We have a few other ideas for the Amazon CEO on how to best deploy his cash.
According to Jeff Bezos, billionaires have a hard time finding ways to spend their money. In an interview with Axel Springer CEO Mathias Döpfner, the Amazon head and richest person in the world called space travel the only way he could imagine using his vast financial resources.

But as my colleague Sam Pizzigati wrote earlier this year about Elon Musk, billionaires don’t need to go to space to spend their money. They have plenty of options right here on Earth. A good place for Bezos to start: actually paying Amazon’s corporate taxes. We have more on Bezos and his tax aversion in this week’s issue.

Chuck Collins, for the Institute for Policy Studies Inequality.org team
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May Day Parade Stands Up Against Wage Theft
As buildings rise in Navy Yard, so too do rents. The rapidly gentrifying pocket of Washington, D.C. has been lining the pockets of developers for years, but the money hasn’t made its way to the construction workers building the luxury apartments popping up around the neighborhood. That’s especially true for the workers contracted out by Power Design, a Florida-based electrical company that’s been sued more than a dozen times for wage theft. Activists targeted the firm’s Navy Yard construction sites on May Day to educate workers on their rights and remind companies working with Power Design that they’re responsible for wage theft that happens on their watch. Inequality.org co-editor Negin Owliaei has more.
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A Burp for Bezos Could Be a Life-Saver for Seattle
Amazon chief Jeff Bezos may have the world’s grandest fortune, but he seems to be lacking one thing money can’t buy: a sense of timing. Last week, with the Seattle city council about to vote on a proposal to levy a new “head tax” on large employers, Bezos had his company — Seattle’s largest employer — “play hardball.” Amazon, a company flack announced, would be pausing plans to build a new Seattle office tower. The obvious between-the-lines message: The new construction dies if Seattle adopts the head tax, a levy that would raise $75 million a year for fighting homelessness and housing unaffordability. Meanwhile, at almost the exact same moment, Money magazine revealed that Bezos is now adding to his $132-billion fortune at the rate of $275 million a day.
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In Mexico, a Challenge to an Unequal Status Quo
The upcoming presidential election in Mexico — now just eight weeks away — may well prove to be this year’s most significant worldwide referendum on inequality. Mexico, after all, rates as one of the world’s most unequal major nations, and the party of the presidential candidate currently topping the polls, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, is pledging to confront the privileged Mexican few who are concentrating the nation’s “economic and political power.” But many sober pundits aren’t viewing this spring’s Mexican presidential campaigning through an inequality lens. Inequality.org co-editor Sam Pizzigati has more from Mexico.
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This week on Inequality.org 

Chuck Collins, Tax Luxury Housing to Fund Social Housing. Taxing high-end real estate transfers can help keep city living affordable for everyone.

Melanie G. Long, 2008 Financial Crisis Still Seems Like Only Yesterday for Single Women. New research shows female-headed households faced troubling debt increases in the lead-up to the financial crash, and the gender gap has only continued through the recovery.

Saurav Sarkar, Bring Back May Day. Politicians have made a mess of things for American workers, but a new Poor People's Campaign is rising to set things right.

Chuck Collins, My Advice for High School Graduates: Learn a Trade. With millions of students racking up college debt and gaining no skills, millions of high-paying trade jobs still sit empty.

Elsewhere on the web 

Nomi Prins, The Fed Boosts Wall Street, Not Main Street, TruthDig. How central bank policy is fueling greater inequality.

Emily Kawano, Solidarity Economy: Building an Economy for People & Planet, Next System Project. Rising inequality is multiplying interest in cooperatives, participatory public budgeting, and other economic practices that build social solidarity.

Zsolt Darvas, European income inequality begins to fall once again, Bruegel. Income inequality within the EU recorded a sizeable decline in 2016, reaching its lowest level since 1989.

Andrea Prat and Patrick Kennedy, Information inequality makes voters vulnerable to manipulation, LSE Business Review. Information inequality, suggests a new study, perpetuates income inequality.

Lance Taylor, The Real Driver of Rising Inequality, Institute for New Economic Thinking. Wage suppression is fueling the growing gap between rich and poor.

Jeremy Avins, Megan Larcom, and Jenny Weissbourd. Why MBAs haven’t got a clue about front-line workers, Boston Globe. Business school programs ignore the plight of the working class. That must change.
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Is Inequality in America Irreversible?
We are living in a time of extreme inequality, and few places have become more unequal than the United States, where the 20 richest now own more wealth than the bottom half of the population combined.

In his latest book, activist Chuck Collins succinctly diagnoses the causes and drivers of rampant inequality and demolishes the simplistic theories that link current inequalities primarily to technological change and globalization or differences in merit. Is Inequality in America Irreversible? proposes a wide range of public policies that could de-rig our economic system and shows how transformative local campaigns can become a national movement for lasting egalitarian change.

Inequality.org readers who pre-order before May 31 can get 50 percent off the cover price. Just use promo code COL18.