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'Colbert Report' Skewers the Austerity Zombies

Austerity is now officially a joke.

Last night's "Colbert Report" highlighted the work of Thomas Herndon, the University of Massachusetts graduate student whose work pointed out serious problems with the famous Reinhart and Rogoff study of "Growth in a Time of Debt."

Note that this is not really a partisan political issue.

The Obama administration is arguably at least as pro-austerity as the Republican opposition. Obama's new Treasury secretary, for example, has been described as one of the "principal architects of austerity in the Obama administration." The administration's proposed budget for 2014 calls for $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction.

Check out the segments from last night:




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  • Jeff Cox is finance editor for CNBC.com.

  • Lawrence Develingne

    Lawrence Delevingne is the ‘Big Money’ enterprise reporter for CNBC.com and NetNet.

  • Stephanie Landsman is one of the producers of "Fast Money."

Wall Street

  • Pedestrians pass a Fidelity Investments office in Boston.

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  • Jack Bogle

    Jack Bogle, Vanguard's founder, identifies the tenets of mutual fund investing: low fees and high ratings.

  • On the eve of the GOP primaries, here’s the big question: What must we do to restore America’s long-term economic-growth performance?