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Tuesday, February 21, 2017
Economy
Working-class

Heaven Help The Little Guy In This Administration

Andrew Puzder’s replacement, Alexander Acosta, hails from an immigrant background (his parents came from Cuba), and he is a former U.S. attorney. But there is no reason to expect him to have any great compassion or concern for the little guy. Trump’s white working-class supporters are in for nothing but disappointment.

February 17, 2017
Goldman Sachs, Mnuchin

Ex-Goldman Banker Mnuchin Installed As Treasury Secretary

President Donald Trump swore in former Goldman Sachs banker and Hollywood financier, Steven Mnuchin, as Treasury secretary on Monday, putting him to work on tax reform, financial de-regulation, and economic diplomacy efforts. At a White House swearing-in ceremony, Trump said Mnuchin would be a “great champion” for U.S. citizens.

February 14, 2017
Jobs

Does Trump Know Where Jobs Really Come From?

Following an election that was, in large part, an expression of Americans’ deep unhappiness with the economy, President Donald Trump’s promise to bring back job growth and a booming stock market appear to be somewhat at odds with the policies he’s putting in place during the first 20 days of his presidency.

February 11, 2017
China

China Gets An Early Win Off Trump, But Many Battles Remain

Combining public bluster with behind-the-scenes diplomacy, China wrested a concession from the United States as the two presidents spoke for the first time this week, but Beijing may not be able to derive much comfort from the win on U.S. policy toward Taiwan. In getting Trump to change course on the “one China” policy, Beijing may have overplayed its hand.

February 11, 2017
Goldman Sachs

Senators Question Goldman Sachs On Its Role In Trump Banking Policy

In a letter to Goldman Sachs’ CEO Lloyd Blankfein, Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tammy Baldwin asked for details on “lobbying” activities in the bank related to review of the Dodd-Frank Act and the Obama-era fiduciary rule on financial advice.

February 11, 2017
U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) shows company documents to Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf during his testimony before a Senate Banking Committee hearing on the firm's sales practices on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 20, 2016. REUTERS/Gary Cameron

Elizabeth Warren Won’t Let Trump Gut The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

“What Donald Trump wants to do is fire one of the most important financial cops and then say to the American people, you keep walking down this dark alley and, you know, what happens is what happens,” Warren said in a recent interview. The financial cop in question is Consumer Financial Protection Bureau director Richard Cordray.

February 10, 2017
Trump

Hallelujah, President Trump Rushes To Aid The Needy!

Public opinion surveys consistently reveal that the great majority of us say that people on the lower rungs of the economic ladder — the poor and the failing middle class— are the ones Congress should focus on. But, then, regular people don’t run Congress — or Donald Trump’s White House.

February 10, 2017
Trump Slump

Trump Slump: Wall Street Opens Lower Amid Political Uncertainty

U.S. stocks opened lower on Monday as investors sought fresh catalysts after a strong jobs report last week, while uncertainty over President Donald Trump’s policies continued to weigh. Investors are wary about Trump’s focus on isolationist policies including travel restrictions to the United States.

February 6, 2017
Trump, Economy

After Initial Optimism, Some Investors Begin To Worry About ‘Trump Slump’

After a weekend of protests sparked by Trump’s immigration and refugee ban, on the heels of his spat the prior week with the Mexican president and confusing White House statements on import taxes, Wall Street is rethinking its assumptions about a Trump presidency and how good it will be for the economy.

February 4, 2017
America First

What Does ‘America First’ Mean For American Economic Interests?

The overwhelming majority of economists agree that prosperity requires countries to specialize in what they are good at producing, rather than trying to make and consume everything domestically. And the only way that specialization can work is if countries trade with one another and also allow a degree of capital and even labor mobility.

February 1, 2017
Labor Department, Trickle down economics

Delayed Again: Senate Postpones Hearing For Labor Nominee Puzder

The U.S. Senate panel tasked with vetting Andrew Puzder to head the Labor Department has postponed its tentative plans to hold his confirmation hearing yet again, a move that some political strategists say could signal trouble for the fast-food executive.

January 31, 2017
Puzder, Labor Secretary, Trump

Labor Nominee Puzder Stakes Future On Discredited Trickle Down Economics

Even though President Trump appears to reject some standard Republican orthodoxy, such as on trade, Trump’s decision to nominate Puzder to lead the labor department indicates that the Trump administration will put forth more of the same trickle-down nonsense. We know all too well the damage trickle-down causes.

January 31, 2017
Trump, U.S. - Mexico relations

Why U.S.-Mexican Relations Are On The Brink

Like so many previously held assumptions, the assumed alliance and cooperation between the United States and Mexico is being tested, if not toppled. Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto is confronted with an unapologetic Trump ready to tear up the 23-year old NAFTA, deport millions of illegal Mexican immigrants, and build his wall.

January 31, 2017
Trump, Allies

Trumped Up: The First Seven Days In Trumplandia

Authoritarians love walls. That will be his scrawl across America. It will make an enemy of our neighbor, Mexico, but who cares? That may be his foreign policy in a nutshell. We’re living in Donald Trump’s reality now, and the “truth” is what Trump says it is.

January 28, 2017
Mexico, Trump, Wall

There’s Much More At Stake In Trump’s Blowup With Mexico Than A Wall

The U.S. and Mexico are partners in a variety of cross-border cooperative agreements, but President Trump’s continued criticism of Mexico threatens to return U.S.-Mexico relations to the frosty state they were in the last century, when the relationship was so delicate that Nazi Germany made a play for an alliance with Mexico.

January 27, 2017
Trump

9 Terrible Things Trump Has Done In His First Week As President

While the media spent the last week spilling digital ink over inauguration numbers, the new administration was diminishing women’s health and safety around the world, chipping away at health care for millions of Americans, and pouring money that could feed and insure children into a useless garbage heap along the border.

January 27, 2017
Russia, Big Oil

The Perils Of Big Oil Democracy

As the Kremlin tries to woo yet another incoming U.S. administration, Moscow expects to count on what it considers the “greed” of Big Oil to help it end the sanctions strangling its economy and to attract fresh investment in its energy industry. Perhaps this time around, the U.S. government and the Western oil industry will more accurately view Russia as a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

January 27, 2017
Bathroom bill, Texas, LGBTQ

Super Bowl Glare Fixes Attention On Texas ‘Bathroom Bill’

The cost of the so-called “bathroom bill,” which bars transgender people from using restrooms that match their gender identity, could run as high as $8.5 billion and result in a loss of 185,000 jobs in the first year alone, according to the Texas Association of Business, a conservative group that is the state’s leading employer organization.

January 27, 2017
Trump, Mexico, Wall, Tax

Trump Seeks 20 Percent Tax On Mexican Imports To Pay For Wall

Trump wants the measure to be part of a broader tax overhaul package that the U.S. Congress is contemplating. “Our country’s policy is to tax exports and let imports flow freely in, which is ridiculous. But by doing it that way we can do $10 billion a year and easily pay for the wall. Just through that mechanism alone,” Spicer told reporters

January 26, 2017
NAFTA, American Made, Cars

Why Reopening NAFTA Could Revive Debate Over What Makes A Car ‘American’

Auto industry officials expect Trump to urge Canada and Mexico to agree to new tougher “rules of origin” that would require a higher percentage of North American content to be considered tariff free. Under NAFTA, at least 62.5 percent of a passenger car or light truck’s net cost must originate in North America – defined as the United States, Canada, or Mexico – to avoid tariffs.

January 24, 2017
NAFTA

Trump To Sign Orders To Renegotiate NAFTA, Pull Out Of TPP

U.S. President Donald Trump could sign an executive order as early as Monday morning intended to renegotiate NAFTA. In addition to wanting to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, the new Republican president also intends to sign an executive order pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), NBC reported.

January 23, 2017
Trump, Democracy

New ‘Sheriff’ Has A Badge — But Doesn’t Have A Clue

Never mind that Trump is really just that guy at the end of the bar who, with beer-lubricated certainty and megaphone volume, tells you how to solve humanity’s most intractable problems. And maybe as he’s speaking, as you’re under the spell of it, it sounds like wisdom. But the next morning, you sober up and see it for the hogwash it is.

January 21, 2017
Germany, Trade

Germany Says U.S. Under Trump Must Abide By Trade Deals

Trump – now hours away from his inauguration – has vowed to make sweeping changes to U.S. trade policy, and economists see his protectionism as the biggest risk to U.S. growth. U.S. companies employ more than 600,000 people in Germany, the United States’ biggest European trading partner, and German firms employ roughly the same number in the U.S.

January 20, 2017
Trump, Mexico, China

Before Trump Started Making Deals, China and Mexico Were Sending Back U.S. Jobs

More than 6 million Americans are directly employed by majority foreign-owned firms, and over 12 million American jobs are linked to foreign investment. These jobs pay one-third more than the economy wide average, 40 percent are in manufacturing, and there has been significant growth in Rust Belt states.

January 19, 2017
Obama, Hope

Obama’s Parting Message: Hope

In what was scheduled as the final news conference of his presidency, Obama said that after all he has witnessed, he is walking away with a sense of hopefulness about the country and where it is going. Obama told a room of reporters that, despite the worry felt by many of his fellow partisans about the incoming Trump administration, “we’re going to be OK.”

January 19, 2017