Robert Reich: The White House’s and Democrats’ single biggest failure in the cliff negotiations was not getting Republicans’ agreement to raise the debt ceiling.
Robert Reich: Friday’s jobs report shows an economy that’s still moving in the right direction but way too slowly, which is why Washington’s continuing obsession with the federal budget deficit is insane. Jobs and growth must come first.
Robert Reich: I wish President Obama and the Democrats would explain to the nation that the federal budget deficit isn’t the nation’s major economic problem and deficit reduction shouldn’t be our major goal.
Eric Laumen: Amidst the controversy of the Starr commission’s Monica Lewinsky investigation, President Clinton, a centrist through and through, was forced to fall back on the support of his party’s left-progressive wing and abandon bipartisanship.
Robert Reich: I worry about the well-financed big lies that the very rich are the nation’s “job creators,” that the benefits from tax cuts on the rich “trickle down” to everyone else.
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.
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.
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.
Robert Reich: The only way out of the vicious economic cycle is for government to adopt an expansionary fiscal policy — spending more in the short term in order to make up for the shortfall in consumer demand.
Ivan Eland: To keep with the bipartisan spirit after the Gabrielle Giffords’ assassination attempt and also to avoid partisan fighting over spending priorities, which will bog down and probably eventually kill any significant budget cuts, all government programs should be cut by 15 percent from last year’s budget level, including heretofore sacred defense and entitlement programs.
Carl Bloice: Social Security is not, to any significant extent, a contributing factor in the burgeoning deficit. Defenders of the system, including some leading economists, have successfully advanced that argument. Yet, a growing number of conservatives have begun to advance other specious arguments for “entitlement reform” that may threaten Social Security.