Politics and Legislation
Democrats deny parallels between Presidents Obama and Carter
By Alexander Bolton
Democrats say the political prognosis for President Obama is much better than it was at the same point in former President Jimmy Carter’s first term, even though the pace of the nation’s job growth has slowed.
Obama was set back Friday by disappointing jobs numbers but the economy still created jobs at a faster pace than under Carter or former President George H.W. Bush, two of only four presidents to lose re-elections in the last 100 years.
Jobs are growing at a substantially faster clip than they did in 1980, when Carter lost to Ronald Reagan in a landslide, and 1992, when Bush lost narrowly to Bill Clinton.
Obama’s three-month average for 2012 is also better than the job growth former President George W. Bush saw when he was re-elected in 2004.
The economy is creating more jobs than it did in 2000, when former Vice President Al Gore (D-Tenn.) fumbled the handoff of the White House from Clinton, or 2004 when George W. Bush held off a strong challenge from Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.).
But jobs are not growing as fast as 1988, when then-Vice President George H.W. Bush successfully ran on Reagan’s economic record, or 1996, when Clinton won a second White-House term. Bush and Clinton won easily in those years.
While many political experts predicted this year’s presidential election would come down to the economy, the middling nature of the recovery signals that campaign tactics and the candidates’ performances may prove more decisive…..
GOP: Obama, Democrats view energy as ‘hazardous waste’
By Vicki Needham
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin said President Obama’s policies are the cause of rising gas prices, not a lack of energy resources.
Fallin said Saturday that the problem stems from a lack of leadership and questioned Obama’s role in increasing the nation’s energy output and in the hold up of the Keystone XL pipeline, especially as gas prices hover near an average of $4 a gallon.
In the weekly Republican address, Fallin said “our pro-energy policies stand in stark contrast though to the policies supported by President Obama and the Washington Democrats, who seem to view American-made energy as a hazardous waste rather than a resource.”
“Millions of Americans remain out of work, but President Obama continues to propose job-killing tax hikes and obstruct the basic energy infrastructure projects that would lead to the creation of thousands of new jobs, not to mention more revenue in state budgets,” she said…..
The Best Congress the Banks’ Money can Buy
Bill Moyers, Op-Ed:
It’s happening right now with the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act — passed two years ago in the wake of our disastrous financial meltdown. Just last week, for example, both parties in the House overwhelmingly approved two bills that already would change Dodd-Frank’s rules on derivatives — those convoluted trading deals recently described by the chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission as “the largest dark pool in our financial markets.”
Germany throws weight behind Iran’s nuclear energy program
German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has underlined Iran’s right to develop its nuclear energy program as a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
According to a commentary by the top German diplomat in the Sunday paper Bild am Sonntag, Westerwelle stressed “Iran’s right to have nuclear energy for civilian use.”
Mild winter may have artificially inflated jobs data, economists fear
By Ylan Q. Mui,
As most Americans basked in the warmest, sunniest March in half a century, economists stared at the skies with dread:
Could good weather portend bad news for the economic recovery?
Economists say the mild winter has artificially inflated job growth. February alone stole as many as 72,000 positions from March and future months, according to Macroeconomic Advisers.
Translation: The surge in hiring early in the year may not be as strong as it appeared.
The unusual weather began in January, which was the fourth warmest in more than a century. February ranked in the top 20, according to government data. Weather consulting firm Planalytics said several major cities experienced their warmest March in 118 years, including Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and Oklahoma City, where temperatures were about 15 degrees higher than average.
For many people, that meant an early debut of open-toed shoes and dinners al fresco, and early mulching and spring cleaning. It also meant more jobs for construction workers and retail employees to keep pace with demand. Planalytics said demand jumped 40 percent last month for lawn mowers, 17 percent for sun care and 5 percent for bottled water…..
Regulators: JP Morgan illegally let Lehman Bros. count customers’ funds as its own
By David S. Hilzenrath,
JP Morgan Chase illegally allowed Lehman Brothers, the investment bank whose 2008 bankruptcy brought the financial system to the brink of collapse, to count customers’ money as its own, according to federal regulators.
The arrangement boosted the amount that Lehman could borrow from JP Morgan, where the customers’ money was deposited, regulators charged Wednesday.
Then, at the height of the financial crisis, JP Morgan refused to release the customer funds for about two weeks, until regulators ordered it to do so, regulators charged.
The charges were spelled out in an enforcement action against JP Morgan by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
What Today’s Job Numbers Mean
Robert Reich, Op-Ed:
American consumers, in short, are hitting a wall. They don’t dare save much less because their jobs are still insecure. They can’t borrow much more. Their home values are still dropping, and many are underwater – owing more on their homes than the homes are worth. The economy has been growing but almost all the gains have gone to the very top. As I’ve noted, this is the most lopsided recovery on record.
Oil prices fall 2 percent
Oil drops below $102 per barrel on concerns of economic recovery
NEW YORK (AP) — Oil prices fell Monday on concerns about the economic recovery.
West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark crude, fell $1.92 to $101.39 per barrel. Brent crude, which is used to price oil imported by U.S. refineries, slipped $2.13 to $121.30 per barrel.
The U.S. economy added just 120,000 jobs in March— half as much as each of the previous three months. The government reported the disappointing data on Friday, but Monday was the first day oil markets were open. Stocks also fell.
Another Credit Agency Downgrades US
by William Bigelow
Credit rating agency Egan Jones downgraded the United States Thursday on concern over the sustainability of public debt. Egan Jones is one of the most important ratings firms in the world; they lowered our credit level from AA+ to AA. The firm reduced America from AAA to AA+ in July 2011, just before Standard & Poor’s did the same.
Egan Jones warned. “Without some structural changes soon, restoring credit quality will become increasingly difficult . . . without some structural changes soon, restoring credit quality will become increasingly difficult.” They added that there was a 1.2% probability of U.S default in the next 12 months. The company cited the fact that the US’s total debt, which now equals its total GDP, is rising and soon will eclipse the national GDP; the company sees the debt rising to 112% of the GDP by 2014.
Wars and Rumors of War
S.Korea, U.S. Practice Stabilizing N.Korea in Civil War
The annual joint South Korean and U.S. exercises dubbed “Key Resolve” last month for the first time practiced deploying more than 100,000 South Korean troops in North Korea to stabilize the country in case of regime collapse.
The two countries “practiced deploying a large contingent of troops to bring stability in the North in case of civil war in the wake of sudden change there,” a government source said on Thursday. “Seoul and Washington practiced preparing for sudden change in the North for the first time during last year’s Key Resolve drill, but this was the first time we went on the assumption that South Korean troops would be deployed in the North.”
“More Than Three Days Of Nonstop U.S. Backed Air Bombardment Of Southern Yemen”
5 days before talks, Iran rejects key demands
US, Israeli demands on Iran very similar; Barak urges world powers not to “lower the bar” during talks.
With critical talks on the Iranian nuclear program set to begin Friday, Tehran already rejected two key demands on Sunday by the world’s powers: Closing the Fordow underground uranium enrichment facility near Qom and stopping the enrichment of uranium to 20 percent.
Fereydoon Abbasi Davani, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Agency, called the Western diplomats’ demands “irrational,” according to AFP.
AFP quoted Davani as saying in an interview with the Iranian ISNA news agency that the Fordow facility had to be built underground because of the West’s threats to attack the Islamic Republic’s nuclear facilities.
“If they do not threaten us and guarantee that no aggression will occur, then there would be no need for countries to build facilities underground.
They should change their behavior and language,” he said.
Davani added that Iran would continue to produce uranium enriched to 20%, but not “more than we need, because it is not in our benefit to produce it and keep it.”
Iran claims it needs 20% enriched uranium to produce medical isotopes in its Tehran Research Reactor, while the West believes the 20% enriched uranium is a stepping stone to creating nuclear weapons.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu ridiculed the isotopes claim during his speech to the America Israel Public Affairs Committee Policy Conference last month, saying: “A country that builds underground nuclear facilities, develops intercontinental ballistic missiles, manufactures thousands of centrifuges and absorbs crippling sanctions, is doing all that in order to advance… medical research. So you see, when that Iranian ICBM is flying through the air to a location near you, you’ve got nothing to worry about. It’s only carrying medical isotopes.”
Getting Iran to suspend its high-level uranium enrichment and close the bunker at Fordow are “near-term priorities” for the United States and its allies, a senior US official said on Sunday, confirming an earlier New York Times report.
Articles of Interest
The BBC Film That Exposed Israel’s Secret Illegal Nuclear Weapons (FULL Documentary)
No More Rule By Slogans And Brands: Public Confidence In The PR State In D.C. Is Collapsing
The brand of Barack Obama is collapsing.
“Heaven smiles, and faiths and empires gleam,
Like wrecks of a dissolving dream.” – Percy Bysshe Shelley.
“He who abhors and shuns the light of the Sun,
He who refuses to behold with respect the living creation of God,
He who leads the good to wickedness,
He who makes the meadows waterless and the pastures desolate,
He who lets fly his weapon against the innocent,
An enemy of my faith, a destroyer of Thy principles is he, O Lord!” – Zarathustra.
The Obama brand is collapsing and nothing can save it. This was inevitable because the Obama brand is all surface and no substance. Barack Obama is a pseudo president of a propaganda state that has committed atrocities against innocent people in America and around the world. Obama’s name, image, authority, and charisma were all artificially created by the mind controllers in the mass media.
As the legendary journalist John Pilger said in April 2009, “No one knew what the new brand actually stood for.” Since it stands for nothing, the Obama brand is falling into oblivion. Obama, who was sold as the defender of the rule of law and the rights of the American people, is now being exposed to be a liar and a fraud…..
Meet the ALEC Staffers Who Help Corporations Write Our Laws
Zaid Jilani, Republic Report:
“ALEC is accustomed to hiding its agenda and its legislation behind closed doors. At secretive conferences and over e-mail chains the public never sees, the organization allows its corporate donors to manufacture bills and then send them to be passed in state legislatures without the public ever knowing about their origin. But these ALEC staffers can’t hide who they are, and what they do for an organization that harms almost every area of American life.”
Sheriff Arpaio says Obama’s birth certificate is forged
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said President Barack Obama’s birth certificate is not authentic.
Arpaio revealed the findings of a investigation into the president’s birth certificate at a 1 hour and 20 minute news conference Thursday, calling the certificate “suspect.”
Arpaio’s team of investigators said they found that the long-form birth certificate was created electronically and never existed in paper form.
The president’s Selective Service card was also questioned.
Arpaio’s investigators claimed the document has “failed every test we put it through.”
At Thursday’s news conference, investigators said they will request a criminal investigation. They also said they have identified a person of interest in the forgery of the birth certificate.
Arpaio said he is not accusing the president of the crime. He said they will investigate who is behind the “possible forgery and fraud.”
“I haven’t decided where to go with this yet,” Arpaio said. “I just wanted to get the facts of this situation. We haven’t accused anyone of anything.”
The controversy over the certificate has been widely debunked, but it remains alive in the eyes of some conservatives, namely members of the Tea Party who urged Arpaio to look into the matter.
For the past six months, Arpaio’s “Cold Case Posse” has been investigating the authenticity of those documents to see if there’s been any fraud or forgery involved.
“We conducted a very professional investigation; we have come up with I feel some probable cause, some evidence,” Arpaio said Wednesday.
Arpaio said the investigation was done at no cost to taxpayers.
“Just let me say the results may be interesting without using the word ‘shocked,’” Arpaio said prior to the conference. “I think it will reveal some information no one else has really developed in a professional law enforcement manner.”
The Cold Case Posse comprises volunteers who are former police officers and lawyers.
Arpaio is facing problems of his own, including a federal grand jury probe over alleged abuse of power and Justice Department accusations of racial profiling.
Rather than seek cover, Arpaio is moving into the spotlight in a fashion that has helped boost his career as a nationally-known law officer. http://www.kpho.com/story/17053035/arpaio-to-reveal-results-of-birther-probe
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