The New York Times describes a "backlash" against Gravity Payments, whose CEO recently hiked his workers' minimum wage to $70,000 annually, but it's not much of a backlash. Gravity has had to hire more folks to handle a spike in new business and in "emails, Facebook posts and phone calls -- which were "mostly positive," so how is that, or the new business, "backlash"? Also, some of the CEO's CEO friends felt ashamed or shown up, boo hoo. And "a few customers" took their business elsewhere -- but most came back, which we don't learn for 14 paragraphs. And two-count-'em-two employees left, complaining about those other people who make the same money they do now just punching a clock, like there's just no other way on Earth to fix that. And the CEO's older brother has sued over other grievances, which does threaten Gravity's existence, but sounds like it would have happened anyway. Verdict: this is the news trying to make the news.
IRS moves to prevent hedge fund managers from classifying their management fees as "capital gains" so they can avoid paying taxes on them. I suppose Republicans will get out their swords, if they're not already out, and claim this is more IRS tyranny that must be remedied through legislation -- and don't bet on the "liberal" media pointing out that, hey, these are hedge fund managers Republicans are trying to coddle.
With regulators cracking down on payday loans, some corporations are offering alternative products that can be just as bad. A lot of states cap the fees that corporations offering installment loans can charge, but a lot of states don't, and it's the same story with open-ended credit (including those cash advances on your credit cards that you should avoid like the plague). Again, this does not mean we throw up our hands and say "government doesn't work." It just means we work harder, and we accept that the price of civilization, and of democracy, is eternal vigilance.
Cecilia Garza at Yes! magazine describes how worker-owned textile cooperatives have helped soften the blow of nearly 90% of clothing corporations in North Carolina moving out between 1992 and 2012. Memo to Republicans: this is what a "small business" looks like. And Republicans will kill efforts like these if they can, because they stand in the way of big corporate profits, and thus the campaign donations that keep Republicans in office.
Finally, Slovakian firm Nice Architects has designed an egg-shaped, solar- and wind-powered Ecocapsule, which also collects rainwater, has a kitchenette and shower, can be situated pretty much anywhere you can get sunlight, and sleeps two, as long as they don't bring all their vinyl records along. It'll be pricey (Nice hasn't said how pricey yet), but the price'll come down when enough of them sell, and if it comes down enough, it could also be a pretty good solution to the homeless problem (think Occupy's Tiny House project for the homeless in Madison, WI).