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  • What Black Friday and the Fiscal Cliff Have in CommonGovernment, Politics, Blog

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    Black Friday is upon us. Yes, it’s time once again for intrepid American consumers to hit the stores like there’s no tomorrow — nudging hundreds of thousands of retailers into the black and ourselves into the red, only to spend the balance of the year clawing our way back to some semblance of solvency. But this year, things are different. While visions of sugarplums may dance in our heads, we have butterflies fluttering in our […]

  • Senator Mitch McConnell, Meet Senator Elizabeth WarrenPolitics, Blog

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    In 2010, as Americans were fighting with all their strength to survive the meltdown of 2007-2009, Sen. Mitch McConnell infamously said, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.” The line was repeated again and again by Democrats and the folks on MSNBC. How could this Republican Senator’s primary goal in his capacity as a public servant be to defeat the president? What about the […]

  • ‘Corporations Are People’ and They Don’t Want You to VoteGovernment, Politics, Blog

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    It’s hard to miss the coincidence: those who want to limit voting hours and demand stricter voter ID protocols also believe that corporations are people. They want to control women’s bodies, and pay them less than men. They’re against higher taxes for the wealthy, and they want to do away with consumer protections. And make no mistake about it, this is a consumer issue. Are they racist and ageist when it comes to voting? Of […]

  • FEMA, Dodd-Frank and the CFPB: It’s All the Same to Mitt RomneyGovernment, Politics, Blog

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    When the long-predicted storm finally hit us, it struck with so much destructive force that it caught even grizzled New Yorkers by surprise. The storm’s surge quickly overran our defenses, overwhelming all emergency responders, causing mayhem across an unprecedented swath of territory, and leaving millions of homes underwater in its wake. I could be talking about Hurricane Sandy, but I’m not. I’m talking about the financial crisis of 2007 and 2008. Four years ago, the […]

  • Why Romney the Closer Is a Consumer NightmareGovernment, Politics, Blog

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    Politicians often have a lazy relationship with the truth. Everyone knows that these folks will say damn near anything to get elected. The Romney-Ryan ticket has put new luster on this homespun truism, revealing a brave new world of lying — beyond Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and the echo chamber — that will mean trouble for America if the GOP retakes the White House in November. In my field, the same tendency takes the form […]

  • Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics and Paul RyanPolitics, Blog

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    Lies, as Mark Twain famously observed, come in three flavors. If he were around today, Paul Ryan would have inspired him to create a fourth category. Everyone knows Paul Ryan is a liar. He’s the guy who boasted about running a “two hour and 50-something” marathon, placing him on par with the guy who took 85th place in this year’s Olympics marathon. Branded the GOP’s “leading intellectual,” policy wonk and budgetary expert, Ryan seems to […]

  • What Mitt Romney and Liar Loans Have in Common (Be Very Afraid)Politics, Blog

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    As I watched Governor Romney in the Presidential debate Wednesday night I was reminded of a financial tactic the candidate’s political supporters and financial backers on Wall Street used during the mortgage boom–the one that netted them billions of dollars while simultaneously pushing the American economy off a cliff. I’m talking about the liar loan, a line of credit based on smiling assertions without a shred of proof–the practice that helped flatten the mortgage market […]

  • 5 Ways President Romney Would Screw the 47 PercentPolitics, Blog, Personal Finance

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    Mitt Romney’s now-infamous statement, “My job is not to worry about those people,” pretty much sums up the Republican nominee’s true feelings about who he represents. And if you’re in serious debt, it looks like he’s talking about you too. If you are among the 22.4 million people who owe college debt, a record 20 percent of all American households, Romney makes clear that he represents big student loan companies, not you. If you are […]

  • Hail to the Thief: Clinton Speech B-Roll Opens Door to ID TheftPolitics, Blog, Identity Theft

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    Was it excessive exuberance? Was it judgmental deficiency? Was it the thrill of hearing a barnburner by the President of the World? Well, whatever it was, it was a dangerous mistake. Wednesday night at the Democratic National Convention, during a particularly rousing segment of President Clinton’s forceful and unabashed dissection of the Republican depiction of Obamacare as a destroyer of Medicare, an enthusiastic Democratic Delegate waved her Medicare card in front of a national news […]

  • Hello Citizens United, Goodbye CFPB: Consequences of the Wisconsin RecallGovernment, Politics, Blog

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    I have watched with horror Republican efforts to emasculate, strangle and kill the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. At present, there are at least nine pieces of legislation (that we know of) snaking their way through Congress that would dismantle a number of the provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act and in the process annihilate the CFPB in the process. I am convinced that if the masters of the universe sieze the White House and further […]

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