Weekend Reads: Roots of the Midlife Crisis, Political Dysfunction, Crisis in Russia, and More

Fred Dews and
Fred Dews Managing Editor, New Digital Products - Office of Communications
Delaney Parrish
Delaney Parrish Office of Communications

November 22, 2014

New this week

Real roots of the midlife crisis. Writing in the Atlantic, Jonathan Rauch looks at the “happiness u-curve” that helps explain the relationship between age and well-being in the United States.

High-skilled immigrants could reverse America’s entrepreneurship decline. New research from Robert Litan looks at a decades-long decline in entrepreneurship and what immigration policies could help reverse the trend.

The ACA’s markets are working pretty well. Many ACA beneficiaries will discover new plan options or higher premiums as the law moves into its second open enrollment period, but Alice Rivlin says that’s because the markets are in their infancy.  

“American exceptionalism does not carry to our political institutions.” So says Thomas Mann in the newest Brookings Cafeteria Podcast on dysfunctional politics and the road to 2016.

What our experts are reading

Thought-provoking read (PDF) from Shep Melnick: “The Conventional Misdiagnosis: Why ‘Gridlock’ Is Not Our Central Problem.” (@PhilipWallach)

Admiral Michael McDevitt offers sound analysis of and prescriptions for US policy re South China Sea.

Aspen Strategy Group’s “Crisis with Russia” is a worthy read on what’s happening in the region and what we can do about it. (@StrobeTalbott)

What I’m reading: Missing school days matters, even in Pre-K by my colleague Richard Reeves. (@ISawhill)