FROM Alberto Alesina
More Federal Stimulus Spending or a Switch to Austerity? White House OMB Director Peter Orszag has announced his resignation and insiders say it's due to frustration with the lack of aggressive action against the growing fiscal deficit. President Obama is committed to pumping up the recovery with continued spending and to his campaign promise not to raise taxes on households earning less than $250,000 a year. Is it time for increased federal stimulus spending or a switch to austerity? We hear a debate.
Stimulus or Austerity?: That Is the Question The consensus is that federal stimulus spending helped to prevent recession from becoming depression and got recovery under way. President Obama is committed to pumping up the recovery with continued spending and to his campaign promise not to raise taxes on households earning less than $250,000 a year. Deficit hawks say it’s time to raise taxes and get spending under control. But would premature austerity measures stop the recovery in its tracks? From the G-20 conference to Capitol Hill, and even within the Obama White House, policy makers are sharply divided. White House budget director Peter Orszag has announced his resignation , and insiders say it’s due to frustration with the lack of aggressive action against the growing fiscal deficit. What are the lessons of history? Are states like New Jersey and countries like Ireland unwilling participants in what could be a dangerous experiment?
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Trump's 'America First' goes missing abroad In the Middle East, President Trump is changing some policies of the Obama Administration—and reversing his own campaign attacks on Islam as a religion that "hates us." We hear about his visit to Saudi Arabia and what's at stake for the rest of his foreign excursion.