December 2009, Robert Pollin and Dean Baker


The U.S. economy faces enormous questions and challenges as it attempts to recover from the collapse of 2008-09. Some of the most pressing questions are a series of longer-term, structural challenges: Can we establish a growth engine driven by something other than financial bubbles? Can we renew the automobile industry and, more generally, reestablish a healthy manufacturing sector? Can we accomplish these various tasks while also rebuilding the economy on a new foundation of clean energy as opposed to fossil fuel energy sources? Addressing these longer-term challenges is the overarching theme of this paper.

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