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A CPEG Tribute to Mel Rothenberg 1934-2023

By Ron Baiman

Mel participating in a panel discussion series hosted by Becoming We the People and the Social Justice Council of the First Unitarian Church in Hyde Park. Panel 2: The War Budget and its effects on Social Services. Uploaded: Aug 7, 2011


It's always sad when an old comrade passes and Mel Rothenberg was one of our leaders and role models whom we will greatly miss.


Mel was founder and long-time activist in the Chicago Political Economy Group. He suggested that we call ourselves the “Chicago Political Economy Group” and start a website. Through his University of Chicago connections, he co-taught, facilitated, and participated in courses, open lectures, dinners, teach-ins and other CPEG events at U of C., and in Chicago.


For many years, CPEG met monthly in his Hyde Park apartment. Mel was a dedicated comrade and friend and his passing is a tremendous loss to us and to the greater Chicago left. He will be remembered dearly for his energy and commitment to social and economic justice. Our deepest condolences to Mel’s family and friends.

Below are some of the CPEG related papers, reports, and activities that Mel participated in over the years:


A Permanent Jobs Program for the US: Economic Restructuring to Meet Human Needs. Ron Baiman, Bill Barclay, Sidney Hollander, Joe Persky, Elce Redmond, and Mel Rothenberg. Feb. 2009.


National Conference to Create Living Wage Jobs, Meet Human Needs and Sustain the Environment. Howard University. Washington DC. Nov. 13-14, 2009. National Jobs for all Coalition and the Chicago Political Economy Group.


A Permanent Jobs Program for the US: Economic Restructuring to Meet Human Needs. Ron Baiman, Bill Barclay, Sidney Hollander, Haydar Kurban, Joe Persky, Elce Redmond, and Mel Rothenberg. Revised and updated. 2012. The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer; National Economic Association, vol. 39(1), pages 29-41, March.)


Rentier-Based Finance-Led Macroeconomies: Keynesian or Classical in the Short-run, but Unsustainably Debt Dependent and Minskyan in the Long-run. Ron Baiman and Mel Rothenberg. Allied Social Science Association Meetings, January 2007, Chicago, IL Revised Jan 14, 2008 and March 18, 2013 (Typos and Prologue).


Progressive Trade Principles: Reframing the Trade Debate. R. Baiman, W. Barclay, S. Hollander, J. Persky, B. Parry, M. Rothenberg, M. Strobel. December 7, 2018.


In Love and Sadness,


Ron Baiman

For the Chicago Political Economy Group


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