This has the makings of a grave policy error: a repeat of the dramatic events in the autumn of 1998 at best; a full-blown debacle and a slide into a second leg of the Long Slump at worst. Emerging markets are now big enough to drag down the global economy. As Indonesia, India, Ukraine, Brazil, Turkey, Venezuela, South Africa, Russia, Thailand and Kazakhstan try to shore up their currencies, the effect is ricocheting back into the advanced world in higher borrowing costs. Even China felt compelled to sell $20bn of US Treasuries in July. "They are running down reserves by selling US
Greece’s former Finance Minister, who steered the country into the single currency, has chided Angela Merkel after the German Chancellor said the debt-strapped country should have never been allowed to join the euro. “She [Angela Merkel] should be more careful in what she is saying,” Yannos Papantoniou told The Independent. “I don’t really think Ms Merkel really believes what she says – it’s part of the party games played ahead of [German] elections.” Ms Merkel, pictured, has been on the campaign trail for weeks now as she battles to win a third term when Germany holds its general election on 22 September.
New York -- Fast-food customers in search of burgers and fries on Thursday might run into striking workers instead. Organizers say thousands of fast-food workers are set to stage walkouts in dozens of cities around the country, part of a push to get chains such as McDonald´s, Taco Bell and Wendy´s to pay workers higher wages. It´s expected be the largest nationwide strike by fast-food workers, according to organizers. The biggest effort so far was over the summer when about 2,200 of the nation´s millions of fast-food workers staged a one-day strike in seven cities. Thursday´s planned walkouts follow a series of strikes
Sen. Tim Scott, R.-S.C., the only African American serving in the United States Senate, wasn´t invited to the event commemorating the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King´s march on Washington, though a host of Democratic luminaries spoke on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. “Senator Scott was not invited to speak at the event,” Greg Blair, a spokesman for the South Carolina lawmaker, said in a statement to the Washington Examiner. “The senator believes today is a day to remember the extraordinary accomplishments and sacrifices of Dr. King, Congressman John Lewis, and an entire generation of black leaders. Today’s anniversary should
America´s only black senator was not invited to participate in the historic 50th anniversary of the March on Washington event, it has emerged. Tim Scott, a Republican Representative appointed by South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley earlier this year, was noticeably absent from the Let Freedom Ring line-up. [Snip] African-American leaders who did speak at the day commemorating Martin Luther King Jr.´s resounding ´I Have a Dream´ included Georgia Democratic Representative John Lewis, who participated in the original March, Martin Luther King III, MSNBC host Al Sharpton and movie stars Jamie Foxx, Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker.
David Cameron was forced to delay plans for immediate military strikes on Syria last night after being warned he faced losing a Commons vote. The Prime Minister battled desperately to get a consensus for a missile attack, but was forced by Ed Miliband and Tory rebels to allow UN inspectors time to report on last week’s chemical weapons atrocity. MPs will vote tonight on a hastily prepared motion which still supports the principle of military action. However, it will not now be carried out until ‘every effort’ has been made to secure a UN agreement, and even then, direct British
House Speaker John A. Boehner said Wednesday that the U.S does have national security interests in Syria, but said President Obama hasn’t laid out a compelling case to Congress or the American public about what those interests are and how military strikes could achieve them. “It is essential that you provide a clear, unambiguous explanation of how military action — which is a means, not a policy — will secure U.S. objectives and how it fits into your overall policy,” Mr. Boehner said in a letter to Mr. Obama, released Wednesday evening. The Ohio Republican told the president to “personally
President Obama said Wednesday he still has not decided what action to take against Syria. “I have gotten options from our military,” Mr. Obama told PBS Newshour. “I have no interest in any kind of open-ended conflict in Syria. But we do have to make sure that when countries break international norms on weapons like chemical weapons that could threaten us, that they are held accountable.” Mr. Obama said the U.S. has concluded that the Syrian government carried out a large-scale chemical weapons attack against civilians last week. The president said the U.S. has examined evidence and doesn’t believe the
What does the world look like when people begin to doubt the credibility of U.S. power? Unfortunately, we’re finding that out in Syria and other nations where leaders have concluded they can defy a war-weary United States without paying a price. Using military power to maintain a nation’s credibility may sound like an antiquated idea, but it’s all too relevant in the real world we inhabit. It has become obvious in recent weeks that President Obama, whose restrained and realistic foreign policy I generally admire, needs to demonstrate that there are consequences for crossing a U.S. “red line.” Otherwise, the
House Speaker John A. Boehner is promising a “whale of a fight” this fall. But a fight over what? That is the $16.7 trillion question as Congress barrels toward another showdown over the federal debt limit. House Republicans are trying to figure out how to finesse the deadlines looming after lawmakers return to Washington on Sept. 9. Unless Congress acts, the federal government will shut down on Oct. 1 and, according to the Obama administration, the nation will run out of cash to pay its bills in mid-October. Boehner (R-Ohio) has proposed a short-term budget bill to keep the government
A panel discussion on CNN’s The Lead examined the impact that Wednesday’s speeches and celebrations surrounding the 50th anniversary of the civil rights movement’s march on Washington D.C. When asked why so few Republicans attended the rally and none spoke, the panel displayed a surprising lack of knowledge as to why that was the case. When asked why Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), the only sitting African-American U.S. Senator, was not invited to speak, one guest displayed a measure of disdain for the “appointed” Senator. A discussion about the impact of the Martin Luther King Jr. “I Have a Dream” speech
The results of a new study on the economic costs of excessive alcohol abuse demonstrate how federal bureaucrats, through a myriad of conflicts of interest, are attempting to influence and, perhaps, dictate, public policy. In a press statement dated August 13th, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the release of a study that concludes excessive alcohol use causes a large economic burden to the nation. According to the release: Excessive alcohol use cost states and D.C. a median of $2.9 billion in 2006, ranging from $420 million in North Dakota to $32 billion in California. This means
Barack Obama´s foreign policy dream -- cordial relations with a Middle East tranquilized by "smart diplomacy" -- is in a death grapple with reality. His rhetorical writhings illustrate the perils of loquacity. He has a glutton´s rather than a gourmet´s appetite for his own rhetorical cuisine, and has talked America to the precipice of a fourth military intervention in the crescent that extends from Libya to Afghanistan. Characterizing the 2011 Libyan project with weirdly passive syntax ("It is our military that is being volunteered by others to carry out missions"),
President Obama late Wednesday dismissed the notion that partisan gridlock on Capitol Hill is the result of his stature as the country´s first black president, instead accusing Republicans of a "habit" of attempting to "delegitimize" Democratic presidents. Obama noted that he had shared a stage at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington earlier in the day with President Clinton, and he remembered "him having a pretty hard time with the Republicans as well." There does [seem to] be a habit sometimes of just Democratic presidents generally being – efforts being made to delegitimize them in some fashion,"
FORT WORTH- He doesn’t live on campus. He can’t even drive there. But an 11-year-old is among the new class of undergrads at Texas Christian University – adjusting to college life, finding the right buildings, settling in for those easy core classes. “I’m taking calculus, physics, history and religion. Those are my four classes,” Carson Huey-You told CBS 11 News. Carson is taking a full load of college courses this semester — and studying to become a quantum physicist. He is the youngest student the university has ever had. “It’s fun because it’s basically just like high school, but in a
“Honestly, all this clean image stuff really gets on my nerves. Like people in America were coming up to me and saying ´aaah … I´m really pleased you´re givin´ our kids some clean harmless fun´ and I´d be going ´AAAARGH! No. I don´t want this.’ ” No, this wasn´t what Miley Cyrus said after her squalid spectacle at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards. This is from a 1985 interview with Wham! lead singer George Michael. He was complaining to Smash Hits Magazine about the burdens of a wholesome image, burdens he would soon shed with salacious-yet-forgettable ditties like
FORT HOOD, Texas — Former Army Maj. Nidal Hasan was sentenced to death Wednesday for killing 13 people in a 2009 shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas – and the families of several victims said justice had been served for a “coward.” A court-martial jury of 13 retired military officers deliberated for just under two hours before they unanimously agreed on the maximum penalty of lethal injection. The sentence also included dismissing Hasan from the Army and stripping him of his military pay. Hasan, 42, will now be flown to the maximum security U.S. military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
President Barack Obama said that he has not made a decision yet regarding a possible U.S. strike against Syria, it was revealed today. The commander-in-chief sat down Wednesday for an exclusive half-hour interview with PBS NewsHour senior correspondents Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill to discuss a wide range of topics, among them the on-going civil war in Syria. The president said that allegations that his Syrian counterpart, Bashar al-Assad, used chemical weapons on civilian populations would factor into his calculation and he warned that Assad should be held accountable. Mr Obama said he has been consulting military leaders and members
Amman - Forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad appear to have evacuated most personnel from army and security command headquarters in central Damascus in preparation for a possible Western military strike, residents and opposition sources said on Wednesday. US-led air or missile strikes on Syria look all but certain after the United States and European and Middle Eastern allies blamed a suspected poison gas attack that killed hundreds in the city on August 21 on Assad´s forces. (Snip) Among the buildings that have been partially evacuated are the General Staff Command Building on Umayyad Square, the nearby airforce command
New York — Public Advocate Bill de Blasio is within just a few points of avoiding a runoff from a Democratic challenger for New York City mayor, according to the latest Quinnipiac University poll. De Blasio is leading the Democratic pack with 36 percent of likely voters, near the 40 percent that would be needed to avoid a runoff. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn trails de Blasio with 21 percent, followed by 20 percent for former Comptroller Bill Thompson. Former Rep. Anthony Weiner has the support of 8 percent of likely Democratic primary voters, followed by 6 percent for Comptroller
When we first started getting messages at the Facebook page of “Reagan: The Movie,” objecting to our (allegedly) having chosen Jane Fonda to play the role of Nancy Reagan, we were mildly nonplussed. There were angry calls for boycotts, heartfelt pleas that we change our minds, and the occasional expletive from furious Vietnam veterans. At first we attempted to set the record straight. “Wrong movie,” our Facebook team would write back. “You’re thinking of a movie called ‘The Butler.’” But in time, the trickle turned into a flood and it seemed that no amount of corrections could stop the misunderstanding.
A U.S. official briefed on the military options being considered by President Obama told the Los Angeles Times that the White House is seeking a strike on Syria "just muscular enough not to get mocked." "They are looking at what is just enough to mean something, just enough to be more than symbolic," the official told the paper, giving credence to similar reports describing a limited military strike in the aftermath of last week´s alleged chemical weapons attack. NBC News reported earlier this week that the administration would launch three days of missile strikes, while CNN cited a senior administration official saying
The shadow of the Iraq conflict should loom long over MPs as they vote on military intervention in Syria tomorrow. Back then we were told of the “definite proof” of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), of the horrors that Saddam wrought on his people and that regime change would bring peace and prosperity to the people of that country. We have been in Afghanistan longer than the First and Second World Wars combined and yet what have we actually achieved? The price we have paid is considerable: not just the billions of pounds spent, but the price in blood of
Barack Obama´s speech on the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington was classic Obama: beautifully delivered, moving, deceptive, divisive, frustrating. And, of course, it was far more about Barack Obama than it was Martin Luther King Jr. It started with a history lesson, a reminder of the significance of that bright shining moment in 1963--when thousands of ordinary Americans, "assembled here in our nation´s capital under the shadow of the great emancipator to offer testimony of injustice, to petition their government for redress, and to awaken America´s long slumbering conscience." For all Americans--left and right--that´s the kernel of what
I´m pretty certain that tomorrow´s newspapers will be written in the traditional language of party manoeuvring. Labour, we will read, has ´scored a victory´ over David Cameron who was forced to ´back down´, ´blink first´, ´eat humble pie´, etc. The story of the watered-down parliamentary motion broke late, and journalists in a hurry often write in hackneyed phrases. No, they think in hackneyed phrases, pressing events into the familiar pattern of Tory-Labour confrontations. [Snip] MPs, not unnaturally, reflected their constituents´ views, and it became clear that there was no appetite for an immediate strike against Syria. The system, you might