WASHINGTON -- There are lots of reasons to worry about how President Trump would handle a recession, should we tip into one. There's his incompetent economic team. Or the limited fiscal policy tools at his disposal, given that Republicans already spent nearly $2 trillion on tax cuts. Or his efforts to discredit the Federal Reserve just when we'...Read more
When Barack Obama was president and the economic statistics were good, then-candidate Donald Trump said they were fake. When Trump became president and inherited the exact same stats, they suddenly became real.
Now that they're turning south, they're apparently fake once more.
Trump, aided by his economic brain trust of cranks and sycophants, ...Read more
On Friday evening, during our joint appearance on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher," former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci said that he stood by President Trump despite his flaws -- because Scaramucci loves his country. He also warned Democrats that his bosom buddy could win reelection in a 40-state landslide.
By Sunday ...Read more
Once upon a time, President Trump pledged to "drain the swamp."
This resonated with lots of Americans, who resented the ecosystem of interest groups rigging government in their favor: corrupt officials, revolving-door lobbyists, palm-greasing executives and the network of pseudo-think tanks and analysts funded by industries trying to pass off ...Read more
It's almost funny, in a twisted sort of way. Election after election, Republicans have based their core political appeal on fear.
And yet -- as dual gun massacres this weekend starkly illustrate -- they refuse to offer solutions to any of the mortal threats Americans actually face.
President Trump's closing (losing) message in the midterms was...Read more
Won't single-payer health care require higher taxes? (Yes, obviously.) And won't abolishing employer-sponsored insurance face opposition from some of the 160 million people happily on those plans now? (Almost certainly.)
At the debates, in post-debate spin rooms and on Sunday TV show interviews, the Democratic presidential candidates are asked ...Read more
President Trump would never even think of doing that!
So we've heard again and again, from Trump allies apparently trying to pre-commit the president to not doing something stupid or dangerous that he's obviously inclined to do.
They said it when they claimed, way back when, that Trump had no interest in starting any trade wars. They ...Read more
Republicans are right. The scourge of socialism is already upon us. They're just wrong about which party is to blame.
Technically, "socialism" refers to a system in which the government controls the means of production. In popular parlance, however, "socialist" has instead become a more generic right-wing slur. To the extent the descriptor ...Read more
Eighty years ago last month, the S.S. St. Louis entered American waters.
The liner carried more than 900 Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution, hoping to find a haven across the Atlantic. Passengers had purchased landing certificates and transit visas issued by the Cuban government, and most planned to wait in Cuba while their U.S. visa ...Read more
Vile, chilling, dangerous and life-threatening.
These words cannot adequately describe the Trump rally chants of "send her back," referring to a U.S.-citizen congresswoman, Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., who immigrated from Somalia as a child refugee; or the presidential tweets that inspired this chant, suggesting that Omar as well as three native-born U...Read more
The government is about to run out of money because of an arbitrary cap on how much it can borrow to make good on bills that it long ago promised to pay.
Lawmakers and the White House are haggling over the conditions under which they will, once again, temporarily raise that cap, known as the debt ceiling. But the better solution would be to ...Read more
Let's say you are deciding between two models of Federal Reserve candidates. One has no fixed principles and embraces whatever is most politically expedient; the other has a blind commitment to a dangerously wrong set of beliefs.
To borrow from "Hamilton": I know it's lose-lose, but if you had to choose?
Or maybe you don't. Because with Judy ...Read more
Want to know how ill-conceived President Trump's proposed China tariffs are? Look to the tennis ball tariff.
It represents a sort of grand slam of terrible trade policy.
Head Penn Racquet Sports, a division of Colorado-based Head USA Inc., makes the best-selling tennis ball in the United States. It sells about 65 million balls under its "Penn"...Read more
President Trump would like to make someone's email a central issue in the 2020 election, just as it was in 2016.
I'm on board -- though I disagree with which someone we're talking about.
We should be laser-focused on newly discovered private emails between a high-ranking census official and a GOP operative, and what they reveal about a long-...Read more
PARIS -- If your country can't figure this out, what hope is there for mine?
I kept wondering this as I met here with Notre Affaire à Tous, one of four organizations suing the French government for failing to keep its Paris climate accord commitments.
In France, unlike in the United States, politicians actually want to lead on this ...Read more
An iconic American industry is struggling.
This sector has long been battered by forces beyond its control: globalization, automation, "disruptive" new competitors, changing tastes. Bankruptcies mount, and workplaces shutter around the country. Big, empty buildings, once bustling with young people, have been left to rot.
To add insult to ...Read more
Breaking: A Republican accidentally told the truth about tax cuts.
Almost. At least if you count Rep. Kevin Brady's (Tex.) recent equivocation about whether the GOP tax overhaul will really pay for itself.
Way back in the first year of President Trump's administration, Republicans made a bunch of promises about their tax law, nearly all of ...Read more
Not this again.
Faced with any sort of self-inflicted crisis, Trump cycles through a series of scapegoats. Among the usual boogeymen (and boogeywomen): immigrants, China, NFL players, Hillary Clinton, House Democrats.
But lately -- and alarmingly, for anyone who cares about the long-term health of the U.S. economy -- the Federal Reserve has ...Read more
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., has a big, bold, multitrillion-dollar plan for addressing climate change. So does her rival Joe Biden. Likewise former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke. And, of course, Gov. Jay Inslee, D-Wash., whose entire campaign is structured around the climate crisis.
These candidates, to their credit, have offered ...Read more
WASHINGTON -- Happy 10th birthday, U.S. economic expansion! Let's hope you'll be allowed to live a little while longer, despite a certain someone's concerted efforts to kill you off.
The Great Recession officially ended -- and the current recovery officially began -- exactly a decade ago, in June 2009. That means we've now tied the record for ...Read more