Dean Baker

Articles by this author

Views
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Saving Social Security
The stimulus bill approved by Congress last week - and due to be signed into law by President Obama [today] - is a very good first step toward slowing the economy's decline, but it clearly is not large enough to accomplish the job.
Read more
Views
Thursday, February 12, 2009
The TARP Dog and Pony Show
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's long-awaited plan for rescuing the banks left people even more confused about the Obama administration's agenda than they had been before the announcement. This is best demonstrated by the plunge in the market, including bank stocks, that immediately followed.
Read more
Views
Monday, February 09, 2009
Economic Stimulus on The Cheap
The moderates in the Senate of both parties are very proud of themselves for having negotiated a slimmed down version of the stimulus package .
Read more
Views
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Dealing With Bankrupt Banks: Nationalization or Welfare
The media continue to do more to misinform the public than to inform them when it comes to plans for fixing the financial system. Following the absolute worst in journalistic practices, a front page Washington Post article explains the Obama administration's policy by telling readers that the "approach reflects Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner's philosophy of how governments should respond to financial crises."
Read more
Views
Wednesday, February 04, 2009
Rationalize The Banks!
Leaks in the media indicate that the banks are about to inhale another helping of taxpayer dollars . This round is likely to be considerably larger than the $350bn they swallowed in the bail-out last October. The leaks from Obama administration officials without names suggest that the money will provide a further subsidy to bank executives and shareholders and may not even resolve the banks' financial crisis. In other words, the banks may yet come back for more.
Read more
Views
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
The Anti-Stimulus Crowd Blows a Gasket
The anti-stimulus crowd is getting desperate. The possibility that a young charismatic new president will push through an ambitious package that begins to set the economy right is truly terrifying to this crew. After all, if the economy begins to turn around and has largely recovered in three or four years, the Republican leadership can look forward to spending most of their careers in the political wilderness.
Read more
Views
Monday, January 19, 2009
The Role of Government: Keeping the Wealthy Rich
For some reason most of the discussion in Washington and the media of the bank bailouts is overlooking their central feature: taxpayer dollars are being used to sustain the income of incredibly rich bankers. The public should be furious over this upward redistribution of income.
Read more
Views
Monday, January 12, 2009
Right to Rent: Helping Homeowners Without Throwing Money at Banks
We got into the current economic crisis because many very smart people with outstanding credentials were unable to use simple arithmetic. If they knew arithmetic, they would have been able to see an $8 trillion housing bubble that was right in front of their faces. The basic story was incredibly simple and obvious, at least as far back as 2002. After just following the overall rate of inflation for the hundred years from 1895 to 1995, house prices began to hugely outpace the rate of inflation in the mid-90s.
Read more
Views
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Free Market Myth
The extraordinary financial collapse of recent months has been commonly described as a testament to the failure of deregulation. The events are indeed testament to a failure—a failure of public policy. Blaming deregulation is misleading.
Read more
Views
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
The Anti-Stimulus Crowd: The Fear of Success
At least some Republicans are starting to muster an anti-stimulus drive, claiming that President-elect Obama's package will not help the economy. Their drive is centered on what they claim is a careful rereading of the history of the New Deal. According to their account, President Roosevelt's policies actually lengthened the Great Depression. In their story, we would have been better off if we just left the market to adjust by itself. New Deal programs that directly employed people, or in other ways supported living standards, created an uncertain investment climate.
Read more

Pages