Is the Crisis Really Over?

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Steve Hochstadt: Despite the billions in damage to our economy that the shutdown caused and the unanimous warnings from economists across the world that a government default would create much worse damage, Republican politicians did not budge.

Government Shutdown Ends

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Sharon Kyle: The government shutdown of 2013 is over. After more than two weeks the Senate voted 81 to 18 and the House voted 285-144 to reopen the federal government.

What to Expect During the Cease-Fire

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Robert Reich: Our real economic problem continues to be a dearth of good jobs along with widening inequality. Cutting the budget deficit may make both worse, by reducing total demand for goods and services and eliminating programs that lower-income Americans depend on.

Republicans Not Budging

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Robert Reich: At a closed-door meeting this morning after deciding they’ll stick to their plan to alter the Affordable Care Act and risk a government default.

Debt Ceiling Law Unconstitutional

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Ted Vaill: Mr. President, there is only one option: Declare the debt ceiling law unconstitutional and order the Secretary of the Treasury to continue to pay all debts of the United States as they become due.

Debt Ceiling: Obama’s Nuclear Option?

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John Peeler: If President Obama defers to Congress and accepts a default on the debt, with its attendant catastrophic economic consequences, he would be a party to Congress’ violation of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Teaparty.org: Stuck in 2008, Still Demented

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Julie Driscoll: Although it’s not really necessary to “know the enemy” (since our enemies have already outed themselves as idiots and numbskulls hugging their guns and building underground bunkers), it’s on sites like teaparty.org where true radical right-wingers are born, bottle-fed, nurtured and set free to wreak havoc.

Can America Withstand Its Own Political Rhetoric?

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Anthony Samad: The Republicans need a vehicle with a big enough horn to get the public’s attention. They need to raise the ideological rhetoric just to have a chance. Regardless of what it does to the nation. The rhetoric bomb is coming under hood and sheets. The question is, will the nation stand for it.

The Top 10 Best and Worst of U.S. Politics in 2011

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Randy Shaw: Occupy Wall Street’s emergence in September raised progressive spirits, as has the unexpected rise of Newt Gingrich as the frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination. Here’s my list of the top ten best and worst political events that occurred across the nation in 2011.

Europe’s Central Bank Fiddles While Rome Burns

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Ellen Brown: The burgeoning debts of the Eurozone countries are being blamed on their large welfare states, but these social systems were set up before the 1970s, when European governments had very little national debt. Their national debts shot up, not because they spent on social services, but because they switched bankers.

Supercommittee Sins

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Brent Budowsky: The sin of the supercommittee is that it has merely mirrored the old-think politics it was created to rise above.

Let’s Have a Tea Party

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Ted Vaill: Teabaggers, look at what has happened this past week in England – get rid of entitlements and you have rioting in the streets fomented by the unemployed youths who have been pushed down through England’s safety net.

Where’s Howard Dean?

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Randy Shaw: At a time when President Obama is openly ignoring this “Democratic wing” while currying favor with “independents,” Dean is publicly silent over the president’s rightward shift.

Democrats Must Push Back

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Norman Solomon: Call me old-fashioned, but I believe in the vital lessons of the New Deal. Many millions of good jobs must be created — and that will require well-funded federal jobs programs on a large scale.

Inflation — Fighting the Last War

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Steven Conn: For thirty years inflation has not been a serious threat to the American economy, yet politicians and pundits continually fret about it. The never-ending worry about inflation is like fighting the last war rather than the current one. What’s needed today is a war on unemployment and wage stagnation, not inflation.

Obama vs. Boehner: Point Guard and Linebacker

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John Peeler: Obama dribbles across mid-court, fakes left, moves right, deftly avoids Boehner’s attempted steal, and goes in for a lay-up. Boehner cuts him off at the knees, grabs the loose ball and runs it back for a touchdown.

Super Committee to the Rescue

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The recent debt ceiling negotiation wrestling match resulted in the United States losing its AAA credit rating and also resulted in the creation of a new committee. The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, also known as the Supercommittee or Super Congress, was created by the Budget Control Act of 2011 on August 2.

Let’s Hope for Continued Fiscal Gridlock

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Ivan Eland: The good news is that if the committee can’t reach an agreement on the fiscal changes, or if Congress rejects its work, defense (including homeland security) and domestic programs have to take equal cuts.

Teach for America Roots

Mark Naison: It behooves us, as progressive organizers and justice fighters, to keep the lines of communication open to people in these organizations, and be there to work with them if they join us in resistance to policies that concentrate economic sacrifice amongst America’s poor.

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.

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