Archives for FUBAR

Jobs? What jobs?

The phrase, "jobless recovery" is gaining traction in Washington these days, as the stock market has turned decidedly bullish, home sales are no longer tanking, at least not at last year's rates, corporate profits are materializing and yet the number of out of work Americans continues to rise.

The Federal Reserve Board of San Francisco launched the talk by issuing an Economic Letter in early June that began as follows:


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Citizens group attacks government secrecy

A public interest group is trying to use the Freedom of Information Act to crack more than three decades of secrecy surrounding how the government deals with wrongdoing by intelligence agencies.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, an open government advocacy group, sued in federal court Wednesday in San Francisco to force U.S. spy agencies to reveal any activities during the Bush administration that the agencies themselves acknowledge may have violated laws, presidential orders or the Constitution.


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America is losing the long war

In 1993, R. James Woolsey, about to become President Bill Clinton's first director of Central Intelligence, remarked to a Senate committee on the defeat of international communism: "We have slain a large dragon" He then added: "But we live now in a jungle filled with a bewildering variety of poisonous snakes. And in many ways, the dragon was easier to keep track of."


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American pessimism returns as Obama fades

That was fast. The hope and optimism that washed over the country in the opening months of Barack Obama's presidency are giving way to harsh realities.

An Associated Press-GfK Poll shows that a majority of Americans are back to thinking that the country is headed in the wrong direction after a fleeting period in which more thought it was on the right track.


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New ethics questions for Sarah Palin

Days before Gov. Sarah Palin is scheduled to leave office, the former vice presidential candidate is facing yet another legal distraction: An independent investigator found evidence she may have violated ethics laws by trading on her position as she sought money for lawyer fees.

A report obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press says Palin is securing unwarranted benefits and receiving improper gifts through the Alaska Fund Trust, set up by supporters.


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Yes, cell phones & driving don’t mix

None of this will come as news to anyone who has been nearly run down in a pedestrian crosswalk by a driver happily prattling away on a cell phone. But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, apparently bullied by Congress, felt that the actual proof of the dangers of distracted driving was too sensitive to share with the public.


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Saddam Hussein’s mother of all bluffs

It looks as though Saddam Hussein, as has been increasingly suspected, pulled off the mother of all bluffs --one that not only changed the course of history but set off a chain reaction so violent it is anyone's guess where and when it will end.

The late dictator told his FBI interrogators before he was turned over to Iraqi justice that he fooled the United States and half the world into thinking he was in possession of weapons of mass destruction as a deterrent to what he believed was a threat from Iran. He said his fear of Iranian fanatics was so strong he even contemplated seeking a security agreement with America, whom he did not see as a major enemy.


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Get ready for Uncle Barack’s Plantation

What is now being billed as health care reform is but the latest chapter in a process I described in an earlier column as "Back on Uncle Sam's Plantation."

Rather than moving dysfunctional America off the welfare state, as we did with welfare reform in 1996, we are now moving the free, functioning, and once prosperous part of our nation onto the welfare state.


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Public support for Obama health care plan fading

Public support for President Barack Obama's handling of healthcare reform, the pillar of his legislative agenda, has fallen below 50 percent for the first time, a Washington Post-ABC News poll released on Monday said.

Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress have run into stiff opposition this month as they try to pass legislation to restructure the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare industry through the creation of a government-run health insurance program.


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So many health plans, so little consensus

President Barack Obama's advisers are urging critics of their health care overhaul to wait for Congress to finish writing legislation before issuing verdicts. They also signaled they are willing to wait longer than their White House-imposed August deadline for action if it means they can sway wary lawmakers.

The White House spent Sunday defending Obama's health care proposals and stressing that Congress has not yet written the final draft of legislation that would dramatically reshape how Americans receive health care. Instead, they said, Republicans — and even some Democrats — should wait until a final bill takes form.
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