Daily digest – Teach the children well. Or not.
What you need to know to navigate today’s most critical debates.
Senate Republicans Block Dem Jobs Bill For Teachers, Firefighters (TPM)
Joined by two Democrats and whatever Joe Lieberman is these days, the GOP filibustered a millionaires surtax that would have funded more big government efforts to put out fires and teach kids to read.
Party of Pollution (NYT)
Paul Krugman notes that the GOP’s own jobs plan is brought to you by the American Petroleum Institute, which coincidentally finds that repealing environmental regulations and letting oil companies go wild will somehow create roughly ∞ jobs.
How the Austerity Class Rules Washington (The Nation)
Ari Berman looks at the extensive, entrenched network of public intellectuals and policymakers who are forever expounding on the sin of deficits and the virtue of balanced budgets, even or especially when it requires them to contradict reality.
Did Citi Get a Sweet Deal? Bank Claims SEC Settlement on One CDO Clears It on All Others (ProPublica)
After pumping out dozens of toxic CDOs in the run-up to the crash, Citigroup feels the $285 million settlement it negotiated on just one of those products is the equivalent of the SEC telling it to say three Hail Marys and sin no more.
Americans for Greater Inequality (NYT)
Catherine Rampell points out that Americans have actually become less supportive of redistribution since the recession began, partly because they’re now so poor that they fear losing what little financial and psychological edge they have over others.
99ers Join Occupy Wall Street Movement (HuffPo)
The 99% have found a natural ally in the two million long-term unemployed who called themselves 99ers before it was cool, but the old guard worries the protests may overshadow their specific cause, which the 1% already felt free to ignore.
Occupy the Mortgage Lenders (Project Syndicate)
Simon Johnson notes that Occupy Wall Street and Eric Schneiderman’s efforts to block a lopsided bank settlement open the door to mortgage policy that actually aims to help homeowners, which would have novelty value if nothing else.
Student loan debts crush an entire generation (Salon)
America’s total student debt could hit $1 trillion this year, and delinquency rates are on the rise. But thanks to the evil genius of the 2005 bankruptcy bill, it’s never been a better time for shady for-profit colleges to scam kids out of a future.
Conflicts Of Interest Abound At The Federal Reserve, Report Finds (HuffPo)
A GAO report shows dozens of regional Federal Reserve members had ties to firms that received emergency funds during the crisis. In their defense, they were just trying to keep taxpayers’ money safe by holding it for them in their own wallets.
Which Bank Is the Worst for America? 5 Behemoths That Hold Our Political System Hostage (AlterNet)
Sarah Jaffe and Joshua Holland size up America’s financial institutions to determine who has the sleaziest lobbying operation, but everyone’s a winner in this contest. Except anyone who wants an accountable government.
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