Wealth, Debt, Unions, and Festivals

First, read E.J. Roller’s My Parents Give Me $28,000 a Year, which starts as a piece about how to afford a career in the arts and expands into a larger discussion about inherited wealth:

Why wouldn’t we require rich kids to report gifts of $28,000 and pay taxes? We can also lower the amount of inheritance that can be passed along tax-free upon death. The latest tax bill just increased the amount that kids can inherit tax-free from their parents from $10.98 million to $22.4 million. (Money above that is taxed at 40%.) That’s a $22.4 million of unearned income for the children of the rich, whereas the working class get taxed on their first dollar earned.

Follow it with CNBC’s These Americans fled the country to escape their giant student debt:

Chad Haag considered living in a cave to escape his student debt. He had a friend doing it. But after some plotting, he settled on what he considered a less risky plan. This year, he relocated to a jungle in India. “I’ve put America behind me,” Haag, 29, said.

He now lives in a concrete house in the village of Uchakkada for $50 a month. His backyard is filled with coconut trees and chickens. “I saw four elephants just yesterday,” he said, adding that he hopes to never set foot in a Walmart again.

His debt is currently on its way to default. But more than 9,000 miles away from Colorado, Haag said, his student loans don’t feel real anymore.

Then pair union member Dory Thrasher’s year of unpaid maternity leave with this Atlantic piece about how unions improve maternity leave policies:

Drawing from a nationally representative sample of 4,108 workers, the researchers found that women with union representation tend to take leave more often than women without union representation due to factors that aren’t typically found in nonunionized workplaces—most notably, the presence of union representatives who serve as educators and advocates, as well as union meetings and newsletters.

Lastly, keep up with the latest Cedar Rapids gossip by reading the Gazette’s look at what went wrong with the newbo evolve festival:

The board allowed GO Cedar Rapids to negotiate for weeks with Maroon 5 to be the main act, despite being rebuffed multiple times. Board chairman John Myers later acknowledged they paid Maroon 5 too much, though the exact amount has not been disclosed.

I cannot wait for them to disclose the exact amount.

Support The Billfold

The Billfold continues to exist thanks to support from our readers. Help us continue to do our work by making a monthly pledge on Patreon or a one-time-only contribution through PayPal.