Rank #1: Are Women Being Underpaid?
Do women get paid 80 cents on the dollar compared to men? That figure has been a political football, but is it overagreggated? How much are pay differences a matter of employer bigotry versus employee choice? FEEcast discusses this hot button issue.
Rank #2: Do we have a “Truth Crisis” in America?
With the 24-hour news media, countless blogs and videos, and near-infinite social media commentary, there’s a lot of noise out there. As a society, we are all struggling to combat disinformation, or “fake news,” and get at the truth. Of course, that’s easier said than done. Joined by guest Jon Miltimore, the FEEcasters discuss how to combat fake news and how constant advisories on everything from romaine lettuce to FBI Russia investigations begin to lose their sense of importance.
Rank #3: Makeup, Macs, and Markets
‘Tis the season for holiday sales, so the FEEcasters discuss the economics of the products they’ve got their eyes on: makeup and Apple products. Celebrity-driven brands are disrupting the established players in the beauty care industry by expanding the diversity of the skin tones they serve. And Apple stock is down due to soft iPhone sales. It all goes to show that, now matter how dominant a company may seem, the consumer holds the ultimate power to make or destroy business fortunes.
Rank #4: Amazon’s HQ Tax Breaks: FEEcast Debate!
Cities and states across the country have been courting Amazon. Each eagerly wanted to host the retail giant’s second headquarters. And each offered billions in tax incentives and cash handouts to entice the company. Now Amazon has made its decision, and “HQ2” ended up being HQ2 + 3.
The FEEcasters are fans of Amazon (except, ahem, for Marianne), but they disagree on one thing: how should we think about the tax breaks Amazon got? Are they welcome tax relief or crony-capitalist subsidies? It’s debate time on FEEcast. What do you think?
FEEcast is taking a break next week. FEE wishes you a happy Thanksgiving!
Rank #5: How Election Season Sets Us against Each Other
Every year, political strife gets more rancorous and invades more of our lives. On the fringes, our hyper-politicized climate even precipitates violent atrocities. Is this a reflection of how much government itself has steadily encroached on our lives? What perspective can we adopt to foster harmony? Watch this episode of FEEcast to find out! Note: FEEcast will take a week off next week. See you again on November 16!
Rank #6: Halloween Costume Controversies
From Kendall Jenner to Elizabeth Warren, cultural appropriation is in the news. And coverage of the topic always ramps up as Halloween approaches. Who is allowed to dress up as whom? What should we consider offensive, and how should we respond to offense taken by others? The FEEcast crew, joined by T.K. Coleman, considers these questions, as well as the economics of Halloween costumes and a recent law passed against adult trick-or-treaters.Show Notes:
Rank #7: Sears Was the 20th Century’s Amazon
After 132 years, Sears is filing for bankruptcy. But it’s not necessarily over for the company which has a surprising and honorable history of disrupting racial hierarchies in the days of Jim Crow. On this episode of the FEEcast, Richard, Anna Jane, and Marianne discuss the company that was truly the Amazon of the 20th century and tackle the question: how likely is it that today's corporate giants will stand the test of time?
Rank #8: What We Hear When Taylor and Kanye Get Political
Taylor Swift recently broke her political silence by endorsing Democratic candidates and dishing out progressive buzzwords. These words were music to some ears and noise to others. Kanye West is rarely silent (as Swift knows from experience), particularly about politics these days. Kanye recently made more waves in his MAGA hat, first on SNL, then on Twitter, where he called for abolishing the 13th amendment. Where some detected a pro-slavery message, others inferred a critique of the prison system. How do our “moral taste buds” (in psychologist Jonathan Haidt’s terminology) shape the way we hear statements from across the political divide? The FEEcasters discuss!
Rank #9: Why Did Amazon Raise Its Minimum Wage?
Jeff Bezos announced that Amazon will raise its minimum wage to $15/hour. This made Bernie Sanders happy, but will it lead to layoffs? And what’s up with Bezos turning around and voicing support for increasing the federal minimum wage? Is all this really about compassion or about using government to squash the competition? Tune in to FEEcast for an in-depth discussion.
*After this recording concluded on Wednesday, news broke that Amazon will discontinue monthly bonuses and stock options for warehouse workers.
Rank #10: Who Helps Working Americans, Bernie or Bezos?
Senator Bernie Sanders recently proposed “Stop BEZOS” (Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies), a tax bill that doesn’t hide its chief target: Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon. But would this law help low-income workers or hurt them? Find out on FEEcast!