The Austerity Death-Trap

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Robert Reich: Can we just put ideology aside for a moment and be clear about the facts? Consumer spending (70 percent of the economy) is flat or dropping because consumers are losing their jobs and wages, and don’t have the dough. And businesses aren’t hiring because they don’t have enough customers.

The Need for a Progressive Alternative

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Robert Reich: Without bold alternatives, Americans desperate for big solutions are attracted to bold crackpot ideas like Herman Cain’s “9-9-9” proposal, which would raise taxes on the poor and cut them for the rich.

The Rise of the Regressive Right and the Reawakening of America

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Robert Reich: Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and the other tribunes of today’s Republican right aren’t really conservatives. Their goal isn’t to conservative what we have. It’s to take us backwards.

The Triumph of Dogma, and a Sad Goodbye to David Frum

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Robert Reich: The American public doesn’t want or need to hear “representatives” from the so-called right or left. It wants insight into what’s best for America.

The Seven Biggest Economic Lies

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Robert Reich: Here’s a short effort to rebut the seven biggest whoppers now being told by those who want to take America backwards.

The Wall Street Occupiers and the Democratic Party

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Robert Reich: Will the Wall Street Occupiers morph into a movement that has as much impact on the Democratic Party as the Tea Party has had on the GOP? Maybe. But there are reasons for doubting it.

Behind Europe’s Debt Crisis Lurks Another Giant Bailout of Wall Street

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Robert Reich: Republicans and Wall Street executives who continue to yell about Dodd-Frank overkill are dead wrong. The fact no one seems to know Morgan’s exposure to European banks or derivatives – or that of most other giant Wall Street banks – shows Dodd-Frank didn’t go nearly far enough.

How to Get Out of America’s Jobs Depression

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The Reverend Al Sharpton and various labor unions have announced a March for Jobs. But I’m afraid we’ll need more than marches to get jobs back. Since the start of the Great Recession at the end of 2007, America’s potential labor force – that is, working-age people who want jobs – has grown by over [...]

The Moral Question

Robert Reich: The appropriation bill the House passed June 16 would deny benefits to more than 700,000 eligible low-income women and young children next year. What kind of country are we living in?

Why This Is Exactly the Time to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure

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Robert Reich: Anyone with half a brain will see this is the ideal time to borrow money from the rest of the world to put Americans to work rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure. Problem is, too many in Washington have less than half a brain.

When Will Wall Street Call for More Federal Spending?

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Robert Reich: We can get out of this recession but not via the Fed’s “quantitative easing” alone. When consumers can’t spend and businesses won’t spend without additional consumers, government must be the spender of last resort.

The Republicans’ Latest Ploy to Keep the Economy Lousy

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Robert Reich: Whatever shred of doubt you may have harbored about the determination of congressional Republicans to keep the economy in the dumps through Election Day should now be gone.

Why the Most Important Issues May Be Off the Table in the 2012 Election

President Barack Obama has lunch at Good Stuff Eatery in Washington, D.C., with staff members who worked on the debt negotiations, Aug. 3, 2011. Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Robert Reich: By continuing to push and prod we give hope to countless Americans on the verge of giving up. We give back to them the courage of their own convictions, and thereby lay the groundwork for a future progressive agenda

Taxing the Rich, the Obama Way

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Robert Reich: You can bet Republicans will continue to harp about the large portion of low-wage earners who pay no income taxes — without mentioning that they pay a higher portion of their incomes than anyone else in payroll and sales taxes.

The Republican Weapon of Mass Cynicism

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Robert Reich: If we can’t trust government at a time like this, whom can we trust? Corporations? Wall Street? Bill Gates and Warren Buffett? Or is each of us now simply on our own?

How to Create More Jobs By Lowering Wages: Texas and America

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Robert Reich: Perry and Romney can duke it out over who created the most jobs, but governors have as much influence over job growth in their states as roosters do over sunrises.

The Oddness of the President’s Upcoming Deficit-Reduction Plan

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Robert Reich: When unemployment is still in the stratosphere, it would be insane to start cutting the deficit by $3 trillion to $4 trillion. That would push unemployment into outer space.

Two Cheers and One Jeer for the American Jobs Act

Robert Reich: President Obama laid out the problem correctly and effectively. He explained why jobs and growth must be the nation’s first priority now — not the federal deficit.

Inequality: The Real Cause of America’s Economic Woes

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Robert Reich: During periods when the very rich took home a much smaller proportion of total income — as in the Great Prosperity between 1947 and 1977 — the nation as a whole grew faster and median wages surged.

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The Zero Economy

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Robert Reich: Every time you hear anyone say we’re “broke” or “can’t afford to spend more,” tell them we’ll be in worse shape if we don’t. If the economy remains dead in the water, the ratio of public debt to GDP balloons.

Obama’s Jobs Plan: Will He Offer Policy Miniatures or Give ‘em Hell?

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Robert Reich: The winner of the 2012 presidential election will be the person who comes off as the toughest fighter for average Americans. Earth to Obama: Remember Harry (Give ‘em Hell) Truman.

Rick Perry’s Secret Plan to Save Blue States from the Red States

Robert Reich: Of all the nonsense Texas Governor Rick Perry spews about states’ rights and the tenth amendment, his dumbest is the notion that states should go it alone.

Protests, Not Parades, This Labor Day

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Robert Reich: Labor Day is traditionally a time for picnics and parades. But this year is no picnic for American workers, and a protest march would be more appropriate than a parade.

Stock Tip: Be Worried. Workers are Consumers.

Iranian medical delegation at the Agent Orange conference in Hanoi.

Robert Reich: Every CEO of every company that continues to squeeze payrolls (Verizon, are you listening? Ford?) needs to understand they’re shooting themselves in the feet. Where do they expect demand for their products and services to come from?

Obama’s Bold Jobs Bill (Maybe)

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Robert Reich: A bold jobs plan is also good politics. With more than 25 million Americans looking for full-time jobs, the wages of people with jobs falling, and an economy on the verge of a double dip, the President has to come out fighting on the side of average people.

How Austerity Is Ushering in a Global Recession

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Robert Reich: Chalk up a big part of Europe’s slowdown to the politics and economics of austerity. Europe – including Britain – have turned John Maynard Keynes on his head. They’ve been cutting public spending just when they should be spending more to counteract slowing private spending.

Healthcare: What Democrats Should Have Learned By Now

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Robert Reich: Had the President and the Democrats stuck to their guns during the health-care debate and insisted on Medicare for all, or at least a public option, they wouldn’t now be facing the possible unraveling of the new health care law.

Slouching Toward a Double Dip, For No Good Reason

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Robert Reich: We are slouching toward a double dip because we’re getting the problem wrong. Despite what Standard & Poor’s says, notwithstanding what’s occurring in Europe, and regardless of U.S. budget projections years from now — our current crisis is jobs, wages, and growth. We do not now have a debt crisis.

Why S&P Has No Business Downgrading the U.S.

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Robert Reich: S&P’s intrusion into American politics is also ironic because, as I pointed out recently, much of our current debt is directly or indirectly due to S&P’s failures (along with the failures of the two other major credit-rating agencies — Fitch and Moody’s) to do their jobs before the financial meltdown.

Republican Double-Dip: What Must Be Done

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Robert Reich: Now that we’re slouching toward a double-dip recession, the only hope is voters will tell their members of Congress to stop obsessing about future budget deficits and get to work on the real crisis of unemployment, falling wages, and no growth.

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