February 17, 2012 |
Hitching The Boss to a Philadelphia institution that normally plumbs the deepest meanings of the Constitution and displays busts of the original signers might seem a stretch. But, yo, this is Philly. Bruce is the city's adopted son. (OK, so he's technically from across the Delaware in Jersey.) Yet it only seems natural that the Constitution Center would eventually honor a sort-of-local boy who made good as America's troubadour. Friday, the center opened a seven-month exhibit, "From Asbury Park to the Promised Land: The Life and Music of Bruce Springsteen.
November 29, 2011 |
Fewer than 50 miles separate the poorest city of its size in the U.S. from the prosperous suburbs of Philadelphia, a corridor of wealth with few rivals. There's an $80,000 difference between the average household incomes. The poverty rates — Reading's is above 40% — don't even compare. But when it comes to the gulf between rich and poor in the U.S., the residents of Reading and the tony locales down the road sound more alike than one might expect. "I do think the system is fundamentally unfair in some ways and skewed toward people with a lot of influence and control," said John Royer, a corporate lawyer and registered Republican from Wayne, Pa. "In the back of my mind, I worry, 'If the gap continues and widens, could this be the beginning of major social unrest?
November 17, 2011 |
Forget about retiring at 55. Or 65. Or perhaps even 75. One-quarter of middle-class Americans fear that they will have to work until they're at least 80 to afford a comfortable retirement (if "retirement" is even the right word, given that many of these people may never actually retire). A survey released Wednesday by Wells Fargo & Co. also found that nearly three-quarters of Americans expect to continue working into what long has been considered retirement age. A little more than half of those said they'll need to work to pay their bills, while the rest said they want to keep working.
November 3, 2011 |
A poll of young adults sponsored by two youth organizations shows that most do not think they will be financially better off than their parents. But they are not totally pessimistic. Though 57% are very concerned about the middle class disappearing, 77% think they personally can achieve the American dream. That means economic status may not play as large a role in defining the American dream for the 18-to-34 age group, said Chris Matthews, one of the pollsters and president of Bellwether Research & Consulting.
October 28, 2011 |
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor called for a “Steve Jobs plan” on Friday in an economic speech outlining the Virginia Republican's views on upward mobility and economic opportunity in the U.S. “In a Steve Jobs plan, no American -- regardless of their current condition -- believes that they are unable to rise up. And in a Steve Jobs plan, we don't believe that those who succeed somehow take away from those still working their way up the...
October 3, 2011 |
President Obama says he's "absolutely" the underdog in his bid for reelection, embracing the findings of a new survey that shows most Americans expect he'll be a one-term president. Among the factors Obama said are weighing on his campaign is his own concession that the economy has not sufficiently recovered. "I don't think [Americans are] better off than they were four years ago," Obama told ABC's George Stephanopoulos in an interview Monday. "What we've seen is that we've been able to make steady progress.
August 30, 2011 |
Michele Bachmann has written a book and it's coming out in November, just in time for Iowa -- er, Christmas. Books by presidential candidates have become so common that the Minnesota congresswoman almost had no choice but to launch her own entry into the crowded marketplace. Heck, Rick Perry's “Fed Up!” came out last year, when nobody thought he was running for president. (Hmmm…in retrospect, that may have been a clue.) Meanwhile, Mitt Romney has written two. Sarah Palin, two (and has spawned her own shelf at Barnes and Noble of Palin-centric tomes.)
June 24, 2011 |
Director Chris Weitz's new drama, "A Better Life," should be a much better movie than it is, but emotions get in the way. It's a quintessential L.A. story of a hard-pressed illegal immigrant family — in this case a father and son — living with the constant fear of deportation. Rather than being compelling, though, the film is weighted down by clichés. A pity, since the issues could hardly be more timely. Weitz, working from a screenplay by Eric Eason ("Manito"), wears his heart on his sleeve in every scene.
May 27, 2011 |
Americans don't seem bothered enough by the country's growing wealth divide to do much about it, according to a recent Harvard Business School survey. In part, that's probably because they vastly underestimate the gap, believing the top 20% own 59% of the nation's wealth when they actually own 84%. But there's another, less obvious reason for our passivity — the hope and glory pushed by an all-pervasive news, gossip and star-driven celebrity culture. The core of the American dream teaches us that the formula for achieving wealth involves hard work, determination and luck.
April 21, 2011 |
There has never been a truly "normal" family on television, just as there's never been a truly "normal" family in real life. But perhaps the closest anyone ever came to either notion was the 1973 documentary series "An American Family," a social experiment that unintentionally spawned the entire genre of reality television and challenged ideas about what the average family was supposed to be. Originally intended as an ordinary look at the Louds,...