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 Can Democracy Survive Global Capitalism? In addition to writing for the Prospect, he writes for The Huffington Post, The Boston Globe, and the New York Review of Books. 

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Recent Articles

Body Politics

P resident Bush insisted that we could afford both a tax cut and the shoring up of Social Security. He was dead wrong. So the Democrats could hardly pick a better set of galvanizing issues. But as Robert Borosage points out in "The Austerity Trap" (see page 13), many Democrats are taking surplus-worship to such an extreme that they are in danger of losing their raison d'être as a party. This odd condition reflects a collision of two trends. First, the Republicans are genuinely vulnerable on the tax cut and on Social Security. But second, conservative Democrats are determined to expunge the Democrats' legacy as the party of "tax and spend." The trouble is, the Democrats' signature programs are nothing if not tax and spend. Social Security raises trillions of dollars in payroll taxes and spends the money on secure retirement. Medicare, likewise, is tax and spend. So is public education. As a party, you can't make your centerpiece the defense of Social Security and Medicare, much less...

Ignoring Health Care At Our Peril

I am at the age where my family and friends all seem to be coping with aging relatives. And I can tell you that something has gone terribly wrong with both the health care system and the system of nursing care. People in their 80s and 90s, when their health starts to deteriorate, tend to have multiple things wrong with them. From a doctors point of view, they are very time consuming to treat. They often tend to be fearful and forgetful. All of this means that either a family member, or a very conscientious doctor, needs to be carefully coordinating their care, or disastrous mishaps will occur. But middle aged sons and daughters are nearly all in the workforce, without much time to spend with frail and aging parents. And despite the promise of managed care, they one thing doctors are not paid to do is spend a lot of time with patients or on the phone. Indeed, managed care has become a parody of its...

Poking holes in the Constitution

The biggest menace to the personal security of Americans may not be terrorism but government's response to it. The administration has already rammed through an antiterrorism bill that allows normal due process and privacy protections to be waived if a prosecutor thinks some potential suspect has some remote connection to terrorism. Now the president has decided that terrorism suspects can be tried before special military tribunals, which do away with the inconvenience of constitutional niceties. The CIA, which is not supposed to use third-degree tactics itself, has been collaborating with foreign governments all too willing to use torture, such as Egypt and Albania. The CIA has knowingly turned terrorism suspects over to the agents of such governments to keep its own hands nominally clean. Here at home, at least a thousand legal foreign residents have been rounded up and detained, often without formal charges being lodged against them. This would be illegal for US citizens. But...