This week started with President Obama Monday demanding lawmakers raise the U.S.’s $16.4 trillion debt ceiling, warning Republicans not to insist on spending cuts in return. The same day, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke advocated getting rid of the debt limit altogether. The Washington Post reports in a conversation at the University of Michigan Bernanke said the debt ceiling has only “symbolic value.” (Snip) Two former U.S. government officials put the federal government’s actual liabilities in excess of $86.8 trillion, or 550% of GDP, in a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed. Casey argues we’re
Comments: We have entered the death spiral, but 51% think it´s just a fun ride.
Bernake´s a hapless stooge who´s in way over his head.But in fairness to him,he´s probably been bullied by obama into making bad fed policy and inventing new ways to print money.
I don´t get the stock market at all.I guess GE had a big 4th quarter but what company wouldn´t with free government money,loopholes,deductions and circumventing paying US taxes.One of the biggest move jobs to China companies right under Obama´s nose.
Justice´s delay isn´t necessarily justice denied for Jill Kelley, the Tampa socialite entangled in the scandal that toppled former CIA director David Petraeus. The Justice Department has asked for a 30-day extension, until Sept. 4, to respond to her lawsuit against the government for violating her family´s privacy, rifling through her e-mails and leaking confidential information about her. And Kelley is fine with the extension, says her lawyer, Alan Raul. The government says it needs the time to sort through the allegations in the 65-page complaint.
A 320,000-signature petition protesting Russia´s stance on gay rights ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi early next year was presented to Olympic bosses in Switzerland on Wednesday. The petition, delivered to the International Olympic Committee headquarters in Lausanne by gay rights group All Out, calls on Russia to repeal its anti-gay propaganda law in advance of the Sochi Games. It also urges the IOC to condemn the law and urged Russia to ensure the security of all visitors, athletes and Russian people before, during, and after the Games. Implemented last month, after Russian President Vladimir Putin
Get ready to shell out more money for individual health insurance under Obamacare ... in some states, that is. While many residents in New York and California may see sizable decreases in their premiums, Americans in many places could face significant increases if they buy insurance through state-based exchanges next year. That´s because these people live in states where insurers were allowed to sell bare-bones plans and exclude the sick, which has kept costs down. Under Obamacare, insurers must offer a package of essential benefits -- including maternity, mental health and medications -- and must cover all who apply.
WASHINGTON — Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel plan to meet here in Washington with their Russian counterparts on Friday for a day of talks that could determine the fate of a September summit meeting between President Obama and the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin. State Department officials on Tuesday afternoon confirmed the meeting with Sergey V. Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, and Sergei K. Shoigu, the defense minister. Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, said the four officials would discuss “a number of pressing bilateral and global issues.” “There’s a lot to discuss,´´Ms. Psaki said.
The story of climate change is largely a story about what´s happening to the ocean. Most of the damage during Superstorm Sandy, after all, had nothing to do with the rain or wind. It was the rising ocean that swamped Staten Island, flooded the Rockaways, and knocked out power and subway service in lower Manhattan for days. People noticed the hurricane sweeping up the coast. But it was the already high ocean that did the damage. Which is why it´s worth paying attention to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration´s newly-completed assessment of how climate changed during 2012.
Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis, a rising star in the Democratic Party, confirmed on Monday that if she doesn´t run for re-election, she´ll run for governor. "I can say with absolute certainty I will run for one of two offices: either my state Senate seat, or the governor," Davis said at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. "I´m working very hard to decide what my next steps will be. I do think in Texas people feel like we need a change from the very fractured, very partisan leadership that we´re seeing in our statewide leadership right now."
Employer retiree health care coverage, which has been deteriorating for years amid high health care costs and waning employer interest, is headed for bigger changes thanks to the Affordable Care Act, a new study shows. More than 40 percent of employers have eliminated their traditional group health coverage for retirees over the age of 65 in favor of giving these former employees a defined amount of money for them to buy their coverage on the individual Medicare plan market, according to a new survey of more than 540 companies by employee benefits consulting firm Aon AON -0.22% Hewitt (AON).
Moscow -- Russia has opened a criminal case on an American band after one of its members stuffed the Russian flag into his pants, pulled it out his backside and whipped it between his legs, state-run news agency RIA Novosti reported Monday. (Snip) A member of the band´s crew, who asked to not be named for security reasons, told CNN the band was attacked Saturday by Russian nationalists inside Anapa airport in Krasnodar Krai. The band members were "beaten up" by a crowd of men who punched and kicked them, the crew member said, adding that some of the attackers
A last-minute appeal that could have stopped Billy Slagle’s execution — without opposition from state attorneys — was poised to be filed this morning with the Ohio Supreme Court. But the convicted Cleveland killer’s attorneys were unable to reach him over the weekend on Death Row at the Chillicothe Correctional Institution. Yesterday morning, they got the call: Slagle hanged himself in his cell about 5 a.m. and was declared dead about an hour later. Vicki Werneke and Joseph Wilhelm, Slagle’s federal public defenders, are left to wonder “what if?” “I don’t know what more we could have done,” Werneke said.
Two children died after a python got into an apartment in Campbellton, N.B., RCMP say. "Police are investigating two sudden deaths of two young boys," Const. Julie Rogers-Marsh said Monday. It´s believed the snake escaped from a pet store called Reptile Ocean. The victims were boys aged five and seven. They were in the apartment above the store. "The preliminary investigation has led police to believe that a python snake escaped its enclosure in the store sometime overnight," the constable said. Rogers-Marsh said it went through the ventilation. "It´s believed the two boys were strangled by the snake," she said.
WASHINGTON - The United States extended the closures of some embassies and consulates in the Middle East - which had been closed Sunday due to an al Qaeda threat - through August 10 due to caution but not the emergence of any new threat, the State Department said. Other U.S. diplomatic posts, including in Kabul, Baghdad and Algiers, that had been closed on Sunday, will reopen on Monday, the State Department said. Posts in Abu Dhabi, Amman, Cairo, Riyadh, Dhahran, Jeddah, Doha, Dubai, Kuwait, Manama, Muscat, Sanaa, Tripoli, Antanarivo, Bujumbura, Djibouti, Khartoum, Kigali, and Port Louis will be closed through Saturday.
PROVO, Utah — Time may be running short for hardcore "Star Wars" fans to see the real-life set used to portray Anakin Skywalker´s childhood home of Mos Espa on the planet Tatooine. Brigham Young University planetary scientist Jani Radebaugh said new research shows a fast-moving sand dune is spilling onto streets of the set in the Tunisian desert and will eventually bury buildings. The dune was measured at 20 feet tall and 300 feet wide in 2009, and it´s been moving toward the set about 50 feet per year since 2002, she said. Research by her and two colleagues
WASHINGTON — U.S. officials insisted Tuesday that extraordinary security measures for nearly two dozen diplomatic posts were to thwart an “immediate, specific threat,” a claim questioned by counterterrorism experts, who note that the alert covers an incongruous set of nations from the Middle East to an island off the southern coast of Africa. Analysts don’t dispute the Obama administration’s narrative that it’s gleaned intelligence on a plot involving al Qaida’s most active affiliate, the Yemen-based Arabian Peninsula branch. That would explain why most U.S. posts in the Persian Gulf are on lockdown, including the U.
The truth about Benghazi, the Associated Press/James Rosen monitoring, the IRS corruption, the NSA octopus, and Fast and Furious is still not exactly known. Almost a year after the attacks on our Benghazi facilities, we are only now learning details of CIA gun-running, military stand-down orders, aliases of those involved who are still hard to locate, massaged talking points, and the weird jailing of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. We still do not quite know why Eric Holder’s Justice Department went after the Associated Press or Fox News’s James Rosen — given that members of the administration were themselves illegally leaking
He thought he was a woman trapped in a man’s body — but it turns out he’s “just another boring straight guy.” ABC News editor Don Ennis strolled into the newsroom in May wearing a little black dress and an auburn wig and announced he was transgender and splitting from his wife. He wanted to be called Dawn. But now he says he suffered from a two-day bout of amnesia that has made him realize he wants to live his life again as Don. “I accused my wife of playing some kind of cruel joke, dressing
Critics of the president are convinced that Barack Obama will do lasting damage to the U.S. I doubt it. Obama came to power in the third year of large Democratic congressional majorities. In his first referendum, he lost the House and he may soon lose the Senate; in other words, there followed a somewhat normal reaction against a majority party. Obama’s popularity rating is well below 50%, despite an obsequious media and a brilliantly negative billion-dollar campaign that long ago turned Mitt Romney into a veritable elevator-using, equestrian-marrying, canine-hating monster. In the second term, there is little
Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney jumped into the debate over the GOP’s future Tuesday night, warning congressional Republicans against forcing a government shutdown in their quest to stop President Barack Obama’s signature health care law. Romney addressed more than 200 donors on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee at a fundraiser for the New Hampshire Republican Party, staged just four miles from the vacation home where he has spent much of the summer with his family. The event was closed to the media, but his office released his prepared remarks.
WASHINGTON — Former Massachusetts lawmaker Barney Frank revealed that he doesn’t believe in God. During Friday’s appearance on HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher,” Frank, who championed the decriminalization of pot while serving in the House of Representatives, admitted to smoking marijuana and being an atheist. “You were in a fairly safe district. You were not one of those congress people who would have to worry about every little thing,” Maher said to Frank. “You could come on this show and sit next to a pot-smoking atheist and it wouldn’t bother you.”
The U.S. State Department issued a global alert about the terrorist threat allegedly posed by Al-Qaeda in Yemen. The USA announced the closure of its missions in the Middle East and Africa, and their example was followed by France, Britain, and Germany. However, this was only an attempt to justify the activities of the National Security Agency.Last Saturday, right after alerting of the terror threat civilians and BOLO complex ("be on the lookout") that includes law enforcement and federal officials, President Barack Obama went to play golf, and then celebrated his birthday at the presidential retreat at Camp David.
In a rare diplomatic snub, President Obama is canceling plans to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow next month. The decision reflects both U.S. anger over Russia´s harboring of National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden and growing frustration within the Obama administration over what it sees as Moscow´s stubbornness on other key issues, including missile defense and human rights. Obama will still attend the Group of 20 economic summit in St. Petersburg, Russia, but a top White House official said the president had no plans to hold one-on-one talks with Putin while there.
Washington--As hundreds of commuters emerged from Amtrak and commuter trains at Union Station on a recent morning, an armed squad of men and women dressed in bulletproof vests made their way through the crowds. The squad was not with the Washington police department or Amtrak’s police force, but was one of the Transportation Security Administration’s Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response squads — VIPR teams for short — assigned to perform random security sweeps to prevent terrorist attacks at transportation hubs across the United States.(Snip)With little fanfare, the agency best known for airport screenings has vastly expanded its reach
A poll released Friday by Public Policy Polling found that Alaska voters would pick former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton over the state´s former Republican governor, Sarah Palin, if the two women were to face off in the 2016 presidential election. Clinton led with 49 percent in the hypothetical match-up, with Palin at 40 percent, a nine-point gap. As of July 3, Republicans comprised 27 percent of the state´s registered voters and Democrats made up just 14 percent. The last time Alaskans opted for the Democrats´ presidential candidate was in 1964. Clinton trails five other hypothetical GOP candidates –
In an interview for The Guardian Weekend magazine, actor Matt Damon recently weighed in with his thoughts on how President Barack Obama has handled the scandals that have engulfed his administration since the spring. Damon, a vocal supporter of the president since his 2008 campaign for national office, said that Obama is overcompensating for his lack of military background with his tough response to controversies like how the government is responding to National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden. The actor said that Obama is allowing himself to “get bullied” and is acting as though is “manhood”
Over the last week, there has been a lot of buzz about a supposed CIA angle to the Benghazi story. Specifically, it has been alleged that a substantial number of CIA employees were on the ground in Benghazi, carrying out a mission that involved rounding up Libyan weapons and transferring them to rebels in Syria. Further, it has been reported that the CIA has leaned on its employees not to cooperate with Congressional investigations or the media, and it has been suggested that the CIA’s role in Benghazi may be related to the al Qaeda