Daily Digest - May 8: A Second Opinion on Austerity

What you need to know to navigate today's most critical debates.

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After Austerity (Project Syndicate)

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Joseph Stiglitz writes that policymakers have better treatment options available if they admit they've misdiagnosed Europe's ailment, but they're running out of time to change course before they kill their patient.

Are there any alternatives to austerity? Six ideas for fixing Europe (WaPo)

Brad Plumer looks at the most commonly suggested options, ranging from increased European cooperation and integration to having countries leave the eurozone. The question is whether this is an "in sickness and in health" type of marriage.

A Tale of Two Elections (HuffPo)

Robert Kuttner notes that Francois Hollande and Barack Obama have much in common: both ran on a platform of change, inherited a miserable economy, and face stubborn opposition to progress. There's also the socialism, if you're a Fox News fan.

Change in Paris May Better Fit U.S. Economic Positions (NYT)

Annie Lowrey writes that while Sarkozy was a key U.S. ally, especially on defense policy, what President Obama gains in having another major voice against austerity could make up for what he loses in back pats and double date opportunities.

The Great Recession Is Pushing Women Out of the Workforce (The Nation)

NND Editor Bryce Covert notes that it's not yet clear whether the women who are dropping out of the workforce plan to spend their downtime hitting the books or changing diapers, but the latter will be a lot less helpful on their future resumes.

Social Security Matters (Baseline Scenario)

James Kwak argues that with American households in general and seniors in particular increasingly relying on the social safety net to keep them from plunging into a bottomless financial pit, it's not a good time to be brandishing the scissors.

No one went to jail, so why is Wall Street so mad? (Salon)

Alex Pareene writes that by failing to punish bankers for their role in destroying the economy, Obama has only made their egos swell. If they didn't do anything worth prosecuting, why should they suffer the indignity of being called a mean name?

It's the Economy, Smartypants (TAP)

Paul Waldman notes that despite Mitt Romney's claims that his business experience gives him special economic insight, that insight seems remarkably similar to what you'd get if you asked any random Republican to devise an economic platform.

Invisible Hand, Greased Palm (New Yorker)

James Surowiecki writes that stories like Walmart's bribery scandal are grabbing more headlines because countries have cracked down on corruption. And once companies get used to having rules that don't come with a price tag, they may even like it.

Big Idea: A Green Energy Offensive From the Department of Defense (GOOD)

Reese Neader of the Roosevelt Institute | Campus Network and Daniel Goldfarb of Roosevelt Institute | Pipeline argue that the military's energy innovation and security strategy can help protect America while ensuring that it has a planet to call home.

With additional research by Elena Callahan.