The demands for our human rights — from housing to water to healthcare to education — have gained renewed traction in American political discourse. Today, on the 70th anniversary of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that’s really something to celebrate.

Our newly elected members of Congress haven’t yet started their new jobs, but they’re already stirring up a storm. This past week Representatives-elect Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez lambasted their biased congressional orientation, where panels were dominated by CEOs and war hawks. 

Their timing couldn’t be more critical. The United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 70 years ago this December, but the United States still hasn’t ratified the covenant on economic, social, and cultural rights. These rights have been at the backbone of some of the most forward-thinking movements of the last several years, from Black Lives Matter to Occupy Wall Street.

Movements like these, Allison Corkery writes for us this week, are cementing their ideas into our political discourse as Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, and other new members of Congress bring their rights-based platforms onto Capitol Hill. On this 70th anniversary of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that’s something to celebrate.  

Chuck Collins, for the Institute for Policy Studies team

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Chicago Teachers Stage First Charter School Strike
Chicago teachers are making history again. Educators at Acero Schools have just reached a deal with their employer after staging the first charter school strike in the nation. A whole host of inequality-related issues stand front and center in this Chicago walkout, from school closings to executive pay and immigration. While the circumstances this month in Chicago might be different than the teacher strikes and protests that made waves across the country all year, they stem from the same place — a desire for more justice and equity in the classroom.  Negin Owliaei has more on the teachers and their demands.
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Even Super Good Times Sometimes Stop Rolling
India’s self-styled “King of the Good Times,” the Kingfisher beer and airline baron Vijay Mallya, seems to be in store for lots of not-so-good times. This past September, a local court ordered the sale of the super yacht Mallya had abandoned in Malta — complete with 40 crewmembers — after his arrest in London on fraud and money-laundering charges. Earlier this month, another court ruling awarded the abandoned crew almost $1 million in back pay. Mallya is now fighting extradition to India. The cells in India’s Mumbai Central Prison, he’s complained to British authorities, lack natural light. The 62-year-old is also tweeting regularly that he’s not getting “fair treatment” from politicians and the media. Mallya’s yacht, meanwhile, has begun a new life as a charter boat renting for $850,000 per week.
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If Democrats Fracture, This Will Be the Fault Line
Should Americans treat the super rich as a distraction from more pressing problems or a clear and present danger? No question more deeply divides the opposition to Donald Trump, and at the Democratic Party’s grassroots level, recent Gallup polling suggests, the answer to that question has evolved over recent years. Will that evolution now shape the imminent 2020 presidential election campaign? co-editor Sam Pizzigati, author of The Case for a Maximum Wage, has more.
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This week on 

Jill Richardson, Republicans Don’t Want Your Vote to Count. They’re trying to overturn the will of voters in Wisconsin, Michigan, and maybe a state near you.

Elsewhere on the web 

Zephyr Teachout and Ron Kim, Amazon's HQ2 deal represents what's wrong with American politics, Guardian. The electric response to the Amazon HQ2 deals shows the depth of the growing resistance to the madness of the corporate welfare that enriches the already rich.

Jonathan Kent, Co-operatives: a way to combat inequality, Royal Gazette. In a top-heavy world, the 1worker1vote movement is gaining traction.

Liz Alderman, These 5 Numbers Explain Why the French Are in the Streets, New York Times. One key factor behind the anger in France: President Macron's tax-cut generosity — toward the wealthy.

Josh Israel, These companies claimed the GOP tax bill would ‘boost jobs.’ Now they’re laying off employees, ThinkProgress. In the year since the GOP corporate tax rate cut became law, about half of the corporations that lobbied for the cuts have slashed their payrolls.

Steven Mikulan, 10 Inequality Takeaways, Capital & Main. Advice for California’s new governor collected from interviews with authorities on poverty and income inequality.
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