The struggling economy, President Obama´s inability to fix unemployment and the sour housing market have cut the value of assets held by adult Americans by 22 percent since 2007, according to Pew Research. In a new analysis of American household fiscal healthiness, Pew also found that those 35 and older have a higher and out-of-whack debt-to-income ratio of 1.22, the highest in three decades. The crash in household assets and rise in debt comes as Americans are paying more in payroll taxes and at the gas pump, an unhealthy concoction that is sapping support for Obama.
For years, most Americans´ vision of history has been shaped by the New Deal historians. Writing soon after Franklin Roosevelt´s death, Arthur Schlesinger Jr. and others celebrated his accomplishments and denigrated his opponents. They were gifted writers, and many of their books were bestsellers. And they have persuaded many Americans -- Barack Obama definitely included -- that progress means an ever bigger government. In their view, the prosperous 1920s were a binge of mindless frivolity. The Depression of the 1930s was the inevitable hangover, for which FDR administered the cure. That´s one way to see it.
LOS ANGELES – The Dolby Theater at Hollywood and Highland was filled with A-listers for the 85th Academy Awards on Sunday night, but the coveted task of presenting the final award was given to someone not even on the premises. Instead presenter Jack Nicholson cut to First Lady Michelle Obama, featured on a drop-down screen, flanked by military servicemen and women, to deliver a passionate monologue live from the White House. "(These films) taught us that love can beat all odds," Obama said of the nominees. "They reminded us that we can overcome any obstacle if we dig deep
Vocabulary is important. It is the means through which we make our argument, through which we move people. (snip)Turn the tables using vocabulary. Turn "Alinsky" into a verb. And use it to dismiss incidents or arguments crafted to make our people look bad, whether it is with Katie Couric or Gloria Allred or Nancy Pelosi, or whomever. "Governor Palin, what did you think about your interview with Katie Couric and her questions about what you read?" "Oh, she was just Alinskying me."
The research continues to affirm it. The statistics highlight it. But actually reading what young people have to say about the reality of missing dads and overworked but caring mothers confirms it. There is no pretense, and the pain is evident. After assigning Langston Hughes´s "Thank You Ma´m" and Anthony Brandt´s "My Grandmother: A Rite of Passage" to my college composition class, I asked them to select one of the following writing choices. Describe a person who has acted as a mother to you.
Michelle Obama made a bit of history last night when she presented the award for best pic at the Oscars. She couldn´t be there herself because she was also attending the state governors´ dinner, so she was broadcasted in dressed up to the nines. Ben Affleck, director of Argo, said he thought he might be "hallucinating" when he saw her. Given that LA has legalised cannabis, half the audience probably were. Hollywood´s obsession with the Obamas borders on teenage infatuation. The puppy love is understandable given how the movie biz votes roughly 100 percent Democrat (the margin of error
TEHRAN — For the second consecutive year many Iranians had good reason to stay up late into the night to watch the Academy Awards ceremony. Ben Affleck’s “Argo,” which recounts the successful rescue mission of several American diplomats during the 1979 hostage crisis in Tehran, won best picture Sunday night, and Iranian media was quick to react on Monday.The elation that followed Iran’s first Oscar victory for the film “A Separation,” which won best foreign film last year, however, has been pushed aside by what many here see as a politically motivated choice
The last survivor of 15 women forced to sample the German dictator’s meals for poisoning, Margot Woelk reveals in an exclusive interview the terror of risking her life every day for the Führer. The darkened train chugged slowly from a blacked out Berlin bearing secretary Margot Woelk eastwards to the sanctuary of her in-laws in the eastern Reich province of East Prussia. It was 1942 and Adolf Hitler’s forces were at the zenith of their power--still advancing in Russia and conquerors of western Europe. But Margot was forced to flee the Berlin of her birth to the house
The reason why the Israeli-Palestinian peace process is doomed can be summed up in a paragraph. The Arab populations left in political limbo when Israel recaptured in 1967 the territory that it had lost to Egypt and Jordan in 1948 exist only as a strategic weapon of disruption. They have been shaped into a population that is defined only by terrorism because that is the purpose that their sponsors put them to. There can be no constructive outcome of the conflict because you cannot negotiate with a weapon.
An excruciating irony of Obamacare is that its architects modeled many of its features after the UK’s National Health Service. The NHS is a classic system of socialized medicine, and a monumental failure by any objective standard. (Snip) The Brits were so desperate to fix their crumbling health care system, they experimented with the private market and it is outperforming government-run health care without breaking a sweat. (Snip) We are implementing Obamacare when the UK has shown that government-run health care does not work and is beginning to move away from it. What is wrong with this picture?
A newly-released tape recording of actor Jon Pertwee, best known for playing the debonair Time Lord, has revealed his clandestine life as a senior intelligence officer during WWII. He was, for many fans, the greatest Doctor Who of them all. The actor Jon Pertwee, who played the intrepid Time Lord from 1970 to 1974, is fondly remembered for the flamboyance and enthusiasm he gave to the role as well as for his sartorial elegance. Yet what was not known until now is that Pertwee, famous for fighting against the Daleks on TV, was a secret agent during the Second World
Nothing can prepare you for seeing your one-year-old nephew in a casket. Nothing can take away his parents´ agony. And nobody could have expected how much good work this helpless baby would do in 14 months. John Paul Kilner was born with an advanced case of spinal muscular atrophy. Nearly paralyzed at birth, his body deteriorated further as he grew. (Snip) Daily saving the life of an immobile kid with a fatal disease raises some fundamental questions. What is the point of such a life? Which raises the prior question: What is the purpose of any life?
COLUMBIA—South Carolina’s wildlife agency gathered a team of scientists more than a year ago to study what could happen if temperatures in the state continue to warm, but have never released their report. A draft of the committee’s findings determined that if temperatures rise in the South by 9 degrees as projected by some over the next 70 years, South Carolina would see more beach flooding and invasion of non-native species such as piranha and Asian swamp eels, according to a draft of the report obtained by The State of Columbia. One scientist involved in the initial work on
BBC Panorama reporter Ben Anderson spent five weeks with US Marines working to advise Afghan security forces in Helmand province. While he was there he witnessed corruption and criminality among the Afghan police force. Most police forces investigate crimes like corruption, kidnapping, drug use, murder and child abuse. But in Sangin--the most violent district in Afghanistan--these are crimes that some of the police commit. Politicians insist the handover to the Afghan security forces is going smoothly and that they will be able to maintain security as the allied forces withdraw. On a recent visit to Helmand, Defence Secretary Philip
Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan´s sometimes brash style may help him persuade voters and city council members, but it also got him kicked out of a high school wrestling tournament over the weekend. Callahan, one of the Lehigh Valley´s most prominent Democrats, was ejected Saturday night from the District 11 wrestling tournament at Liberty High School after shouting at referee Dennis Buchman, a distinguished 22-year veteran of officiating high-stakes wrestling matches.
When John Kerry, America’s new secretary of state, sits down to breakfast with David Cameron this morning, one overriding question will hang unanswered above the teapots and the toast racks. It is one too delicate to ask, but too important to ignore: after a first Barack Obama term marked by conspicuous US foreign policy disengagement, does the appointment of Mr Kerry herald significant change?[Snip]Despite the pomp and circumstance laid on during his visit to Washington last year, British diplomats complain of a “transactional” relationship with Obama’s White House--most recently seen in its refusal to recognise next month’s referendum on independence
Gov. Chris Christie got the seat of honor at tonight’s annual governor’s dinner, sitting next to first lady Michelle Obama. [Snip] The event allowed the governors to loosen up and take a break from their deliberations about issues facing their respective states and was held in the State Room of the White House. For the night’s festivities, Mrs Obama wore a custom-made Naeem Khan beaded gown with her hair swept up in an elegant updo with her new fringe worn elegantly over her eyes.
Hypocrisy is endemic in Hollywood. That is one reason Barack Obama and other Democrats feel so welcome there. Hypocrisy is a wide spectrum disorder in Hollywood. Similar to a virus, it has many types and mutates as time goes by. There are the obvious displays. However, one form of hypocrisy mostly escapes notice, and it cuts to the heart of the Democrats´ phony posturing. President Obama slammed Mitt Romney for the same thing during the campaign but, of course, is silent when it comes to celebrities.
Conservative movie lovers didn´t suffer any serious Red State taunts during the just-wrapped Academy Awards telecast. Michael Moore wasn´t on hand to bash the GOP, and show host Seth MacFarlane trained his immature wit on George Clooney, breast-baring actresses and the show´s ridiculous length. And then it came time to announce the Best Picture winner, and Jack Nicholson stepped on stage to do the honors. Only Nicholson, and the show´s organizers, had something else in mind. Enter Michelle Obama. (snip) It was an unprecedented cultural power grab by the Obamas, almost daring conservative viewers to adore her as much as progressives
LOS ANGELES - U.S. first lady Michelle Obama made a surprise and unprecedented appearance on Sunday´s Oscars telecast when she presented the award for Best Picture, the first time a president or first lady has ever presented an Academy Award. Appearing live on screen from the White House in Washington, almost 3,000 miles from the Oscars ceremony in Hollywood, Obama praised the work of the movie industry before announcing the Iran hostage drama "Argo" the Best Picture winner. Wearing a silver evening dress, Obama said this year´s nominated films had "made us laugh, made us weep and grip
A new global campaign to persuade nations to ban "killer robots" before they reach the production stage is to be launched in the UK by a group of academics, pressure groups and Nobel peace prize laureates. Robot warfare and autonomous weapons, the next step from unmanned drones, are already being worked on by scientists and will be available within the decade, said Dr Noel Sharkey, a leading robotics and artificial intelligence expert and professor at Sheffield University. He believes that development of the weapons is taking place in an effectively unregulated environment, with little attention being paid to moral implications and
Though years in the brewing, the internal fight over the direction of the Republican Party has exploded onto front pages and political talk shows this month after strategist Karl Rove announced the formation of a new political action committee designed to promote more electable candidates. Fed up with what they see as a sellout of their small-government agenda and tired of Election Day disappointments, tea partyers and many conservatives are firing back. The outcome of the battle will define the party and how it tackles
Montreal -- Quebec´s language minister said Saturday that her office will "review its process" after a series of embarrassing language inspections at Montreal businesses caught international attention. Diane de Courcy acknowledged that 13 countries reported on the story about an inspector with Quebec´s language office, the OQLF, who told a Montreal restaurant owner that the menu was too Italian because it didn´t contain the French translation for the word "pasta." After heavy public criticism and embarrassing international attention, the OQLF relented and admitted its inspector showed "an excess of zeal." "We will from now on apply moderation, but also judgement,"
SEN. CHRIS MURPHY (D-Conn.) offered a trenchant comment the other day about the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December, which was carried out by Adam Lanza with a semiautomatic assault weapon that reloaded bullets in rapid succession from a single ammunition magazine. Twenty children and six adults were killed in a deadly few minutes of fire. “We do know that historically in these instances, amateurs have trouble switching magazines,” the senator said, according to the New York Times. “I believe, and many of the parents there believe, that if Lanza had to switch cartridges nine times