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Budget austerity proved a joke, but the US and Europe won’t change course (Guardian)
Dean Baker writes that despite recent setbacks, deficit hawks are making two arguments against a policy shift: the recovery’s getting stronger on its own (there, did you see? It twitched a little bit) and no one knows how to spend money to create jobs (sorry, FDR).
Extended Benefits Didn’t Keep People from Taking Jobs (WSJ)
Many conservatives have taken it as an article of faith that unemployment benefits encourage people to be lazy and let those fat $300 checks roll in, but Amy Schatz notes that a new study by the San Francisco Fed shows they keep workers in the job market longer.
Churn, baby, churn: The labor market won’t be healthy until people feel like they can quit their jobs (WaPo)
Neil Irwin argues that while layoffs are stable, we won’t know the economy is really back on track until a lot more people start moving freely between jobs, or to put it another way, until they stop clinging to their current jobs like a kitten dangling from a tree branch.
In the Long Run, Niall Ferguson, Keynes Was Right (Bloomberg)
Matthew C. Klein makes the case that despite the homophobic comments made by some of Keynes’s critics, what really makes them uncomfortable is that they have no answers to immediate human suffering, not that gay economics will destroy the human race.
Yanking Broadband From the Slow Lane (NYT)
Eduardo Porter writes that while high-speed Internet access is the key to innovation, expansion and improvement of U.S. broadband networks has been about as slow as a dial-up connection, and monopolies are so strong that Google looks like a scrappy upstart.
Lew Slams Wall Street Deregulation Bills (MoJo)
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it — and if you can’t tell, ask someone who knows what they’re doing. As Erika Eichelberger notes, that’s the message Jack Lew sent to the House Financial Services Committee this week as it considers nine (cough) “fixes” to Dodd-Frank.
No, the Gang of Eight Immigration Bill Won’t Cost You $6.3 Trillion (Slate)
Matthew Yglesias writes that the Heritage Foundation’s report on immigration reform makes some strange assumptions, like the idea that legal status itself has no economic value, which is too bad for Republicans who were hoping to make an informed decision.
Many Americans say they can’t retire until their 70s or 80s (LA Times)
A Northwestern Mutual survey finds that most Americans are less financially secure than they thought they’d be and more than 40 percent expect to work past their 60s. We haven’t raised the legal retirement age, but the mental retirement age is another story.