January 9: The Treatment is Worse Than the Disease

Jan 9, 2012Tim Price

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

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How Austerity Is Killing Europe (NYRB)
Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Jeff Madrick argues that austerity hawks have forgotten the lessons of the Great Depression, but they're giving the euro zone nations a crash course.

America’s Unlevel Field (NYT)
Paul Krugman writes that while Mitt Romney criticizes Barack Obama for betraying Teddy Roosevelt's commitment to equal opportunity, it's he and other Republicans who take the "great to be me; sucks to be you" approach to economic mobility.

Unemployment Scars Likely to Last for Years (WSJ)
While the unemployment rate ticked down to 8.5 percent last month, many economists believe the job crisis's long-term effects on the economy will be profound -- especially if policymakers keep picking at it and not letting it heal.

An Appalling Idea, Even by Washington Standards (CBPP)
Robert Greenstein points out the absurdity of denying unemployment benefits to people who have already paid into the system unless they enroll in adult education courses they may not need in programs that may not exist or have room for them.

This Week in Poverty: TANF Is Broken (The Nation)
Greg Kaufmann kicks off a new weekly round-up of stories, quotes, statistics, and other items related to America's growing poverty crisis, and leaders across the U.S. are implicitly showing their support by providing him tons of material to work with.

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The Devil and Rick Santorum: Dilemmas of a Holy Owned Subsidiary (AlterNet)
Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Tom Ferguson argues that the see-sawing fortunes of Mitt Romney's challengers are a result of GOP base voters struggling to look past wedge issues that were meant to distract them while the elite picked their pockets.

Through an Economic Lens, an Election Too Close to Call (NYT)
Regardless of who wins the Republican nomination, political scientists argue Barack Obama's toughest opponent will be the economy, and if Ray C. Fair's projections are accurate, he might want to find some new hobbies to help pass the next four years.

From East and West, Foreclosure Horror Stories (NYT)
While negotiations in the 50-state foreclosure probe have stalled, Gretchen Morgenson notes that AGs in Massachusetts and Nevada are turning up plenty of dirt on their own. Dirt that might just be relevant to, you know, a national settlement.

How Wall Street Turned a Crisis Into a Cartel (Bloomberg)
William Cohan notes that in 1947, the U.S. sued 17 investment banks for colluding in violation of antitrust laws. Now, an even smaller number of firms has formed a crime ring that regulators seem more worried about bailing out than breaking up.

Year of the Yo-Yo (New Yorker)
James Surowiecki writes that an extremely volatile year in the stock market may have been fun and profitable for adrenaline-fueled traders, but for many ordinary investors, it was a sign that their mattresses could use some more padding.

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