We cover a great deal of ground in this week’s issue, everything from the CEO-worker pay ratio disclosure victory just won in the UK to the absurdity of the runaway paychecks now going to American college football coaches.

The most distressing — and despicable — turn of events from this past week? That has to be the xenophobia behind the White House’s just-announced plan to rescind DACA, the Obama-era program that prevents the deportation of young people who’ve essentially lived most all their lives in the United States. We shine a light this week on one of the key groups working to reverse this latest xenophobic assault, the Black Alliance for Just Immigration.

Want to learn more about this effort? You can meet the group’s director, Opal Tometi, also the co-founder of Black Lives Matter, at the annual Institute for Policy Studies Letelier- Moffit Awards in Washington, D.C. on September 21. As a bonus, you can also meet the staff behind! We’ve just completed a new report on the racial wealth divide. Keep an eye out in your inbox for more on it.

Chuck Collins, for the Institute for Policy Studies team
Raising Up Black Immigrants in the DACA Debate
Black “Dreamers” are often overlooked in the immigration debate. The Black Alliance for Just Immigration, led by Black Lives Matter co-founder Opal Tometi, is working to change that. The national network is helping lead the fight against the structural racism that has disproportionately sucked black immigrants into the criminal justice system. According to the BAJI, black immigrants make up just 5 percent of the overall immigrant population, but 21 percent of those deported as a result of criminal contact. On September 21, Tometi will receive the prestigious Letelier-Moffitt Human Rights Award at a Washington, D.C. event hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies.
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Boys Will Be Boys, Especially the Rich Ones
Betsy DeVos, the billionaire U.S. secretary of education, has spent her life surrounded by enormously rich men accustomed to getting their own way. Her father, billionaire industrialist Edgar Prince, rated as one of Michigan’s wealthiest residents. Her husband, Dick DeVos, owes his $5.3-billion fortune to Amway. Last week, in an invitation-only forum at George Mason University in Virginia, DeVos rode to the rescue of the men she claims have become the victims of Obama administration moves to protect students who report sexual assaults. Obama officials, DeVos charged, “weaponized the Office of Civil Rights” and pushed colleges to railroad young men accused of sexual assault in “kangaroo courts.” Activists supporting survivors of sexual assault rallied in protest outside last week’s rape forum. DeVos, a spokesperson for the group End Rape on Campus pointed out, had not invited any survivor organizations to attend.
This week on, John Hood of the London-based Equality Trust outlines the partial victory pay fairness activists have just won in the UK. British companies will now be required to disclose the ratio between their CEO and their average worker’s pay. For U.S. readers, Josh Hoxie warns about the media blitz selling the Trump tax cuts coming soon to a newspaper, television, or website near you.

Elsewhere on the web, a pair of New York Times articles outline the realities of the ultra-wealthy in the United States. Rachel Sherman looks behind the scenes at the lives of the modern elites, many of whom live modest and unassuming lives despite their immense fortunes. David Leonhardt peeks into the past to note the time when many rich — Mitt Romney’s CEO dad among them! — actually accepted high taxes.

Speaking of the Big Apple, Juan Gonzalez of the New York Post and Democracy Now! has just released a fascinating new book on what happened when an outspoken critic of inequality became the mayor of New York. Check out labor organizer Steve Early’s write-up.

Among the many titans on New York’s financial scene, Jamie Dimon ranks among the most powerful as head of JP Morgan Chase. That power included, apparently, the ability to squash coverage of his company’s record breaking fines in the wake of the “Great White Whale” crisis — until, that is, William Cohan at Vanity Fair got the scoop.

On the opposite end of the economic spectrum from Dimon: Amazon warehouse employees struggling to make ends meet in an insecure, low-paying industry. These workers, Hamilton Nolan at Splinter argues, represent the future of work and should be the biggest priority for labor unions concerned about our common future.

And finally, from the academic press, Graeme Guthrie of Victoria University of Wellington insightfully examines the under-reported dark side of corporate stock buybacks.

Roll, Tide, Roll: Defending the Indefensible
University of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban will take home at least $11.1 million this year. He makes more than the president of the University of Alabama — and so, amazingly, do three of his assistant coaches. Saban’s teams can defend against college football’s most high-powered offenses. His biggest fans have a tougher task: defending Saban’s mega-million paychecks. co-editor Sam Pizzigati explains why still another version of the “sophisticated” defense for inequality is once again falling flat.
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