We are living through a two-faced economy. On one hand, corporate profits are high, corporate cash holdings are soaring, and income gains are proliferating among the rich. On the other, job growth is meager, unemployment stays high, and America’s middle class sees the foundation for a better life tomorrow erode in a sea of debt. Bottom line: The economy is not working for millions of people who are looking for jobs and facing tremendous economic uncertainty.
Policy needs to focus on creating more and better jobs quicker than has been the case in the economic expansion so far. This can happen through necessary public investments that can promptly put people back to work, as well as extended unemployment benefits and lower payroll taxes, for instance.
Policymakers have an opportunity to put down key markers on tax and spending priorities with the work of the super committee charged with finding ways to rein in the long-term budget deficits. This work will directly impact the economic security of struggling American families and the outlook for growth and future living standards for years to come.
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