We are living through a profound financial crisis. That crisis has many proximate causes in the governance and deregulation of Wall Street. But its real roots lie in the long-term weakening of the real American economy in an era of globalization -- in closed factories, outsourced high-tech jobs, low-wage jobs with no benefits, and in the unsustainable effort to maintain middle-class living standards through borrowing.
Enron's collapse--and the terrible losses suffered
by Enron workers--has
created the political space for a real conversation about how employers have
chosen to finance their employees' retirement. That debate is centered on the
fact that millions of Americans hold 401(k) plans that are overinvested in the
stock of their employer, which puts them at risk of suddenly losing their