Category Archives: The National Economy

Professor Steven Pressman evaluates President Trump’s new tax plan

Donald Trump’s Tax plan does none of the things he claims, says Professor Steven Pressman in his latest op-ed published on The Conversation site.

In response to Trump’s “middle-class miracle” tax plan announced on September 27th, Pressman deems the plan “not fit to become law of the land because it will enrich the rich, explode the deficit and hurt many middle-class Americans.” His article then delves into the details of the three main changes to the current tax code: repealing the estate tax, simplifying the individual tax code and slashing the rates corporations pay.  In order to pay for the cuts, according to Pressman, economic growth would have to reach two percentage points above the highest rate achieved over the past 75 years.

Read the full article here

How does our sharing economy impact the environment?


The term sharing economy is a relatively new concept but as CSU Economics professor Anders Fremstad points out, “There’s a lot of excitement around the sharing economy, and I’m excited, too, but it’s important to recognize that people have been sharing things forever.”

The Washington Post posted an article on Monday 9/18, “The sharing economy helps fight climate change (but not as much as you think)”, which cited a recent paper published by CSU Economics professors Anders Fremstad and Sammy Zahran. Tony Underwood, our first Fall Seminar Speaker, also contributed to the publication. Their paper is titled “The Environmental Impact of Sharing: Household and Urban Economies in CO2 Emissions” and can be found in Ecological Economics issue volume 145 or by following this link:

Fremstad and Underwood are also quoted in The Washington Post article, found here:

Taking American jobs? A Labor Day look at the work immigrants do

Professor Stephan Weiler contributes to an eye-opening article that was published by The Post Independent on September 3, 2017. The article explores the question of immigrants being culpable in taking jobs from native-born American citizens.

Dr. Weiler points to California’s economy as an example that disproves the theory that immigrants are responsible for some of America’s high unemployment rates. He notes that 27% of California’s population is foreign born and the state has the 6th largest economy in the world.

An excerpt from the article quotes Dr. Weiler as saying: “”The thing about migration even in the U.S., even between states: It’s self-selecting. It’s those people that have the energy, the ideas, the drive who migrate. That’s absolutely true about international migration. The people who move, who take chances to come here, are pretty motivated.”

Read the full article here:


Steven Pressman, Colorado State University – Struggling US Middle Class

Steven Pressman is a Professor of Economics at Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, Colorado and Emeritus Professor of Economics and Finance at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey. Earlier today, 8/24/2017, Dr. Pressman was featured on NPR where he delved into what defines the middle class and how it has been affected in recent years.

You can read/listen to his academic minute by clicking on the link below.

read the full article here

How Many Adjunct Professors Are on Public Assistance


Someone Calculated How Many Adjunct Professors Are on Public Assistance, and the Number Is Startling

Once in a while, someone publishes an article about adjunct professors who resort to food stamps in order to survive on the rock-bottom pay that so many college instructors are expected to live on. But until today, I had never seen a statistic summing up how many academics are actually resorting to government aid. The number, it turns out, is rather large. According to an analysis of census data by the University of California–Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education, 25 percent of “part-time college faculty” and their families now receive some sort public assistance, such as Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, food stamps, cash welfare, or the Earned Income Tax Credit. For what it’s worth, that’s not quite so bad as the situation faced by fast-food employees and home health care aids, roughly half of whom get government help. But, in case there were any doubt, an awful lot of Ph.D.s and master’s degree holders are basically working poor.

Low-Wage Occupations and Public Assistance Rates


UC–Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education

I don’t think it would be quite accurate to say that 25 percent of all adjuncts are getting aid, since some do in fact have full-time jobs that would show up in the census as their occupation. Still, we’re talking about a large group of highly educated individuals. According to NBC News, which reported on some of the labor center’s data prior to publication, “families of close to 100,000 part-time faculty members are enrolled in public assistance programs.”

Despite their symbolic value, food stamps aren’t the most popular program among adjuncts. According to the NBC report (I haven’t been able to find these specific numbers published elsewhere), 7 percent of part-time faculty are enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, 7 percent are signed up for Medicaid (though the number may be higher thanks to Obamacare’s expansion of the insurance program), and “one in five” receive the Earned Income Tax Credit, which boosts pay for low-wage workers.


Article from Slate/Moneybox

Jordan Weissmann is Slate‘s senior business and economics correspondent.