Steven Pearlstein Informs Us of a Corporate-Led Coup

By: Monday July 23, 2012 10:14 am

In the wake of the news about the expectations that the poverty rate rose in 2011 to pre-Great Society levels, I have to second Dean Baker’s story about the plans by the corporate elite to exacerbate that problem even more. Steven Pearlstein at the Washington Post wrote approvingly over the weekend of an effort by [...]

Deficit Scolds Form New Rock Supergroup

By: Tuesday July 17, 2012 11:58 am

All the uncertainty around fiscal issues has convinced the group of Washington mandarins who have been trying to undermine the social safety net in service to reducing the deficit that this is the moment to strike. Practically everyone affiliated with a commission that could earn the appellation “cat food” over the past several years has [...]

Gang of Six Members Were Willing to Cut $400 Billion from Medicare

By: Wednesday May 18, 2011 1:36 pm

Greg Sargent has more of the story about Tom Coburn’s unceremonious exit from the Gang of Six. We pretty much knew it had to do with Coburn seeking a global spending cap for Medicare. We didn’t know the details: The “Gang of Six” talks on deficit reduction broke down after Senators Dick Durbin and Tom [...]

GOP House Waived Rule That Would Have Automatically Raised Debt Limit With Budget Resolution

By: Friday April 22, 2011 11:13 am

Only in the Washington Post would the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, which is Maya MacGuineas’ wholly owned subsidiary of the Peterson Foundation, be termed an “independent” group. But their analysis of the plan introduced last week by President Obama on fiscal policy unintentionally reveals a hidden truth: The analysis, by the bipartisan Committee [...]

Obama Budget Speech Later Today Strives for “Balance”

By: Wednesday April 13, 2011 7:20 am

Later today, President Obama will deliver his speech on long-term deficit reduction. This was not planned. At the beginning of the year, the White House didn’t lay out a strategy to just touch on the deficit in the State of the Union, allow Paul Ryan to propose his ideological budget plan, and then scramble to [...]

Ryan’s Budget Plan Is Ridiculous, But It Could Shift the Debate

By: Tuesday April 5, 2011 1:55 pm

Ezra Klein has helpfully assembled a summary of the Ryan GOP budget. As you can see, while everyone’s talking about the privatization of Medicare and block-grant of Medicaid, there are plenty of other pieces worth discussing here even without any of that. Ryan would reduce discretionary spending to pre-2008 levels and freeze it for five [...]

Warner, Chambliss Go Public with Their Cat Food Road Show

By: Tuesday March 8, 2011 1:10 pm

We already knew plenty about Warner-Chambliss, the move by two Senators to revive the cat food commission and push through the Bowles-Simpson report. Bowles and Simpson are giving them a hand with that with something called the “Moment of Truth Project,” in conjunction with the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a Pete Peterson outfit [...]

Social Security Options in the Grand Bargain

By: Wednesday February 16, 2011 10:31 am

One of the more glaring possible outcomes in the grand bargain would be a plan to “reform” Social Security for the long term. The President was praised by the Strengthen Social Security coalition for not proposing benefit cuts in the State of the Union or the 2012 budget proposal. The budget also added funds to [...]

Yes, Elizabeth Drew’s “Grand Bargain” Is Real

By: Wednesday February 16, 2011 9:51 am

I noticed a fair bit of good Democrats and Obama defenders throwing cold water on what Elizabeth Drew reported in the New York Review of Books about back-channel negotiations aimed at a “grand bargain” on the budget, tax reform and even entitlements. Jon Chait didn’t like the sourcing. Neither did Kevin Drum. At least Steve [...]

What Are the Areas of Agreement Between President Obama and the Fiscal Commission?

By: Tuesday February 15, 2011 8:42 am

In his press conference just now, President Obama just said that the fiscal commission has not been shelved, despite the lack of pickup of its ideas in his budget. He said that the fact that it got 11 votes – three less than it needed to move on to Congress – showed it served as [...]

McCaskill Leads Democratic Rush Toward Austerity

By: Wednesday February 2, 2011 11:08 am

The Obama Administration called for a 5-year spending freeze in the State of the Union. Republicans have advanced rollbacks to 2008 levels in their early budget projections. And there are outliers like Rand Paul and Michele Bachmann as well. But now, Democrats are threatening to tip the balance over to the side of austerity by [...]

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