No proposal to raise the minimum wage can be evaluated without asking "how fast and by how much?" The Congressional Budget Office offers an evaluation of three alternatives in "The Effects on Employment and Family Income of Increasing the Federal Minimum Wage" (July 2019). CBO considers three proposals: "The options would raise the minimum wage to $15, $12, and $10, respectively, in six steps between January 1, 2020, and January 1, 2025. Under the $15 option, the minimum wage would then be indexed to median hourly wages; under the $12 and $10 options, it would not." (There are some other complexities involving possible subminimum wages for teenage workers, tipped worker, and disables workers, which I won't discuss here.)
"For decades, US multinational corporations (MNCs) conducted nearly all their research and development (R&D) within the United States. Their focus on R&D at home helped establish the United States as the unrivaled leader of innovation and technology advances in the world economy. Since the late 1990s, however, the amount of R&D conducted overseas by US MNCs has grown nearly fourfold and its geographic distribution has expanded from a few advanced industrial countries (such as Germany, Japan, and Canada) to many parts of the developing world ..."
In my experience, complaints about the system of health care finance over the years almost always began with the lack of universal health insurance coverage, and how many tens of millions of Americans lacked health insurance. Then, somewhat later in the conversation, the high per capita costs of US health care spending might or might not come up.
The number of people receiving benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), perhaps better know as "food stamps," rose slowly in early 2000s, then leaped during the Great Recession, and now has been sagging lower for a few years, although remaining above pre-recession levels. Victor Oliveira gives a quick overview in "The Food Assistance Landscape:FY 2018 Annual Report" (US Department of Agriculture, April 2019)
Social scientists sometimes say that "demography is destiny," which never seemed quite right to me. Yes, demography has powerful and often underestimated effects. It constrains and shapes the options available to society. But society also makes decisions about how to react to demographic forces, too. In that spirit, here are some of the population constraints that will be shaping and constraining global politics and economics in the next few decades, from World Population Prospects 2019 done by demographers at the United Nations. In particular, I'm drawing here from the World Population Prospects 2019: Highlights report (June 2019).
Since the terrorist attacks of 9/11, a number of economists and other social scientists have been studying terrorism. Khusrav Gaibulloev and Todd Sandler summarize the findings in a review article written for the Journal of Economic Literature (June 2019, pp. 275-328, not freely available online, but many readers should have access via subscriptions through their library). Here, I'll hit some high spots of their five main themes, and I'll skip the citations, but the paper itself has vastly more detail.
"About half a century ago, the American alligator became one of the original endangered species. Today, there are approximately 1.3 million in Florida alone, and residents routinely call nuisance trappers ... to remove gators from swimming pools, neighborhood lagoons, and pretty much any other body of water they find their way into. For the nuisance trappers across the state, markets and commercialization are part of the foundation that helps manage this now-abundant species."