Stories in The Washington Post and the New York Times have some in the blogosphere proclaiming that it’s time to celebrate the death of the Grand Bargain, and others at least raising a question about its death. I’ll go on record as saying that celebrating its death is definitely premature.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday August 29, 2013 8:00 pm|
Despite the weeks of hysterical caterwauling in the US media, we are, for the moment, not going to war in Syria in time for the Labor Day weekend. The fact that the general public was almost universally opposed was really no impediment; after all, bipartisan consensus has long held that public opinion can always be brought along to support a war, any war, once the bombs start falling.
|By: letsgetitdone Thursday August 29, 2013 7:00 pm|
As we approach the time when the debt limit, and the lack of agreement between the two parties in Congress, will force the Government to miss payments, Congress does have an obligation to raise the debt limit or remove it entirely. But, Treasury Secretary Lew and the President need to acknowledge that there are things they can do too to avoid a default on the public debt, apart from either reminding Congresspeople of their responsibility, or giving into Republican demands.
|By: letsgetitdone Sunday August 25, 2013 6:40 pm|
In Part One, of a critique of the most important of “Fix the Debt’s” reasons for “Why the National Debt Should Matter To You,” I asserted that high debt levels haven’t caused high unemployment in the United States, and that, if anything causation was in the other direction. I didn’t want to disturb the flow of the argument there with a relatively lengthy survey of some of the numbers in the historical record since the 1930s. But let’s test the idea that High debt causes fewer jobs and lower wages in the United States by looking at that record now.
|By: letsgetitdone Saturday August 24, 2013 4:00 pm|
I came across a post from the “Fix the Debt” campaign last month called “The Top Five Worst Reasons Why the National Debt Should Matter to You.” It’s a post full of debt/deficit lies that cry out for correction. That’s what I’ll provide in this series.
|By: Robert Kuttner Sunday August 18, 2013 1:59 pm|
By now, it’s been thoroughly proven by events that austerity policies backfire. Cut public spending in a deep downturn, and you only worsen the slump. Europe is the more extreme version of the proof, but even the United States, which is technically out of recession, faces a needlessly slow recovery. We’ve reduced deficits by slashing spending, raising taxes, and making sequester deals, but the supposed reward in the form of restored business confidence never arrives. Austerity, as Mark Blyth writes, neither restores growth not reduces the debt ratio, because slow growth (and in some cases negative growth) makes the debt loom that much larger.
|By: fatster Wednesday August 14, 2013 5:45 am|
This Sunday the FDL Book Salon will feature Mark Blyth, a major economist who just published a new book, “Austerity: The History of A Dangerous Idea”.
|By: DSWright Tuesday July 30, 2013 6:40 am|
Remember that illegal prison camp President Obama campaigned on closing, twice? Well not only is it an embarrassment and insult to the rule of law, but its costing American taxpayers over a million dollars a day.
|By: letsgetitdone Monday July 29, 2013 4:20 pm|
There were varying reactions to the President’s recent speech at Knox College this week. My reaction was that the speech was deeply dishonest in light of the President’s previous policies, actions, and results, and I intended to do a critique, but Michael Hudson and Yves Smith beat me to it. In a fine post at Naked Capitalism, entitled “Michael Hudson Shreds Obama’s Orwellian Speech On Middle Class Prosperity,” Michael Hudson, with occasional added comments from Yves, deconstructs the speech paragraph by paragraph, and sometimes line-by-line, pointing out disingenuous assertions and outright dishonesty.
|By: Mark Thoma Saturday June 29, 2013 1:59 pm|
David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu’s new book The Body Economic: Why Austerity Kills is a thorough examination of the toll that recessions take on people’s health. They show, convincingly, that there are many, many channels through which health outcomes can deteriorate when the economy goes into a deep recession. They also show that the manner in which the government reacts to an economic downturn is a critical factor in determining health outcomes. Deterioration in health in a recession, though common, is far from inevitable.