Today’s News & Commentary — March 2, 2018

Published March 2nd, 2018 -  - 03.02.1811


Yesterday, President Trump announced that he would impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, effectively taxing every foreign shipment of those metals into the United States. The New York Times reports that the announcement was made despite strong pushback from American companies and foreign officials. Utah Senator Orrin G. Hatch, Republican and Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, called the tariffs “a tax hike the American people don’t need and can’t afford.” On the other hand, Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, said the announcement represented a “long overdue” action for steelworkers in his state.

According to a study by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies, over fifty percent of American baby boomers plan to work past age 65 or not retire at all. The New York Times reports that, although negative attitudes about older workers pervade some workplaces, other workplaces are beginning to pioneer employment programs for workers over 50. The Columbia Aging Center at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health grants Age Smart Employer Awards to businesses and nonprofits that offer programs for older workers. “We’ve increased our life expectancy by 50 percent in the last 100 years,” said Dr. Linda Fried, dean of the Mailman School. “Now we have to design society for longer lives, and these awards, I think, are a linchpin of that.”

The Nation writes that March 1, which is the 41st day of the year, was “Minimum Wage Workers’ Equal Pay Day.” According to analysis by the Center for American Progress, workers earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour needed to work 41 extra days to make the same amount—adjusted for inflation—that they would have made back in 2009. Last year, “Minimum Wage Workers’ Equal Pay Day” was on February 21.

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