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Council on Foreign Relations State and Local Officials Bulletin
February 2013

February 2013

The Long Road of U.S. Fiscal Reform

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(Courtesy of Reuters)


In this CFR Expert Brief, Robert Kahn suggests President Obama's State of the Union address set the stage for more political wrangling over U.S. fiscal policy. Read the brief to learn more about the long-term challenges this country faces.

For more information, listen to the recent State and Local Officials Conference Call to hear Kahn discuss the U.S. economy and answer questions on what lies ahead.


New Feature: "Ask CFR Experts"

This new feature invites members of the public to pose questions on pressing international issues that affect domestic agendas. CFR will highlight a question on its homepage, and all selected questions and answers by CFR experts will appear on a dedicated page. Ask a Question!

Education Drives Economic Growth

In this op-ed, Peter Orszag posits that America's aging population, combined with the effects of the lingering financial crisis, will continue to hinder economic growth. Orszag believes that the federal government would boost economic growth by encouraging more Americans to earn college degrees. "More graduates would mean lower inequality... and it would mean higher national income, because better-educated workers are, on average, more productive," writes Orszag. Read more »

Interview with Stanley McChrystal

Stanley McChrystal, the retired general and former Afghanistan and special forces commander, talks frankly with Foreign Affairs Editor Gideon Rose. He discusses Iraq, Afghanistan, and the limits of U.S. counterterrorism strategies, and offers his perspective on the future of American warfare.

Read more of the interview at Foreign Affairs>>

New CFR Book: "The Battle of Bretton Woods"

In The Battle of Bretton Woods: John Maynard Keynes, Harry Dexter White, and the Making of a New World Order, CFR Senior Fellow Benn Steil tells the story of the intertwining lives and events surrounding the historic conference. In the book, Steil analyzes the complex relationships that dominated the conference and offers practical lessons for policymakers today. The Financial Times calls this book "a triumph of economic and diplomatic history." Read an Excerpt »

'Energy Independence' Alone Won’t Boost U.S. Power

With America moving toward energy independence, Meghan L. O'Sullivan says the United States is "only beginning to understand the many ways in which brightened U.S. energy fortunes will shape the geopolitical landscape." O'Sullivan recommends that the United States "rethink its grand strategy" because "strength in the energy domain can be a major driver of U.S. influence in a world in which American power is more diffuse." Read more »