With Greece suffering the biggest economic depression in decades, all so a few rich men can preserve their wealth and not have their EUR-denominated savings wiped out (even if the alternative means finally being able to rebalance externally using the Drachma instead of forcing internal rebalancing via unemployment and plunging wages), it was only a matter of time before we found out just how humiliating the conversion of the entire [...]
WASHINGTON — One day before President Obama is due to deliver a major speech on national security, his administration on Wednesday formally acknowledged that the United States had killed four American citizens in drone strikes in Yemen and Pakistan.
In a letter to Congressional leadersobtained by The New York Times, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. disclosed that the administration had deliberately killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical Muslim cleric who was [...]
In no uncertain terms and with no hedging, The New York Times reports that the Obama administration was aware of the fact that the IRS was targeting Tea Party groups as far back as June of 2012. The Treasury Department’s Inspector General confirmed that he told senior Treasury officials in June of 2012, a full five months before Election Day:
The Treasury Department’s inspector general told senior Treasury officials in June 2012 he was [...]
HONG KONG — The state-controlled Bank of China said on Tuesday that it had halted all dealings with a key North Korean bank in what appeared to be the strongest public Chinese response yet to North Korea’s willingness to brush aside warnings from Beijing and push ahead with its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.
Chinese analysts said that the Bank of China’s move carried clear diplomatic significance at a time when [...]
On Friday, President Barack Obama’s Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan B. Krueger took a victory lap of sorts after the Labor Department’s jobs report showed the U.S. added 165,000 nonfarm payroll jobs in April.
“Today’s employment report provides further evidence that the U.S. economy is continuing to recover,” said Krueger.
From The Big Picture:
“It is a smart, simple, and tough piece of work that would protect taxpayers from costly rescues in the future. This means that the bill will come under fierce attack from the big banks that almost wrecked our economy and stand to lose the most if it becomes law.”
- Gretchen Morgenson, NYT
“It’s clear there’s too much Wall Street in this administration.”
– Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
This weekend, we saw a flurry [...]
From Economic Policy Journal:
There have been 441 shootings and 100 homicides in the city of Chicago so far this year, according to a blog that tracks crime in Chicago.
That works out to 3.8 shootings per day or approximately one shooting every 6.3 hours.
Maybe they need stricter gun laws. Oh yeah, forgot. NYT reports:
Not a single gun shop can be found in this city because they are outlawed. Handguns were banned in Chicago [...]
NYT: Judge Orders Morning-After Pill Available for All Ages
A federal judge has ruled that the government must make the most common morning-after pill available over the counter for all ages, instead of requiring a prescription for girls 16 and younger.
The decision, on a fraught and politically controversial subject, comes after a decade-long fight over who should have access to the pill and under what circumstances. And it counteracts [...]
Cyprus central bank fires Bank of Cyprus chief Kipri – official – Reuters (via CNBC)
ALARM: SPAIN, GREECE EXEMPLIFY RISK OF RELIANCE ON BANKS’ LIQUIDITY. – CHART
Italian Industrial Orders Come In Horrible
Not much to say except with this kind of spiraling down, crises both financial and political will continue.
Chris Marshall‏@cmarshallCW2 min
Major UK banks and building societies have a shortfall in capital of around £25 billion, says BoE Financial Policy Commitee
NYT: Dallara, [...]
March 23, 2013
The US Southern Command (Southcom) has requested $49 million to build a new prison building at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba “for special detainees” as well as carry out other “necessary” renovations, US media reveal.
The proposed facility is an apparent replacement for Camp 7, which was constructed to hold 14 “high-value” detainees – including the self-described 9/11 attack architect Khalid Shaikh Mohammed – who had been in CIA custody, but [...]
Saying that “gay rights are human rights,’’ Hillary Rodham Clinton, the former secretary of state and potential 2016 presidential candidate, has endorsed same-sex marriage.
“I believe America is at its best when we champion the freedom and dignity of every human being,’’ Mrs. Clinton said in a video posted Monday on the Internet by the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights advocacy group. Her announcement comes as the Supreme Court [...]
Global temperatures are warmer than at any time in at least 4,000 years, scientists reported Thursday, and over the coming decades are likely to surpass levels not seen on the planet since before the last ice age.
Previous research had extended back roughly 1,500 years, and suggested that the rapid temperature spike of the past century, believed to be a consequence of human activity, exceeded any warming episode during those years. [...]
Major banks have quickly become behind-the-scenes allies of Internet-based payday lenders that offer short-term loans with interest rates sometimes exceeding 500 percent.
With 15 states banning payday loans, a growing number of the lenders have set up online operations in more hospitable states or far-flung locales like Belize, Malta and the West Indies to more easily evade statewide caps on interest rates.
While the banks, which include giants like [...]
From Economic Policy Journal:
The mainstream media is warning us. The NYTwrites:
Airlines and airports across the country are preparing for across-the-board federal budget cuts due to hit next week as if they were a hurricane, although with even less certainty about how many flights they will have to cancel and how many passengers will be stranded.
The federal government is warning about delays that could begin in March, as the first cuts take [...]
On Thursday, Valentine’s Day, WaPo officially discussed the circumstances surrounding the layoffs of employees, FishbowlDC sources have learned. Internal sources appropriately place the number at 54, though a publicist hasn’t confirmed the exact number. Every department facing cuts was asked to keep the news to their department only, as to not make it look like a mass layoff. We’re told those given pink slips include Beth Jacobs, General Manager of Mobile, and Ken Dodelin, [...]
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — On the eve of his State of the City address, Mayor Michael Bloomberg had a new ban in store, as well as a parking proposal that might drive some New Yorkers crazy.
As CBS 2’s Dick Brennan reported Wednesday, if you plug in, Mayor Bloomberg has some good news for you. In the address set for Thursday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, he will propose more parking [...]
A New York appellate court has ruled that the New York Times‘s request for a list of gun owners in New York City, under the Freedom of Information Law, violates the state’s statute. The ruling overturns in part a lower court’s ruling.
Josh Brown Explains The Huge Mistake That A Bunch Of Investors Are Going To Make Right Now
There is no doubt that in the past few weeks (arguably just the past week) there’s been a real breaking of the bearish spirit.
Bullishness is hitting all-time highs, and even some of the folks who were very skeptical about the economy, are turning positive.
Meanwhile, the S&P just broke 1500. As Josh Brown at The Reformed Broker notes, the [...]
Donald Trump has spent a lot of time in the last year trying to make news, first with his birther obsession, and more recently demanding comedian Bill Maher pay him $5 million. (Maher offered the sum for proof Trump wasn’t the “spawn of his mother having sex with an orangutan.” Trump released his own birth certificate and threatened to sue Maher for the money.)
Now Trump is exploring ways to make news [...]
My mother,who has congestive heart failure, and is on oxygen, as of January 1st no longer has a nurse come and check on her once a week, due to the Medicare cuts. As of August 1st of 2012, when the first round of cuts came, her once a week Physical Therapist was totally cut, her nurse was cut to 1 day a week from 2 days, and her CNA was [...]
From a White House factsheet, via NYT, here are the 23 “executive actions” that Obama will take to reduce gun violence.
For full coverage of Obama’s announcement today, see here.
There’s very little in this part that will be too big or controversial. It’s very small bore regulatory stuff.
For the full list of legal proposals, see here.
Today, the President is announcing that he and the Administration will:
Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies [...]
WASHINGTON — President Obama plans to push Congress to move quickly in the coming months on an ambitious overhaul of theimmigration system that would include a path to citizenship for most of the 11 million illegal immigrants in the country, senior administration officials and lawmakers said last week.
Mr. Obama and Senate Democrats will propose the changes in one comprehensive bill, the officials said, resisting efforts by some Republicans to break the [...]
It’s been a while since the Syntagma square riotcam was broadcasting live from Athens. After all, despite the ongoing collapse in its economy, where only 3.7 million people have jobs compared to 4.7 million who are unemployed or inactive, the general sentiment was that “austerity” measures have been put on hiatus, and no more tax, pension, or benefits cuts are on the table. That changed last night when Greece was the latest country [...]
An annual survey of colleges and universities found that a growing number of schools face declining enrollment and less revenue from tuition.
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The survey, released by the credit ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service on Thursday, found that nearly half of colleges and universities that responded expected enrollment declines for full-time students, and a third of the schools expected tuition revenue to decline or to grow at [...]
Health insurance companies across the country are seeking and winning double-digit increases in premiums for some customers, even though one of the biggest objectives of the Obama administration’s health care law was to stem the rapid rise in insurance costs for consumers.
Particularly vulnerable to the high rates are small businesses and people who do not have employer-provided insurance and must buy it on their own.
In California, Aetna is proposing rate [...]
LAST month, HSBC admitted in court pleadings that it had allowed big Mexican and Colombian drug cartels to launder at least $881 million. The bank also admitted to using various schemes to move hundreds of millions of dollars to nations subject to trade sanctions, including Iran, Cuba and Sudan, in violation of the Trading With the Enemy Act. “On at least one occasion,” according to a statement by [...]
Al Jazeera, the pan-Arab news giant, has long tried to convince Americans that it is a legitimate news organization, not a parrot of Middle Eastern propaganda or something more sinister.
It just bought itself 40 million more chances to make its case.
Al Jazeera on Wednesday announced a deal to take over Current TV, the low-rated cable channel that was founded by Al Gore, a former vice president, and his business partners seven [...]
For President Obama, the fiscal deal pending in the House would finally end four years of debate with Republicans about raising tax rates on the wealthy. But it seemed to reopen a debate within his party about the nature of his leadership and his skills as a negotiator.
While Mr. Obama got most of what he sought in the agreement, he found himself under withering criticism from some in his [...]
Doctors treating Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Monday said that she suffered a blood clot in a vein between her brain and skull behind her right ear but predicted that she would make a full recovery.
Mrs. Clinton was hospitalized on Sunday with a blood clot stemming from a concussion she suffered earlier this month, a State Department spokesman said.
Her doctors said in a statement [...]
THE doctor was dumbfounded: a drug that used to cost $50 was now selling for $28,000 for a 5-milliliter vial.
The physician, Dr. Ladislas Lazaro IV, remembered occasionally prescribing this anti-inflammatory, named H.P. Acthar Gel, for gout back in the early 1990s. Then the drug seemed to fade from view. Dr. Lazaro had all but forgotten about it, until a sales representative from a company called Questcor Pharmaceuticals appeared at [...]
Former Mitt Romney economic advisor Greg Mankiw admits something that he probably would never have said during the campaign: Middle class tax rates can’t be set in stone. They might have to rise, too.
In a column at the NYT, Mankiw argues that if we’re going to get real about connecting spending to revenue, and if we want to keep (for the most part) the level of entitlements we’ve come to expect, some kind of tax [...]
Forget the fiscal crisis and the automatic budget cuts. Come Jan. 1, there is a threat that milk prices could rise to $6 to $8 a gallon if Congress does not pass a new farm bill that amends farm policy dating back to the Truman presidency.
Lost in the political standoff between the Obama administration and Congressional Republicans over the budget is a virtually forgotten impasse over a farm bill that covers billions [...]