2:18PM EST December 10. 2012 - As "fiscal cliff" talks exit the public posturing stage and real private discussions begin, this would be a good time to take a step back and look at the whole fiscal forest, instead of the trees. The biggest problem we´ve had in our economy for the last several years is a lack of job growth. We officially came out of the recession more than three years ago, but our economy is still not growing fast enough to create enough jobs for everyone
WASHINGTON — Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, said in an extensive interview this month that he did not take any secret N.S.A. documents with him to Russia when he fled there in June, assuring that Russian intelligence officials could not get access to them. Mr. Snowden said he gave all of the classified documents he had obtained to journalists he met in Hong Kong, before flying to Moscow, and did not keep any copies for himself. He did not take the files to Russia “because it wouldn’t serve the public interest,”
ROME— Pope Francis plans to visit Israel as soon as next year, the Vatican said, in what could be a landmark visit for a pontiff who has already won plaudits from the Jewish community for his strong condemnation of anti-Semitism. On Thursday, the pope also met at the Vatican with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who invited him to visit Palestine as well. Israeli President Shimon Peres had already extended an invitation to the pope to visit the Holy Land shortly after the pontiff´s election in March. Following the invitation from Mr. Abbas, "we can now start thinking in a more concrete way
More than anything else, eBay founder Pierre Morad Omidyar—who is ready to plow as much as $250 million of his nearly $9 billion fortune into an as-yet-undefined journalism venture—has impressed colleagues and acquaintances with his refreshingly modest personal style. “He’s a very normal person,” says New York University journalism professor Jay Rosen, who interviewed the press-shy Iranian-American about his plans to join forces with lawyer-turned-investigative reporter Glenn Greenwald, the impresario of the Edward Snowden revelations in Britain’s The Guardian, to create a major media enterprise from the ground up.
President Barack Obama launched a ferocious political attack on hardline Tea Party Republicans yesterday, accusing them of betraying the ideals of America by forcing a 16-day government shutdown that cost the economy at least $24 billion (£15 billion). Hours after signing the legislation that ended Washington’s latest budget stand-off, Mr Obama said Republicans who had “pushed for the shutdown” had succeeded only in creating a spectacle of poor governance that had tarnished America’s credibility in the world. “It’s encouraged our enemies, it’s emboldened our competitors, and it’s depressed our friends, who look to us for steady leadership,” he said. Mr Obama said the
Far from chastened by the debt debate, tea partyers and conservative groups signaled Thursday they’ve concluded they didn’t lose, but rather were sabotaged from within by weak Republicans — and they took the first steps to oust one of them. Mississippi state Sen. Chris McDaniel announced he would challenge U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran in the Republican primary next year, a day after the GOP’s senior senator voted to end the 16-day government shutdown and grant President Obama more borrowing authority.
WASHINGTON – The shutdown provoked her meltdown. The official stenographer who flipped out on the floor of the House as the world watched the vote ending the nation’s debt-ceiling crisis was clocking mind-numbing hours during the government shutdown, her husband said. Dan Reidy told The Post Thursday that his wife, Dianne, was plagued by sleeplessness since the start of the shutdown Oct. 1. “Two weeks, waking up in the middle of the night. She’s like, I can’t sleep, God’s got me in the work,” Reidy said, speaking from the living room of the couple’s Maryland home, where they’re raising two twin girls.
New allegations that Turkey’s intelligence service leaked the identities of Israeli agents to Iran have placed scrutiny on President Barack Obama’s close relationship with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and raised questions about the future of cooperation between United States and Turkish intelligence agencies. Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MIT) allegedly revealed the identities of as many as 10 Iranians who were meeting covertly with Israeli spies in Turkey, the Washington Post’s David Ignatius reported Wednesday. Israeli and Turkish intelligence have had a close collaboration for decades.
The US team believe the "waste removal system" is one of the fundamental reasons for sleep. Their study, in the journal Science, showed brain cells shrink during sleep to open up the gaps between neurons and allow fluid to wash the brain clean. They also suggest that failing to clear away some toxic proteins may play a role in brain disorders. One big question for sleep researchers is why do animals sleep at all when it leaves them vulnerable to predators?
The Environmental Protection Agency is still working on those carbon-emissions rules, but it’s already saved its own workers from a potential bio-hazard: a 16-year-old can of soup, which was discovered in one of the Chicago headquarter’s refrigerators during the government shutdown. EPA workers from the midwest region got a welcome-back e-mail, which included a note from chief Gina McCarthy, information about back pay, and a few notes about what had gone on during the 16-day partial shuttering of the government. Fortunately, those remaining in the building had thought to clear the office fridges of all those weird Tupperware-like containers and tubs
Every so often but not nearly often enough, the opportunity to revel in guilt-free schadenfreude rolls around. This is one of those moments. Over at Daily Kos, one of the most heavily-trafficked liberal websites and a revealing glimpse into the repugnant id that is the leftist mind, Daily Kos diarist "Tirge Caps" is belatedly learning that the Affordable Care Act is not the glorious legislative accomplishment that "progressives" have trumpeted over the last three years. Instead, it´s a downright bummer, man. (Sorry, but Daily Kossacks are the only people who look back at 1968 fondly). Here´s what "Tirge Caps" wrote about his first
MRCTV´s Dan Joseph had a question on his mind that he couldn´t shake: who bears the brunt of the blame for the government shutdown? Who really is responsible for the mess we´re in right now? Is it President Obama or former President George W. Bush? He decided to take these questions to the heart of our misery: Washington D.C. Despite the fact that "Dubya" has been out of office for the past five years, most of the respondents said former President George W. Bush is to blame for the shutdown. Why? Well, he apparently did a lot of bad stuff and had policies that only Barack Obama can reverse,
Journalist and author Carl Bernstein said Wednesday that Republican Party leadership is “cancerous” and has put the United States at risk by letting the tea party lead the GOP. “The Republican Party today has become a rabid organization from the top down. The leadership is cancerous,” the former Washington Post reporter said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Wednesday. Bernstein called the current situation a “terrible moment in our history” and said only segregation politics offers a comparison.
WASHINGTON— President Barack Obama is not an overtly religious man. He and his family rarely attend church, and he almost never elaborates in public about his own relationship to his Christian faith. But away from the public eye, advisers say, the president has carefully nurtured a sense of spirituality that has served as a grounding mechanism during turbulent times, when the obstacles to governing a deeply divided nation seem nearly insurmountable. Every year on Aug. 4, the president´s birthday, Obama convenes a group of pastors by phone to receive their prayers for him for the year to come. During the
The Affordable Care Act´s botched rollout has stunned its media cheering section, and it even seems to have surprised the law´s architects. The problems run much deeper than even critics expected, and whatever federal officials, White House aides and outside contractors are doing to fix them isn´t working. But who knows? Omerta is the word of the day as the Obama Administration withholds information from the public. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is even refusing to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee in a hearing this coming Thursday. HHS claims she has scheduling conflicts, but we hope
An unnamed Obama administration official claimed that the White House feared GOP subpoenas would slow their work on the Obamacare website, leading to keeping its design in-house with "trusted campaign tech experts" that seemed to have spectacularly failed at creating a successful commerce website. In a Politico article lamenting the second week of failed performance of Healthcare.gov, the Obamacare insurance website, the unnamed official attempts to explain why the whole thing has been such a dismal failure: it´s the Republican´s fault. "Facing such intense opposition from congressional Republicans," Politico wrote, "the administration was in a bunker mentality as it built the enrollment
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said he might not be good at calculus, but he knows how to legislate. Reid told The Huffington Post that Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is smart, but he can’t outmaneuver the 26-year veteran in the halls of Congress. “He might be able to work a calculus problem better than I can,” Reid said Thursday. “But he can´t legislate better than I can." Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) are credited with brokering the deal that ended the government shutdown. Reid said the House’s decision to go along with a deal to end
Of all the bitter fruit of the Barack Obama disaster, the most bitter may be the sense of hopelessness that has descended on Americans, especially the young. Has there ever been anything like it in our history? Even on the eve of the Civil War, was there this much pessimism about our future? Gallup wasn’t around in those days, but I wonder. For a simple measure of how the Obama administration has crushed any sense of hopefulness in the American people, take a look at the survey that Rasmussen Reports does periodically on whether America’s best days are behind her,
This is not the column about the Obamacare rollout I expected to write. If you had told me, months ago, that weeks after the health care law’s coverage expansion went into effect I would be writing about the problems its launch had exposed, I would have assumed I’d be writing about rate shock, rising premiums and the disappearance of many cheap insurance plans — basically, all the problems conservatives have worried will make Obamacare a ruinously expensive failure if they play out as we fear they might. I may be writing about those issues soon enough. But for now there
Here’s a question for conservatives and Republicans: Going into the 2012 Election Day, or even in the last few days before Election Day, did you think Mitt Romney was going to win? A couple of months ago, did you think the strategy of threatening to shut down the government or prevent raising the debt ceiling, to force the outright repeal or defunding of Obamacare, would really work? Romney lost by 4,967,508 votes, 126 Electoral College votes, and 3.85 percentage points. That’s not very close. Obamacare isn’t going to be repealed this year, and it’s not going to be defunded. So the
The British multinational in charge of processing Obamacare paper applications received a hefty contract boost just days before Healthcare.gov’s disastrous roll-out, a sign that the Obama administration may have expected serious problems with the website.The Business of Federal Technology (FCW) reports that on Sept. 26, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) increased their planned payout to Serco’s U.S. subsidiary by 75 percent, adding an extra $87 million to the $114 million promised for processing initial Obamacare enrollment applications.The contract documents do not explain the last-minute infusion of federal dollars, and neither Serco nor CMS would disclose why the
In a statement delivered from the White House this morning, President Barack Obama said that now that Congress has enacted a continuing resolution to fund the government--that includes funding to implement Obamacare--he would like to negotiate with the House with the aim of enacting the immigration bill passed by the Senate earlier this year. The key provision in that Senate bill would allow illegal aliens currently in the United States to become legal residents here and get on a "path to citizenship." Critics of the "path to citizenship" call it an "amnesty" because it lets foreign nationals breaking U.S. law--including U.S. immigration
Watch out, Alan Grayson: you´ve got competition when it comes to uttering the ugliest slur on Tea Party Republicans . . . Sure, you´ve compared them to the Klan. But fellow Dem Steve Cohen has upped the ante. On Steve Kornacki´s MSNBC show this morning, Cohen called Tea Party congressmen: "domestic enemies" that he took an oath to defend the country against. Did Kornacki challenge Cohen´s libel? Hah! He merely observed that Cohen sounded "very pessimistic." View the video after the jump.Was Cohen´s calumny what President Obama had in mind when this past week he proclaimed that "there is no
South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy doesn’t think the GOP’s “defund Obamacare” strategy turned out to be such a smart plan. “What did Republicans get for 16 days of a government shutdown with people being hurt? We have absolutely nothing to show for it, other than a damaged brand,” the tea party favorite told The Greenville News, noting that Republicans were ultimately forced to capitulate to the president. Gowdy said that the GOP ended up worse off after the 16-day shutdown than the party had been beforehand. “We had a government shutdown, we were at the precipice of hitting the debt ceiling and
Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton formally endorsed Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe on Saturday, signifying her first high-profile public foray into elective politics since leaving her post earlier this year. Mrs. Clinton helped fire up an overflow crowd of an estimated 800 people at the State Theater in Falls Church there to support Mr. McAuliffe, a former Democratic National Committee Chairman and prolific fundraiser who was a rainmaker for President Clinton during the 1990s.