Don’t Cut Social Security: Double It

save social security

Steven Hill: An expansion of the Social Security retirement system — one of the most successful and popular social programs in American history — that converts it into a more robust retirement system would build upon the most stable component of the current system.

Europe’s Youth Employment Is Bad, But Not As Bad As We’re Told

spain euro

ardly a day goes by without a new headline screaming about the scandal of youth unemployment, which has been pinned at the outrageous levels of 50 percent in Spain and Greece and above 20 percent in the eurozone. There’s just one problem – those numbers are derived from a flawed methodology, which misrepresents the true [...]

The Latest Act of Romania’s Drama

Steven Hill: The key is having a prolonged period of peace and stability so that the slow march toward prosperity can gather steam. Fortunately the European Union provides that space for Romania, despite the current challenges of the eurozone.

Was Rahm Right (about Progressives)?

rahm-wide

Steven Hill: At this point, any progressive leader who does not pursue political reform relentlessly is a faux leader, and she or he should get off the stage and hand over the microphone to someone else.

Can Krugmanomics Be Saved?

krugman-2

Steven Hill: So according to Krugmanomics, taking on too much debt is not the problem – it’s not being able to pay the debt that is the problem. And Krugman’s solution, apparently, is to be able to depreciate your currency and/or default on your debts, leaving the creditors holding the bag.

Economic Powerhouse Germany

germany

Steven Hill: Germany has evolved a social capitalism which has proven to be more stable and efficient than America’s Wall Street capitalism, not to mention more ecologically sustainable.

Istanbul: Ancient City, Throbbing Metropolis

istanbul street

Steven Hill: Muslims, Christians, and Jews live in relative harmony here, yet it’s as if its too-jumbled history pulses within the walls, the monuments, the winding streets, indeed within each individual Turk now inhabiting this ground zero zone.

Athens, Birthplace of Democracy

agora

Steven Hill: While democracy can be noisy and messy, and can sometimes result in confusion and inefficiency, if implemented fairly with the right institutions the human experience shows that it is capable of fostering remarkable things.

Greece: Epicenter of the Debt Earthquake?

Papandreou and Obama

Steven Hill: One of the qualities holding Greece back from enjoying the benefits of a more modern economy is its reliance on an informal economy of family and social networks which too often translates into nepotism, back room deals and tax dodging. But during an economic crisis like this, those networks become valuable

The Myth of the Overtaxed Europeans

Comedy Congress

Steven Hill: In return for their taxes, Europeans get valuable support systems like childcare, senior care, university tuition and healthcare. Americans must pay exorbitantly, out-of-pocket, for these support services often going without because the cost is prohibitive.

Europe Ponders U.S. Election Results

Christian Stoffaes

Steven Hill: Europeans are puzzled by the success of the populist Tea Party movement, which seemingly wants to roll back the last two years and return to how things were at the end of the Bush-Cheney years.

How’s Europe Doing?

Taksim Square

Steven Hill: When puzzled Europeans ask me to explain the American voter, the best metaphor I can give for understanding the American electorate right now is that of a coyote with its leg caught in a trap, suffering in pain, so now it is chewing off its own leg to get out of the trap.

French Protestors: “Where Are You Americans?”

french protests

Steven Hill: “Where are you Americans? Why aren’t Americans out in the streets? If Americans are angry, why aren’t they out in the streets like we are?” He said something quickly to his comrades in French, then reverted back to English. “It’s like Americans have gone to sleep or something. You used to have many protests.”

Slash Social Security? No – Double It

ss check

Steven Hill: Social Security Plus would provide a stable, secure retirement for every American and contribute greatly toward a solid foundation from which to build a strong and vibrant 21st century U.S. economy.

Shorting Economists: The ‘Experts’ Keep Getting it Wrong

economy

Steven Hill: So when the authorities say “a recovery is under way” or “stimulus rather than deficit reduction” or “deficit reduction instead of stimulus,” remember: These are the same experts who are unsure of how to measure, who too often substitute ideology and partisanship for broken theory, and usually have been flat wrong in their assessments.

Europe’s Post-Copenhagen View of Obama

Obama in Copenhagen

Steven Hill: Mr. Obama isn’t delivering because he can’t deliver. The majorities needed for major policy changes are too high a threshold, even for someone with Mr. Obama’s political gifts.

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