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By Michael Dirda

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Tag: Deficit


Archie Army: Comics Used to Recruit Soldiers Are Laughable

The U.S. government-funded “America’s Army” is a digital comic being used as a recruitment tool and it, well, sucks; free online courses may be changing the face of college education as we know it; meanwhile, Rush Limbaugh has been fabricating callers and outsourcing Facebook fans. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 18, 2012 READ MORE


The Sequesteroid

In this installment of “A Brodner Minute” from “The Washington Spectator,” the artist muses over the impending calamity of automated budget cuts.

Posted on Jun 28, 2012 READ MORE



Photo by (CC-BY)

A Campaign Without Ideology: Profile of a Unicorn

What might a reasonable, constructive presidential campaign look like?

Posted on Jun 3, 2012 READ MORE



(CC-BY-SA)

Pants on Fire Romney

There are those who tell the truth. There are those who distort the truth. And then there’s Mitt Romney.

Posted on May 29, 2012 READ MORE


Spending

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Posted on May 24, 2012 READ MORE



Pete Souza/The White House

Report: Under Obama, Taxes, Deficit and Spending All Down

Despite what Republicans and the tea party would like to have Americans believe, taxes, spending and the deficit are all lower than when President Obama took office.

Posted on May 16, 2012 READ MORE



(CC-BY-SA)

Death to Austerity

Economic austerity is a dangerous, self-defeating intellectual fad. Perhaps I should say that’s what it was, given Sunday’s election results in Europe.

Posted on May 7, 2012 READ MORE



AP/Michel Spingler

France Goes With the Socialist

The austerity regime in Europe took a big hit Sunday, with French voters electing Socialist Francois Hollande, while the Greeks, also voting Sunday, handed out pink slips to the ruling centrist coalition that has slashed government spending on EU orders.

Posted on May 6, 2012 READ MORE



davelawrence8 (CC-BY)

Romney’s ‘Loony View About the Economy’

Frugality? Check. Family values? Check. Sound reasoning? Nope. Mitt Romney’s campaign managed to stay true to the concerns of his base while totally botching the logic behind an infographic claiming that President Obama’s management of the U.S. economy is akin to that of a family accountant gone mad.

Posted on Apr 17, 2012 READ MORE


The Right’s Etch A Sketch Imperative

Clarifying moments are rare in politics. Over the last week, Americans were blessed with three.

Posted on Mar 25, 2012 READ MORE



DonkeyHotey (CC-BY-SA)

The Easiest Way to Cut the Deficit

Here is a surefire way to cut $7.1 trillion from the deficit over the next decade. Do nothing.

Posted on Nov 16, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

Labor Lawyer: Look to Keynes to Fix Economy

Wall Street’s occupiers are asking the big questions about the U.S. economy. What can we do to create jobs, eliminate poverty and free the nation from the grip of debt? American labor lawyer Thomas Geoghegan points to early 20th-century economist John Maynard Keynes for some clues. (more)

Posted on Oct 26, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / zpeckler

Robert Reich Points a Way Out of the ‘Jobs Depression’

Government—the purchaser of last resort—must intervene to revive a sickly economy when consumers and businesses can’t do it on their own, says the award-winning political economist Robert Reich. (more)

Posted on Oct 2, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / San Diego Shooter

The Push to Preserve the Postal Service

Facing a shortfall of a few billion dollars, the U.S. Postal Service is planning to drop 220,000 full-time jobs and close 3,700 post offices and 300 processing centers by 2015, while scaling back services and cutting retirement benefits. And that’s after laying off 110,000 employees since 2007. (more)

Posted on Sep 28, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Evan Vucci

Obama Does the Math on Deficit Reduction

President Obama rolled out a plan on Monday to reduce the federal deficit by $3 trillion over the next decade by combining cuts to benefit rights and war savings with tax increases. (more)

Posted on Sep 19, 2011 READ MORE


Paul Krugman’s ‘Twilight Zone’ Economics

Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman employed a bit of imagination while discussing the need for fiscal stimulus on Fareed Zakaria’s “GPS” last week, playfully suggesting that the discovery of an impending alien attack would force ... (more)

Posted on Aug 15, 2011 READ MORE


America’s Debt Problem

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Posted on Aug 1, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Borya

Retirees and Wrong Assumptions

On Sunday, President Obama and members of the U.S. Congress agreed to cut at least $2.4 trillion from federal spending over the next 10 years, some of which will come from programs that benefit retired Americans. (more)

Posted on Aug 1, 2011 READ MORE


U.S. Debt Crisis Explained

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Posted on Jul 31, 2011 READ MORE


Look Ma No Brains

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Posted on Jul 31, 2011 READ MORE


Pea Party

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Posted on Jul 27, 2011 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Till Debt Do Us Part

Another week, another standoff on Capitol Hill over the ever-pressing debt ceiling issue, with President Obama warning Friday of impending economic “Armageddon” if things don’t get sorted out soon. So what’s the good news?

Posted on Jul 15, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

The GOP’s Sick Priorities

These threatened programs are not government handouts to a privileged class, like defense contractors and bailed-out bankers, who do feel eminently entitled to pig out at the federal trough.

Posted on Jul 12, 2011 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Jobs, Budget, Murdoch, Space

This week the Labor Department reported that employers added a mere 18,000 jobs in June, and that the unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent. The news is a blow to all who were hopeful that the nation’s economic recovery was gaining speed.

Posted on Jul 8, 2011 READ MORE



The Dirty Secret of the Jobless Recovery

Have you ever asked yourself what makes a “jobless recovery” possible? Since the beginning of the recession, American companies have trimmed their staffs and shifted work to remaining employees, largely without increasing pay, and those workers are not reaping the benefits. (more)

Posted on Jul 3, 2011 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: DSK’s Reversal of Fortune; Obama as Scolder-in-Chief

Last week brought a dramatic shift in Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s case—will he be exonerated? President Obama isn’t happy with congressional Republicans’ unwillingness to negotiate on the debt front, and they’re not thrilled with his disdainful stance.

Posted on Jul 2, 2011 READ MORE


Debt Ceiling Negotiations

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Posted on Jul 1, 2011 READ MORE



Freedom to Marry (CC-BY)

California Passes $86 Billion Budget Without New Taxes

Californians made it easier for their lawmakers to pass a budget, but you might not be able to tell from all the drama. Perhaps you heard that Gov. Jerry Brown (above) vetoed a budget passed by his own party, Republicans managed to block voters from approving new taxes and the state controller stopped paying legislators. (more)

Posted on Jun 28, 2011 READ MORE



woodleywonderworks (CC-BY)

The Economy Is Bad Enough

With the nation struggling to recover from a devastating recession, unemployment stuck at crisis levels, financial markets spooked by the possibility of European defaults and consumers disinclined to consume, it makes no earthly sense to suck money out of the economy.

Posted on Jun 27, 2011 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Troop Timetable, Budget Breakdown, Fed Forecast

So, now we know Obama’s big plan for pulling American troops out of Afghanistan, but it hasn’t exactly been well received. This week’s “Left, Right & Center” panel—featuring Tony Blankley, Matt Miller, Robert Scheer and Chrystia Freeland—offers no exception to the naysaying.

Posted on Jun 24, 2011 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Obama Moves to Resolve Debt Deadlock

After Republicans bailed on Vice President Joe Biden’s deficit talks Thursday, the government once again hit an impasse in resolving the burgeoning debt crisis, but by Friday, President Obama signaled his readiness to enter the fray. Republicans, meanwhile, signaled their ongoing displeasure over talk of tax hikes.

Posted on Jun 24, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Gilded:

Christie and N.J. Lawmakers Show No Mercy for Public Workers

Republicans and a handful of “Christie Democrats” joined forces in New Jersey’s legislature on Thursday to punch through a bill that will require public workers to pay way more for their health insurance and pensions, curb unions’ collective bargaining rights and rob them of other crucial benefits. (more)

Posted on Jun 24, 2011 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons

Deficit Talks Break Down on Capitol Hill

So much for another attempt at bipartisan negotiations. Vice President Joe Biden saw his bid to get both sides talking about ways to deal with the deficit come to a halt on Thursday after all two of the GOP participants cited talk of tax increases as their reason for bowing out.

Posted on Jun 23, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Thanassis Stavrakis

IMF Sounds Warning About Global Economy

Three years into the Great Recession, the outlook is wobbly in the eurozone, according to the IMF. France and Germany are doing well enough to offset some of the economic problems plaguing their neighbors, but in a networked world, nations’ fates are intertwined.

Posted on Jun 17, 2011 READ MORE


Wall Street
Wikimedia Commons / Martin St.-Amant

Obama Pitches Woo to Wall Street

Though he once referred to them as “fat cats,” President Obama now has to sing a different tune to Wall Street’s bigwigs in order to persuade them to open their wallets as he revs up for campaign 2012. Awkward!

Posted on Jun 13, 2011 READ MORE


Playing With Default

The current puppet play in Congress—where Republicans sponsored a bill to raise the nation’s debt ceiling only because they wanted to vote it down—would be funny, if only they weren’t risking economic disaster.

Posted on Jun 5, 2011 READ MORE


No Need to Demagogue the Ryan Plan

Republicans who invented “death panels” out of whole cloth and insisted, falsely, that Obama’s health proposal was nothing but a “government takeover” have a lot of nerve complaining about the “demagoguery” against Rep. Paul Ryan.

Posted on Jun 2, 2011 READ MORE


Cutting Kids’ Health Care Will Make Deficits Bigger

In the name of curtailing deficits, politicians across the country are hacking away at programs that aim to make children healthier.

Posted on Jun 2, 2011 READ MORE



U.S. Marine Corps / Staff Sgt. Jeff Kaus

Budget Problems, America? Try Ending Your Many Wars

To the wayfaring American citizen, the view of Washington, D.C., from abroad is as bizarre as that of Oz. One cannot believe what is happening.

Posted on Jun 1, 2011 READ MORE


Our Imagination Deficit

While the United States remains utterly frozen in a debate about budget deficits and all the things that government shouldn’t do, other countries are marrying public and private resources to make themselves stronger and more competitive.

Posted on May 29, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Beverly & Pack

Budget Watchdog Blames Debt Crisis on Bush Policy

The nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has updated research that projects nearly half of public debt in 2019 will be attributable to President George W. Bush’s tax cuts plus the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted on May 25, 2011 READ MORE



Rep. Perry's office

Pennsylvania House Takes Aim at Unemployment Payouts

Pennsylvania’s GOP-controlled House of Representatives will consider a bill that would change the way unemployment benefits are calculated, taking almost $500 million out of jobless residents’ pockets each year.

Posted on May 21, 2011 READ MORE


Will Symbols Trump Logic?

Republicans holding the increase of the debt ceiling hostage to their efforts to eviscerate programs know perfectly well that Congress will not risk a financial crisis.

Posted on May 19, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / DVIDSHUB

John Boehner Hits the Skids With Tea Party

House Speaker John Boehner’s battle for budget cuts has not won him many points with the cost-conscious tea party, particularly in light of a Congressional Budget Office study that indicates the latest spending bill will not cut the deficit nearly as much as advertised.

Posted on May 17, 2011 READ MORE



Flickr / Tattooed JJ

The Trillion-Dollar Public Benefits Gap Widens

State governments are looking at a cumulative shortfall of at least $1.26 trillion needed to pay for pension and retirement health care services, The Pew Center on the States reported in a study published last week.

Posted on May 1, 2011 READ MORE



AP Photo/Ryan J. Foley

A Generation of Termites?

Indeed, in the guise of saving future generations from excessive federal debt, themes of national decay, egotistical greed and irresponsibility pervade the Ryan plan.

Posted on Apr 29, 2011 READ MORE



AP / Jeffrey Phelps

Watch Out for Ryan, Not Trump

Contrary to conventional wisdom, the media fascination with the potential presidential campaign of the great American phony, Donald Trump, has been helpful to the Republican Party. 

Posted on Apr 27, 2011 READ MORE


Passing Through

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Posted on Apr 26, 2011 READ MORE


Budget Similarities

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Posted on Apr 17, 2011 READ MORE


Step by Step Deficit Solution

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Posted on Apr 16, 2011 READ MORE


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