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Retired business editor Jack Markowitz writes Thursdays. Jack Markowitz can be reached via e-mail or at 412-380-8551

Entitlements won’t save the middle class

By Jack Markowitz
There is no “middle-class economics,” the same as there’s no middle-class astronomy or biology. It’s a tricky business to raid a whole body of knowledge for one slice of pie. When President Obama coined the phrase in his State ...

Let’s just dump the IRS, adopt sales tax

By Jack Markowitz
Come let us sympathize together. A big federal agency is having to cope with a budget cut this year. And we’re supposed to worry if its usual tip-top service to the public will suffer. The department on short rations is ...

Markowitz: With awareness comes promise of better times

By Jack Markowitz
More People Realize — so better days are possible in this young year. But realize what? Sudden truths (or more exactly, familiar truths suddenly rediscovered). Families, investors, maybe even whole countries might avoid jumping the wrong way as a result. Here ...

Lower oil prices that crush terrorist wallets should be strategy

By Jack Markowitz
It looks as if a major gift of 2014 — lower oil prices — might keep right on giving through 2015. The stock market doesn’t like it, and there are other downsides. But in the main, let’s take it — ...

Markowitz: New Year’s wish? Jobs with impact

By Tribune-Review
A new year is beginning, and let’s hope it brings Big Jobs. Huge, exciting, useful building projects. The sort that ambitious kids dream about (grown-up kids, too). Part of the disenchantment with modern government is how it spends so ...

Markowitz: Economy was solid in 2014, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves

By Jack Markowitz
A year that ends with high stock prices and low oil prices can’t be all bad. The economy looks good going into 2015. But that’s also a danger sign. When stock watchers and economic prophets see everything looking up, watch ...

Jack Markowitz: College graduate finds success in oil field

By Jack Markowitz
Alec Rothman graduated from college with majors in economics and French, typically impractical “liberal arts.” No way he’d find a job in the real world, you might think. Wrong. It took a lot of looking, but Rothman landed on the ...

Even a good cause is no excuse for looting

By Jack Markowitz
“Hands up, don’t LOOT!” “Turn, don’t BURN!” Those could be signs in business windows nowadays. Specifically neighborhood businesses, Mom ’n Pops, many of them. The little guys of free enterprise are sitting ducks where people have a grievance and ...

The savings decline — and what to do about it

By Jack Markowitz
It’s hard to believe that just under 40 years ago, if your take-home pay was $100 a week (about average), you saved $17 of it — just socked it away, a full 17 percent. Such was the record-high savings rate ...

Parents can make holidays ‘teachable moment’ for kids

By Jack Markowitz
To spend is the trend of the season. And to save? — Ah, another time. And yet the shopping season that kicks off today offers a surprising opening to teach that old-fashioned virtue — thrift — to children. ...

Markowitz: Health care runaround has grown old

By Jack Markowitz
It’s April in November! Dining room tables are laden with papers demanding attention. There are forms to fill out and a filing deadline. But wait! It’s not income tax time. It’s time for seniors citizens to make decisions about their ...

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