Posts by Nick Cassella

Daily Clips: May 15, 2017

Report: Michigan employers steal $429 million in pay from low-wage workers each year

Pramila Jayapal highlighted and interviewed by The Nation

For New York’s free-tuition plan, lessons from Tennessee

Enrollment is up by a third and federal student loan debt is down in the first state to offer free tuition at its community colleges.

Kansas’ economy is a cautionary tale for the rest of the country

We need to challenge the myth that the rich are specially-talented wealth creators

Daily Clips: May 12, 2017

To cut taxes on the rich Mitch McConnell is ok w/ Trump cover-up of Russia probe

Trump lawyer: Tax returns from past 10 years show no “income of any type from Russian sources,” with few exceptions

Why Trumponomics (see trickle down) won’t make America great again

The economist who helped write Trump’s tax plan in five Days

Quantitative easing, stock buybacks and other stuff

So, while stock buybacks and QE aren’t exactly the same they are similar in the sense that their efficacy is contingent on the specific environment and the implementation. There will be times when this is a good idea and times when there’s just better ways to implement policies that try to move the private sector needle in one direction or another.

Trickle Downer of the Week: The American CEO

The average S&P 500 CEO pulled in $13.1 million last year, a 5.6 percent increase from 2015. Meanwhile, the average employee only made $37,362. Think about that: Your typical head honcho makes nearly as much in one day as his typical employee makes in a year.

Daily Clips: May 10, 2017

Today is a genuinely sad day in American history. The worst part? If you would have told me in 2012 this was how the Republican Party would end up…I would have believed you.

They have become an awful group of legislators, so interested in their own power that they have sold out at nearly every key point in the last forty years. Democrats aren’t completely angelic, but the Republican Party stands alone in its utter betrayal of the American people.

James Comey’s firing is the moment of truth for the GOP

Calls for Independent Investigator, even from (a few) G.O.P.

Michael Flynn targeted by grand jury subpoenas, sources confirm

Mitch McConnell: Any new Russia investigations would derail current ones

Meaning without work?

In any case, the end of work will not necessarily mean the end of meaning, because meaning is generated by imagining rather than by working. Work is essential for meaning only according to some ideologies and lifestyles. Eighteenth-century English country squires, present-day ultra-orthodox Jews, and children in all cultures and eras have found a lot of interest and meaning in life even without working.

Leftist critique of Kristen Gillibrand

If Hillary Clinton’s closeness to Wall Street torpedoed her campaign — and more importantly, made her a poor agent of change — then Gillibrand has the same problem in spades.

And the rest of her record isn’t any better. Her unyielding, at-all-costs loyalty to Israel, her expedient shape-shifting, her questionable links to certain political figures — all make Gillibrand a suspect tribune for anti-Trump resistance.

 

Daily Clips: May 5, 2017

Apple plans to spend $1 billion to support advanced manufacturing jobs in the U.S.

U.S. job growth rebounds sharply, unemployment rate hits 4.4 percent

Most U.S. homes are worth less than before the crash

GOP can now turn their attention to taxes

In rare unity, hospitals, doctors and insurers criticize health bill

History will remember these 217 House Republicans for their inhumanity

The science of inequality: why people prefer unequal societies

Daily Clips: May 3, 2017

Trump: Crazy Like a Fox, or Just Crazy?

Democrats say they need a better economic message. Ohio’s Sherrod Brown thinks he has one.

Wall Street lawyer Jay Clayton confirmed as Trump’s SEC Chair

We’re finally having the health-care debate we need

The Kansas experiment

Sam Brownback cut taxes dramatically in Kansas. As a Republican governor of a Republican state, he was going to enact the dream. Taxes on small businesses went down to zero. Personal income taxes went down. The tax rate on the highest income bracket went down about 25 percent. Brownback promised prosperous times for the state once government got out of the way.

Reviving productivity is a moral imperative

Trump, Pence lobby U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert in all-out effort to pass GOP health-care plan

Daily Clips: May 2, 2017

Republicans still short of votes to pass U.S. healthcare overhaul

Why Republicans are still desperate to pass a health bill absurdly quickly

The Trump tax plan’s devilish details:

Trump advisers insist that big cuts in tax rates would pay for themselves by generating strong economic growth, a highly speculative claim, to put it gently. They also claim they’d add revenue by eliminating most tax deductions, though not the politically popular write-offs for charitable contributions and home mortgage interest. But the plan doesn’t specify which deductions would go, citing only the ones for state and local taxes paid.

Economics, not identity, is key to reviving American liberalism

The United States of Work:

Against this bleak landscape, a growing body of scholarship aims to overturn our culture’s deepest assumptions about how work confers wealth, meaning, and care throughout society. In Private Government: How Employers Rule Our Lives (and Why We Don’t Talk About It), Elizabeth Anderson, a professor of philosophy at the University of Michigan, explores how the discipline of work has itself become a form of tyranny, documenting the expansive power that firms now wield over their employees in everything from how they dress to what they tweet. James Livingston, a historian at Rutgers, goes one step further in No More Work: Why Full Employment Is a Bad Idea. Instead of insisting on jobs for all or proposing that we hold employers to higher standards, Livingston argues, we should just scrap work altogether.

Meet Bob Ferguson, the Washington State Attorney General who shut down Trump’s Muslim ban

The absurd amount of entitlements that go to rich people

Seattle soda tax will now include diet products because of equity concerns

Daily Clips: May 1, 2017

American Airlines gave its workers a raise. Wall Street freaked out.

Why it’s hard to pay for Trump’s tax cuts:

One crucial question, though, is whether the tax breaks that Trump targets will generate enough savings to cover the cost — estimated at more than $6 trillion over 10 years — of what he wants to do, which is slash rates to 35 percent for top individual earners and 15 percent for corporations and pass-through businesses. If they don’t yield enough savings, his plan will boost budget deficits in a way that economists doubt would be offset by faster growth.

Trump says he’s considering moves to break up Wall Street banks: Top administration officials back return of Glass-Steagall Act.

Master negotiator Trump wanted $1.2B cut to National Institutes of Health. Instead it got $2 Billion boost.

Trump quote on the civil war:

He was really angry that he saw what was happening with regard to the civil war. He said, ‘There’s no reason for this.’ People don’t realize, you know, the civil war – if you think about it, why? People don’t ask that question, but why was there a civil war? Why could that one not have been worked out?

Trump’s tax cuts may be more damaging than Reagan’s

NYT Editorial Board nails Obama on his paid speech:

He wrote in 2006: “I know that as a consequence of my fund-raising I became more like the wealthy donors I met. I spent more and more of my time above the fray, outside the world of immediate hunger, disappointment, fear, irrationality, and frequent hardship of … the people that I’d entered public life to serve.”

Is it a betrayal of that sentiment for the former president to have accepted a reported $400,000 to speak to a Wall Street firm? Perhaps not, but it is disheartening that a man whose historic candidacy was premised on a moral examination of politics now joins almost every modern president in cashing in. And it shows surprising tone deafness, more likely to be expected from the billionaires the Obamas have vacationed with these past months than from a president keenly attuned to the worries and resentments of the 99 percent.

Daily Clips: April 28, 2017

Trump’s corporate tax cuts would increase deficit, and therefore are very unlike to pass

The Republican tax cut myth:

It’s worth remembering that the conservative Heritage Foundation made exactly the same argument about the 2001 tax cut that Secretary Mnuchin is making today. It issued a report on April 27, 2001 forecasting that by 2011, federal revenues would be higher with the tax cut than they would have been without it, due to higher economic growth, greater investment, and lower unemployment. In fact, real G.D.P. growth was half of what Heritage predicted and the unemployment rate was 50 percent higher. It predicted that federal revenues would equal $3.3 trillion in 2011 including the effect of the tax cut; revenues actually were $1 trillion less, $2.3 trillion.

American Airlines announces pay raises for pilots and shareholders freak

Trends in absolute income mobility since 1940

US economy has weakest quarterly performance in three years: So…is this still a part of the Obama economy?

Quote of the day:

Mr. Obama, who recently accepted a very lucrative speaking engagement on Wall Street, now looks like just one of the fortunate members of historically depressed minorities who mistake their own upward mobility for collective advance.