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Michael Likosky
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Michael Likosky (PhD Oxford Law) is a Senior Fellow at The Century Foundation. Prior to that, he directed NYU's Center on Law & Public Finance for several years at the institute for Public Knowledge. He is the author of Obama's Bank: Financing a Durable New Deal (Cambridge University Press), and four other books on infrastructure, energy, and high-tech growth. He is an Expert to the UN and OECD. His work is supported by Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, Arts & Humanities Research Council, and Markle Foundation. He has held fellowships and posts at Oxford and NYU Law. He advises government officials, investors, major firms, labor unions, and non-profits.

Entries by Michael Likosky

Infrastructure and Spaghetti Investing

(0) Comments | Posted July 10, 2014 | 1:58 AM

Advocates of infrastructure are guilty too often of throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks. We've got poll numbers to justify almost any infrastructure investment. This only reinforces things.

Investing in infrastructure for its 'multiplier' effect will not get the economy moving any faster. We do not need...

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Gov. Scott Demands More Handouts

(1) Comments | Posted May 23, 2013 | 6:59 AM

President Barack Obama stood in front of the Port of Miami Tunnel a few weeks ago to make clear that he supports private investment in public infrastructure. It turns out that Florida Gov. Rick Scott prefers federal money.

The Port of Miami project closed during the height of the global...

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Obama & Buffett Bullish on P3s

(0) Comments | Posted April 4, 2013 | 3:32 PM

Last week was a big one for public-private-partnerships:

On Friday, President Obama fleshed out his partnership plan, which he had announced during the State of the Union and the American Society of Civil Engineers issued its annual Report Card on infrastructure. We got a bump because of partnerships in the...

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Our Public-Private Partnership President

(0) Comments | Posted March 15, 2013 | 3:20 PM

In his State of the Union Address, President Obama embraced public-private partnerships. This was treated as a departure. However, no president to-date has embraced partnerships as whole heartedly as Obama has.

In fact, the chalkboard of the widely circulated picture of Obama teaching class at the University of Chicago...

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SOTU: Obama Embraces Public-Private-Partnerships

(2) Comments | Posted February 21, 2013 | 8:01 AM

In November of 2009, President Obama asked his Economic Recovery Board:

Obviously we're entering into an era of greater fiscal restraint as we move out of deep recession into a recovery. And the question I've had is people still got a lot of capital on the sidelines there...
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Utopists Geithner and Clinton Honor Infrastructure Banks, Promote Partnerships

(0) Comments | Posted November 16, 2012 | 1:52 PM

Out of the ashes of the Second World War emerged a Utopia vision -- rather than solve problems through military means, we could maintain the peace by investing across borders and promoting human rights.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is one of the main advocates of this Utopian vision along...

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Bipartisanship Post-Labor-Day: P3s and a National Infrastructure Bank

(0) Comments | Posted August 29, 2011 | 4:53 PM

We can expect proposals in the coming weeks aiming for a domestic economic surge, putting Americans back to work. But Americans should be wary of four types of proposals:

  1. Ones not designed to kick in before a 2013 inaugural address.
  2. Ones not enjoying broad bipartisan support.
  3. Ones dramatically increasing public...
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Agreeing on Austerity: It's Harder Than It Looks

(0) Comments | Posted July 25, 2011 | 10:40 PM

America is not the only country now struggling to restructure its public balance sheet. However, we are peculiar in two ways.

First, typically governments in crisis restructure their public sector in exchange for a financial lifeline from a foreign government or international financial institution. For instance, Greece is restructuring...

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A New Debt Ceiling Proposal: a Future Fund

(0) Comments | Posted July 11, 2011 | 2:29 PM

Both the grand and modest proposals for addressing the debt ceiling are misconceived. Like much of what comes out of Washington these days, it is not particularly inspiring. The idea of shared sacrifice as a public value is fine. However, why should many Americans, who have become accustomed to shouldering...

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Crisis Philanthropy: Partnerships & Co-Investment

(1) Comments | Posted July 6, 2011 | 5:11 PM

United States Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes was fond of saying, "leverage is everything." Today, philanthropy is coming to recognize the value of this insight as essential to fulfilling sector-wide shared missions. The leaders of major foundations - Judith Rodin of Rockefeller, Luis Ubinas of Ford, Bill and Melinda...

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Clinton Global Initiative America: Problem-Solvers Not Provocateurs

(5) Comments | Posted July 1, 2011 | 1:31 PM

There's plenty of money eager to find ways of investing in America's resurgence. However, we suffer from a bad case of provocateurship -- we have too many Attention Entrepreneurs who judge an argument's value by whether Fox News, MSNBC, or others looking for waste/fraud/abuse in government or the commercial world...

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Let Wave Two Begin -- Obama, Geithner and an Infrastructure Bank

(3) Comments | Posted June 24, 2011 | 5:32 PM

In the late 1930s, when we faced a double-dip depression, Marriner Eccles, the chairman of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Federal Reserve, worried that our mounting debts and real need for public investment would be hampered by a prevalent sentiment that "unwise spending seems to be spending for the other fellow."...

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Fareed Zakaria's Republican Case for a National Infrastructure Bank

(1) Comments | Posted June 22, 2011 | 11:28 AM

Fareed Zakaria recently joined a growing group supporting a National Infrastructure Bank. His piece, though, moves the ball forward. Zakaria begins to make the case for Republican and Tea Party support. Let's flesh it out a bit.

Zakaria makes two main arguments:

  1. An American Infrastructure Bank would make...
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America: 21st Century's First Emerging Economy

(12) Comments | Posted June 9, 2011 | 12:03 PM

By most accounts, our representatives in Washington will find a way of raising the debt ceiling to avert financial crisis. However, our deficit is not going away anytime soon. We can expect many more rounds of this fight over how we meet out shared sacrifice. We must shift our focus...

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From Shared Sacrifice to Shared Prosperity

(5) Comments | Posted May 28, 2011 | 2:00 PM

President Obama announced an executive order in the Wall Street Journal not long ago to revisit our regulatory agencies to make sure that they promote economic growth and other public values in the areas of safety, health, and the environment. The point was widely misunderstood as an attempt...

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Kerry's American Infrastructure Bank

(2) Comments | Posted March 15, 2011 | 8:02 PM

Today, a rare thing happened in the United States Senate. A major bill was unveiled aiming to invest in America's infrastructure. It has bipartisan sponsors -- Senator John Kerry (D-MA) and Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX). Tom Donohue (President and CEO of the US Chamber of Commerce) and...

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Geithner and the Post-WWII Utopian Vision

(1) Comments | Posted March 10, 2011 | 6:16 AM

Yesterday, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner laid out the case for increasing our financial commitments to the World Bank and its sibling regional development banks. The argument for increasing our commitments is sound, and the commercial case for it essentially four-fold.

First, these development banks constructively reinforce transitions by empowering...

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Machiavelli, Third World America and Our National Crisis

(1) Comments | Posted February 17, 2011 | 1:34 PM

When something goes horribly wrong, it's always useful to look to the Classics to understand what's actually happened and how to move forward. Is our national economy a case in point?

A lot of compelling stories are now circulating about what caused our crisis.

Choose the story that...

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Obama's Economic Philosophy

(30) Comments | Posted January 26, 2011 | 12:11 AM

President Obama reaffirmed his economic philosophy in the State of the Union address -- a government that works, invests, delivers opportunity, and that we can believe in. It is a lean government, not a big government. It is not a problem, but a problem-solver. The approach that Obama laid out...

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American Economic Highway: More Onramps, Less Roadblocks

(3) Comments | Posted January 13, 2011 | 12:05 PM

Our country faces astounding infrastructure needs. The broken levies of New Orleans, collapsed bridge in Minneapolis, power outages in the Northeast are symptomatic. Nearly every governor and mayor -- Democrat or Republican -- is pressing for more investment.

In a time of budgetary crisis, public officials -- and nearly...

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