July 27

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

The Budget Deficit Chicken Hawks (Truthout)
Dean Baker notes that more and more lawmakers are calling for deficit reduction, but not if it comes at the expense of their rich and powerful friends.

Long-Term Economic Pain (NYTimes)
Bob Herbert highlights a new study showing that America’s workers have been losing ground for decades, and laments the lack of real solutions being offered.

Is America facing an increase in structural unemployment? (The Economist)
A roundtable of economists debates the source of our current jobs crisis and the appropriate legislative remedies.

Permanently High Unemployment (NYTimes)
Paul Krugman warns that a weak response to 9.5 percent unemployment could help to establish it as the new normal.

The Great Decoupling of Corporate Profits From Jobs (HuffPo)
Robert Reich explains why it’s going to take more than new tax breaks to get businesses to start hiring again.

It’s the Unemployment, Stupid (TAPPED)
Jamelle Bouie suggests that President Obama should seriously consider whether he wants to run for reelection with unemployment still above 8 percent.

Blame Games (New Yorker)
James Surowiecki argues that those who pin our economic woes on President Obama are ignoring the evidence and overestimating the power of the presidency.

Elizabeth Warren (Daily Kos)
Markos Moulitsas endorses Elizabeth Warren to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, framing it as a choice between Wall Street on one hand and the American people and the progressive base on the other.

Why Elizabeth Warren Will Likely Be Confirmed (TNR)
Noam Scheiber predicts that despite some grumbling, opposition to Warren is too halfhearted to sustain a filibuster.

What happens when Congress fails (WaPo)
Ezra Klein observes that when the filibuster rules leave Congress unable to pass legislation, regulatory agencies and the courts are forced to fill in the gaps.

HAMP is Hurting Liberalism (FDL)
David Dayen argues that the Obama administration’s badly designed mortgage relief program is confirming conservative stereotypes about government incompetence.

Taxing the Rich (MoJo)
Repealing the Bush cuts would mean a return to the awful lean years of the 1990s, when millionaires were forced to scrape by while paying 5 percent more in taxes.

After bailouts, new autoworkers make half as much as veterans in same plant (WaPo)
The debate over proper compensation for factory workers is a complex one, but the current compromise appears untenable.

How Much Credit Card Rewards Cost the Poor (NYTimes)
Retailers are raising prices to recoup the cost of credit card transactions, and it’s taking a bite out of the wallets of poorer consumers.

Chamber Shows It’s Beholden to Big Business By Sitting Out Debate on Small Business Lending (Think Progress)
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce portrays itself as a defender of all businesses, but its loyalties appear to lie with multinational corporations and the Republican Party.

Neel Kashkari, TARP Guru, Supports Cutting Entitlements, Citing ‘Me-First’ Attitude Of Beneficiaries (HuffPo)
The free market means we’re all on our own, unless we happen to work for a major Wall Street firm.