Why Jobs Still Matter More Than Budget Deficits

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Robert Reich: Government should extend unemployment benefits, and not cut spending until the nation’s rate of unemployment is down to 5 percent. Then, and only then, should we move toward budget austerity.

Newt’s Tax Plan, and Why His Polls Rise the More Outrageous He Becomes

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Robert Reich: The more irresponsible his bomb-throwing, the more attractive Gringrich becomes to a sizable portion of Americans so fed up they feel like throwing bombs.

Super Committee Deadlock: Heads They Win, Tails We Lose

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Ellen Brown: Either way the super committee goes, the economy will wind up with $1.2 trillion less in the way purchasing power. The result will be to reduce demand, kill jobs, and put more people on the streets.

Trigger Deficit Cuts When Unemployment Drops to 5 Percent

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Robert Reich: So the best of all worlds is to have a big jobs plan now, and also commit to automatic cuts triggered when unemployment falls to 5 percent.

The Deficit Committee Is a Stacked Deck

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Carl Bloice: Obviously, there is nothing demographically representative of the Gang of 12. It’s hardly democratic; but then, there is nothing particularly democratic about the whole setup.

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.

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.

Well-To-Do Americans Getting More Benefits than the Poor

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Sherwood Ross: All the Federal welfare checks, food stamps, and unemployment benefits don’t begin to add up to the more than $1 trillion in indirect tax breaks awarded annually to America’s middle- and upper-classes.

What the Debt Ceiling Deal Means for Foreign Policy

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Rebecca Griffin: Depending on whom you ask, the Pentagon either got a free ride or the deal decimates the military budget. Given the leverage that Republicans had in this debate, it’s not surprising that the Pentagon got off easy in the first round of cuts.

In the Debt Ceiling Machinations Democracy Is Also Up for Grabs

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Carl Bloice: If the people who set the Tea Party in motion and sustain it want a mandatory “balanced budget” there is a democratic way of going about getting one; introduce specific legislation. They wouldn’t take that route.

Why Obama Can’t Pivot to Jobs

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Robert Reich: The nation and Oba,ma remain hostage to the ideology of right-wing Republicans who won’t let the government spend more money. Yet if the government can’t spend more – at least this year and next, until the pump is primed and the economy is growing again – we won’t see job growth. And without job growth, the economy will remain anemic.

Understanding ‘Debtageddon’ Tuesday

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Denis Campbell: Many economists predict a failure to act before Asia markets open Sunday or Monday night could see an immediate stock market loss of up to 5% and wipe out 10% of US GDP by Tuesday night. It’s that serious.

Don’t Fall for GOP “Budget Crisis” Lie

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Robert Reich: Republicans are using what would otherwise be a routine, legally technical vote to raise the debt limit as a means of holding the nation hostage to their own political goal of shrinking the size of the federal government.

7 Myths That Drive the Debt Ceiling Debate

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Adam Eran: The metaphors that frame the current Federal budget and debt ceiling debates are completely inaccurate, and if the media coverage is any indication, the public has swallowed them hook, line and sinker, too.

The Biggest Driver in the Deficit Battle: Standard & Poor’s

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Robert Reich: Standard & Poor’s insists any deal must also contain a credible, bipartisan plan to reduce the nation’s long-term budget deficit by $4 trillion — something neither Harry Reid’s nor John Boehner’s plans do.

What “Shared Sacrifice” Means

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Carl Bloice: All across the country social services, which largely benefit lower income women, men and children are being cut back and people who made them function are being added to the ranks of the unemployed.

We Need to Rethink the Morality of the Economy

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James Livingston: Why can’t the liberal Left answer the Right when budget deficits are the issue? Why are Democrats, Obama included, so eager to reduce spending on so-called entitlements?

Stronger Words from the White House? Hold the Euphoria

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Carl Bloice: The country really does need a deal right now; that’s as in ‘New Deal.” There are a lot of people, groups and new movements out there proposing that we come up with one.

Mayors to Obama: Bring War Dollars Home

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Peter Dreier: At its annual conference in Baltimore, the U.S. Conference of Mayors passed a resolution calling for an end to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, saying that the money could be put to better use at home.

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More Truth About the American Economy

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Robert Reich: Democrats are behaving as if they’re powerless to affect the economy even though a Democrat occupies the White House and his appointees run the federal government.

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Across-the-Board Spending Cut Proposals Go Mainstream

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Ivan Eland: Deep down, both Republican and Democratic politicians believe something needs to be done about the monstrous and dangerous deficit and debt, but they are scared to do anything because, unfortunately, the American people want their government handouts but are unwilling to pay for them.

Voters Rejecting Obama’s Rightward Shift

President Barack Obama waves to the people gathered on the street outside the Cidade de Deus (City of God) favela Community Center in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Sunday, March 20, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Randy Shaw: As dysfunctional as the Republican presidential contest is likely to be, when presidential elections are framed around Republican issues like deficits rather than Democratic issues like jobs, the Republican candidate nearly always wins.

Beware of the Racial Demagoguery

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Carl Bloice: With public opinion across the political spectrum clearly opposed to slashing the healthcare and retirement programs, any negotiated settlement would be undemocratic.

The Fake Budget Debate

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Shamus Cooke: This two-party big lie is not an accident, but an expression of a deeper held belief: that the U.S. government must be directed to meet the needs of the super wealthy who own U.S. corporations.

Tax War!

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Tina Dupuy: Republicans claim to be the arbiters of fiscal discipline, but their record says otherwise. The Ryan Plan, which passed the House, was like a cat burglar writing the charter for the neighborhood watch.

Why Obama’s Proposal Is Risky

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Robert Reich: The underlying problem isn’t the budget deficit. It’s that so much income and wealth are going to the top that most Americans don’t have the purchasing power to sustain a strong recovery.

Disaster Capitalism in the Budget Debate

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Adam Eran: Historic tax reductions on the wealthy, and the Wall-Street-Fraud recession, have reduced public revenues, and this reduction now makes otherwise too-popular-to-cut programs vulnerable. But are such cuts really necessary?

The Progressive Caucus Budget

What Do You Expect

We hear a lot about Ryan’s budget and the President’s budget but we’re not hearing very much about the Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget which appears to be more in line with what the average middle class American wants and needs. What’s up with that?

As the Global Economy Trembles, Our Nation’s Capital Fiddles

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Robert Reich: In the past I’ve often wondered whether they’re knaves or fools. Now I’m sure. Republicans wouldn’t mind a double-dip recession between now and Election Day 2012.

War and Workers

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Lydia Howell: Whether it’s debt-ridden college graduates working as baristas or small town youth with only fast-food and Wal-Mart as post-high school career options, high unemployment keeps a volunteer military ranks full.

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