Rob Johnson

Rob Johnson is the Director of the Project on Global Finance at the Roosevelt Institute and is a regular contributor to NewDeal 2.0, which runs his “FinanceSeer” column. For more on his long list of credits and expertise see his his page at new deal 2.0.

Responding to a question from Kris Welch during her Saturday Morning Talkies program regarding his take on a first draft issued by the Deficit Commission’s chairmen, Johnson said “I think it’s class war from above.”

A summary of this interview contains this, about two leading contributors to the deficit: military spending and health care costs:

“He notes that the US spends nearly as much as the rest of the world combined on our military, some of it on outdated forts and weapons used in the Cold War. Plus we spend almost double what other countries pay per capita for health costs, yet we rank 38th in the world for health care. “You got to face down the military budget, you got to face down the health care industry, or the American people are not getting value for their money,” Rob says. And it all goes back to the trail of money in politics. “We’re in a situation where money drives things and people are even collectively somewhat powerless,” Rob says. And in some ways this is pragmatic on Obama’s part — after all, Rob notes that “it costs nearly a billion dollars to run for president. In essence you have to sell policy in order to be able to garner enough funds to be reelected.””

Listen to the interview.

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