Daily Digest - May 18: Ticking Time Bombs

May 18, 2012Tim Price

What you need to know to navigate today's most critical debates.

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The Eurozone Crisis: An End to Austerity? (NYRB)

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Jeff Madrick argues that Europe's leaders could take recent election results as a wake-up call to focus on growth over austerity instead of hitting the snooze button and triggering an economic nightmare.

Apocalypse Fairly Soon (NYT)

Paul Krugman warns that a eurozone break-up would wreck the economy, discredit European solidarity, and give rise to extremists who could be even less capable of governing than current leaders, if one's imagination can stretch that far.

Investigating JPMorgan Chase (NYT)

Simon Johnson has five questions that need to be answered about what happened and who knew about it, but he notes that this isn't a witch hunt. We already know who's in the coven; we just need to find out what's cooking in the cauldron.

Why Markets Won't Fix JPMorgan (Baseline Scenario)

James Kwak argues that banks can't be trusted to learn from their mistakes because their entire business model is built around traders spinning the roulette wheel while the government steps in to make sure it always lands on black.

Mitt Romney, Servant of the Right (TAP)

Jamelle Bouie makes the case that Mitt Romney the Massachusetts Moderate is dead and buried. Say hello to the new model, who has essentially promised Republicans that he will govern as Paul Ryan wearing a Mitt Romney mask.

What do Republicans mean when they say 'spending-driven debt'? (WaPo)

Ezra Klein examines the GOP's new favorite neologism and determines that once they excuse themselves for their role in the Bush tax cuts, the wars, and the economic crisis, it translates into "things that do not actually drive the debt."

Preying on the Poor (TomDispatch)

Barbara Ehrenreich looks at how corporations and government alike have recognized that while robbing a single poor person might not net them much money, robbing the poor collectively is a lucrative heist they can always get away with.

"Leave women alone" act! (Salon)

Irin Carmon notes that women don't just have to ask Republicans to stop waving their transvaginal wands around. There's plenty of pro-woman legislation that has no chance to pass, but Democrats can make sure it hurts going down.

The Student Debt Bomb (CounterPunch)

Laura Flanders argues that President Obama's commencement address at Barnard failed to address the reality that today's grads need debt relief and need it now, but if they could pay off their loans with cliches, they'd already be debt-free.

The Real Super PAC Menace (Hint: It Has Nothing To Do With Jeremiah Wright Ads) (TNR)

Ed Kilgore points out that while Super PACs will spend lots of money this year to inform you that Romney is rich and Obama is black, they'll have the biggest impact in races like the one between Deb Fischer and Jon Bruning. Who? Exactly.

With additional research by Elena Callahan.

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