These policies will make the next recession both more likely and worse

But at least we’ve got the automatic stuff that kicks in when people start falling through the cracks, right? Not if anything like the proposed cuts to the safety net go through. Medicaid, SNAP (food stamps), employment programs, infrastructure spending — they’re all on the chopping block in both Republican budgets and health-care bills. One of the worst things they’re trying to do in this space is turn safety net programs, like SNAP and Medicaid, into block grants, which would end those programs’ critical countercyclical function

.. Another Republican initiative in this space that would compound the damage to vulnerable people in recessions is the intention to add work requirements to safety net programs. Even in strong recoveries, that’s a terrible idea — do you really think less than $5 a day in food stamps is what’s keeping someone from working? But in recessions, when unemployment is rising quickly, work requirements make even less sense.

.. There’s a cost to dysfunctional, unrepresentative government. It may take a while to show up, but trust me, it will.