Economic Policy Will Never Be the Same

July 15, 2022

The American Rescue Plan changed the game.

The Roosevelt Rundown features our top stories of the week.

What We’ve Learned about the Economy

As we look back at how the economy has shifted since the height of the pandemic, this much is clear: The economic narratives once considered conventional wisdom aren’t true. 

The American Rescue Plan (ARP) has given us a new blueprint for recoveries, and changed our approach to economic policymaking for good, Roosevelt’s Mike Konczal explained at an event hosted by Community Change and the Urban Institute this week. 

It demonstrated that we could recover from a recession more quickly and equitably than we have in the past. That good policy can strengthen worker power and improve labor conditions for Black and brown people. And that providing direct support to struggling families can substantially reduce poverty. 

In the last year, we’ve also learned more about what can drive inflation—that in addition to demand factors, supply chain problems and corporate markups are contributing to recent price increases.

Fresh ideas to tackle those problems are ascendant.

“After a decade of expanding demand-side policies, we’re already seeing a new emphasis on production and expanding out the supply-side of our economy, one addressing the challenges we’ve faced during the reopenings of the past year,” said Konczal.

Read more in “Three Ways the American Rescue Plan Changed Economic Policymaking.”


The Supreme Court’s Extremist Agenda

The Supreme Court’s decision in West Virginia v. EPAwill not only have catastrophic consequences for the environment; it will constrain government’s ability to successfully enact regulations across all areas,” Roosevelt’s Shahrzad Shams writes

“And it marks a critical juncture in a decades-long battle by the conservative legal movement to dismantle the modern administrative state.”

To meet this moment, our leaders can learn from FDR’s legacy, and “use the full power of the federal government to solve the challenges of the day. . . . They must confront this far-right Court, pass Court reform measures, and fight for their constituencies’ freedom and agency from reactionary forces,” Shams argues. “Our democracy and environment depend on it.”

Read “The Court’s Extremist Agenda to Dismantle 20th Century Gains.”


A Pivotal Phase for Justice40

“[E]nvironmental justice requires significant federal resources, and community control and ownership of these resources,” writes Roosevelt’s Lew Daly in Nonprofit Quarterly. “Justice40 is the first and only federal policy with the potential to deliver these resources.”

But how it’s implemented—and who has a say—is key.

Learn more in Daly and Rhiana Gunn-Wright’s “A New Administrative Architecture for Justice40.”


What We’re Reading

Wonking Out: Rockets, Feathers and Prices at the Pump [feat. Roosevelt’s Mike Konczal and Niko Lusiani]New York Times

“Greedflation”: Is Corporate Profit-Taking Driving Prices Higher? [feat. Konczal]CBS News Sunday Morning

Unions Protect Democracy. How Do We Protect Unions?The Nation

US Emissions Cost the World $1.9 Trillion in Economic Damages – Grist