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What Mitt Romney Really Represents (Robert Reich)
Reich writes that our wealthiest presidents, like FDR, have always been champions of the less fortunate, while Romney just seems to want to make sure the concentration of power in government is consistent with the concentration of power in the economy.
The Optimism Cure (NYT)
Paul Krugman writes that Romney has declared himself the confidence fairy by claiming the economy will turn around once he's elected because the job creators will be in a better mood, but it doesn't seem like he's going to get to dip into his bag of magic dust.
Romney's Laughably Vacuous Plan to End "Too Big to Fail" (Slate)
Matthew Yglesias notes that Romney has released a two-step plan to end bailouts. Step one: reform Fannie and Freddie, which have nothing to do with that. Step two: pass "sensible regulation." What's that? It's sensible. Weren't you paying attention?
Susan Crawford Calls for Expansion of Fiber Networks (Mashable)
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai recaps a talk by Roosevelt Institute Fellow Susan Crawford, explaining why high-speed Internet access is today's equivalent of electricity. No, not just because unprotected contact with it can be hazardous to one's health.
America's hidden unemployed: Too discouraged to count (Reuters)
Lucia Mutikani writes that the official unemployment rate overlooks the millions who have dropped out of the labor force, including many young people who are gaining experience for their World of Warcraft characters, but nothing for their own resumes.
Why Taxing the 47 Percent Would Put Millions Into Poverty (TPM)
Brian Beutler explains that Republicans' problem with the 47 percent isn't that they're exempt from taxes, but that they recieve a net transfer from tax credits and deductions. So to be fair, they want the poor to cough up at least $1 -- plus $5000, give or take.
'Citizens United' and the Corporate Court (The Nation)
Jamie Raskin writes that Citizens United was the culmination of a series of cases that built up to the Roberts Court's radical declaration that the "identity of the speaker" is irrelevant to free speech, which makes so much sense that even they don't believe it.
Filling Geithner's (Small) Shoes (HuffPo)
Since Tim Geithner has said he won't return as Treasury Secretary in a second Obama term, Robert Kuttner runs through the list of potential candidates to replace him, ranging from the progressive longshots to the lifelike 3D avatars of the financial sector.
Under Ben Bernanke, a more forceful and open Federal Reserve (WaPo)
Zachary Goldfarb writes that in what may be the latter days of his service as Fed chairman, Bernanke has pushed the central bank to step outside its comfort zone and do some unconvential things, like talk to people or explain what on earth it's doing.
C.E.O.'s and the Pay-'Em-or-Lose-'Em Myth (NYT)
Gretchen Morgenson highlights a study that finds raising executives' compensation to keep up with their peers isn't necessary to retain them, because just like your trusty old three-legged dog, just because they love 'em doesn't mean anyone else wants 'em.