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.
Charley James: Newspapers and cable are filled with counter GOP demands for massive spending cuts that would almost entirely hurt the poor, the working poor, the tattered remains of the middle class and the elderly.
John Peeler: Obama, if he could free himself of the Wall Street crowd, is the likelier buyer of Will’s prescription of breaking up financial institutions that are “too big to fail”.
Robert Reich: Democrats want a deal that raises taxes only on America’s wealthy and doesn’t substantially alter Medicare, and Social Security — which is the opposite of what Republicans want.
Steve Hochstadt: One obvious conclusion is that high, even very high tax rates on the wealthiest taxpayers do not impede economic growth.
Michele Waslin: While immigration restrictionists have long tried to demonize immigrant workers and blame them for high unemployment rates and other economic woes, the facts make it clear that immigrants actually create jobs and businesses and boost the wages of native-born workers.
Steve Hochstadt: Our economic disaster is not about national debt, but about national poverty. America cannot be a great country, if we do not alleviate the critical economic problems gripping our poorest families.
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.
Robert Reich: If governments keep hacking away at their budgets while consumers almost everywhere are becoming more cautious about spending, global demand will shrink to the point where a worldwide dip is inevitable.
Robert Reich: Say you’re a high government official with some responsibility for advising the President on what he should be doing and saying about the economy. You know the economy is still in a deep hole, the deepest since the Great Depression.
Robert Reich: The most important thing to know about the 1,500 page financial reform bill passed by the Senate last week — now on the way to being reconciled with the House bill — is that it’s regulatory. It does nothing to change the structure of Wall Street.
Andrea Nill: A new study by University of California at Los Angeles professor Raúl Hinojosa-Ojeda suggests that comprehensive immigration reform, which includes an earned path to legalization for undocumented immigrants, could generate at least $1.5 trillion in added U.S. gross domestic product over 10 years.
As we note, the heightened attention to the crisis, and hopefully proposals for Congressional action, the alarming jobless figures will be repeated over and over. The employment situation is dire and from all indications it is going to get worse.