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Obamanomics: A Counterhistory (NYT)
David Leonhardt argues that the real flaw in the Obama team’s response to the economic crisis was not its failure to will a larger stimulus into existence or convince the public not to get its hopes up, but looking at a weak, shambling recovery and shouting “Nailed it!”
The Real Referendum (NYT)
Paul Krugman writes that the election has shifted from a referendum on Barack Obama to an easier question: How’d you like to preserve every social insurance program of the last century? The hard part is figuring out what Obama’s answer will be afterward.
Romney’s ‘Secret’ Economic Plan Isn’t a Secret (and It’s Not Much of a Plan) (The Atlantic)
Derek Thompson notes that Romney’s optimistically named transition team has a plan: strike one of those grand bargains op-ed columnists love, then pass a corporate tax holiday to move jobs and money where they belong — overseas and with the 1%, respectively.
The Romney Recession (TNR)
Timothy Noah argues that Mitt Romney might have the skillset to turn a failing private company into the next Staples, but his approach to the economy writ large would leave the U.S. looking more like one of those shuttered steel mills Bain left in its wake.
Corporate Welfare Queens (New Yorker)
James Surowiecki writes that while Romney has had (too) much to say recently about the 47 percent and their dependence on government, he seems to have a big old soft spot for the corporate welfare state that ranges from tax subsidies to patent protections.
Rise of the lockout: another sign of labor’s slide (Salon)
Josh Eidelson notes that the NFL referee lockout highlights how workers’ negotiating power has eroded, making it less likely for them to be standing around outside their workplace because they’re on strike than because they’re not allowed inside the building.
How to Erase a Debt That Isn’t There (NYT)
Gretchen Morgenson reports that banks seem to be getting creative about earning credits for the nationwide mortgage settlement by forgiving debts and eliminating liens that no longer exist. Time to stop with the forgiving and start with the apologies again.
A Very Strange Way to Assess the Safety of Banks (Bloomberg)
Simon Johnson writes that international regulators have to adopt a better way of assessing the risk of banks’ investments than calling them up and asking, “Hey, how risky are your investments?” Luckily, experts have developed non-guessing-based methods.
This Week in Poverty: The Invisibles in Mississippi and the US (The Nation)
Greg Kaufmann argues that we need to implement policies that support single mothers on welfare rather than blaming them for failing to turn their grocery-bagging into a lucrative career or urging them to marry the first guy they see who could be a fixer-upper.
I am a job creator: A manifesto for the entitled (WaPo)
Steve Pearlstein offers a daily affirmation for the corporate executives, business owners, and financial bigshots who require frequent reminders of how special and vitally important they are to keep them from crying big, hot tears onto their large stacks of money.