Here's a painful but necessary reminder from Dave Johnson, in the context of the trouble the U.S. Postal Service is in: "how to manufacture an anti-government 'crisis': cut funding for a government service and put people who want to kill the service in charge of managing the service. Generate lots of press coverage of the resulting failings of the government agency involved. After a while the service is performing poorly and the public is getting upset. Declare a 'crisis' and say that government doesn’t work so 'reform' is needed. Of course the 'reforms' involve gutting the service, privatizing it, corporatizing it – anything but serving the public."
Good news, everyone: a Senate amendment to the education bill allowing low-income students to spend as much as $2,100 in taxpayer money each on private schools. Those of you saying ZOMG TEH POOR KIDZ NEEDS TEH PRIVATE SKOOLZ!!!!! need to ask yourself how much of a private school $2,100 pays for -- and note well that $2,100 comes out of our public schools. And though this amendment went down, that doesn't mean there won't be others.
Former Maryland Governor/current Democratic Presidential aspirant Martin O'Malley promises he'll crack down hard on Wall Street banksters. I count four separate policy initiatives in the article, all good, but none are as robust as the Brown/Vitter bill that would prevent banks from having more than 10% of all deposits. Maybe he could posit himself as the "sensible" liberal alternative to Hillary Clinton -- and then confound the "liberal" media by putting actual economic populist/gun lover Jim Webb on the ticket.
Surprise, surprise, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau finds that student loan corporations aren't following the law with their military service members. Of course, since it doesn't involve sending our troops into harm's way, bet that Republicans, despite controlling both houses of Congress now, do nothing about it -- or (as with the Post Office) make the problem worse in an effort to prove that government doesn't work and only their cronies can fix it.
Finally, Jeb Bush sure is taking a lot of flack for suggesting that "people need to work longer hours" for the economy to grow. Even if he really did mean that we should get more part-time workers working full-time -- which isn't obvious from the quotation -- there may not be a worse way to say it. "People need to work longer hours" sounds exactly like a boss hectoring his employees in order to divert attention from his own incompetence. Of course, he's Bush Mobb, so maybe he knows all about that.