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Dean Baker – A Trade Deal for the 21st Century: An Alternative to the TPP

It looks like the major media outlets are doing their full court press to lay the groundwork for the passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). In recent weeks the news and opinion pages have been filled with articles and columns on the wonders of trade and why all good people should support trade deals like the TPP. In fact, some …

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Dean Baker – How to Fight Poverty Through Full Employment

One of the most effective ways to combat poverty among current and future generations is to maintain a full employment economy. The point should be straightforward: when the labor market is strong, or “tight,” it offers increased employment opportunities for those at the bottom. Disadvantaged workers are not only more likely to find employment in a tight labor market, they …

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Dean Baker – Convincing the Young to Blame the Old, Not the Rich

The Washington Post‘s Catherine Rampell devoted a column (12/24/15) to a popular Washington pastime: trying to get young people angry at their parents and grandparents so that they are not bothered by the enormous upward redistribution of income taking place in this country. She begins the piece by telling readers that college students are wasting their time complaining about diversity …

Dean Baker – Treating Global Warming Denialism Like a Sex Scandal

The Washington Post ran a column last week that blamed the baby boom generation for global warming. Even for the Post this was extraordinarily low. This is not an issue of defending my generation; it is a question of how bad policy persists. And the answer puts the blame far more on media outlets like theWashington Post than people born in the two decades after World War …

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Dean Baker – The Federal Reserve Board and the Presidential Candidates

Some of the folks watching the Republican presidential debates were struck by the fact that Donald Trump was apparently unfamiliar with the concept of the nuclear triad: that the United States maintains a nuclear force composed of land based missiles, submarine based missiles, and strategic bombers that can deliver nuclear weapons. This is the sort of basic knowledge of the …

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Dean Baker – Your retirement prospects are bleaker than ever

The vast majority of Americans who expect to retire in the next decade can count on little income other than their Social Security. This is true not only for low-income workers, who have struggled most of their lives, but also for millions of middle-income workers. Although Social Security is a tremendously important program, and provides a solid base that retirees …

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Dean Baker – The Elite’s Childlike Commitment to Austerity

The landslide victory of left-wing candidate Jeremy Corbyn for Labor Party leader in the United Kingdom has many establishment types bent out of shape. The Blair-wing of the party was literally obliterated, with Corbyn drawing more than four times the votes of his nearest competitor. After giving the country the war in Iraq and the housing bubble whose collapse led …

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Dean Baker – A Fed Rate Hike Will Harm the Economy, Why Don’t the Candidates Seem to Care?

There was something for everyone in August’s US jobs report. The headline figure for jobs growth was less than expected, but the last two months were revised up. Wages grew, but the number of people out of the workforce remains worryingly high. What’s a central banker to do? Sadly the answer is exactly what they want to do, and no …

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David Morris – Sanding Down the Rough Edges of Capitalism Is Not Enough

The catalyst for a recent column by David Brooks was a speech delivered by his New York Times colleague Anand Giridharadas at the Aspen Action Forum. (Giridharadas writes the Letter from America column for the Global Edition of the Times) Giridharadas questioned the “Aspen Consensus” that the wealthy and powerful, the benefactors of the Aspen Institute, could be asked to …

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Obama’s Big Trade Failure – DEAN BAKER

The Obama administration is doing its full court press, pulling out all the stops to get Congress to approve the fast-track authority that is almost certainly necessary to get the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) through Congress. One of the biggest remaining stumbling blocks is that the deal will almost certainly not include provisions on currency. This means that parties to the …