Department of the Treasury

When Should Debt-Ceiling Drama Scare You? Right About Now.
October 08, 2013

Economic doomsday is approaching. And while we don’t know the exact date, we’re starting to get a pretty good idea.

What Those Glowing Obits Didn't Tell You About Joe Allbritton
December 14, 2012

The banking and media magnate's dealings with corrupt dictators.

The Behavioral Economics of Christmas
December 07, 2012

Here's what happens when a prominent scholar examines the behavioral economics of Christmas.

The Man Who Took on the Wall Street Blob
September 10, 2012

In a new book, a former Senate insider and lobbying kingpin spills the beans on how Wall Street throws its weight around Washington.

The Steelworker's Wife—and What Might Have Been
August 09, 2012

The controversial ad about Bain Capital, a former steelworker, and his uninsured wife deserves some of the criticism it's received. The ad implies something its supporters cannot prove and raises one argument that its supporters may not believe.  But let's focus, one more time, on the broader policy question about health care, because that’s what should matter when Americans vote in November. In particular, let’s assume that Joe Soptic’s wife could have turned to the Affordable Care Act, the law that Obama signed and that Romney has pledged to repeal.

Wonk Rock: Why Do So Many of Washington DC’s Politicos Play in Bands?
February 04, 2012

Midnight nears on a Saturday at the Rock and Roll Hotel, a nightclub in northeast Washington, D.C.  The front row of the crowd is lined with attractive women. Clad in jeans and a flannel shirt, drummer Jim Arkedis bashes his drums onstage to a cover of The Who’s “Baba O’Riley.” Arkedis’s band The Electric 11s is headlining the show. Blue Pinto, the indie opening act, shares little of The 11s’ classic rock sound.

Deadline: Bad Arguments That Won't Die
November 29, 2011

[with contributions from Matt O'Brien and Darius Tahir] Whenever Democrats propose raising taxes on the very wealthy, Republicans (and, yes, sometimes some Democrats) attack the idea as a job-killer. And one of their favorite ploys is to suggest the tax will impose a crushing burden on millions of small business owners.

As If Unemployment Wasn't Difficult Enough
August 31, 2011

Some Americans who lost their jobs in the recession are about to lose something else: Their access to affordable health insurance. And it's thanks to the same backwards thinking that's preventing broader action to boost the economy. Ever since February, 2009, the federal government has been subsidizing COBRA premiums. COBRA is the program that allows people to keep their job-based insurance even when they lose their jobs.

Selling Public Works to the Tea Party
August 11, 2011

I know Tea Party Republicans don’t care for infrastructure spending. But I presume they still care for infrastructure. That is, I presume they like well-maintained roads, affordable electricity, and clean drinking water as much as I do. And when those things aren’t available – when antiquated air traffic control systems delay their flights, for example, or broken down street sewers flood their neighborhoods – I presume they are just as frustrated as I am. The problem, for the Tea Partiers and their allies, is the government part.

Default Would Kill Jobs
July 30, 2011

The economic consequences of hitting the debt ceiling may be bigger than you realize. If the government can't pay all of its bills and the agencies downgrade America's credit rating, one likely effect is higher interest rates. That would obviously slow down the economy, by, among other things, making it more expensive for business to take out loans. But hitting the debt ceiling could have an even more direct impact on growth, as Michael Ettlinger and Michael Linden point out in a newly updated briefing for the Center on American Progress.