Robert Kuttner

Robert Kuttner is co-founder and co-editor of The American Prospect, and professor at Brandeis University's Heller School. His latest book is Debtors' Prison: The Politics of Austerity Versus Possibility. He writes columns for The Huffington Post, The Boston Globe and the New York Times international edition. 

Recent Articles

How Michael Bloomberg Complicates the Election

(Photo: AP)
(Photo: AP) Michael Bloomberg at the World Climate Change Conference in Paris on December 4, 2015 A s you have doubtless read or seen, Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of New York, has put out the word that his minions are testing the waters for an independent candidacy . Bloomberg is supposedly the sensible moderate that the county needs, the one that political polarization has kept from the ballot of either party. But that’s not an obstacle that a few billion dollars from the candidate’s own fortune can’t fix. Bloomberg is center-right on economics and finance, and liberal on social issues and gun control. He’s not likely to get elected. There is no mass clamoring for such a combination, except among fellow rich people. Yet Bloomberg’s entry could tip the race—more likely to the Republican than the Democrat. Investment banker Peter G. Peterson made an absolute fool of himself imagining that there was a mass groundswell of public opinion waiting for a leader to step forward urging...

Get Ready for a Three-Way Race in November

AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt
AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt Republican presidential candidate, businessman Donald Trump participates in the spin room after the Fox Business Network Republican presidential debate at the North Charleston Coliseum, Thursday, January 14, 2016, in North Charleston, South Carolina. This article originally appeared at The Huffington Post . T his could well be the first election since 2000 with an independent candidate. In the past century, that happened in 1912, 1948, 1980, 1992 and 2000. In three of these elections, the independent probably changed the outcome. This year, a three-way—or even a four-way race—would be a wild card in an election that is already a doozie. It could take any of several forms, with different partisan winners and losers. Consider: Suppose Donald Trump is the Republican nominee and Hillary Clinton is the Democrat. Establishment Republicans will be convinced that their party has been hijacked by a bizarre rabble-rouser; GOP elites will be unsure which is worse—the...

Sanders, Trump, and Economic Populism

AP Photo/Jae C. Hong
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong Supporters hold up signs while listening to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump at a rally, Saturday, January 9, 2016, in Ottumwa, Iowa. An earlier verison of this article appeared at The Huffington Post . T he economy generated almost 300,000 jobs last year and cut the nominal unemployment rate to 5 percent. But family incomes for most people are still deeply depressed. No wonder voters are in a state of simmering rage. Yet a lot of experts seem to think this is the best the economy can do. The Federal Reserve last month actually voted to raise interest rates on the premise that growth would soon pick up, and inflation might be a threat. Meanwhile, slowing growth has made fools of the Fed’s experts. Family income is soft. The collapsing stock market in China has produced reverberations around the world and projections of slower growth at home and abroad. The U.S. economy is relatively strong compared to the rest of the world (faint praise). But as the...

Thinking Harder about Political Correctness

AP Photo/Steve Nesius
AP Photo/Steve Nesius Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters after arriving for a campaign rally Saturday, November 28, 2015 at Robarts Arena in Sarasota, Florida. This article originally appeared at The Huffington Post . D onald Trump and the rest of the Republican presidential pack have had a field day disparaging political correctness as an affliction of liberals that is resented by regular Americans. Some liberal commentators have suggested that political correctness has become a serious albatross for Democrats. Columnist Thomas Edsall, in a piece for The New York Times online, cited polls showing that large numbers of Americans, Democrats as well as Republicans, agreed that “political correctness” was a big problem. But what exactly is political correctness? The term was first used by lefties to make fun of themselves. I've been hearing it used ironically since the 1970s. As in: “This may not be politically correct, but may I buy you a drink?” This...