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By John Pudner
Posted on: September 15, 2017
With everything else  on your desk right now, why care about campaign finance reform?Because it’s not just about “campaign finance.”  It’s about the future workability of our democracy.   Special interest money in politics completely distorts not just our system of government – but also our economy and, increasingly, our culture and sense of community. ‘Dark’ money skews the ability of small and mid-sized companies to have their voices heard.It hits each of us in our pocketbooks, through higher taxes – an estimated $1,300 more per taxpayer per year to pay for government spending that benefits... read more
By Michael Peck
Posted on: September 5, 2017
Pogo’s prophetic and pathetic observation holds: “we have met the enemy and he is us.” Today’s polarized and polarizing United States, under siege from itself, is proving too internally cowed, under-imagined and social media pigeonholed to buck predictable spheres of influence. More than just another rare bipartisan opportunity, getting worker ownership equations right could heal the breach between mutually-assured destructing left and right populism by empowering and freeing workers to think, act, provide, invest and vote for themselves.Placing a concerted worker ownership cultural thumb on... read more
By Mac Clemmens
Posted on: August 23, 2017
At this point you’re probably getting tired of hearing long, complex arguments about the importance of Net Neutrality.The thing is, it’s not complicated at all. It’s as simple as “Leave the internet alone.”Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon the corporations whose backfired lawsuit ultimately brought the net neutrality protections we now enjoy, need to mind their own business and get back to building better broadband across America. Right now, we’re 23rd in the world and falling, not only in speed, but in the price we pay.  Why? Because big telecom has stopped betting on infrastructure. Instead of... read more
By Holly Ensign-Barstow
Posted on: August 8, 2017
B Lab and ASBC are excited to celebrate new benefit corporation legislation. Since the beginning of 2017, benefit corporation legislation has been signed into law in Kentucky, Kansas and Texas. In Kentucky and Kansas, legislation became effective on July 1, 2017 and will go into effect in Texas on September 1, 2017. With these three states, a total of 35 jurisdictions around the world have benefit corp. statutes. Other states that are moving forward include Alaska, Wisconsin and Ohio. A number of countries are also pursuing benefit corporation legislation, with bills in process in Australia,... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: July 31, 2017
With efforts to repeal Obamacare all but dead, the 2018 budget has taken center stage. It's easy to let your eyes glaze over on this, but don't: The proposed House budget dramatically reallocates both national priorities and taxpayer dollars.The politics of the budget bear an uncanny resemblance to those of the health care bill, and the outlook for budget legislation may not be much better. Too many conflicting promises have been made to too many different factions. The GOP health care proposal aimed to make good on multiple promises: to repeal Obamacare, to NOT repeal the parts of Obamacare... read more
By Marilyn Waite
Posted on: July 28, 2017
So the United States has pulled out of the Paris Agreement.Now what?We’ve still got a lot of work to do. Many of the most vocal and disappointed critics of leaving the Paris accord are not doing much about tangibly reversing climate change. Angry tweets will only get us so far, and pouring millions into political campaigns has brought us to where we are today, for better or worse.Let’s look at what we can actually do, on a practical level, to address climate change. Project Drawdown is a climate change mitigation project started by Paul Hawken in 2013, with the input of more than 200 scholars... read more
By Michael Stumo
Posted on: July 13, 2017
The US imported $500 billion more goods and services than it exported last year. We are the biggest trade deficit country in the world, absorbing the oversupply of a few major countries such as China, Germany, Japan and South Korea (surplus countries). This causes US growth stagnation, wage stagnation, under employment and an eroding middle class. ASBC member businesses struggle more than they would if the economy, wages and consumer spending were growing.Because there is so much misinformation in the press, I would like to give you a structure to think about trade. First, the volume of... read more
By Connie Evans
Posted on: July 3, 2017
President Trump released his full Fiscal Year 2018 budget yesterday, and it calls for a reduction in the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund from $248 million to a paltry $14 million. This essentially amounts to elimination of the crucial fund, which would be a heavy blow to small businesses in distressed rural and urban areas. The administration’s reasoning behind their decision is that the program has been so successful that it is no longer necessary. The first part of that statement is accurate. The last part is dangerous.The CDFI Fund supports hundreds of mission-focused... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: June 30, 2017
This week, the U.S. Senate rolled out its version of Obamacare repeal, called the "Better Care Reconciliation Act." The bill would brutally strip coverage from many millions of Americans, while raising costs and reducing coverage for tens of millions more. And it redistributes the money gained by stripping coverage mostly to people who already have a lot of money, and already have access to great care.But even if you think taxes need to be cut and it's OK to strip coverage from people, there's a lot to dislike about the bill. It does nothing to solve the most important problem with U.S.... read more
By John O'Neill
Posted on: June 26, 2017
Don’t expect the budget before Congress to make the economy more sustainable.Budget negotiations are hung up in Congress, where Republicans can’t agree on what they want. Still, the budget the president released on May 23 set the tone and direction.The president’s budget was anti-business, if you define business as companies with U.S. employees and sales that want to remain viable. His budget would reduce consumer spending, boost tax breaks for U.S. multinationals, and slash important business regulations.The budget’s proposed cuts to Medicaid would result in less healthcare and more strain... read more