Robert Reich

Robert B. Reich, a co-founder of The American Prospect, is a Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. His website can be found here and his blog can be found here.

Recent Articles

Trump’s Art of the No Deal

One of the biggest cons from the biggest conman to occupy the Oval Office is that he’s a dealmaker.

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Trump promised to be America’s dealmaker in chief. “We need a leader that wrote The Art of the Deal ,” he said in the speech announcing his candidacy. “I’m a negotiator. I’ve done very well over the years through negotiation,” he said during a Republican debate. “That’s what I do, is deals,” he said in May. “I know deals, I think, better than anybody knows deals.” Rubbish. So far, Trump has made no deals at all, and the ones he thinks he’s made have unraveled. He has no deal with North Korea. Following his June 12 summit with Kim Jong Un, Trump declared on Twitter that “there is no longer a nuclear threat” from North Korea. In fact, recent satellite images show that North Korea has upgraded a nuclear facility. It also appears to be finalizing the expansion of a ballistic missile manufacturing site. Instead of surrendering its nuclear stockpile, American intelligence says North Korea is...

What We Must Do Now

My friends, this is a dark hour. Intolerance, cruelty, racism, misogyny, xenophobia, and environmental destruction have been let loose across the land. Trump controls the Republican Party, the Republican Party controls the House and Senate, and Trump may soon control the Supreme Court. But here’s the thing. Only 27 percent of Americans are Republican, according to the Gallup poll. Moreover, the vast majority of Americans disapprove of Trump. He lost the popular vote in 2016 by 2.8 million. Since then, his approval ratings haven’t exceeded 45 percent. The GOP itself is no longer a political party, anyway. It is now little more than Donald Trump, Fox News, a handful of billionaire funders, and rightwing Christians who oppose a woman’s right to choose, gay marriage, and the Constitution’s separation of church and state. Yet Trump is about to make the second Supreme Court nomination of his presidency. And that second nominee—like Trump’s first, Neil...

Trump's Fourth of July

On this coming Fourth of July, it’s worth pondering the true meaning of American patriotism—as opposed to the malignant, distorted view of it propounded by Donald J. Trump. For Trump, the central challenge of American patriotism is to secure our borders. “Without borders, there can be no nation,” he says. But excluding foreigners has never been a dominant part of American patriotism. For most of its existence America has been relatively open to people from the rest of the world, especially those fleeing tyranny and violence. America’s core struggle has been one of inclusion, not exclusion. We have strived to extend equal citizenship to Native Americans, African Americans, women, and LGBTQs. The poems of Walt Whitman and Langston Hughes, and the songs of Woody Guthrie, expressed loving devotion to America while turning that love into a demand for justice. “This land is your land, this land is my land” sang Guthrie. “Let America be America...

The Military-Industrial Drain

President Trump's call for ramping up military spending leaves most Americans behind. 

As Trump stokes tensions around the world, he’s adding fuel to the fire by demanding even more Pentagon spending. It’s a dangerous military buildup intended to underwrite endless wars and enrich defense contractors, while draining money from investment in the American people. President Dwight D. Eisenhower once noted, “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed." Eisenhower was a Republican and a former general who helped win World War II for the allies, yet he understood America’s true priorities. But Washington—and especially Trump—have lost sight of these basic tradeoffs. Since 2001, the Pentagon budget has soared from $456 billion—in today’s dollars—to $700 billion, including the costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and other national security expenses. All told, when you include...

The Constitutional Crisis Is Now

(AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
I keep hearing that if Trump fires Mueller we’ll face a constitutional crisis. Or if Mueller subpoenas Trump to testify and Trump defies the subpoena, it’s a constitutional crisis. Or if Mueller comes up with substantial evidence that Trump is guilty of colluding with Russia or of obstructing justice but the House doesn’t move to impeach him, we’ll have a constitutional crisis. I have news for you. We’re already in a constitutional crisis. For a year and a half the president of the United States has been carrying out a systemic attack on the institutions of our democracy. A constitutional crisis does not occur suddenly like a coup that causes a government to collapse. It occurs gradually, as a system of government is slowly weakened. The current crisis has been unfolding since the waning days of the 2016 campaign when Trump refused to say whether he’d be bound by the election results if Hillary won. It continued through March 4, 2017, when Trump...

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