Are You Unfairly Paying Extra For “Made in the USA” Products?

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Made in the USA used to stand for quality and pride. It meant buying high quality products made by American workers earning good wages and benefits. Products made in the USA aren’t as common anymore, especially as more American jobs are outsourced to places like China or Bangladesh. But when something says “Made in the USA” today, is it still a positive thing?

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Is Dishonest Behavior Responsible for Most Lawsuits?

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After reading this New York Times article “When ‘Liking’ a Brand Online Voids the Right to Sue,” I’m considering revoking all my ‘likes’ on Facebook. Apparently certain companies like General Mills are starting to rewrite their policy rules. Now simple actions can unknowingly void your ability to sue them. Apparently if you like their page, print their coupon, or in some cases even buy their product, you’ll now have to settle any problems with them via email arbitration, instead of taking them to court. Why did GM rewrite their rules and why is this a problem?

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Do You Know What Doctors Are Actually Charging You?

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Rising healthcare costs is both puzzling and worrisome to many Americans. Health insurance premiums increased more than 60% over the past eight years. Deductibles— the amount you pay out of pocket for doctor visits — also increased; so you’re actually getting less for the money you pay in. Thinking about paying this increased cost while American wages have stagnated, maybe you’re wondering if it’s worth it to get rid of your health insurance plan.

How did costs get this out of control?

Posted in Healthcare

People Don’t Have Uprisings When The Unemployment Rate Is 6.7 Percent

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When the December 2013 unemployment rate came out on January 10, some news sources were glad to see that it decreased to 6.7% from 7%. Sounds good, right? In reality, it doesn’t explain everything. Actually, it hardly explains anything. That number only captures people who are still in the job market, who are also still actively searching for a job. So when you hear “unemployment rate,” feel suspicious. Who doesn’t it include?

Posted in employment Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,

Which Topics Do You Want To Know More About In 2014?

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Hey guys, I hope everyone is having a great start to their new year. One of my goals is to help more people this year.

So I thought I’d ask:

What do you want to know more about? Is there something in the economy that doesn’t make sense to you? Whether it’s jobs, wages, health insurance, car insurance, housing prices, textbook prices, food ingredients, or counterfeit goods, I probably have your answer.

Posted in Uncategorized

New Website Domain Name at www.abraveneweconomy.com

Hi everyone, I hope you’re enjoying the holidays. I’m in the process of permanently switching my website over to the domain name www.abraveneweconomy.com. I think this new name is not only easier to remember, but more accurately reflects the message of this website. It’s already up and running, and soon this website will be down, but will automagically take you there if you type this one in.

Please update your RSS feed information and bookmarks. Thanks :)

Posted in Uncategorized

Smart Career Options: Specialized Skills (part 2)

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While considering recession-resistant career options, there are some key rules to remember. The first key to a good paying job is to differentiate yourself by learning specialized skills. How should you go about this?

The main reason cashiers and retail make low wages
Have you ever wondered why many cashiers and retail workers make below poverty wages? I’m not debating on why this is right or wrong here (that’s a topic for another post!). But it’s useful to understand why. You don’t want to find yourself or your kids stuck on this poverty path if you can help it.

Posted in employment Tagged with: , ,

Planet Money 485- What’s Your Major: Relevant for today’s student, or not?

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In this episode 485, NPR’s Planet Money talked about expected earnings for each college major. They based their discussion on Georgetown Professor Caravelli’s study. There’s lots of useful, detailed data included for each college major. But does this information give us the whole picture?

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Starbucks donates for World AIDS Day: Are generic drugs the solution? (Part 3)

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In the last two posts, we discussed Starbucks donating money for World AIDS Day. In part 1, I discussed now Starbucks donates money to The Global Fund, which in turn buys antiretroviral (ART) drugs for HIV patients in poorer countries. In part 2, I discussed why pharmaceutical companies don’t have incentive to actually cure HIV/ AIDS, since they can profit off lifetime customers by simply prolonging the disease. So what’s the light at the end of this depressing tunnel?

Posted in Healthcare Tagged with: , ,

Starbucks donates for World AIDS Day: One time cure, or lifetime customers? (Part 2)

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In the last post, I discussed Starbucks’ donation for World AIDS Day. Starbucks gives 10 cents for each drink sold on December 1. Starbucks gives to The Global Fund, who buys antiretroviral (ART) drugs for those infected with HIV in lower income countries.

ART drugs aren’t a cure
Those infected with HIV must take ART drugs for the rest of their life, or they’ll die. So ART pharmaceutical companies make a guaranteed profit for the lifetime of each HIV patient infected. Does this mean they have no incentive to actually cure HIV or AIDS?

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