Are We Still a First-World Nation?

From income inequality to gender to education, the U.S. is lagging far behind most other developed countries. Here's what we need to fix to truly make America great.

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There was a time when America really was one of the best countries in the world. We had a tax system that generally taxed the wealthiest at a rate they could comfortably absorb to fund programs that supported the common good and created a social safety net. We’ve never had what you might call a good track record on equality, but there was a stretch of a few decades there where our performance on that front was improving. That is not the reality we live in today. Today, the United States tends to be keeping company with developing nations on nearly every metric—education, income inequality, health care, gender equality, homelessness, you name it. So in fact, there is a need to make America great again, but not in the way this administration, which is cutting funding for every program that would move the needle on these indicators, envisions it.


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