Last year at this time a debate raged about whether economic growth and job creation has been abnormally slow compared with previous recoveries from recessions in the United States. Now that the growth rate has declined to 1.6% over the past year from 2.8%, the debate is no longer about whether. It´s about why. The poor economic policies of the past few years is a reasonable explanation for today´s weak economy. Fiscal policy has at best provided temporary stimulus before fading away with no sustainable impact on growth. More costly and confusing regulations—including the many mandates in the Affordable Care Act
WASHINGTON -- In an interview Monday, President Obama responded to a surprising late proposal that could head off a military strike against Syria. The Syrians agreed to a Russian proposal to put their chemical weapons under international control and destroy them. I talked to President Obama about that, and about a threat Syrian dictator Bashar Assad made during an interview with Charlie Rose. SCOTT PELLEY: Can you accept the Russian/Syrian proposal? PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, we don´t know the details of it yet. But I think that it is a potentially positive development. I don´t think that we would´ve gotten to the point where
In an interview with NBC, President Obama suggested a diplomatic solution was at hand regarding Syria, and he said, "If you ask Michelle do we want to be involved in another war, the answer is no." The NBC host asked, "Would you act without Congress? The answer could be yes, no, or I haven´t decided." "I think it´s fair to say that I haven´t decided. I am taking this vote in Congress and what the American people are saying very seriously. Because if you ask somebody, you know, I read polls like everybody else. And if you ask somebody, if you
As Congress debates whether to authorize a strike on Syria in response to Bashar Assad´s use of chemical weapons, much has been said and written about America´s special role in the world. Simply put, the blessings of prosperity obligate the U.S. to enforce the peace it seeks. There is no nobler duty. If the U.S. is unwilling to use its strength to respond to Assad´s crimes, then the defenseless will continue to be slaughtered in Syria, and America risks having similar atrocities visited upon its citizens. To allow the use of weapons of mass destruction to go unanswered would be an
So much for John Kerry´s "global test," circa 2004. So much for Barack Obama slamming the Bush administration for dismissing "European reservations about the wisdom and necessity of the Iraq war," circa 2007. So much for belittling foreign leaders who side with the administration as "poodles." So much for the U.N. stamp of legitimacy. So much for the "lie/die" rhyme popular with Democrats when they were accusing George W. Bush of fiddling with the WMD intelligence. Say what you will about the prospect of a U.S. strike on Syria, it has already performed one useful service: exposing the low dishonesty, the
Today we observe the anniversary of the birth of the incomparable soul singer Otis Redding. Among other things, Redding was the artist responsible for Aretha Franklin’s breakthrough song “Respect.” Franklin recorded the song in 1967 at her Atlantic recording session in New York City after she returned from her initial Atlantic session in Muscle Shoals. It turned out to be the breakthrough that turned Aretha into a star overnight after years of struggle. According to Peter Guralnick in Sweet Soul Music — a magnificent book — Redding complained with great foresight to Atlantic executive Jerry Wexler upon hearing Aretha’s version
No decision by an elected official is more serious than whether to send our armed forces into conflict. President Obama was right to seek Congress’s authorization to use military force against Syria. But having carefully considered the president’s substantive arguments, I am compelled to vote against the requested authorization. I do not make this decision lightly. I want to support our commander in chief. I emphatically condemn Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons against his people, and all Americans mourn the loss of innocent lives in Syria’s civil war.
Rafa Nadal took the upper hand in the U.S. Open men´s final by winning the opening set 6-2 against world number one Novak Djokovic on Monday. The French Open champion broke the top-seeded Serbian in the third game when he blasted a forehand winner to take a 2-1 lead. World number two Nadal broke Djokovic again in the seventh game for a 5-2 edge when he won his eighth consecutive point after winning a challenge on a Djokovic ball ruled in by the linesman. Nadal, dashing around the court with speed and ease, played a much cleaner set in windy
A Florida ministry that feeds the poor said a state agriculture department official told them they would not be allowed to receive USDA food unless they removed portraits of Christ, the Ten Commandments, a banner that read “Jesus is Lord” and stopping giving Bibles to the needy. “They told us they could no longer allow us to have any religious information where the USDA food is going to be,” said Kay Daly, executive director of the Christian Service Center. So why did the government have an issue with the religious group’s religious decorations? A spokesperson for the Florida Department of Agriculture
Remember that dumb cowboy George W. Bush, who alienated all our allies and dragged us into wars of choice in the Mideast? And remember that goofball Mitt Romney, whom Joe Biden a year ago accused of wanting to go to war in Syria? Both of them must be having a big laugh over the way things are going for Obama now. When I wrote last week on our bumbling Syria diplomacy, it seemed that things couldn´t possibly go further downhill. Boy, was I wrong. Last week, it seemed our only ally was France. But now the French are having second
President Barack Obama has revealed that has hasn´t ruled out abandoning an attack on Syria, and that he has been secretly discussing a non-military resolution to the Syrian crisis with Russian President Vladimir Putin ´for quite some time.´ ´We will pursue this diplomatic track,´ Obama told Fox News anchor Chris Wallace. ´I fervently hope that this can be resolved in a non-military way.´ But ´it´s fair to say that I haven´t decided´ what to do if Congress fails to authorize a military strike against the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria, he conceded to NBC News´ Savannah Guthrie. While he said
Australia´s incoming conservative government has promised to reboot a stalled mining boom and revive an appetite for investment. Prime minister-elect Tony Abbott swept into office on a platform to scrap a mining tax and run a stable administration. Mr Abbott´s Liberal-National Party coalition ended six years of often turbulent Labor Party rule and three years of minority government. It won a majority of more than 30 seats in the 150-seat parliament at the national elections. It was Labor´s worst result since 1934. Mr Abbott, a former student boxer, Rhodes scholar and trainee priest, began his first day as prime minister-elect with a dawn bike
Peking duck is no longer a dish in China, it´s a craze. Rubber ducks have been appearing on lakes, some used to commemorate the outlawed democracy movement, some to promote businesses and others just set out for fun. [Snip] The craze began in May, when a 54-foot duck made by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman was floated in Hong Kong´s Victoria Harbor. Copycat versions of the work made in China began appearing all over. The ducks showed up in at least 16 cities, used mostly to advertise real estate.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel´s choice of the term "degrade" to describe an attack on Syria has been interpreted by Pentagon planners as guidance for a limited strike, according to senior military officials. (snip) A second senior official, who has seen the most recent planning, offered this metaphor to describe such a strike: If Assad is eating Cheerios, we´re going to take away his spoon and give him a fork. Will that degrade his ability to eat Cheerios? Yes. Will it deter him? Maybe. But he´ll still be able to eat Cheerios.
President Obama, speaking at the G-20 meeting in St. Petersburg on Friday, reminded me of an investment banker trying to sell a deal he doesn´t believe in. And the customer knows it. Halting. Hesitant. Uncertain. Uncomfortable. That´s what Obama´s statement and body language had to say. On the verge of a potentially huge defeat on the Syrian question in Congress, President Obama is in a box. He´s looking for a way out, but he can´t find one. He´s losing supporters in the legislature at home, and he didn´t gain any at the G-20 summit abroad. When Obama speaks to the American people on
CARACAS – One of the worst power outages in Venezuelan history has given a jolt to President Nicolas Maduro’s government and revived opposition accusations that its socialist policies and incompetence are wrecking the country. Even though Venezuela’s 29 million people have endured sporadic blackouts since 2009, there was widespread shock at the extent of this week’s outage across two-thirds of the nation. In the capital Caracas, which the government strenuously shields from rationing, the power went off throughout Tuesday afternoon, causing chaos on the streets. “This isn’t the Third World, it’s the Fifth World!” griped student Marilyn Morales, 26, recounting how first she
JAMAICA WILL, this weekend, seek to have Venezuela agree to a proposal for the training of Venezuelans in English language as part of a programme to offset oil debts. Phillip Paulwell, Jamaica’s minister of science, technology, energy and mining, who leaves the island for Port-au-Prince, Haiti, today, said he is expecting a positive response to the proposal. “By the end of the weekend, I will be able to report on it,” Paulwell told The Gleaner. Paulwell will be attending the 11th meeting of the PetroCaribe Council of Ministers and the second meeting of the PetroCaribe Economic Zone. “We are continuing our discussions with Venezuela
President Obama said on Monday he would "run to ground" a proposal floated by the Russians that would wrest control of chemical weapons from Syria and would potentially head off a U.S. military strike against the Bashar Assad regime. Obama, who conducted a half dozen television interviews on Monday afternoon to try to gin up support for his call for military action against Syria said he would "absolutely" put off a punitive strike if Assad gave up his weapons. "It´s possible if it´s real," Obama told CNN in an interview that aired Monday of the possible breakthrough on the Syria
President Obama said Monday, a day before his prime-time address to the nation justifying military action in Syria, that he would prefer a diplomatic solution over a military strike and that he doesn´t think he will be able to convince a majority of Americans that it´s the right thing -- but that he can make "a strong case." (Snip) Mr. Obama also told Ifill that, "I did have those conversations" with Russian President Vladimir Putin, when asked whether he had discussions with the Russian leader about the idea of putting Syrian chemical weapons under international control.
Actress Eva Longoria and Michelle Obama are teaming up to encourage people to drink more water. The two will be at a high school in Watertown, Wis., on Thursday for the event, which is a part of Obama´s Let´s Move! anti-obesity campaign. Longoria is a prominent Obama supporter who addressed delegates at the Democratic National Convention and raised funds for the president´s reelection bid. The first lady will also spend time with military families this week. She will visit military children at Fort Belvoir, Va., on Wednesday, the anniversary of 9/11. She´ll also stop by Intrepid Spirit One — which
Small business owners who thought they were off the hook for ObamaCare regulations until 2015 may be in for an expensive wake-up call next month. Beginning Oct. 1, any business with at least one employee and $500,000 in annual revenue must notify all employees by letter about the Affordable Care Act’s health-care exchanges, or face up to a $100-per-day fine. The requirement applies to any business regulated under the Fair Labor Standards Act, regardless of size. Going forward, letters are to be distributed to any new hires within 14 days of their starting date, according to the Department of Labor.
Syria: As a Chinese warship joins Russian ships in the Mediterranean, we should remember a cruise missile attack on an Israeli warship. President Obama should understand that Syria and Hezbollah have missiles, too. As the Obama administration continues to deploy its comical weapons, with Secretary of State John Kerry promising America any attack on Syria will be "unbelievably small," a Chinese warship deploys off the Syrian coast, joining its Russian counterparts in what used to be an "American lake," the Mediterranean Sea. The People´s Liberation Army has dispatched the amphibious dock landing ship Jinggangshan, a move that follows the announcement that Russia
Syria: The attack the U.S. is threatening Bashar Assad with for alleged chemical weapons use will now be an "unbelievably small, limited kind of effort." Is America becoming a paper tiger? When the White House´s foreign policy team aren´t dissembling or dithering, they can be found fudging, vacillating or prevaricating. Secretary of State John Kerry, the face President Obama obviously wants defending an increasingly indefensible non-strategy, vowed Monday, "We´re not going to war. We will not have people at risk in that way." We will have "a very limited, very targeted, very short-term effort," an "unbelievably small, limited kind of effort." We´re talking
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will let President Barack Obama make his case to senators before moving to a vote on a resolution to authorize a strike on Syria. “I don’t think we need to see how fast we can do this. We have to see how well we can do this,” Reid told senators Monday evening. “What we need to do is make sure that the president has the opportunity to speak to all 100 senators all 300 million people before we do this.” Reid said he consulted with the president before making his decision. The move could mean
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Monday delayed a vote on using military force against Syria. Faced with stiffening opposition from Republicans and skepticism from many Democrats, Reid said he would not rush the vote to begin considering the controversial use-of-force resolution. He insisted he was not delaying action because of a lack of votes. “I’ve spoken to the Republican leader. I’ve talked to virtually all my Democratic senators and we have enough votes to get cloture,” he said. Reid said the delay could give senators more time to weigh the arguments of President Obama and other proponents