February 6: A Choice, Not an Echo

Feb 6, 2012Tim Price

daily-digest-150 What you need to know to navigate today's most critical debates.

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The progressive vision America needs (Salon)
Roosevelt Institute Fellow Sabeel Rahman introduces the 99 Percent Plan series. We gave conservatism and conservatism lite a chance; why not try something that works this time?

The privatization trap (Salon)
Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal kicks off the 99 Percent Plan with a look at why the push for privatization results in waste, corruption, and lack of accountability -- you know, those things that supposedly make big government so terrible.

Things Are Not O.K. (NYT)
Paul Krugman writes that while last Friday's jobs report was a positive one in the sense that it won't drive anyone to drink, policymakers shouldn't be so quick to pop the champagne and start jacking up interest rates for no particular reason.

Avoiding Congress’s fiscal bombs (WaPo)
Ezra Klein notes the big gray cloud in the middle of the jobs report's silver lining, which is the CBO's projection that economic growth will soon slow to just 1.1 percent unless Congress can pull off the tricky feat of not shooting itself in the foot.

Do Manufacturers Need Special Treatment? (NYT)
Christina Romer dissects three arguments for a manufacturing-focused stimulus and argues that with little evidence of market failures and stronger options for creating jobs and reducing inequality, it's better for policy to be effective than sentimental.

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Deal Is Closer for a U.S. Plan on Mortgage Relief (NYT)
Today's the deadline for the states to sign onto the mortgage settlement, and California and New York's AGs are back at the negotiating table. What remains to be seen is whether the "relief" part of the plan is more for borrowers or servicers.

The Citizens United catastrophe (WaPo)
EJ Dionne writes that the kindest reading of the Citizens United ruling is that the Supreme Court's conservative majority didn't understand how it would weaken democracy, but the more likely case is that this is exactly what they wanted.

With Tax Break, Corporate Rate Is Lowest in Decades (WSJ)
Thanks to a write-off for bonus depreciation on investments, corporations paid less in taxes in 2011 than they have since 1972. This only confirms that Barack Obama is the most socialistic, anti-business president since Richard "Hussein" Nixon.

Soaking the Poor, State by State (MoJo)
Kevin Drum notes that though the 1 percent may complain that they shoulder the federal tax burden while others get off easy by selfishly not having any money, regressive state taxes ensure that the poor receive their (un)just punishment.

Where the CBO report on federal pay went wrong (WaPo)
Colleen M. Kelley argues that it wouldn't be fair to give raises to the federal workers who earn the most while those on the low end have basic benefits stripped away, though it would certainly bring the public sector more in line with the private sector.

With additional research by Roosevelt Institute intern Elena Callahan.

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