Categories

A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.

Populist messaging, auditing the Fed, payday loans – Daily Kos

By Rachel Goldfarb, originally published on Next New Deal

Click here to subscribe to Roosevelt First, our weekday morning email featuring the Daily Digest.

How Democratic Progressives Survived a Landslide (TAP)

Bob Moser says that populist, localized campaign messages, not the party’s own turnout strategy, saved a few key Democratic races in the 2014 midterm elections.

After every election, the losing side naturally tends to brood over where and how things went wrong. For Democrats this year, there’s no shortage of theories about the party’s avalanche of key losses in Senate, House, and statehouse contests. Perhaps it was wrong to sideline President Obama so thoroughly. Perhaps they shouldn’t have run away from the Affordable Care Act. Perhaps they still haven’t found the formula for turning out young and minority voters in midterms. Maybe it was just a bad map that couldn’t be overcome. Or maybe there had been, as the pundits chorused, no “coherent national message” for Democrats to run on.

You can find shards of truth in these tidbits of conventional wisdom, but it’s a gauzy, overgeneralized kind of truth. It’s more instructive to take a long look at what did work in 2014—at the candidates and campaigns that overcame the Republican drift. How did Democrats beat their odds in Arizona, Minnesota, New Hampshire, and Michigan even as they fell short in Iowa, Wisconsin, Florida, and Colorado? The closer you look, the clearer the picture becomes: They did it the way Kirkpatrick did. They ran with their populist boots on.

Roosevelt Take: Moser references Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch’s post-election analysis on winning populist messaging.

Follow below the fold for more.

What ‘Audit the Fed’ Really Means – and Threatens (WSJ)

Robert Litan explains that Senator Paul’s proposal calls on Government Accountability Office economists to go outside their expertise to report on the Fed’s activity and minimize its independence.

Payday Loans Are Bleeding American Workers Dry. Finally, the Obama Administration Is Cracking Down. (TNR)

Danny Vinik breaks down how payday loans harm consumers: the initial loan might not be so bad, but the repeated roll-overs have a high cost. Limiting those roll-overs is one potential regulation.

The “War on Women” is a Fiscal Nightmare: Taxpayers on the Hook for Millions as Republicans Gut Family Planning (Salon)

Katie McDonough looks at Kansas as an example of where legal fees to fight for potentially unconstitutional abortion restrictions and cuts to family planning services create massive costs.

Is Republican Concern About Middle-Class Wage Stagnation Just a Big Con? (MoJo)

Kevin Drum doesn’t think this is a sign of Republican reformers succeeding in shifting the party in a populist direction, and says that the more likely explanation is an attempt to defuse Democrats.

New on Next New Deal

The Politics of Responsibility – Not Envy

Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Richard Kirsch argues that voters are responding not to envy, but to the knowledge that everyone needs to take a fair share of responsibility for shared prosperity.

[…]

Ruben Diaz Jr. slips Carl Heastie cash at Sharpton event

Carl Heastie’s new job as ­Assembly speaker is already paying off.

At the end of a meeting of the National Action Network in Harlem on Saturday in which Heastie waxed poetic about renewed focus on Albany ethics — and as the Rev. Al Sharpton pressed his high-profile guests for donations — Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. slipped Heastie a wad of cash.

But it wasn’t your typical Albany payoff. It was just Diaz trying to save his fellow Dem from looking ungenerous.

The two pols were seated next to each other on stage when Sharpton, as he usually does after his Saturday speeches, called out for handouts like an auctioneer.

As people began tossing money into a wicker collection basket in front of the stage, the new speaker seemed to come up empty-handed.

At that point, Diaz divided the bills he had clumped in his own fist, discreetly handing half of the cash to his pal.

Diaz wouldn’t disclose the amount of the impromptu loan — the bills looked likely mostly ones and fives — but it seemed like he might forgive the debt.

Sharpton (left) gives Heastie a hug at the Nation Action Network in Harlem.Photo: R. Umar Abbasi

Asked if Heastie would be repaying him, Diaz chirped: “He doesn’t have to. He’s a great guy! Everybody knows who he is so he’s good for it.”

Fortunately for Heastie, an accountant by trade, he won’t have to list the loan on his annual financial -disclosure forms since it was likely smaller than $1,000.

One thing that is known about the donation is it’s going to a non-profit that, according to 2013 records, is saddled with more than $800,000 in unpaid taxes and led by a preacher who owes $3.77 million in federal and state taxes.

The payoff came the same morning Heastie was making his first public address since he was sworn in Tuesday as speaker, following the ouster of Sheldon Silver, who has been indicted by the feds on bribery charges.

It also came as he trumpeted a panel he formed to hire an Albany ethics watchdog.

A group of six Assembly members will lead a national search for an executive director of the new Office of Ethics and Compliance, according to Heastie.

The panel includes Republican Assemblywoman Janet Duprey. Duprey was the subject of an ethics complaint last election when her opponent accused her of bullying rival supporters.

Share this:

[…]

Economics Daily Digest: Regulating payday loans, a hopeful look at …

By Rachel Goldfarb, originally published on Next New Deal

Click here to subscribe to Roosevelt First, our weekday morning email featuring the Daily Digest.

Roosevelt Institute Fellow Saqib Bhatti’s proposal to allow the Fed to lend directly to municipalities is one of many ideas you can vote on in the Progress Change Institute’s Big Ideas Project. The top 20 ideas will be presented members of Congress. Voting ends on Sunday, January 11. Click here to vote!

CFPB Sets Sights on Payday Loans (WSJ)

Alan Zibel reports on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s plans to explore creating new rules to regulate predatory payday lending, the first such rules on a federal level.

Consumer-advocacy groups say the loans are deceptive because borrowers often roll them over several times, racking up fees in the process. They also criticize high annual interest rates that can range from less than 200% to more than 500%, depending on the state, according to research by the Pew Charitable Trusts.

Early this year, the CFPB plans to convene a panel of small lenders to discuss its payday-loan plans, according to the people familiar with the matter. The bureau, like other federal agencies, is required to consider input from small businesses if regulations being developed are likely to have a significant impact on them.

Follow below the fold for more.

Signs of Economic Promise Are Offering Some Hope for the New Year (NYT)

Rachel Swarns reports on the positive signs that some are seeing, including new jobs for long-term job seekers and raises and more hours for workers at retail chains like Zara.

Don’t Believe What You Hear About the U.S. Economy (AJAM)

Dean Baker says it’s not yet time to celebrate an economic comeback. Growth is still slow enough that the labor market won’t reach pre-recession numbers by the end of 2015.

Why the Democrats Need Labor Again (Politico Magazine)

Timothy Noah interviews Thomas Geoghegan on his new book, which he describes as a “last-ditch effort for the Democrats” to revive the labor movement and win elections.

California Colleges See Surge in Efforts to Unionize Adjunct Faculty (LA Times)

Larry Gordon speaks to adjunct faculty at some of the private colleges in California that are seeing union organizing on campus for the first time.

Austerity’s End Strengthens U.S. Recovery (MSNBC)

Steve Benen corrects Grover Norquist’s attempt to give Republicans credit for economic growth, pointing to small increases in public spending as proof that austerity didn’t fix anything.

The Five Major Things We Screwed Up in Inequality in 2014 (The Guardian)

Suzanne McGee’s list includes the minimum wage, which she says needs a boost at a federal level, and race and economic opportunity, an issue she says we practically ignored.

[…]