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By Rachel Goldfarb, originally published on Next New Deal

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On the Wrong Side of Globalization (NYT)

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow and Chief Economist Joseph Stiglitz argues that trade deals like the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership create a race to the bottom for regulations, and exacerbate inequality.

The Great Corporate Cash-Hoarding Crisis (AJAM)

David Cay Johnston says that multinationals keeping their cash abroad instead of investing in their businesses or paying income taxes on it is what is keeping the U.S. from a real economic recovery.

10 Things Elizabeth Warren's Consumer Protection Agency Has Done for You (MoJo)

Erika Eichelberger lists the changes the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has already pushed through since its creation in 2011, which affect homeowners, student loan holders, and anyone with a credit card.

Capping Public Service Loan Forgiveness at $57.5K Defeats Its Purpose (HuffPo)

People who use the PSLF program are trying to do good for the country, and according to Tim Lowden, this proposed cap would create a disincentive to entering these absolutely vital careers.

Income Gap, Meet the Longevity Gap (NYT)

Two U.S. counties, separated by only 350 miles, have life expectancies that differ as much as Sweden and Iraq. Annie Lowrey reports on how inequality is affecting the length of people's lives.

Paul Ryan’s Worst Nightmare: Here’s the Real Way to Cut Poverty in America (Salon)

Michael Lind thinks planning to avert future poverty is great, but we could reduce poverty today with a simple solution: increased government spending in the form of generous welfare and social insurance programs.

The Cost of Kale: How Foodie Trends Can Hurt Low-Income Families (Bitch Magazine)

Flat wages and rising food costs are only exasperated by food gentrification and trends, says Soleil Ho. From 2007 to 2012, wages remained stagnant, while the cost of feeding a family increased 18 percent.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Economics on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 05:29 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  What's the Return for Investing in the US (0+ / 0-)

    economy? China and India are going to buy more of our manufactured goods? Because the American consumer with declining incomes is pretty much tapped out?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 08:10:32 PM PDT

  •  History of free trade agreements. (0+ / 0-)

    For me, the emphasis Stiglitz places on the history of free-trade agreements is key.

    "Let’s tackle the history first. In general, trade deals today are markedly different from those made in the decades following World War II, when negotiations focused on lowering tariffs….

    "Today, the purpose of trade agreements is different. Tariffs around the world are already low. The focus has shifted to “nontariff barriers,” and the most important of these — for the corporate interests pushing agreements — are regulations."

    He goes on to describe how free-trade agreements work as "end-arounds" for democratically-created limitations, in the name of regulatory harmonization. But the true motivation, as usual, is profit:

    "When agreements like the TPP govern international trade — when every country has agreed to similarly minimal regulations — multinational corporations can return to the practices that were common before the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts became law (in 1970 and 1972, respectively) and before the latest financial crisis hit. Corporations everywhere may well agree that getting rid of regulations would be good for corporate profits. Trade negotiators might be persuaded that these trade agreements would be good for trade and corporate profits. But there would be some big losers — namely, the rest of us."

    Clean air and water regulations could not be repealed in the US; numerous other reforms, such as minimum wage and other remaining labor protections are similarly virtually impossible to dislodge. But free-trade agreements such as TPP seek to work around such protections by putting the problems in someone else's back yard.

    This all serves to emphasize another point Stiglitz makes: "One of the reasons that we are in such bad shape is that we have mismanaged globalization." For all the promise that free-trade reforms would improve overall growth, global GDP per capita growth is slower in the last thirty years of increased globalization than it was in the previous thirty years:

    You Don't Happen To Make It. You Make It Happen !

    by jeffrey789 on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:47:17 PM PDT

    •  Continue (0+ / 0-)

      March 16, 2014

      Stiglitz Sets the Record Straight on "Globalization"

      Joe Stiglitz had a nice essay * on globalization pointing out that recent "trade" agreements have been largely about shaping rules and regulations to benefit the one percent rather than reducing trade barriers. The strategy of the Obama administration and other proponents of deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership is to make nonsense claims about the economic benefits of these deals and use ad hominem arguments against the opponents (i.e. call them Neanderthal "protectionists").

      In reality, it is the proponents of these deals who are the protectionists, supporting the barriers that limit competition from foreign doctors and others in highly paid professions. And, one of the main goals of these deals is to increase the strength of patent and copyright protection, often raising the price of the affected items by several thousand percent about the free market price.

      You Don't Happen To Make It. You Make It Happen !

      by jeffrey789 on Mon Mar 17, 2014 at 09:49:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The article about food trends is dead on (0+ / 0-)

    I can't count the number of people who are barely scraping by who insist on eating only organic.

    And this applies outside of the US, too, as wealthy folks here try to get countries with even bigger nutrition problems than us to ban GMOs despite no evidence of danger.

    I would call this a Republican war on the poor if I didn't know any better.

    •  I thought it was a totally wrongheaded article. (0+ / 0-)

      First, food inflation is very modest, not out of line with the overall rate of inflation.  It's not the fault of food producers and merchants that wages have stagnated or declined.  Second, the increased availability and consumption of things that are good for you, even leaving aside the snake-oil claims, can't be a bad thing.  As for the fetishization of organics somehow being oppressive to poor people who can't afford them, I think progressives need to get their stories straight: are organic foods a good thing or not?  The idea that they're a good thing (for the eater, for the planet, whatever) is incompatible with the idea that it's too bad that people want to buy them.  And what's this fantasy world in which leafy greens are more than a negligible share of anyone's food dollar?

      It's not the side effects of the cocaine/I'm thinking that it must be love

      by Rich in PA on Tue Mar 18, 2014 at 04:47:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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