Daily digest – Admitting the obvious
What you need to know to navigate today’s most critical debates.
Lawmakers Trade Blame as Deficit Talks Crumble (NYT)
As expected, with their deadline looming and no deal in sight, Super Committee members have agreed to disagree. This frees them to forget about policy and get back to expounding on why the other party sucks.
Does America need Wall Street? (WaPo)
Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Jeff Madrick writes that the economy depends on a financial sector that can reliably manage and invest money, extend credit, and facilitate non-cash transactions. But this Wall Street thing has got to go.
Boring, Cruel Euro Romantics (NYT)
Paul Krugman argues that the label of “technocrat” shouldn’t apply to those who ignore all evidence of the failure of austerity and instead tell themselves how awesomely serious and rational they are for making Difficult Choices.
Stop the Austerity Train Wreck! (Robert Reich)
Just in case anyone in Washington wants to think about ways to make the economy better instead of worse, Reich has a four-step plan, including the revival of the WPAand CCC. Bonus: Unlike austerity, those programs have been proven to work.
Older, Suburban and Struggling, ‘Near Poor’ Startle the Census (NYT)
The Census Bureau’s new measure of poverty suggests that fully one third of Americans are now either living in poverty or barely scraping by, which according to conservative logic means that sales of flat screens and Cadillacs must be skyrocketing.
Redefining the Union Boss (NYT)
A recent trend of women seeking leadership positions in the labor movement is inspiring hope among members and activists — not because they’re ladies, but because they have a plan to make unions a relevant force in American society.
Pepper-Spray Brutality at UC Davis (The Atlantic)
In the latest insane response to the Occupy movement, police pepper sprayed a group of student protesters who were sitting calmly on the ground with their hands clasped together. To be fair, a folk song threatened to break out at any moment.
How Wall Street really views the protesters (WaPo)
At least one corporate lobbying firm thinks Occupy Wall Street has staying power and that Democrats will benefit from association with it, giving Occupy protesters the corporate lobbyist seal of approval that they’ve long been yearning for.
Vilifying Rival, Wall St. Rallies for Senate Ally (NYT)
Wall Street has thrown its support behind Scott Brown’s reelection bid, but if you have a pulse and can establish residence in Massachusetts, they’d probably be happy to contribute to anyone other than Elizabeth Warren.
Republican Financial Plans (NYT)
Most of the Republican presidential candidates make no secret of the fact that they have loads and loads of money, but Gail Collins asks what they’ve actually done to earn it. The answer seems to be “whatever it takes.”
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