The New New Deal
The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era
The stimulus has launched a transition to a clean-energy economy, doubled our renewable power, and financed unprecedented investments in energy efficiency, a smarter grid, electric cars, advanced biofuels, and green manufacturing. It is computerizing America’s pen-and-paper medical system. Its Race to the Top is the boldest education reform in U.S. history. It has put in place the biggest middle-class tax cuts in a generation, the largest research investments ever, and the most extensive infrastructure investments since Eisenhower’s interstate highway system. It includes the largest expansion of antipoverty programs since the Great Society, lifting millions of Americans above the poverty line, reducing homelessness, and modernizing unemployment insurance. Like the first New Deal, Obama’s stimulus has created legacies that last: the world’s largest wind and solar projects, a new battery industry, a fledgling high-speed rail network, and the world’s highest-speed Internet network.
Michael Grunwald goes behind the scenes—sitting in on cabinet meetings, as well as recounting the secret strategy sessions where Republicans devised their resistance to Obama—to show how the stimulus was born, how it fueled a resurgence on the right, and how it is changing America. The New New Deal shatters the conventional Washington narrative and it will redefine the way Obama’s first term is perceived.
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The New New Deal
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— INTRODUCTION —
Nostalgic liberals complain that the Recovery Act pales in comparison to the New Deal. It didn’t create giant armies of new government workers in alphabet agencies like the WPA, CCC, and TVA; ARPA-E is its only new federal agency, with a staff smaller than a Major League Baseball roster. It didn’t establish new entitlements like Social Security and deposit insurance, or new federal responsibilities like securities regulation and labor relations. It didn’t set up workfare programs for the creative class like the Federal Theatre...see more
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