DeVos’s summer home deserves a special place in McMansion Hell, Vox.com, August 6, 2018.

New Article: Federalism as a Safeguard of Progressive Taxation

New Article: Daniel Jacob Hemel, Federalism as a Safeguard of Progressive Taxation, (March 30, 2017). 93 New York University Law Review 1 (2018); U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 633; University of Chicago Coase-Sandor Institute for Law & Economics Research Paper No. 816. Abstract below:

This Article considers the distributional consequences of the Supreme Court’s federalism jurisprudence over the past quarter century, focusing specifically on the anti-commandeering, anti-coercion, and state sovereign immunity doctrines. The first of these doctrines prevents Congress from compelling the states to administer federal programs; the second prevents Congress from achieving the same result through offers that for practical purposes the states cannot refuse; the third prohibits Congress from abrogating state sovereign immunity outside a limited class of cases. These doctrines vest the states with valuable entitlements and allow the states to sell those entitlements back to Congress for a price. In this respect, the doctrines have an intergovernmental distributional effect, shifting wealth from the federal government to the states.

The distributional consequences of the anti-commandeering, anti-coercion, and state sovereign immunity doctrines are not purely intergovernmental, however. The doctrines also have potential implications for the distribution of wealth across individuals and households. By forcing Congress to bear a larger share of the costs of federal programs, and by shifting some of the costs of liability-imposing statutes from the states to Congress, these doctrines allow the states to raise less revenue and compel Congress to raise more. For a number of historical as well as structural reasons, the federal tax system is dramatically more progressive than even the most progressive state tax systems, and so the reallocation of fiscal responsibility resulting from these federalism doctrines causes more revenue raising to occur via the more progressive system. The likely net effect is a shift in wealth from higher-income households (who bear a larger share of the federal tax burden) to lower- and middle-income households (who would have borne a larger share of the burden of state taxes).

This conclusion comes with a number of caveats. The distributional consequences of the Supreme Court’s federalism doctrines may be moderated—or magnified—by differences in federal and state spending priorities. Moreover, the doctrines may affect the size of government as well as the allocation of fiscal responsibility across levels of government (though the net effect on government size is ambiguous). And the doctrines may have distributional consequences that are not only interpersonal, but also intergenerational. What seems clear from the analysis in this Article is that federalism doctrines affect the distribution of income and wealth in subtle and sometimes unexpected ways, and that a comprehensive understanding of wealth inequality in the United States requires careful attention to key features of our fiscal constitution.

News Coverage: What is Prison Abolition?

News Coverage: John Washington, What is Prison Abolition? TheNation.com, July 31, 2018.

The movement that is trying to think beyond prisons as a tool to solve society’s problems.

News Coverage: Internal Documents Show How Trump Administration Misled Public on Poverty

News Coverage: Amy MacKinnon, Robbie Gramer, & Simon Ostrovsky, Internal Documents Show How Trump Administration Misled Public on Poverty, ForeignPolicy.com, August 2, 2018.