http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/03/business/economy/03illinois.html?_r=2&partner=MYWAY&ei=5065Even by the standards of this deficit-ridden state, Illinois’s comptroller, Daniel W. Hynes, faces an ugly balance sheet. Precisely how ugly becomes clear when he beckons you into his office to examine his daily briefing memo. He picks the papers off his desk and points to a figure in red: $5.01 billion.“This is what the state owes right now to schools, rehabilitation centers, child care, the state university - and it’s getting worse every single day,” he says in his downtown office.Mr. Hynes shakes his head. “This is not some esoteric budget issue; we are not paying bills for absolutely essential services,” he says. “That is obscene.” * HEY... DIDN'T PRESIDENT OBAMA USED TO BE AN ILLINOIS STATE SENATOR...??? AND THEN AFTER THAT WASN'T HE A UNITED STATES SENATOR REPRESENTING THE STATE OF ILLINOIS...??? For the last few years, California stood more or less unchallenged as a symbol of the fiscal collapse of states during the recession. Now Illinois has shouldered to the fore, as its dysfunctional political class refuses to pay the state’s bills and refuses to take the painful steps - cuts and tax increases - to close a deficit of at least $12 billion, equal to nearly half the state’s budget. * HMM... "DYSFUNCTIONAL POLITICAL CLASS," HUH...??? "REFUSING TO CLOSE DEFICITS," HUH...??? IMAGINE THAT!Then there is the spectacularly mismanaged pension system, which is at least 50% underfunded and, analysts warn, could push Illinois into insolvency...* "SPECTACULARLY MISMANAGED," HUH...??? "INSOLVENCY" PERHAPS AROUND THE CORNER... (*JUST SHAKING MY HEAD*)The governor proposes to borrow $3.5 billion to cover a year’s worth of pension payments, a step that would cost about $1 billion in interest. (*ROLLING MY EYES*) HEY... WHAT OTHER FAMOUS "SON OF CHICAGO" BELIEVES IN BORROWING TO THE MAX, FUTURE INTEREST PAYMENTS BE DAMNED?! (*SMIRK*)* SERIOUSLY, FOLKS... WE'RE IN DEEP $HIT; DON'T LET ANYONE TELL YOU DIFFERENT.
http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/539337/201007021859/Shootout-At-El-Paso-City-Hall.aspxIn his speech Thursday, President Obama assured us that our "southern border is more se cure today than at any time in the past 20 years." So why is El Paso's City Hall taking fire from Mexico?El Paso's City Hall found itself in a war zone as gunfire from the Mexican side from either traffickers or the Mexican lawmen trying to fight them pocked the edifice. News reports said as many as seven bullets hit the building. No one was hit - this time. It's another sign of the horror in Mexico spilling onto the U.S. side.(*NOD*)Further down the border on the same day, 12 miles from Nogales, Ariz., 21 people were massacred in a fight between rival smuggling gangs over the right of way to bring their illegal immigrant "shipments" and narcotics into the U.S.The U.S. has lost control of actual U.S. territory to drug and migrant smugglers as much as 80 miles inland in Arizona. Any American who enters this area risks being shot dead. Arizona now has the second-highest kidnapping rate in the world - behind only Mexico City - with nearly all of it due to drug and migrant smugglers and their quests for cash and territory.Obama did say he was sending 1,200 National Guard troops to the Arizona border, but the Guardsmen are there to perform clerical tasks - not to protect and defend.The Falcon Dam on Texas' lower Rio Grande was targeted for destruction by a Mexican cartel to destroy a rival's drug and alien-smuggling route. Had the foiled plot succeeded, 4 million people could have ended up downriver with mass casualties and deaths.Mass graves have been discovered in New Mexico, believed by lawmen to be the work of cartels.Two U.S. border consulates have been attacked, and three people connected with them have been killed in the past three years.In Washington state and others, national forests and Indian reservations have seen large swaths of land converted by cartels to drug cultivation operations guarded by illegal immigrants, making them also no-man's lands.
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/a8954406-862e-11df-bc22-00144feabdc0.htmlU.S. lawmakers are challenging a joint venture between China’s third-largest steel producer and a U.S. steel company because it would “allow a Chinese company to exploit the American steel market” and threaten national security.In a letter to Tim ["The Tax Cheat"] Geithner, U.S. Treasury secretary, 50 lawmakers representing steel-producing states said a venture between Anshan of China and Steel Development Company, which is on course to receive a $175m investment from the state-controlled Chinese company, should be investigated by the Obama administration on national security grounds.“The full details of this transaction are not known to the public,” the letter read. “Anshan could have access to new steel production technologies and information regarding American national security infrastructure projects.”
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704293604575343190840956602.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_AboveLEFTTopThe decline in the headline unemployment rate to 9.5% from 9.7% is [due to the unpleasant reality that] the labor force shrank again by some 652,000 following a 322,000 decline in May.* HMM... 322,000 + 652,00 = 974,000 IS THE "LABOR FORCE SHRINKAGE" OVER JUST THE PAST TWO MONTHS. (*SMIRK*) OH, YEAH... WHAT A RECOVERY...! THANK YOU PRESIDENT OBAMA... THANK YOU... THANK YOU... THANK YOU... (*ROLLING MY EYES*)* ALSO...The average hours worked per week fell to 34.1 from 34.2, when employers should be adding to worker shifts given the big gains in productivity.* OH... AND BY THE WAY...A useful rule of thumb is that roughly 150,000 new jobs are needed each month to keep up with normal growth in the labor market...To get the jobless rate down even to 8% will require 250,000 new jobs a month for the next three years. Meanwhile, Washington continues to believe its own advertising that government spending creates growth. Speaker Nancy Pelosi asserted this week that another extension of jobless benefits will cause more people to work, and Mr. Obama responded to a question in Wisconsin about job creation by saying that he wants to create a new tax break for Americans to weatherize their homes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Their worst critics couldn't make this up.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/04/world/middleeast/04reconstruct.html?_r=1&ref=global-homeFALLUJA, Iraq --After two devastating battles between American forces and Sunni insurgents in 2004, this city needed almost everything - new roads, clean water, electricity, health care. The American reconstruction authorities decided, however, that the first big rebuilding project to win hearts and minds would be a citywide sewage treatment system.Now, after more than six years of work, $104 million spent, and without having connected a single house, American reconstruction officials have decided to leave the troubled system only partly finished, infuriating many city residents. * BTW... FOR THE MATH CHALLENGED: "NOW" REFERS TO "THE AGE OF OBAMA. * BTW... FOR THE MATH CHALLENGED: THE AGE OF OBAMA INCLUDED 2009.* BTW... FOR THE MATH CHALLENGED: NANCY PELOSI AND HARRY REID TOOK OVER CONTROL OF CONGRESS IN JANUARY, 2007.The plant is just one of many projects that the United States has decided to scale back on - or in some cases abandon...* AFTER HOW MUCH U.S. TAXPAYER MONEY WAS SPENT...???Even some of the projects that will be completed are being finished with such haste, Iraqi officials say, that engineering standards have deteriorated precipitously, putting workers in danger and leaving some of the work at risk of collapse. * MAKES YA PROUD, HUH?!
http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2010/07/03/us/politics/AP-US-Obama-Jobs.html?src=me&ref=usThe government is handing out nearly $2 billion for new solar plants that President Barack Obama says will create thousands of jobs and increase the use of renewable energy sources. The Obama administration says those projects will create more than 2,000 construction jobs and 1,500 permanent jobs. * OK. SO LET'S DO THE MATH: 1 BILLION = 1,000 MILLION. 2 BILLION = 2,000 MILLION. RIGHT...??? * SO... LET'S JUST ASSUME OBAMA'S NUMBERS ARE CORRECT; 2,000 TEMPERARY JOBS + 1,500 PERMANENT JOBS. CALL 'EM ALL JOBS AND YOU GET $3,500 JOBS.* DO THE MATH. THAT'S A SUBSIDY OF $750,000 PER JOB! (AND THE MAJORITY OF THESE JOBS ARE TEMPORARY CONSTRUCTION JOBS!)* OH... AND BY THE WAY... AFTER INTEREST ACCRUED ON THE $2 BILLION THAT IS BEING BORROWED IN ORDER TO BE SPENT... I'M GUESSING THESE JOBS (ASSUMING THEY MATERIALIZE AS PROMISED) WILL END UP COSTING CLOSER TO 1 MILLION PER JOB.
http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/107103-us-plans-15-million-grant-for-auschwitz-preservationThe Obama administration has pledged $15 million to the foundation created to preserve the Auschwitz concentration camp.Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced the grant Saturday that will go to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation* WHY...???* SERIOUSLY... WHY...???* WE'RE BROKE. WE'RE IN HOCK. EIGHT AND A HALF AMERICANS HAVE LOST THEIR JOBS SINCE THIS ADMINISTRATION TOOK POWER AND HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON BECAME SECRETARY OF STATE. WHY ARE WE GIVING MONEY TO GERMANY...???* WASN'T LIBERATING AUSCHWITZ ENOUGH...* OBAMA AND CLINTON ARE BOTH MILLIONAIRES. WHY AREN'T THEY WRITING CHECKS TO COVER THIS? OR... WHY NOT DO A FUNDRAISER - I'M SURE THE BUSH AND CHENEY FAMILIES WOULD JOIN THE OBAMA AND CLINTON FAMILIES AND I HAVE NO DOUBT THAT FAR MORE THAN $15 MILLION WOULD BE RAISED.* I KNOW... I KNOW... IT'S "ONLY" $15 MILLION AND IT'S FOR "A GOOD CAUSE." BUT ISN'T THAT ALWAYS THE EXCUSE FOR SPENDING MONEY WE DON'T HAVE...??? THINK ABOUT IT...
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/b122ac06-8793-11df-9f37-00144feabdc0.html“The Taliban, they’re probably watching us. I guarantee they are watching us,” said Lance-Corporal Monty Buchanan. “Whoever’s in the area will decide what they want to do, if they want to hit us or not.”This is the daily grind faced by US marines in Marjah almost five months after they seized the town in Nato’s biggest operation of the nine-year Afghan war.The offensive in southern Helmand province was billed as a centrepiece of General Stanley McChrystal’s strategy of pouring in US forces to protect the population from insurgents, but the climate of fear remains palpable.* AS WE ENJOY THE LONG 4TH OF JULY WEEKEND, LET'S REMEMBER THAT NOT ALL OF OUR COUNTRYMEN ARE FACING SUCH "TOUGH" DECISIONS AS WHETHER TO HAVE A SECOND HELPING OF POTATO SALAD OR TO SAVE ROOM FOR THE STRAWBERRY SHORT CAKE.Tracing his finger over a map of Marjah, Lance Corporal Paul Horchler sketched the route ahead. He would lead his marines along a canal, past the spot where a buried bomb had exploded the day before, then down a track nicknamed “ambush alley”.Either the Americans would have a chance to ask the locals where the Taliban were, or the insurgents would reveal themselves by shooting at them. After trudging for an hour down a path flanked by fields and scattered adobe houses, seemingly deserted in the midday heat, the marines found a man willing to talk. He said he had seen four Taliban fighters at a nearby bazaar 30 minutes earlier.L Cpl Horchler’s men returned to base unscathed, but a second patrol would be attacked on the same route a few hours later by insurgents armed with rifles and rocket-propelled grenades. * WHILE THE ARTICLE DOESN'T MENTION CASUALTIES, ASK YOURSELF THIS: IF AN AMERICAN HAD BEEN KILLED OR SERIOUSLY WOUNDED, WOULD IT HAVE BEEN WORTH IT...??? IS THERE AN END GAME...??? WHAT ARE WE DOING IN AFGHANISTAN...?Marines who seized Marjah from the Taliban in a blaze of publicity are now facing almost daily ambushes staged by attackers skilled at burying home-made mines or hiding them under bunches of dried poppy stalks.* I'LL TELL YOU WHAT WE'RE DOING: WE'RE MAKING THE MISTAKES OF VIETNAM ALL OVER AGAIN - ONLY THIS TIME SINCE THERE'S NO DRAFT MOST AMERICANS DON'T GIVE A FLYING F--K.* IT'S JUST ANOTHER SIGN OF OUR DETERIORATION AS A REPUBLIC... AND AS A PEOPLE.
http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=37896How has China vaulted to the forefront in manufacturing, trade and technology? Export-driven economic nationalism. Last year, China surpassed Germany as the greatest exporting nation. This year, China surpasses Japan as the world's second-largest economy. This year, China became the first auto manufacturer on earth. In 2011, said the Financial Times, China will surpass the United States as first manufacturing power, a title America has held since surpassing Great Britain around 1890.For a decade, China has been running history's largest trade surpluses with the United States and has amassed a hoard of $2.3 trillion in foreign currency. She now holds the mortgage on America.Beijing cut the value of its currency in half in 1994, doubling the price of imports, slashing the price of exports and making Chinese labor the best bargain in Asia. Foreign firms were invited to relocate their plants in China and told this was the price of access to the Chinese market. Beijing began looting these firms of technology, as she sent her sons to study in America. Industrial espionage and intellectual property theft became Chinese specialties.* HMM... IF MEMORY SERVES WASN'T BILL CLINTON PRESIDENT IN 1994 - PRESIDENT WITH A DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS...???* AND YES... BEFORE SOMEONE ELSE SAYS IT... REPUBLICANS TOOK CONTROL OF CONGRESS THE NEXT YEAR AND THEY TOO BACKED "FREE TRADE" OVER FAIR TRADE AND U.S. INTERESTS. DEMPUBLICANS. REPUBLICRATS. THEY BOTH SUCK!And how has America fared in the new century?One in every three manufacturing jobs we had in 2000, nearly 6 million, vanished. Some 50,000 U.S. factories shut down. We have run trade deficits totaling $5 trillion since NAFTA passed. The real wages of working Americans have been stagnant for a decade.Yet, even as the end of America's tenure as the world's first manufacturing power was being announced, The Wall Street Journal admonished us to keep our eyes on the prize: a new world order where it does not matter who produces what or where.* YEP. THE WSJ HAS LONG BEEN WRONG ON TRADE. (*SIGH*)There you have it - the conflict in visions between us.* YEP. (*SIGH*)For decades, America's leaders have followed the Wall Street Journal ideology. We put a mythical world economy before our own economy. We put "global prosperity" before national interest. We forced our workers to compete, in their own country, against the products of foreign laborers earning a tenth of their pay. And we let in tens of millions of semi-skilled and unskilled immigrants, legal and illegal, to take the jobs of our countrymen.And the Chinese? They put China first, second and third.And who won the decade? And who is winning the future?* WHEN BUCHANAN WRITES "WE" HE MEANS "THEY." AND BY "THEY" WE'RE TALKING BILL CLINTON AND NEWT GINGRICH... WE'RE TALKING THE "INVESTOR CLASS" - BE THEY LIBERAL OR CONSERVATIVE, DEMOCRAT OR REPUBLICAN - OVER THE NATIONALISTS.* I'M A NATIONALIST - A PROUD NATIONALIST. I WANT AMERICAN TO COME FIRST, SECOND, THIRD... IDEALS LIKE MINE AND BUCHANAN'S USED TO BE CALLED "PATRIOTISM."Inside the July 1 Washington Post is a small story about how the World Trade Organization finally ruled that European nations have been unfairly subsidizing Airbus - for 40 years.While welcome, what good will it do now for scores of thousands of U.S. workers who built commercial jets for Lockheed and McDonnell Douglas, which Airbus took down, or Boeing, which was outsourcing jobs even before Airbus dethroned it as the world's No. 1 aircraft manufacturer?The day the FT reported that China was sweeping past us to become No. 1 in manufacturing, The New York Times ran a front-page story on the closing of the Whirlpool refrigerator plant in Evansville, Ind., and the loss of 1,100 jobs. The plant is moving to Mexico.
Post a Comment