The rich and powerful will do most anything to make more millions – even profit off an inhumane immigration policy that has outraged the world.
Like people around the world, we’ve been aghast over the last few weeks at the ruthlessly cruel Trump administration moves to separate immigrant kids from their families.

But not everyone shares our shock. As David Dayen reports for In These Times, private prison companies and defense contractors are already raking in the cash. Their share prices soared after Donald Trump signed an executive order that would end the separation policy by indefinitely detaining and caging families together.

The rich and powerful, all this reminds us, will do most anything to make more millions – even profit off an inhumane immigration policy that has outraged the world. More in this week’s newsletter on the callous companies that will stoop to the lowest of lows to grow their wealth.

Chuck Collins, for the Institute for Policy Studies team
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Jeff Bezos 1, Seattle Homeless 0. Now What?
Last fall, a coalition of Seattle grassroots and progressive organizations called on their city to address the local homelessness crisis. The groups urged the city council to tackle housing insecurity — and a regressive city tax system — by requiring Seattle’s largest businesses to contribute funding for housing and shelter programs. But businesses like Amazon balked at even a watered-down version of the legislation and eventually forced the city council to kill it. The city council failure left Katie Wilson, a coordinator of the Housing For All Coalition, with lessons learned on Seattle’s power dynamics. She shares them this week on
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A Swamp Creature Too Big to Go Down the Drain
Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, one of the wealthiest U.S. cabinet secretaries ever, sailed through his Senate confirmation hearings early last year, mainly because he pledged to follow ethics rules and divest from his many business holdings. But once in office, the business magazine Forbes revealed last week, Ross did no such thing. He kept significant stakes in foreign companies that could, the Washington Post notes, “pose conflicts of interest for Ross in trade talks.” And he dumped other holdings in a trust for family members — and then continued to deal with foreign nations on matters that could impact the trust’s value. Ross would later decry some of the charges against him as “unfounded allegations.” Says Ross: “My overriding concern is to comply with the ethics laws.” Says Forbes: “Wilbur Ross is not known for telling the truth.”
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New York, New York: a Less than Wonderful Town
The ultimate real-life test of “trickle down” — the notion that we all prosper when the rich get richer — may well be New York. No city in the world now hosts more of humanity’s super rich. Researchers at Wealth-X last month put the New York billionaire total at 103, ten more than Hong Kong. Top 1 percenters in New York overall are now taking in over 40 percent of the city’s income, about double the top 1 percent’s income share nationally in the United States. Numbers like these don’t happen by accident. City and state officials in New York have worked diligently for decades to make the Big Apple as attractive as possible to the ten-digit set. What’s happened to everyone else? co-editor Sam Pizzigati, author of the just-published The Case for a Maximum Wage, has more.
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This week on 

Brian Wakamo, We Subsidize the Wrong Kind of Agriculture. Support the small farmers who sell at farmers markets, not the corporate giants that hurt our health and environment.

Jessicah Pierre, Celebrating the End of Slavery — With One Big Asterisk. Juneteenth marks the end of slavery in America. But with over 2 million of us behind bars, has it really ended — or just transformed?

Elsewhere on the web 

Leah Prinzivalli, The Anti-Aging Secrets of the Ultra Rich, New Beauty Secrets. To be ultra rich means you may never wash your own hair.

Bernie Sanders, A World for All of Us, Not Just the Billionaires, The Nation. To fight today’s extreme inequality, we need to challenge the global oligarchy.

David Cay Johnston, Tax Cheating Is as American as Apple Pie, DCReport. New research reveals that the United States has become the tax haven of choice for the super rich.

Elfren Cruz, Philanthropy is not enough, Philippine Star. Corporate obligations go beyond making charitable donations.

Martin Ravallion, Dean Jolliffe, and Juan Margitic, Alongside rising top incomes, the level of living of America’s poorest has fallen, Vox. More evidence of trickle-down’s failure.
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The Case for a Maximum Wage!
Modern societies set limits on everything from how fast motorists can drive to how many ducks hunters can shoot. But we don’t limit incomes. Should we? Would limiting income address the inequality that ails us more effectively than conventional approaches to narrowing our vast economic divides? Could a cap on income — a “maximum wage” — ever become politically practical?

All these questions deeply matter. That some people are making far too much has become not just a problem. This inequality has become the problem, a social cancer that’s coarsening our cultures, distorting our democracies, and even limiting how long we live.

This is a cancer we can conquer. Egalitarians worldwide, Sam Pizzigati details in The Case for a Maximum Wage, are exploring promising new approaches to capping income. They’re leveraging the power of the public purse, fighting to deny government contracts, subsidies, and tax breaks to enterprises that pay their top executives more in a morning than their workers can earn in a year — or even a career.

These grassroots struggles point us toward a grander goal: a world with income ceilings set as a multiple of income floors. A world without the super rich. A better world for us all. readers who pre-order before June 30 can get 50 percent off the cover price. Just use promo code PIZMW.