What is really holding American workers back?

(By Helen Raleigh, Centennial Fellow) Even though the official unemployment rate fell below 5%, most of us who live in the real world know better: there are still an estimated 30 million Americans who have

The Democrats’ Pope Problem

(By Donald Devine, '76 Contributor) Sure, the mainstream media has spent its time highlighting Francis’ Republican snares — on immigration, the environment, the death penalty, and market economics. But Republicans were at least consoled by

The pope and Sanders: misguided economic missionaries

(By Melanie Sturm, '76 Contributor) If only Pope Francis were in my Buenos Aires taxi last Christmas. I could have used his moral authority (and Argentine-accented Spanish) in negotiating with a driver who’d forgotten the

When welfare beats work

(By Joy Overbeck, '76 Contributor) With multimillionaire Democrats such as Hillary Clinton predictably accusing mean Republicans of ignoring the poor, and the upcoming election sure to hinge on “who cares more” about struggling Americans, it’s

A Libertarian view of Francis’ Laudato Si

(By Donald Devine, <em>'76</em> Contributor) Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si (“Be Praised”) has been acclaimed by the international media as a call to action on global warming, to combat its threat to world survival. It

Obama’s failed war on poverty

In his bow to holding a “conversation” about the poor, supported by two other progressives at liberal Georgetown University against one lone conservative, President Barack Obama’s big idea was to “invest” more to combat poverty,

Summit Surprises: Did You Know?

(By Centennial Institute Staff) Yes, Western Conservative Summit 2015 is very much about the invisible primary for president next year.  Seven GOP contenders are coming, others may come, and we even invited five Dems (not holding our breath).  But there’s a lot more to WCS15 that you maybe didn’t know about.

At the intersection of race and poverty

(Centennial Fellow) When I was in law school, I had the privilege of working at the Institute on Race & Poverty. IRP was focused on issues that were found at the intersection of race and poverty. IRP recognized that while race and poverty were concerns independent of each other, when they intersected, it raised a different and more complex set of concerns. I appreciated that perspective as a law student, but as a professional and a community member, the realities of that perspective have deepened over time.

Achievement: Why are we afraid?

(Centennial Fellow) May is the month for most high school and college graduations across the U.S.  Commencement exercises mark a key milestone in the life of the student.   For some it’s the end of their formal education, for others a marker toward the next educational or professional milestone, and for all, it’s the start of the rest of their lives.  Whatever the context, graduation certainly is worth celebrating.  But in the United States, graduation progressively has become more about being “done” and getting that diploma, rather than recognition of achievement and educational advancement.  The term achievement has progressively become less “PC” in American lexicon, and the idea of advancing in education has become less accepted.  The result is a decline in educational motivation and mobility in America.  And the consequences of that decline can be significant for not only students but for our American society as a whole.

How Washington can help the poor this Christmas

In this holiday season, let’s suppose what might strike some as a miracle, that our Democratic president and a Republican Congress will soon join forces to do something wondrously humane. Let’s suppose they agree to do what actually works to help shove poverty off the American map.