I’ve never lived through a political period like this one. Even Richard Nixon’s second term had its intermissions, but the Trump presidency hurtles from one self-inflicted crisis to another. The result is that many pressing issues get overshadowed – from the fate of Obamacare (upon which the health coverage of 20 million or more rest) to continuing instability of the global economy, which suffers from huge trade imbalances and the unregulated flow of finance.
The world has by means freed itself from the conditions that led to the Great Recession – and if the Republicans are able to repeal Dodd-Frank, as the House has already voted to do, they will have eliminated the few roadblocks that the Obama administration erected against another crash. Dani Rodrik, an economist at Harvard’s Kennedy School, knows about this stuff better than anyone. I did an interview with him just as Trump was tweeting about the evil of Germany’s trade surpluses, but by the time I had transcribed and edited it, Trump and the press had moved onto Comeygate. I hope TPM readers take time off from contemplating Trump’s latest to read this interview and afterwards to read some of Rodrik’s writings.