Russell Simmons: 'Every Single One' Of My Employees Pays More Taxes Than Me

Famed investor Warren Buffett and Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons have at least one thing in common: They both want the U.S. government to raise their taxes.

"All my employees -- every single one -- paid more taxes than I did," Simmons told MSNBC's Martin Bashir on Thursday in a segment highlighted by Think Progress. "We need to make the rich pay their fair share."

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Less money, less marriage

Although the Pew research shows “no significant differences by education or income in the desire to get married,” the less money a male has, the less likely he will actually marry.

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Alabama Cannot Face Its History

The book chronicles the vast and brutal convict leasing system, which became nearly indistinguishable from antebellum slavery as it grew. In this system, people, in almost all cases black, were arrested by local law enforcement, often on the flimsiest of charges, and forced to labor on the cotton farms of wealthy planters or in the coal mines of corporations to pay off their criminal penalties. Though convict leasing occurred across the South, the book focuses on Alabama.

Mr. Melvin never received the book. According to his lawsuit, he was told by an official at Kilby that the book was “too incendiary” and “too provocative,” and was ordered to have it sent back at his own expense.

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Illegal Marijuana Arrests?

Commissioner Raymond Kelly of the New York Police Department came forthwith too little, too late when he issued a memo directing officers not to arrest people caught with small amounts of marijuana unless the drug is in plain public view. A 1977 law decriminalized minor possession, yet tens of thousands are arrested every year.

In 2010, more than 50,000 people were arrested for possession of marijuana; a vast majority of them were racial minorities and male. Civil rights lawyers say that many of them were stopped as part of the Police Department’s broad stop-and-frisk practice and were arrested after officers told them to empty their pockets, which brought the drugs into open view.

Commissioner Kelly’s memo now makes clear that displaying the drug must be an “activity undertaken of the subject’s own volition” and that individuals may not be charged with violating the law if the marijuana “was disclosed to public view at an officer’s direction.”

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All workers—including black youth—benefit from a tight labor market

For black 16-to-24 year olds who were not enrolled in school, the strong job growth over the 1989-2000 business cycle shaved 3.7 percentage points off their unemployment rate. This decline in the black youth unemployment rate was three times as large as the 1.2 percent decline in unemployment for white youth.

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Single Mothers: Poverty Climbs As Jobs And Social Safety Net Fade

The primary reason that so many single women are poor right now is the large number of jobs cut in female-dominated sectors, including government, Entmacher said. In fact, since the recession ended in 2009, women have lost more jobs than men shed while the economy was still contracting.

"I think most people understand that women's income has become increasingly important to the survival of many families," said Entmacher. "In families where that is the only income, a job loss puts them in dire straits."

Moreover, just as a growing number of Americans find themselves in need of help, the social safety net has grown weaker. States have trimmed their welfare rolls, cut back the amount of time that a family can receive cash welfare assistance and even scaled back spending on child support enforcement and collections activity, Entmacher said.

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Screening of I AM A MAN in Washington D.C.

Join us for this special film event sponsored by EPI's Program on Race, Ethnicity and the Economy and the Poverty and Race Research Action Council

Screening and Discussion of I Am A Man

As our nation’s policymakers debate how government can help boost employment and jumpstart our stalled economic recovery, it is important to remember that a good job is more than an economic indicator; it is a source of dignity for people who want to work.

In 1968, black sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee, who toiled for less than the federal minimum wage and were subject to deadly working conditions, stood together and said: “Enough.” Their protest, now best known as the final mass action joined by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. before his assassination, was at heart a demand by 1,300 African Americans to be treated like men.

I Am A Man is the award-winning documentary film chronicling the 1968 Sanitation Worker’s strike through the eyes of one its participants and present day sanitation worker, Elmore Nickleberry. After the short documentary and "making of feature," there will be a discussion featuring the film’s producer, Calvin Taylor.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011
4:00 - 5:30 pm
Economic Policy Institute
1333 H St. NW, Suite 300
Washington, DC 20005
Convenient to Metro’s Red (Metro Center) and Blue/Orange (McPherson Square) lines
Refreshments will be served.

Rsvp here


Recession continues to take its toll on America’s children

Even in relatively good economic times, the United States has an appallingly high rate of child poverty for a very rich country. In 2007, by international comparative standards*, UNICEF found that the United States had the highest rate of child poverty of 24 OECD nations. The poverty data released today shows the worsening living standards for America’s children caused by the recession.

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Reducing poverty and increasing marriage rates among Latinos and African Americans

Though marriage rates have declined for Latinos and African Americans (as well as for whites), these groups still want to marry at fairly high rates. However, because of rising inequality, many members of these groups believe they cannot afford to do so. It is likely that an anti-poverty agenda that targets the decline in good jobs, high unemployment and increasing incarceration rates would have the added effect of increasing marriage rates.

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Black unemployment: Highest in 27 years

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- The August jobs report was dismal for plenty of reasons, but perhaps most striking was the picture it painted of racial inequality in the job market.

Black unemployment surged to 16.7% in August, its highest level since 1984, while the unemployment rate for whites fell slightly to 8%, the Labor Department reported.

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In Honor of Teachers

...how do we expect to entice the best and brightest to become teachers when we keep tearing the profession down? We take the people who so desperately want to make a difference that they enter a field where they know that they’ll be overworked and underpaid, and we scapegoat them as the cause of a societywide failure.

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