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The Biggest Economic Challenge of Obama's Second Term (Robert Reich)
Reich writes that the weak jobs report shows the real economic story is not about who's to blame, but who has a better plan to move forward. And while Romney reads from the dusty tome of Republican orthodoxy, Obama has a chance to write a new chapter.
Obstruct and Exploit (NYT)
Paul Krugman notes that Republicans' attacks on the president's economic record rely on voters forgetting the fact that they've blocked his agenda at every turn like protesters chaining themselves to the jobs crisis so he can't despoil its natural wonders.
What Krugman & Stiglitz Can Tell Us (NYRB)
Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson argue that the Nobel laureates' latest books on the economic crisis make the case that our broken politics are the root of our economic mess, and the only way forward is to tear it up and cultivate a healthier debate.
The young are leaving the labor force, the old are flocking to it (WaPo)
Suzy Khimm digs into the decline in labor force participation and finds young people responding to the "Abandon hope all ye who enter here" sign at the entrance to the job market, while would-be retirees struggle to convince the bouncer they're on the list.
'Everything people think they know about the stimulus is wrong' (WaPo)
Ezra Klein interviews New New Deal author Michael Grunwald, who argues that the results of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act have been far more significant and impressive than anyone realizes, including the guy who signed it into law.
Romney's Tax Plan Leaves Key Variables Blank (NYT)
Annie Lowrey and David Kocieniewski report that despite Romney's attempts to defend his tax plan, experts insist it's made up of objectively contradictory promises. Until we find out which ones he'll stick to, it's more Schrodinger's plan than Romney's.
The Ryan Sinkhole (NYT)
Thomas Edsall points out that aside from slashing aid for the poor, Paul Ryan's budget plan hides all its unpopular cuts in a convenient $897 billion "Function 920 allowance" that lets him cut everything and nothing in particular at the same time.
The Conventions' Gift: The Great Clarification (TNR)
Alec MacGillis writes that the 2010 electorate was confused about whether Democrats hated Wall Street or wanted to give it a big, sloppy kiss, but their 2012 convention was focused on the message that they want to go steady with the middle class.
DNC disses teachers (Salon)
Josh Eidelson notes that between the two conventions, we had Republicans blasting Democrats for supporting teacher's unions and Democrats bragging about how alienated those unions are, to the point where it was the theme of their movie night.
'Beating the Drum About Poverty' (And Obama's Nomination Speech) (The Nation)
Greg Kaufmann highlights Tavis Smiley and Cornel West's effort to raise awareness of poverty on the campaign trail, and argues that since Obama admitted we're the only ones with the power to move things forward, it's time to put our backs into it.