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America’s Stimulus Debate

Featured in this Big Picture
  1. Joseph E. StiglitzJoseph E. Stiglitz,
  2. James K. GalbraithJames K. Galbraith,
  3. Daron AcemogluDaron Acemoglu,
  4. Koichi HamadaKoichi Hamada,
  5. Shang-Jin WeiShang-Jin Wei,
  6. George P. ShultzGeorge P. Shultz,
  7. John F. CoganJohn F. Cogan,
  8. John  B. TaylorJohn B. Taylor,
  9. Robert SkidelskyRobert Skidelsky

Many would regard the middle of a pandemic-induced economic crisis as the wrong time to sound the alarm about the potential dangers of profligate government spending. But as US President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion economic rescue plan works its way through Congress, it is not only Republicans who are asking whether providing too much fiscal stimulus could be just as risky as delivering too little.

  1. Russia arrest Mihail Siergiejevicz/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

    How Secure is Putin?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Alexei Navalny,
    2. Tikhon Dzyadko,
    3. Sławomir Sierakowski,
    4. Andrei Kolesnikov,
    5. Sergei Guriev,
    6. Nina L. Khrushcheva,
    7. Ana Palacio,
    8. Mark Leonard

    Although the arrest and hasty imprisonment of opposition leader Alexei Navalny triggered Russia’s biggest wave of protests in years, President Vladimir Putin’s regime appears to be in little danger for now. But a stagnant economy, mounting anger at high-level corruption, and restless political elites could sooner or later threaten Putin’s seemingly well-entrenched regime.

  2. Pandemic playbook Dusan Stankovic/Getty Images

    The Post-Pandemic Playbook

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Jim O'Neill,
    2. Mariana Mazzucato,
    3. Diane Coyle,
    4. Raghuram G. Rajan,
    5. Nurul Izzah Anwar,
    6. Beverley McLachlin,
    7. Harold James

    Calls by US President Joe Biden and others to “build back better” after the COVID-19 catastrophe have attracted widespread support, raising hopes of far-reaching changes in policymaking and business. But which new norms and concrete measures lie beyond leaders’ hortatory appeals, and who should implement them?

  3. Venezuela covid test Schneyder Mendoza/AFP via Getty Images

    The Grim COVID Convergence?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Andrés Velasco,
    2. Kenneth Rogoff,
    3. Lee Jong-Wha,
    4. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg,
    5. Dalia Marin,
    6. Arvind Subramanian,
    7. Josh Felman,
    8. Ricardo Hausmann

    Global inequality has unexpectedly declined during the pandemic – not because poorer countries became richer, but because richer countries became poorer. Many emerging and developing economies remain as fragile as ever, and the nature of the current convergence potentially threatens their future growth prospects.

  4. Africa opportunity Edwin Remsberg/VWPics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

    Africa’s Opportunity

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Célestin Monga,
    2. Carlos Lopes,
    3. Hippolyte Fofack,
    4. Pat Utomi,
    5. Paola Subacchi,
    6. Brahima Coulibaly,
    7. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala,
    8. Vera Songwe,
    9. Anne O. Krueger,
    10. Carl Manlan,
    11. Efosa Ojomo

    Rich-country governments, desperate to revive their economies, are pursuing vaccine nationalism and turning their backs on the developing world. But a healthy, peaceful, and prosperous Africa is in their interests, too, and can be achieved by implementing the vision and policies needed to boost the continent’s global standing and economic prospects.

  5. Biden inauguration Saul Loeb - Pool/Getty Images

    Biden to the Rescue?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    2. Daron Acemoglu,
    3. Laura Tyson,
    4. Lenny Mendonca,
    5. Jayati Ghosh,
    6. Kemal Derviş,
    7. Joseph S. Nye, Jr.

    Tackling the COVID-19 pandemic and engineering an economic recovery are only two of the challenges facing new US President Joe Biden. Amid deep social divisions and the continued threat of right-wing extremist violence, Biden must also try to re-establish democratic political norms and restore trust in American leadership at home and abroad.

  6. Biden Xi meeting Lintao Zhang/AFP via Getty Images

    Doing Business with China

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Jeffrey D. Sachs,
    2. Dani Rodrik,
    3. Charles A. Kupchan,
    4. Peter Trubowitz,
    5. Anne O. Krueger,
    6. Arvind Subramanian,
    7. Lee Jong-Wha

    US President-elect Joe Biden’s incoming administration may initially be too preoccupied with trying to calm America’s domestic turmoil to unite the world’s democracies in standing up to China. But, given European and Asian countries’ eagerness to strengthen their trade and investment ties with China, adhering to the Trump administration’s confrontational approach may be the right strategy.

  7. Trump Capitol mob Samuel Corum/Getty Images

    Trump’s Failed Putsch

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Nina L. Khrushcheva,
    2. Jeffrey D. Sachs,
    3. Jan-Werner Mueller,
    4. Ian Buruma,
    5. Koichi Hamada,
    6. Yasheng Huang,
    7. Martha Minow,
    8. J. Bradford DeLong

    US President Donald Trump’s single term in office is ending, as many suspected it would, in infamy. The storming and occupation of the US Capitol by a mob of Trump supporters, just hours after the Democrats won control of the Senate, distilled the essence of Trump’s presidency: a cult of personality that has confirmed the Republican Party as an anti-democratic force.

  8. Wuhan street Getty Images

    The Legacy of 2020

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Yanis Varoufakis,
    2. Ana Palacio,
    3. Ngaire Woods,
    4. Joschka Fischer,
    5. Bill Emmott,
    6. Jeffrey Frankel

    Although there will be a temptation to forget this pandemic-ridden year as quickly as we can, the COVID-19 crisis holds useful lessons that must not be neglected. A major question for 2021 is which of the significant changes wrought in 2020 will prove to be temporary, and which deeper and longer-lasting.

  9. Boston vaccine Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

    The Gift of a COVID Vaccine?

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Seth Berkley,
    2. Richard Hatchett,
    3. Soumya Swaminathan,
    4. Jayati Ghosh,
    5. Tom Bollyky,
    6. Elmira Bayrasli,
    7. Anne O. Krueger,
    8. Mariana Mazzucato,
    9. Henry Lishi Li,
    10. Els Torreele

    The world received the blessings of cutting-edge science this holiday season with the record-fast development of effective COVID-19 vaccines that promise to end a pandemic that has so far killed more than 1.7 million people and caused the worst economic crisis in generations. But the rush by rich-country governments to secure enough doses for their own citizens threatens to prolong the agony for the developing world.

  10. alex wong_getty images_yellen Alex Wong/Getty Images

    America’s Looming Fiscal Battle

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Laura Tyson,
    2. Lenny Mendonca,
    3. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    4. Dani Rodrik,
    5. Todd G. Buchholz,
    6. Michael J. Boskin,
    7. John B. Taylor

    Few would dispute that US President-elect Joe Biden’s administration will face a daunting task in 2021 as it tries to engineer a sustainable post-pandemic recovery. And, as the months-long failure to enact a second COVID-19 relief package showed, a major factor underlying the challenge is the depth of disagreement about how much the federal government should spend and how. 

  11. peshkov_getty images_graph peshkov/Getty Images

    The Sovereign-Debt Crunch

    Featured in this Big Picture
    1. Paola Subacchi,
    2. Willem H. Buiter,
    3. Anne Sibert,
    4. Joseph E. Stiglitz,
    5. Hamid Rashid,
    6. Shamshad Akhtar,
    7. Kevin P. Gallagher,
    8. Ulrich Volz,
    9. Daron Acemoglu

    The steep economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic will likely trigger a wave of defaults among highly indebted developing and emerging-market countries. An orderly international sovereign debt restructuring mechanism is arguably needed now more than ever – but will private creditors sign up?

  1. haass123_BRENDAN SMIALOWSKIAFP via Getty Images_MBS Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

    A Realist Reset for US-Saudi Relations

    Richard Haass

    President Joe Biden’s administration appears determined to separate America's relationship with the Kingdom from the relationship with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. But this separation will likely prove impossible to sustain. 

    explains why the Biden administration has no choice but to maintain ties with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
  2. op_andrews6_Heinrich Hoffmannullstein bild via Getty Images_hitler franco Heinrich Hoffmann/ullstein bild via Getty Images

    Low Dishonest Decades

    John Andrews

    Former US President Donald Trump is not Hitler, and America is not the Weimar Republic. But, as four excellent recent books about the interwar years show, false narratives and craven political choices can have dreadful consequences that may not emerge immediately.

    draws contemporary lessons from four recent books charting Europe's slide toward war in the 1920s and 1930s.

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