What you need to know to navigate today's most critical debates.
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In debt talks, Obama offers Social Security cuts (WaPo)
In advance of today's summit, President Obama has floated a deal that includes $4 trillion in savings and cuts to Social Security. If this reverse psychology works out, John Boehner will argue for single-payer health care.
How Much Would A Social Security Deal Cost You? (CAF)
Richard Eskow points out that proposed changes to COLA would not only reduce Social Security benefits, but amount to a tax increase for everyone except the rich. That should provide the popularity boost Democrats have been looking for.
Man Without a Plan: Obama’s Short-Sighted View of U.S. Politics (TNR)
Michael Kazin notes that we've come a long way from the days of Time covers depicting Barack Obama as the next FDR, and that the administration's idea of "winning the future" doesn't seem to include planting a flag for liberalism.
The Ideological Crisis of Western Capitalism (Project Syndicate)
Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Joseph Stiglitz writes that instead of setting the US and Europe on a course toward saner economic and regulatory policy, the crisis of 2008 has led to a renaissance for worn out right-wing extremism.
Ideology and economics (Credit Writedowns)
Ed Harrison observes that while there are plenty of ideological reasons for wanting to cut the deficit, politicians who argue that doing it now will help to boost the recovery must be sampling too much of their own product.
The Obama-Keynes Mystery (NYT)
Paul Krugman suggests that instead of scratching our chins over the elaborate policy chess game that the President is playing, it might be time to accept that he really believes in the discredited framework his administration has embraced.
Big Business Leaves Deficit to Politicians (NYT)
David Leonhardt writes that for corporate America, expanding or cutting the deficit really only matters to the extent that politicians keep cutting their taxes, subsidizing their failures, and opening loopholes for them to fly their jets through.
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The Tea Party and Goldman Sachs: A Love Story (Truthdig)
Robert Scheer calls out the Tea Party for railing against government efforts to help working class Americans while serving the same corporate interests that drove the country into debt. In other words, business as usual.
FDIC backs pay clawback in bank liquidations (Reuters)
The FDIC's new rule: If your financial institution collapses while you're busy on the golf course, maybe you don't really deserve that last $20 million you earned.
Bair's Legacy: An FDIC With Teeth (WSJ)
With Sheila Bair's exit from the FDIC, our long national nightmare of a regulator that polices powerful interests and does its job effectively could finally be at an end.
1955: When Chase Was Too Small to Bail (CJR)
$7.5 billion in assets was enough to make Chase the second biggest bank in the US when it started out, but in today's dollars it would be stuck at number 32. Instead, it has maintained its power by engulfing everything around it, just like the Blob.
Mancession to He-covery (NYT)
Catherine Rampell notes that while men were hit hardest by the recession, they've also recovered the fastest due to cutbacks in frivolous girly jobs like keeping the government running or teaching kids to read.
Get a Job, Kid! (Slate)
Annie Lowrey writes that while the number of teens doing paid labor this summer has fallen to a record-low 25%, they're not all rotting away on X-Box Live. Instead, they're staying in school, volunteering, and competing with old people.
Are We There Yet? (TAP)
Jason Mark argues that passing the transportation reauthorization bill would help fight climate change, create jobs, restore America's infrastructure, and pay political dividends for Democrats. All good things to keep in mind once Congress screws it up.