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America's clear choice: Franklin Roosevelt or Ayn Rand (FT)
Simon Schama writes that Paul Ryan's VP nod sets us up for the debate America has long needed: Do we stick with the New Deal that built the America we know and love, or do we scrap it and create a society based on a fantasy novel about trains?
The End of The Scam: Paul Ryan's Victory—or Defeat—Could Transform American Politics (TNR)
Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Mark Schmitt argues that a serious debate over the Ryan plan may mark the end of the GOP's attempts to claim that they can hack at the budget with a machete without leaving a scratch on anything that anyone likes.
Five Things to Know About Paul Ryan's Plan (TAP)
Jamelle Bouie highlights the lowlights of the Ryan plan: huge tax cuts for the rich, huge spending cuts for Medicare, Medicaid, and other government programs, and bigger deficits. The Path to Prosperity runs through the Valley of Everything Is Terrible.
Paul Ryan’s Budget Deals a Body Blow to Women’s Bottom Line (The Nation)
NND Editor Bryce Covert writes that no matter how much Paul Ryan bats those baby blues, he probably won't be making many female voters swoon unless they're doing so because they've fallen ill from lack of access to health care or food assistance.
Is That It for Financial Crisis Cases? (NYT)
Peter Henning speculates that with the collapse of the government's case against Goldman Sachs, financial crisis criminal investigations have gone out not with a bang but with a whimper. That maintains the whimper-to-bang ratio at 100-to-zero.
Jamie Dimon: 'It's A Free. F---ing. Country.' (HuffPo)
When asked in a recent interview about his frequent criticism of financial regulation, the JPMorgan CEO responded with the patriotic non sequitur above. After all, what good is freedom of speech if you still have to justify all the ridiculous stuff you say?
What Happened to Europe? (TNR)
Amartya Sten writes that European bankers realized they had a good thing going until democracy got in the way, so they've taken voters out of the equation and convinced leaders that the problem is spending money on anything except banks.
It's the Accounting, Stupid (NYT)
Nancy Folbre argues that our current method of national income accounting undervalues key elements in our productivity. Little things, like environmental regulations to ensure that we're not all choking on toxic clouds of dust while trying to work.
Two Dark Money Groups Outspending All Super PACS Combined (ProPublica)
Kim Barker reports that the conservative 501(c)(4)s Crossroads GPS and Americans for Prosperity (because Secret Council of Rich Dudes was already taken?) are proving to be even super-er than the Super PACs, dropping $60 million on TV ads.
The Reformers Strike Back! (MoJo)
Andy Kroll notes that campaign finance reformers have won some important victories on disclosure and donor requirements over the last year, but the dark money crowd is already planning its comeback tour at the Roberts Court next year.