For more than 25 years, analysts have been reporting that the American Middle Class was endangered and in decline. But it was not until this fall that anyone spelled out not only the policies that fostered that decline, but the political movement that drove those policies. Who Stole the American Dream?
is an extraordinary new book by Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and best-selling author Hedrick Smith, who will come to the Center for American Progress to discuss how a little-known memo by a Virginia corporate lawyer launched a movement that reshaped this nation’s economic playing field. In great detail, Smith ties the success of that movement to the decline in wages, the disappearance of traditional pension plans, and the increasingly tenuous financial condition of America’s middle class families.
In the past few years, nearly all states have passed legislation that revises how teachers are evaluated. Reforms around teacher evaluation and, in particular, efforts to assess teachers on the basis of student achievement have sometimes resulted in confrontations between teachers and school districts. But confrontation and conflict are not the dominant themes in all districts seeking to reform teacher evaluation. Some districts have successfully used a collaborative approach in developing their new evaluation systems.
At the event, a panel of health care experts will discuss alternative strategies. Dr. Nirav R. Shah will discuss Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Medicaid reforms, which achieved more than $4 billion in savings in one year while improving quality of care and increasing enrollment by 154,000 people. Dr. Herbert Pardes will compare and contrast different cost containment strategies and their impacts on hospitals and health care providers. Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel and Maura Calsyn will provide a federal perspective and discuss the Center’s Senior Protection Plan in anticipation of the looming “fiscal cliff.” The Senior Protection Plan is the Center’s contribution to the debate over entitlement reform and federal health care savings. It would produce federal savings of about $385 billion over ten years and includes a number of reforms to bend the cost curve over the long term.
The 113th Congress will include 20 female senators, and more women will be serving in the U.S. House of Representatives than ever before, with 78 congresswomen elected to serve. Women now make up nearly 51 percent of the U.S. population. For the first time in U.S. history, women make up half of all workers on U.S. payrolls, and nearly two-thirds of mothers are either their family's primary breadwinner or share that responsibility with a partner—their ability to control their fertility has been a key component of that phenomenon. What should women do with their new power in the United States? How will the voices of women be reflected in policy agendas and legislative priorities? Join the Center for American Progress as we explore the issues around women’s economic strength, health, rights, and their ability to manage work and family responsibilities that helped shape the course of the presidential election, and discuss what a new policy agenda should include.
In an era of increased enforcement on the federal, state, and local levels, what is life like for immigrants—those with and without legal status, and for the wider communities in which they live? This event will focus on three primary aspects of society in America: the school, the workplace, and the family. We will discuss how detentions and deportations build upon one another in harmful ways, straining family ties, opening the door to employer exploitation and mistreatment, and causing children to underperform or exit school early. Since the documented and the undocumented live, work, and go to school alongside one another, these issues ripple outward, affecting entire communities.
Please join the Center for American Progress, Harvard University, and Google for an in-depth look at the challenges and opportunities policymakers face in ensuring U.S. economic competitiveness at a time of mounting competition around the world.
Working families need savings to weather emergencies and plan for the future. Congress recognized the importance of helping cash-strapped families save when it enacted the Saver’s Credit in 2001, but the credit has not reached its full potential. Please join the Center for American Progress for a discussion on building wealth for low-income families at tax time. The conversation will focus on two innovative pilots—SaveUSA, a city-driven matched savings demonstration that began in New York; and Refund2Savings, or R2S, a large-scale pilot using behavioral economics to market savings through online tax prep software. Savings policy experts from the Aspen Institute and the New America Foundation will also discuss proposals for reforming the Saver’s Credit.
A new paper from the Center for American Progress, "Lessons from the NFL for Managing College Enrollment" by Jerry Lucido, exposes how colleges, public and private, set enrollment goals and strategies that maximize revenue and prestige—at the expense of middle-class applicants and society.
In the aftermath of the presidential election, much has been said on how President Obama got to the 270 electoral votes needed for his reelection. In 2011 and 2012, the Center for American Progress’ Ruy Teixeira and John Halpin correctly predicted that two large forces would determine the outcome of the election: the objective reality and voter perception of the economy in key battleground states and the shifting demographic balance of the American electorate. In the end, with growing concern about the economy, the rising electorate of communities of color, the Millennial generation, professionals, single women and secular voters once again came together to push President Obama to victory.
Our keynote speaker, FHA Acting Commissioner Carol Galante, will address the major findings from the agency’s 2012 actuarial review and annual report to Congress, and our panel will discuss these findings, the role FHA has played in recent years, and what lessons we can learn for the future.
From marriage equality to income inequality, the role of faith is crucial to the public debate. It can serve as a weapon to divide and create fear, or as an inclusive force to advance justice and equality. Please join CAP senior fellow and former congressman Patrick Murphy and CAP senior fellow Bishop Gene Robinson as they explore the role of faith in politics and public policy. Murphy and Robinson will examine marriage equality for same-sex couples, women’s reproductive health, religious liberty, and other issues in the news. In addition, Robinson will discuss ideas from his new book, God Believes in Love, where he makes the religious case for marriage equality for same-sex couples. Murphy will reflect on his time in Congress, and the role his Catholic faith played in helping him champion a wide range of issues, including gay rights, health reform, and women’s health.
Please join the Center for American Progress for a discussion with United States Patent and Trade Office Director David Kappos. Director Kappos will address the topic of high-tech innovation and the role of software patents in that innovation. He’ll examine how software came to be patented; how those patents are featured across the innovation landscape; and how the USPTO in the last three years has taken concrete steps to ensure the highest level of quality in issued patents while providing avenues for re-examination of existing patents. Director Kappos will also address some of the criticisms of software patents as well as some proposed reforms, providing context on how the debate fits in the larger picture of intellectual property protection and economic growth.
In her 2012 book, The End of Men and the Rise of Women
, Hanna Rosin weaves together social statistics, economic data, and journalistic interviews to paint a picture of how women are pulling away from men on numerous fronts. Rosin reveals how this new state of affairs is radically shifting the power dynamics between men and women at every level of society, with profound implications for marriage, sex, children, and work. Please join us for a fascinating discussion with Hanna Rosin about these trends and her ideas for how men and women might adapt to this new reality and channel it for a better future.
Americans voted to keep their commander in chief, but the country is still in for real national security change in the coming months. There will be a new secretary of state, potential new secretary of defense, more transitions in Washington, and continued challenges abroad. Iran’s nuclear program, Syria’s civil war, and the Afghanistan war are just a few of the issues that will be high on the agenda. And then there is the issue of the fiscal cliff and the possible sequestration of $500 billion in defense funds if Congress does not act to stop it. What will change and what will remain the same between now and January 21, 2013?
The Obama administration’s Race to the Top competitive grant program triggered an unprecedented wave of state teacher evaluation reform across the country. Most of the scholarly analysis of this activity to date has focused on the design of the evaluation instruments, or the implementation of the new evaluations by districts and schools. However, little research has explored how states are managing and supporting the implementation of these reforms. As US Education Secretary Arne Duncan has remarked: “because teacher evaluation systems are still a work in progress, it is vital that school leaders and administrators continue to solicit feedback, learn from their mistakes, and make improvements.” It has become increasingly clear that the role of state education agencies will be critical as school districts enter what (for most) will be uncharted territory.