President Obama has, unfortunately, embraced the faulty premise that deficit reduction should be a top priority. He, along with a chorus of deficit hawks, longs for a "grand bargain" that would get the debt and the deficit "under control."
Here's my down-the-middle solution to the shutdown, which I offer as a professional economist: Suspend Obamacare and cut the budget -- just as House Republicans have demanded -- but do all the cutting in just the 80 or so congressional districts of the most ardent Tea Party members.
Today, political hardliners seem more callous than ever. They act like they would rather there be no government than a government that implements a legally voted piece of legislation -- the Affordable Care Act. It
We can't spend more and we can't stop helping and protecting people. But by prioritizing outcomes we can shift from a budget fight to a constructive debate about investments and returns, rather than programs and spending.
A partial shutdown of the government began Tuesday, and you're probably wondering how it will affect the things that are part of your daily life. We researched how the shutdown will affect what's closest to us.
Much of what is commonly being said about the federal budget is either mischaracterization or flatly wrong. When you slice through all the heated rhetoric, the budgetary choices we face may be painful, but they are actually much simpler to make than the debate would suggest.
Nothing illustrates the utter dysfunctionality of the 113th Congress more than the failure of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, or THUD, appropriations bills to pass in both houses right before Congress left for its August recess.
Whether it is firing synapses, moving cranes, or powering our homes, we run on energy. And our dependency is growing: 7,000,000,000 humans with an annual growth rate of more than 1 percent translates to one more person on Earth every 13 seconds.
Before we kill a program that passes every logical test, let's make sure that the program is executing the intended mission and that the measurements are properly designed to reflect the appropriate outcomes.
Some say the West Coast has the best beaches, the Midwest has the friendliest people, and that you can't beat the cheesesteaks in Philly. But financial transparency? Fugghedaboudit. New York City's got everyone beaten by a mile.