Working and Living in the Shadow of Economic Fragility
Not since the Great Depression of the 1930s has the United States faced such a prolonged period of high unemployment and underemployment. Recovery from the "Great Recession" that began in 2008 has been slow, and is projected to remain sluggish over the next several years, while another shock to the global economy could erase the meager gains of the past months. Economic conditions remain fragile and employment challenges show no sign of letting up. With persistently high unemployment and underemployment-and growing inequality in wages-an increasing number of American families are no longer adequately supported by employment income and basic benefits. Many older workers have "retired" before they are ready, and many young workers cannot find a foothold in the job market. A silent crisis is underway, with huge social and economic costs for the nation.
Working and Living in the Shadow of Economic Fragility examines the current state of employment through historical, macroeconomic, cultural, sociological and policy lenses, in order to address fundamental questions about the role and value of work in America today. The book offers suggestions for how to address the short- and long-term challenges of rebuilding a society of opportunity with meaningful and sustaining jobs as the foundation of the American middle-class.
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1 The Continuing Unemployment Crisis Causes Cures and Questions for Further Study
2 Too Much Spending or Too Little Income? The Macroeconomics of Household Spending and Debt in the Consumer Age
3 Financial Fragility Medical Problems and the Bankruptcy System
4 The Affordable Care Act and LowWage Workers
5 How Will Employers Respond to National Health Reform? Lessons from the 2006 Reform Initiative in Massachusetts
6 Unionism Law and the Collective Struggle for Economic Justice
7 The Limits of Voluntary Employer Action for Improving LowLevel Jobs
8 Economic Security and the American Dream
9 Guardianship and the New Gilded Age Insular Politics and the Perils of Elite Rule
10 Keep Government out of My Medicare The Search for Popular Support of Taxes and Social Spending
11 A Model of American Inequality Opportunity and Political Power
12 The Challenge of Creating Good Jobs
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