Harold Meyerson

Harold Meyerson is the executive editor of The American ProspectHis email is hmeyerson@prospect.org.

Recent Articles

Race Relations, Hunky-Dory. Economy, Not So Hot

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File A homeless man pushes a shopping cart full of his belongings across an intersection in the Skid Row area of Los Angeles. An earlier version of this story appeared at The Los Angeles Times . Subscribe here . O n the 25th anniversary of the Rodney King riots, Los Angeles is glowing with racial amity—and festering with economic disparity. As King himself might have put it, we all are getting along just fine—but by the way, many of us are very poor, even though we work as hard as we can. That’s the take-away from the remarkable poll released last week from Loyola Marymount University’s Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles. Fully 76 percent of respondents said that racial and ethnic groups in LA are getting along well. In 1997, when the Center first polled Angelenos, only 37 percent said racial and ethnic relations were good. LA’s progress, however, has been strikingly uneven. As the Times noted in its report on the poll, the city’s unemployment rate may be...

Flying the Bloody Skies

Patrick Gorski/NurPhoto/Sipa via AP Images
Patrick Gorski/NurPhoto/Sipa via AP Images The United Airlines terminal on display at O'hare International Airport in Chicago. W hile the videos of security cops dragging a bloodied physician down the aisle of a United Airlines plane clearly shocked the millions of people who viewed them, my guess is that, at some level, it didn’t surprise them. Indeed, the reason the videos were so damaging to United—and at some level, to the entire airline industry—is that everyone who’s flown in coach during the past several decades knows that the welfare of airline passengers, save for those who fly first- or business-class, is the least of the airlines’ concerns. The systemic abuse of those who fly coach has become the sine qua non of the airlines’ business model, as the incessant shrinkage of the seats and legroom afforded passengers clearly attests. “The roomiest economy seats you can book on the nation’s four largest airlines,” according to Consumer Reports ’ Bill McGee, “are narrower than the...

The GOP Debacle and the New Poor

(Photo: AP/Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
(Photo: AP/Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call) Speaker of the House Paul Ryan walks away after holding his press conference to announce the canceled vote on the American Health Care Act on March 24, 2017. “ Everybody knows there is no fineness or accuracy of suppression,” says the eponymous hero of Saul Bellow’s The Adventures of Augie March . “If you hold down one thing, you hold down the adjoining.” Well, everybody except today’s Republican Party. The GOP’s problem is that the world they knew has changed, but their strategy hasn’t. For decades, Republicans have attacked Democratic efforts to expand or merely defend social insurance by depicting such insurance as benefiting presumably shiftless minorities at the expense of white workers who weren’t all that prosperous themselves. That’s why Ronald Reagan told stories about a Chicago “welfare queen” who lived high on the public dole. That’s why Rush Limbaugh and others who opposed the Affordable Care Act as it moved through Congress in 2010...

The Cosmological and Temporal Implications of the GOP Tax Cut in the AHCA

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik House Speaker Paul Ryan calls on a member of the media during a news conference following a GOP party conference at the Capitol. W e fail to appreciate the depth of thought that has gone into House Speaker Paul Ryan’s bill repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, which may be brought to a vote today if there are enough Republican votes to pass it. Well, not the original, pre-amendment bill, which would reduce the number of Americans with health insurance by 24 million and cut taxes on the wealthiest Americans by nearly half a trillion dollars over the next decade. No, what’s elevated the bill to the forefront of contemporary physics is an amendment pushed by House Ways and Means Committee Chair Kevin Brady, a Texas Republican. Ryan’s original legislation repealed the 3.8 percent tax that Obamacare imposed on capital gains, dividend, and interest income for individuals with annual incomes of $200,00 or higher, or families with annual incomes of $250,000...