Tim Price

Deputy Editor

Recent Posts by Tim Price

  • Daily Digest - May 8: For Austerians, Failure is the Only Option

    May 8, 2013Tim Price

    Click here to receive the Daily Digest via e-mail.

    Budget austerity proved a joke, but the US and Europe won't change course (Guardian)

    Click here to receive the Daily Digest via e-mail.

    Budget austerity proved a joke, but the US and Europe won't change course (Guardian)

    Dean Baker writes that despite recent setbacks, deficit hawks are making two arguments against a policy shift: the recovery's getting stronger on its own (there, did you see? It twitched a little bit) and no one knows how to spend money to create jobs (sorry, FDR).

    Extended Benefits Didn't Keep People from Taking Jobs (WSJ)

    Many conservatives have taken it as an article of faith that unemployment benefits encourage people to be lazy and let those fat $300 checks roll in, but Amy Schatz notes that a new study by the San Francisco Fed shows they keep workers in the job market longer.

    Churn, baby, churn: The labor market won't be healthy until people feel like they can quit their jobs (WaPo)

    Neil Irwin argues that while layoffs are stable, we won't know the economy is really back on track until a lot more people start moving freely between jobs, or to put it another way, until they stop clinging to their current jobs like a kitten dangling from a tree branch.

    In the Long Run, Niall Ferguson, Keynes Was Right (Bloomberg)

    Matthew C. Klein makes the case that despite the homophobic comments made by some of Keynes's critics, what really makes them uncomfortable is that they have no answers to immediate human suffering, not that gay economics will destroy the human race.

    Yanking Broadband From the Slow Lane (NYT)

    Eduardo Porter writes that while high-speed Internet access is the key to innovation, expansion and improvement of U.S. broadband networks has been about as slow as a dial-up connection, and monopolies are so strong that Google looks like a scrappy upstart.

    Lew Slams Wall Street Deregulation Bills (MoJo)

    If it ain't broke, don't fix it -- and if you can't tell, ask someone who knows what they're doing. As Erika Eichelberger notes, that's the message Jack Lew sent to the House Financial Services Committee this week as it considers nine (cough) "fixes" to Dodd-Frank.

    No, the Gang of Eight Immigration Bill Won't Cost You $6.3 Trillion (Slate)

    Matthew Yglesias writes that the Heritage Foundation's report on immigration reform makes some strange assumptions, like the idea that legal status itself has no economic value, which is too bad for Republicans who were hoping to make an informed decision.

    Many Americans say they can't retire until their 70s or 80s (LA Times)

    A Northwestern Mutual survey finds that most Americans are less financially secure than they thought they'd be and more than 40 percent expect to work past their 60s. We haven't raised the legal retirement age, but the mental retirement age is another story.

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  • Daily Digest - May 7: The More FinReg, the Merrier

    May 7, 2013Tim Price

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    Dodd-Frank is finally being implemented. Will that be enough? (WaPo)

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    Dodd-Frank is finally being implemented. Will that be enough? (WaPo)

    Roosevelt Institute Fellow Mike Konczal argues that Brown-Vitter's capital requirements could be a smart addition to Dodd-Frank even if the latter works well. Just because banks can fail doesn't mean they should feel free to do so as hard and as often as possible.

    2 Big Banks Face Suits In Mortgage Pact Abuses (NYT)

    Jessica Silver-Greenberg reports that New York AG Eric Schneiderman is suing Bank of America and Wells Fargo for violating the mortgage settlement's terms by mishandling modification requests. Suddenly folding paperwork into funny hats is against the rules?

    Why Left and Right Economists Can't Just Agree (NY Mag)

    Jonathan Chait writes that finding economic beliefs shared by liberals and conservatives is tough because you're not comparing two people driven by data; you're comparing one person driven by data and one person who read somewhere that government is bad.

    How Our Incredible Shrinking Government Raises Unemployment and Hurts the Recovery (The Atlantic)

    Derek Thompson notes that even without the sequester, unemployment could be as low as 6.3 percent now if the government hadn't spent the last few years cutting back on spending when we need investment and laying off workers like it's going out of business.

    Congress Helps Air Travelers, Ignores Victims of Rape and Domestic Violence (MoJo)

    Tim Murphy writes that despite lawmakers' quick and decisive action to protect weary business execs from flight delays, they don't seem too interested in restoring the $20 million cut from VAWA grants that help protect the victims of abuse and sexual assault.

    How Low Can Part-Timers' Hours Go? (Prospect)

    Harold Meyerson notes that in response to an Affordable Care Act rule intended to make employers insure employees who work 30 hours a week, many part-timers are being bumped back to 29 hours or less. You win this round, nonsensical health care system.

    Rising Health Care Costs Are Quietly Strangling the Middle Class (RealClearPolicy)

    Benjamin Landy argues that while conservatives claim workers' compensation is on the rise because health benefits are getting pricier, that's all money that employees aren't seeing in their paychecks, and Aetna's not going to pay their mortgage for them.

    GOP pushes bogus workplace bill from 1996 (Salon)

    Alex Seitz-Wald notes that House Republicans are bringing us the freshest ideas of the Gingrich era with a plan to let workers convert their overtime pay into paid time off, so the only thing they need to do if they want to work less is to start working more.

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  • Daily Digest - May 6: Learning by Doing Badly

    May 6, 2013Tim Price

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    The Lessons of the North Atlantic Crisis for Economic Theory and Policy (IMFdirect)

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    The Lessons of the North Atlantic Crisis for Economic Theory and Policy (IMFdirect)

    Roosevelt Institute Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz argues that the crisis has given us a chance to rethink broken models, so instead of tinkering at the edges and hoping the markets somehow fix themselves, we can break out the full repair kit next time around.

    The Chutzpah Caucus (NYT)

    Paul Krugman writes that although many cynics seem to think any government stimulus will lead to a liberal spending spree that bankrupts the nation, the real problem is usually that stimulus gets cut off too soon, and the bankrupting is left to conservatives.

    The College Grad Recovery Continues (The Atlantic)

    Matthew O'Brien notes that the latest jobs report tells the same story of painfully slow but steady job growth that we've been hearing since the recovery began. Except for those without college degrees, who file that story under the creative fiction category.

    The Idled Young Americans (NYT)

    David Leonhardt writes that lack of new job creation has caused the U.S. to go from having the biggest share of young workers employed among wealthy nations to having one of the smallest. But they're still optimistic about one day being able to pay a bill.

    McJobs recovery continues in latest job figures (MSNBC)

    Ned Resnikoff writes that while April's report shows the recovery is slowly adding jobs, it also shows that they're some of the worst jobs around, with a third of growth concentrated in retail and hospitality while stable union work goes the way of the dinosaurs.

    The Loss of Government Jobs Is Holding Back the Economy (Think Progress)

    Bryce Covert notes that the public sector has lost 718,000 net jobs since 2009, including 11,000 sacrificed on the altar of austerity in April. And not to get too technical, but continually subtracting jobs from the economy makes the total number of jobs smaller.

    The Hollowing Out of Government (Robert Reich)

    Reich argues that whether it's OSHA enforcing safety standards or the IRS collecting taxes, Republicans deal with any law or government function they don't like but can't repeal by starving it of resources and then complaining about how it doesn't work right.

    This Week in Poverty: Florida Gives Workers a Smackdown (The Nation)

    Greg Kaufmann highlights the Florida legislature's raft of anti-worker legislation, designed to override local ordinances establishing benefits like paid sick leave and wage theft protection and leave it up to the state government to not implement them instead.

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  • Daily Digest - May 3: Wall Street's Latest Greatest Fear

    May 3, 2013Tim Price

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    This Is How Wall Street Is Fighting the Brown-Vitter Bill (NY Mag)

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    This Is How Wall Street Is Fighting the Brown-Vitter Bill (NY Mag)

    Kevin Roose writes that despite Brown-Vitter's slim chances of passing, the fact that banks have already started freestyling their fear-mongering -- how's "too-big-to-fail is a good thing!" working for you? Okay, what if it's already fixed? -- makes him root for it.

    Turns out the much-hyped settlement still allows banks to steal homes (Salon)

    David Dayen notes that banks still illegally foreclose on thousands of homes using tactics like robo-signing that they swore off as part of the $25 billion National Mortgage Settlement, but the settlement terms recognize that it's tough to go cold turkey on criminality.

    Not Enough Inflation (NYT)

    Paul Krugman writes that despite conservatives' warnings that we should stock up on gold coins and canned beans before the Fed's money-printing causes hyperinflation, the real danger is in having the dollar become a collector's item when demand is already low.

    The Austerity Delusion (Foreign Affairs)

    Noting that austerity has proven to be a singularly useless and counterproductive economic policy wherever and whenever it's been tried, Mark Blyth looks at why western leaders continue to be lured in by the siren song of "common sense" that's anything but.

    U.S. Spending Cuts Seen as Key in Slowing Growth (NYT)

    Are you sitting down? Okay, get this: Nelson Schwartz reports that economists think the combination of higher payroll taxes and sequestration will drag down the recovery and hurt job creation. Why didn't anyone warn Congress sooner? Egg on their faces, for sure.

    Expert: Obama's Housing Nomination Is Good News for Poor People (MoJo)

    Erika Eichelberger reports that affordable housing advocates back Mel Watt, current House Democrat and would-be FHFA director, citing his support for principal reduction and lending to low-income and minority borrowers. Just don't call it community reinvestment.

    More Obama appointments: Pritzker at Commerce; Froman for trade representative (WaPo)

    Zachary Goldfarb notes that hotel heiress Penny Pritzker, the president's pick to head the Commerce Department (official motto: Google us!), could be the wealthiest Cabinet secretary ever. Meanwhile, Paris Hilton continues to wait for her call to serve.

    The Face of Pregnancy Discrimination (RH Reality Check)

    Annamarya Scaccia looks at how employers exploit vulnerable workers and creative interpretations of the law to fire pregnant employees, put them on unpaid leave, and otherwise deny them opportunities, just like their own mothers dreamed they'd grow up to do.

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  • Daily Digest - May 2: DeMarco's Days Are Numbered

    May 2, 2013Tim Price

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    A Mortgage Agency Pick Is Likely to Cause Conflict (NYT)

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    A Mortgage Agency Pick Is Likely to Cause Conflict (NYT)

    Peter Eavis and Annie Lowrey report that critics are displeased that the president is nominating Mel Watt, who supports mortgage writedowns to help struggling homeowners, to replace Ed DeMarco, who's been doing his best pet rock impression as acting FHFA director.

    Federal Reserve ponders possibility of increasing stimulus (WaPo)

    Ylan Q. Mui notes that the Fed explicitly acknowledged for the first time yesterday that the economy could get bad enough to convince it to ramp up its bond-purchasing program -- and if it does, the central bank doesn't mind telling anyone that it will be Congress's fault.

    GOP's Census Bill Would Eliminate America's Economic Indicators (HuffPo)

    Tired of bad economic news? Maybe we'd be better off with no news at all. As Michael McAuliff writes, that seems to be the position taken by Republican lawmakers who want to ban the Census Bureau from collecting data used to calculate unemployment and GDP.

    American job prospects make for dim May Day celebration (MSNBC)

    Ned Resnikoff notes that yesterday was International Workers' Day, but it was a lot like any other day for American workers, marked by historically low labor force participation and union membership, declining job quality and safety standards, and the looming threat of layoffs.

    Big Banks are Victims of Their Own Success (ProPublica)

    Jesse Eisinger argues that the Brown-Vitter bill banks are decrying as a punitive measure that will destroy the financial system is the bad cop to Dodd-Frank's good cop. Wall Street may live to regret stripping the latter of its badge and its gun and drumming it off the force.

    Banks on the Run (Continued) (The Nation)

    Greg Kaufmann writes that banks are learning another valuable lesson about the consequences of indiscriminately throwing people out of their homes: no matter where they hold their shareholder meetings, angry activists keep turning up like a roll of bad pennies.

    It's a 401(k) World and It Basically Sucks (Slate)

    Matthew Yglesias thinks Tom Friedman's "401(k) world" metaphor is an apt description of modern America, but it's a barren, inhospitable world for anyone except the wealthy and the few middle-class workers who manage to invest wisely and adequately.

    The New Study That Republicans Who Reject Medicaid Must Read (TNR)

    While some conservatives are doing an end zone dance over a new study that shows Medicaid access has limited health benefits for the poor, Jonathan Cohn argues that keeping beneficiaries out of crippling medical debt -- and clinical depression -- isn't nothing.

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