Insight News

Sunday
Dec 21st

Commentary

Misguided stimulus spending

When Congress, after much debate, approved a $787 billion stimulus package designed to created jobs and jump start the nation’s economy, it was envisioned the funds would be used to repair roads and bridges and to tackle other needed infrastructure repairs in urban areas across the country.  These repair programs would create hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of badly needed jobs.  It was a win-win situation: communities would be improved and Americans would be working again. Unfortunately, states are not spending the funds as intended and the economy is still stalled.
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Let's stop playing the lottery with our children’s health

As Congress drafts legislation to reform America's health care system, our Senators and Representatives must consider the impact of the unjust lottery of geography on children like Carlos Sanchez (not his real name). For five years, Carlos, 15, received pediatric care at the Upper Cardozo Health Center, one of the 39 sites that are a part of Unity Health Care, Inc., in the District of Columbia. Carlos was enrolled in Medicaid, but when his family could no longer afford the cost of housing in D.C., they moved just across the state boundary line into Maryland where rents are more affordable.
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Criminal justice cycle must end: Time for treatment, not more prisons

In communities across America, citizens, public officials and civic leaders fight against the criminal justice cycle. It's the maddening sequence in which people are incarcerated for drug-related crimes, returned to their neighborhoods without counseling, treatment or healthcare, and then swiftly sent back to prison for resuming old habits.
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Santa Clara County Probation Program's alternative to warehousing youths

At the Children's Defense Fund's Cradle to Prison Pipeline® Summit in Sacramento, CA, earlier this year, we heard from young people from Missouri and California who are trying to get out of the pipeline with the help of caring adults. Here's the story of one of them: At 13, Diego Ramirez's violent, alcoholic father kicked him out of the house and onto the streets of one of San Jose, CA’s most dangerous neighborhoods.
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President Obama in Africa: Taking responsibility begins at home

While discussing Africa ahead of his trip to Ghana, President Obama stated he is not a big believer in excuses.  I understand the President’s frustration.
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Minority homeowners hurt most

Owning a home is a key part of the “American Dream” and critical step in creating wealth; even low- and moderate-income homeowners are able to benefit from their investment.  Unfortunately, with the recent crash of both the housing and financial markets, fewer Americans own homes than they did just a few years ago. The biggest declines were among minorities, with blacks and Latinos homeownership rates falling at a rate much faster than whites.
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Limit credit card use

The U.S. government is headed towards drastically restructuring the way credit card companies do business and, in turn, easing a heavy financial burden carried by so many Americans.  Congress has approved, and the President is expected to sign, legislation that will, among other things, control sudden credit card interest rate increases and late fee charges. Of course, the credit card industry is not happy with these new restrictions and will look for new ways to generate profits. So, even the new law will protect consumers, individuals must still exercise restraint when using credit cards.
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