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Want to Add 1 Million Jobs to the Economy? Cancel the Sequester Next Fiscal Year

July 26, 2013 Its impact may not have been quite as dire as initially predicted, but the automatic cuts under sequestration will take their toll over the next fiscal year. If the scheduled cuts are canceled this August, the nation would have 900,000 more jobs in the third quarter of next year (the ...

The House Is the Most Conservative It's Been in More Than 60 Years

July 15, 2013 The last session of the House of Representatives, from 2011 to 2012, was the most conservative in more than 60 years, according to the Brookings Institution. The think tank, along with the American Enterprise Institute, released a trove of data last week—the annual update to the Vital Statistics on Congress—and ...

That Good-for-Nothing Congress Is Actually Getting More Done

July 9, 2013 That's right, the good-for-nothing, inept, ineffective, partisan, unyielding Congress everybody loves to hate is actually getting more productive, at least according to some measures. The American Enterprise Institute and Brookings Institution just released their Vital Statistics on Congress—a trove of legislative data—and it shows that lawmakers have been putting in ...

Defense Workers Take Furloughs in Stride

July 8, 2013 Let it never be said that Defense Department employees have no sense of humor. Starting Monday, some 680,000 of the department's civilian employees each began taking one unpaid day off per week through September. And to cope with what amounts to a 20 percent pay cut over 11 weeks, some ...

Sequestration Concerns Play Out

July 3, 2013 Critics of government spending have long complained that the sequester fears were overblown: The across-the-board spending cuts were not and will not be apocalyptic. And, in a lot of ways, they were right. Half of the doomsday predictions that The Washington Post looked at this week never happened, the paper ...

State Department Spent $630K to Buy Facebook 'Likes'

July 2, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A State Department bureau wanted so badly to boost its social-media presence that it dropped $630,000 over two years on advertising campaigns on Facebook, according to a May inspector general's report. The campaigns "succeeded in increasing the fans of the English Facebook pages from about 100,000 to more than 2 ...

Treasury Secretary Lew Cleans Up His Signature for the Nation's Currency

June 18, 2013 Priggish patriots everywhere can breathe a sigh of relief: America's currency was spared Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew's loopy signature. Ever since Lew's appointment in January, his signature has been a running, playful joke. President Obama made fun of it, a signature generator was created, and it was the butt of ...

Is a Sequester Tipping Point Coming?

June 17, 2013 When $85 billion in broad spending cuts went into effect in March the world didn't end. Kids weren't kicked out of school en masse, hundreds of thousands weren't laid off, the economy didn't tank. Sequestration was overhyped and the deluge never came. But it may begin to pour this summer. ...

Labor Department Offers $2.5 Million in Grants to Improve Bangladeshi Factory Conditions

June 13, 2013 The U.S. Labor Department wants to improve the subpar safety standards in Bangladesh's garment sector and is putting up $2.5 million in grants to do it. The collapse of the Rana Plaza factory on April 24 killed more than 1,100 people and is considered to be among the worst modern ...

The Biggest Threat to the Economy Could Come From Outer Space

June 12, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Imagine waking up just after midnight to a sky so bright you swear it must be early morning. Imagine seeing the Northern Lights as far south as Cuba or Hawaii. Imagine that the same phenomena behind both has also generated electric fields in the ground strong enough to power small ...