JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon is one of the powerful business leaders who has lectured about the so-called ‘skills gap’. Photoraph: Yuri Gripas/Reuters

The argument that an ‘education gap’ is at the root of inequality is at odds with the evidence

Real Greek gross domestic product per capita fell 26 per cent from 2007 to 2013, compared with a German decline of 29 per cent from 1913 to 1919

Greece cannot pay its debts in full and austerity has devastated its economy as thoroughly as military defeat devastated Germany (...)

German chancellor Angela Merkel: the way forward, she insisted,  was a return to frugality. Photograph: Fritz Reiss/AP

If everyone slashes spending at the same time, incomes go down around the world

 Barack Obama: it goes without saying the president’s fiscal proposals will be attacked by Republicans. Photograph: John Gress/Reuters

Washington needs to take on the hard issue of short-run gratification

Incoming Greek prime minister  Alexis Tsipras is being far more realistic about austerity and growth than European officials who want the beatings to continue until morale improves. Photograph: Michael Kappeler/EPA

The troika was peddling an economic fantasy: Greeks have paid the price

Kansas governor Sam Brownback:  in 2012,  he drastically cut taxes, assuring everyone that the resulting boom would make up for the initial loss in revenues. Unfortunately for his constituents, his experiment has been a resounding failure. Photograph: Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times

From climate change to Omabacare, actual evidence is irrelevant to an angry cohort

No surprise: the first move of the new Republican Senate is an attempt to push Barack Obama into approving pipeline. Photograph: Jessica Rinaldi/Reuters

Debts must be paid and the oil and gas industry expects to be rewarded for its support

President Barack Obama. ‘Now that he’s presiding over unexpected economic strength [his critics] can’t just turn around and assert his irrelevance.’ Photograph: J Scott Applewhite/AP Photo

Stimulus programme and protection of Fed independence key presidential achievements

Pussian president Vladimir Putin: he’s an ex-KGB man – which is to say, he spent his formative years as a professional thug. Photograph: EPA/Sergei Chirikov

Putin may be starting to see that war makes you poorer, even if you win

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