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Archive for September 6th, 2009

Unemployment Hits a 26-Year High

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:43 am by HL

Unemployment Hits a 26-Year High
Just as the Labor Day weekend arrives comes word that the U.S. economy shed another 216,000 jobs last month, pushing the unemployment rate up to a 26-year high of 9.7 percent. The BBC: US employers cut 216,000 jobs in August, pushing the unemployment rate up to 9.7%, a 26-year high, official figures show. The unemployment rate rose after dipping to 9.4% in July but the Labor Department said the job loss figure was the smallest in a year. Since the start of the recession in December 2007, the economy has shed 6.9 million jobs, the department said. Jobs have been lost across manufacturing and service industries. Total unemployment stands at 14.9 million. Read more READ THE WHOLE ITEM

Unemployment

Just as the Labor Day weekend arrives comes word that the U.S. economy shed another 216,000 jobs last month, pushing the unemployment rate up to a 26-year high of 9.7 percent.

The BBC:

US employers cut 216,000 jobs in August, pushing the unemployment rate up to 9.7%, a 26-year high, official figures show.

The unemployment rate rose after dipping to 9.4% in July but the Labor Department said the job loss figure was the smallest in a year.

Since the start of the recession in December 2007, the economy has shed 6.9 million jobs, the department said.

Jobs have been lost across manufacturing and service industries.

Total unemployment stands at 14.9 million.

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U.S. Condemns Israeli Settlement Expansion
In a strong rebuke of Israeli policy, the White House has expressed “regret” over an announcement by Israel that it will expand its illegal settlements in Palestinian areas. Hundreds of new housing units are expected to be approved for construction in the West Bank in a move seen as placating the rightists in power. The Washington Post: The White House issued an unusual rebuke of Israel on Friday, expressing “regret” at the Israeli government’s announcement that it would expand settlements in Palestinian areas. “The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued settlement expansion and we urge that it stop,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said. Israeli media reported Friday that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu soon will approve the construction of hundreds of new housing units in settlements, apparently an effort to placate members of his right-leaning Likud party before he officially reaches a deal with the Obama administration to freeze settlement activity for six to nine months in order lay the groundwork for new peace talks. Read more READ THE WHOLE ITEM

In a strong rebuke of Israeli policy, the White House has expressed “regret” over an announcement by Israel that it will expand its illegal settlements in Palestinian areas. Hundreds of new housing units are expected to be approved for construction in the West Bank in a move seen as placating the rightists in power.

The Washington Post:

The White House issued an unusual rebuke of Israel on Friday, expressing “regret” at the Israeli government’s announcement that it would expand settlements in Palestinian areas.

“The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued settlement expansion and we urge that it stop,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said.

Israeli media reported Friday that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu soon will approve the construction of hundreds of new housing units in settlements, apparently an effort to placate members of his right-leaning Likud party before he officially reaches a deal with the Obama administration to freeze settlement activity for six to nine months in order lay the groundwork for new peace talks.

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Bill Moyers: “We Should Be Treating Health As A Condition, Not A Commodity”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:42 am by HL

Bill Moyers: “We Should Be Treating Health As A Condition, Not A Commodity”
On Friday’s episode of Bill Moyers Journal, Moyers succinctly described the current state of the health care debate: “here we are, wallowing in our dysfunction.”…

Gail McGowan Mellor: The New Town Hall Reality: Why Did Congressman Baron Hill (D-IN) Blow Up?
At the New Albany meeting, people were polite and even relaxed enough to chuckle whenever someone spoke with dry Indiana wit. Yet Hill silenced would-be hecklers by saying “Let me answer that before you interrupt, please!”

Pelosi Loath To Drop Hammer On Rangel
Stripping the Harlem Democrat of his chairmanship of the House Ways and Means Committee would force Pelosi to make a series of unpalatable decisions about…


Ponnuru: McDonnell Didn’t Really Mean That Part About Working Women

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:41 am by HL

Ponnuru: McDonnell Didn’t Really Mean That Part About Working Women
Nice try. Ramesh Ponnuru of National Review, writing on Washingtonpost.com, does his best to misconstrue Virginia GOP gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell’s neanderthal master’s thesis. Writes Ponnuru:…

Madoff Claimed He Was On “Short List” For SEC Chair
When Franklin Roosevelt appointed Joseph P. Kennedy as SEC chair, the president responded to concerns about Kennedy’s unsavory reputation by declaring: “It takes a thief to catch a thief.” Over 70 years later, Bernard Madoff may have been hoping that…


Exposed

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:38 am by HL

Exposed
 


“You Can’t Handle The Truth”

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:37 am by HL

“You Can’t Handle The Truth”
Yesterday, War Department Secretary Gates excoriated the Associated Press for publishing a photo the the dying Lance Cpl. Joshua M. Bernard in Afghanistan (above left). WTF! For those of you with short memories or who were not alive in…


Sponsored Topics: AfghanistanAssociated PressLance CorporalLance CplWarfare and Conflict

Obama Administration Codifies US-Cuba Moves: How about Third Cousins?
The Obama administration today lightened travel and remittance restrictions for US-based relatives of Cuban citizens residing in Cuba. The limit on relatives is noted at “second cousins.” Hooray! — not. OK — it’s some progress. But this is progress that…


Sponsored Topics: CubaPresidency of Barack ObamaBarack ObamaUnited StatesObama administration


Van Jones Resigns

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:36 am by HL

Van Jones Resigns
The AP reports that after weeks of constant attacks by the right wing, Van Jones has resigned as Special Advisor for Green Jobs at the Council on Environmental Quality. Below is the letter he sent to chair Nancy Sutley: I am resigning my post at the Council on Environmental Quality, effective today. On the eve of […]

vanjonesThe AP reports that after weeks of constant attacks by the right wing, Van Jones has resigned as Special Advisor for Green Jobs at the Council on Environmental Quality. Below is the letter he sent to chair Nancy Sutley:

I am resigning my post at the Council on Environmental Quality, effective today.

On the eve of historic fights for health care and clean energy, opponents of reform have mounted a vicious smear campaign against me. They are using lies and distortions to distract and divide.

I have been inundated with calls – from across the political spectrum – urging me to “stay and fight.”

But I came here to fight for others, not for myself. I cannot in good conscience ask my colleagues to expend precious time and energy defending or explaining my past. We need all hands on deck, fighting for the future.

It has been a great honor to serve my country and my President in this capacity. I thank everyone who has offered support and encouragement. I am proud to have been able to make a contribution to the clean energy future. I will continue to do so, in the months and years ahead.

On July 23rd, Glenn Beck began his crusade against Van Jones, calling him “a communist-anarchist radical.” He went on to rail against Jones approximately 20 times on Fox News in the past couple of months. Last Friday, Beck cited “former black nationalist, avowed communist Van Jones” as an example of “the true danger” of Obama’s “czars.” Prior to joining the administration, Jones had co-founded Color of Change, an organization that successfully convinced 57 advertisers to drop Beck’s program in just a matter of weeks after Beck called Obama a “racist.”

In recent days, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) called on Jones to resign, and Sen. Kit Bond (R-MO) called for a congressional hearing to investigate him.


The Change Agenda At a Crossroads

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:35 am by HL

The Change Agenda At a Crossroads
As President Obama’s senior advisers gathered at Blair House at the end of July for a two-day review of their first six months in office, what was meant to be a breath-catching moment of reflection was colored by a sense of unease.

In N.J., a Nasty Race for Governor: Incumbent Corzine Trails GOP’s Christie
HOBOKEN, N.J. — Cheryl Bulvid, who works at the Hallmark gift shop on the main street of this mile-square city, is a registered Democrat who helped elect her party’s candidate, Jon S. Corzine, to the governor’s office four years ago — “unfortunately,” she adds.


Officials Pressing for Legislation That Would Keep Terror Watch-List Data Secret
The Obama administration wants to maintain the secrecy of terrorist watch-list information it routinely shares with federal, state and local agencies, a move that rights groups say would make it difficult for people who have been improperly included on such lists to challenge the government.

Spending on Lobbying Drops in a Down Economy
In a year when Washington’s influence industry should be thriving, with epic battles over health-care and energy legislation, lobbying in many sectors is in marked decline as defense contractors, real estate firms and other companies pull back in a down economy.


Obama Must Inspire Passion & Conviction

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on September 6th, 2009 4:32 am by HL

Obama Must Inspire Passion & Conviction
Charles Blow, New York Times

U.S. Shouldn’t Escalate War in Afghanistan
Bob Herbert, New York Times

Obstacles to Peace in Holy Land
Jimmy Carter, Washington Post