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Wednesday’s Presidential Debate and Friday’s Jobs Report (Robert Reich)
Reich argues that no matter how many sick burns the candidates drop on each other tomorrow night, the real story is going to be how many jobs the economy added in September and whether anyone has a plan besides muddling along or making things worse.
The Case Against a CEO in the Oval Office (WSJ)
Alan Blinder writes that our greatest presidents, like FDR, lacked business experience, while CEO presidents like Herbert Hoover show that a focus on efficiency and profits doesn’t carry over well to a job where you’re actually supposed to care about people.
The billionaire Obama hate club (Salon)
Andrew Leonard notes that while the super-rich have done very well under President Obama, that hasn’t stopped them from denouncing him as Adolf Hitler reborn. But FDR knew how to respond properly to the hatred of the rich: by trolling them even harder.
Bernanke vs. the Borg: A Short History of the Fed’s Amazing Transformation (The Atlantic)
Matthew O’Brien explains how hawkish Minneapolis Fed president Narayana Kocherlakota went from dismissing unemployment as structural to pushing one of the Fed’s most aggressive stimulus plans, all because Ben Bernanke wouldn’t stop bugging him.
Facing ‘Fiscal Cliff,’ Obama Would Quickly Fill Treasury Job (WSJ)
Damian Paletta reports that if President Obama wins reelection, replacing Tim Geithner will be a top priority. Will it be middle-aged guy with Wall Street experience? Older guy with Wall Street experience? Glasses or no glasses? The possibilities are endless.
Corporations Are People When They Donate to Campaigns — But Not When They Violate Human Rights? (TNR)
Jeffrey Rosen writes that the Roberts Court that decided corporations have the same First Amendment rights as people now seems poised to grant them a few extra privileges, like being able to torture Nigerian citizens without getting hassled in U.S. courts.
CFPB Catches American Express Breaking the Law (Prospect)
Patrick Caldwell notes that the CFPB has forced American Express to implement a new kind of cash-back reward: refunding $85 billion to 250,000 customers who were ripped off by the company’s shady practices and misleading claims about its credit cards.
JPMorgan Unit Is Sued Over Mortgage Security Pools (NYT)
Hey, remember the federal mortgage task force? The one co-chaired by Eric Scheiderman? No? Well, Gretchen Morgenson notes that it finally did something yesterday, filing a complaint about JPMorgan’s securities packaging. And there was much rejoicing.
Congress just let the farm bill expire. It’s not the end of the world… yet. (WaPo)
Brad Plumer writes that the do-nothing Congress reinforced its cred by allowing the farm bill to expire, resetting policy to the 1949 status quo. Those on food stamps get to keep them for now, but God help anyone who wants a glass of milk come January.