Morning Must Reads: May 30

In the news: James Comey, Russia-Syria, American drug policy, Tokyo stocks, Obama-Christie, Africa's boom, Weiner puns.

  • Share
  • Read Later
Mark Wilson / Getty Images

The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC.

  • Prettier in print
    • Cover story: Rahm Emanuel’s plan to turn around Chicago, written by editor-at-large David Von Drehle.
    • On July 1, 7 million college students will see their federal-loan rates double unless Congress can muster a compromise. Alex Altman on the chances of a student-loan fix.
  • Syria President Bashar al-Assad said in a television interview that Russia had delivered S-300 air defense missiles, weapons that Israel has said present a threat to its security.
  • President Barack Obama has tapped former deputy attorney general James Comey to head the FBI. Watch one pivotal moment from his time in the Bush Administration.
  • The most embarrassing graph in American drug policy.
  • Tokyo stocks fell sharply again, with the Nikkei losing 5.2% to land decisively in a correction. It has now lost 14.7% over the past week.
  • Democratic pollster Mark Mellman writes on how the country’s demography favors Democrats in presidential races, and the Republicans in House races.
  • John Cassidy: The message from the Obama-Christie photos from the post-Sandy New Jersey shore was clear: “Government can work.”
  • AEI’s Michael Strain says Republicans need to offer conservative ideas for creating jobs. On his list: temporarily lowering the minimum wage while expanding the earned-income tax credit; relocation subsidies to get jobless workers to move; reduced paperwork and licensing for would-be entrepreneurs.
  • Africa’s economic boom.
  • Why James Rosen is not blameless.
  • Michele Bachmann: A Fact Checker’s Dream
  • The new Anthony Weiner, same as the old.
308 comments
mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

The GOP thanks their lucky stars for useful brainwashed fools. Without them they would be the banjo and bible party lucky to hold 100 seat in the House and 20 seats in the Senate.

ahandout
ahandout

Who was that guy?  The very first guy that Obama hired as Chief of Staff? Rahm something...

Just a coincidence, or maybe Barry wasn't even aware of who Rahm Emanuel was.  That's probably it. 

ahandout
ahandout

But Barry never DOES what he promises.  He campaigned on renegotiating NAFTA, but this is what he did.

Obama to Strengthen NAFTA Without New Negotiations

http://www.thenewamerican.com/economy/economics/item/4425-obama-to-strengthen-nafta-without-new-negotiations

The report presented the following statistics: "Between 1993 and 2002, NAFTA resulted in an increase in exports that created 794,194 jobs, but it displaced production that would have supported 1,673,454 jobs.... Thus, the combined effect of changes in imports and exports as a result of NAFTA was a loss of 879,280 U.S. jobs. These NAFTA-related job losses suggest that U.S. workers have good reason to be concerned that the proposed Free Trade Agreement of the Americas will threaten jobs and communities."

Since that report was written, the loss in jobs, particularly in the Great Lakes region, has only become worse.

ahandout
ahandout

Is Obama in favor of NAFTA or not?

nflfoghorn
nflfoghorn

'Scuse me, I was just watching the prosecution's case fall apart...musta gotten distracted.

MementoMori
MementoMori

  First came their deliberate choice to profit from their suppliers’ abuses of powerless garment workers paid $37 a month. Second was their intentional turning of a blind eye to the blatantly unsafe factories they use, including the hellhole that collapsed in April, killing more than 1,100 workers in Bangladesh. Third was their diabolically shameful denial of responsibility, claiming that the dead workers were not making clothes for Walmart on the day of the collapse.

And now, they have fiendishly refused to join nearly 40 other global retail giants in an agreement to help finance such minimal safety upgrades as putting fire escapes on Bangladesh’s factories and allowing rigorous independent inspections.

Walmart executives explained that non-binding, unenforceable self-regulation would be best for all concerned.

Walmart Sinks to a New Low

http://otherwords.org/walmart-sinks-to-a-new-low/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=walmart-sinks-to-a-new-low

ahandout
ahandout

As far as Rahm's plan for Chicago...Rahm had a plan for the US-NAFTA.  How's that working out for ya?

La_Randy
La_Randy

@ahandout Really, is this all you've got, another bad photoshop? You get more disappointing by the day.

ahandout
ahandout

@mantisdragon91  Well, it must wearing on you to have to come up with the energy to support the liar in chief.  It's going to get worse.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout Poor sad Troll. The economy is recovering despite the best efforts of the GOP to sabotage it and that fact is killing you.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@ahandout The New American? Well, that's sounds very patriotic - let's take a looky...

AFFILIATES AND FRIENDS

The John Birch Society

Ewwwww, never mind.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@ahandout"We can't keep passing unfair trade deals like NAFTA that put special interests over workers' interests...

I don't think NAFTA has been good for America -- and I never have. I didn't just start criticizing unfair trade deals like NAFTA because I started running for office -- I'm doing it because I've seen what happens to a community when the factory closes down and the jobs move overseas."            

Feb. 24, 2008 Barack Obama 

http://2012election.procon.org/view.answers.election.php?questionID=1701#barack-obama

The Google is your friend.

MementoMori
MementoMori

Here's a snippet...

Complaining that oil companies rip you off?

I say, shut up. Even if gas costs $4 per gallon, we should thank Big Oil. 

The title of the article?

In praise of Big Oil

The punchline? It's written by John Stossel.

ahandout
ahandout

@mantisdragon91

@ahandout

By most measures the country isn't making slow progress; it's falling further behind. Some examples:

Median incomes: These have fallen 7.3% since Obama took office, which translates into an average of $4,000. Since the so-called recovery started, median incomes continued to fall, dropping $2,544, or 4.8%.

Long-term unemployed: More than three years into Obama's recovery, 811,000 more still fall into this category than when the recession ended.

Poverty: The poverty rate climbed to 15.1% in 2010, up from 14.3% in 2009, and economists think it may have hit 15.7% last year, highest since the 1960s.

Food stamps: There are 11.8 million more people on food stamps since Obama's recovery started.

Disability: More than 1 million workers have been added to Social Security's disability program in the last three years.

Gas prices: A gallon of gas cost $1.89 when Obama was sworn in. By June 2009, the price was $2.70. Today, it's $3.84.

Misery Index: When Obama took office, the combination of unemployment and inflation stood at 7.83. Today it's 9.71.

Union membership: Even unions are worse off under Obama, with membership dropping half a million between 2009 and 2011.

Debt: Everyone is far worse off if you just look at the national debt. It has climbed more than $5 trillion under Obama, crossing $16 trillion for the first time on Tuesday and driving the U.S. credit rating down.

Ironically, the only people better off under Obama are corporate chieftains, who've seen corporate profits climb more than 50% under Obama's "recovery," and investors, who've benefited from a near-doubling in the Dow industrials from its March 2009 lows.


Read More At Investor's Business Daily: http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/090412-624523-were-not-better-off-under-obama.htm#ixzz2Uom40j1x

ahandout
ahandout

@MementoMori @ahandout  Obama doesn't sound patriotic, and his actions prove it.  The fact is, Obama strengthened NAFTA, after he was elected.  He ran against it, and then he stabbed workers in the back.

ahandout
ahandout

@MementoMori @ahandout Yes, that is what Barry said.  In addition he said, that NAFTA was responsible for the loss of a million jobs and that whole cities have been destroyed because of NAFTA.  That's what Obama said.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout @mantisdragon91 And yet Ford still benefited by the bail out, since without the bailout the auto parts suppliers that they rely on for production would have been out of business.

ahandout
ahandout

@mantisdragon91 @ahandout  Yet Ford, didn't take a bailout, and is outperforming.

Do you really think that Chrysler is going to be around long? 

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout @mantisdragon91 Exactly how will that be the case? Obviously you missed the fact that the deficit is now at 4% of GDP compared with 10% under Bush. So who's wild ride is it exactly?

ahandout
ahandout

@mantisdragon91 @ahandout  The stock market is flush with Obamabucks.  It's looking forward to the very near future when interest rates rise, investors bail permanently from bonds, and put there money in the stock market.  The deficit is going to explode when we have to pay 10% or higher to finance Barry's wild ride.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout@mantisdragon91

The auto rescue plan has worked.  American car manufacturers are still dominant and employing millions directly and in supplier companies.  Wall Street reform has been painful but it has re-instated faith amongst investors.  The markets are far more predictable than they were four years ago, as VIX numbers demonstrate greater faith and less risk.

Even for small investors, such as those limited to their 401(k) or IRA investments, the average annual compound return on stocks under President Obama has been more than 24% since the lows of March, 2009.  This is a better result than either Clinton, Reagan or FDR – who were the prior winners in our book.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout@mantisdragon91In 2000, at the end of Clinton’s administration, the Consumer Confidence Index was at a record high 140.  By January, 2009 this index had fallen to an historic low of 25.3.  Comparatively, when Reagan took office at the end of the economically weak Carter years the Confidence Index was still at 74.4!  Today this measure of how people feel about the country is still nowhere near 2000 levels, but it is almost 3 times better than 4 years ago.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout@mantisdragon91Today the Congressional Budget Office is reporting a $200B decrease in the deficit almost entirely due to increased revenue from a growing economy and higher taxes on the wealthiest Americans.  The deficit is now only 4% of the GDP, down from over 10% at the end of Bush’s administration – and projections are for it to be only 2% by 2015 (before Obama leaves office.)  America’s “debt problem” seems largely solved, and almost all due to growth rather than austerity.

ahandout
ahandout

@MementoMori @ahandout I appreciate the thoughtful reply.  The end result is the same.  The one segment of the Republican party that rejects the whole sham of "free" trade, it the only group that would repeal unjust trade agreements. 

I support bringing back the US, good paying jobs, jobs that employ those that aren't service workers. 

Meanwhile, both sides are currently going to pass another amnesty that will bring in even more unskilled people.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@ahandout @MementoMori You'll find I offer a tepid defense of Obama at best. The best thing I can say is he's not as bad as the other available options, and if you think Republicans wouldn't do a worse job, then you haven't been paying attention to either recent history or current behaviors.

And I was just using the campaign quotes from the two major candidates, calm down. When it comes to NAFTA, one's a liar who will sell us out to the highest bidder, the other is telling the truth when he says he will sell us out to the highest bidder. While you may quibble about the veracity of their rhetoric, the end result is the same:

The end of the middle class.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout @MementoMori And yet here you are defending a party that lies, cheats and crashed our economy all the while creating two unpaid for wars one of which was completely unneeded. So yep compared to them he is very much worth defending.

ahandout
ahandout

@MementoMori @ahandout  Just used the article MM, calm down.  Interesting that you liberals always attack the messenger when confronted with the truth.  To bad you don't have the IRS at you disposal isn't it?

NAFTA was and is a fraud, like much of the BS that the government does TO the people of the United States.

I am pointing out that your guy, Obama, lies.  That's all he does.  He says one thing and does the opposite.  And, you and the rest of the hive constantly twist the truth around in a knot trying to defend him.

Eventually, you might realize that he's not worth defending.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@ahandout @MementoMori NAFTA's not the best idea, handy, we can agree on that.

If you're looking to support a candidate that's going to run against NAFTA, you're either going to have to go with Bernie Sanders or Ron Paul, because the vast majority of mainstream politicians are beholden the the corporations that profit from NAFTA. Based on your affections for the Birchers and the CFR, I'm guessing you're going to go far right, rather than far left.

But feel free to just blame Obama, and forgive the Republicans. That's all you guys usually do anyway.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@ahandout @MementoMori Speaking of stabbing workers in the back, what did the GOP ever do for any workers, other than reduce their wages and safety protections?

ahandout
ahandout

@mantisdragon91  Seriously mantis?  You quote the one guy that had NAFTA nailed to a tee.  Ross Perot.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

Mittens would have been in office if idiots like you had their way. The giant sucking sound we would have heard are our jobs headed to China.

MementoMori
MementoMori

@mantisdragon91 @ahandout @MementoMori Since you asked....

"George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton both worked to negotiate and implement the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which went into effect in 1994... All told, these agreements have enabled people across the world to come together and build a better future. Economists estimate that the agreements have led to the creation of 5.4 million new American jobs and support a total of nearly 18 million jobs. Looking beyond just our FTA partners, our total exports support nearly 10 million American jobs. These are not just jobs; they're good jobs, paying significantly above average, and more than one-third are in manufacturing."

June 6, 2011 Mitt Romney

Same link

ahandout
ahandout

@Tero @SirDonQuixotic @ahandout  Not much use wasting a lot of time trying to inform the brain dead followers here.  I have better things to do, you know, a life.  Besides, if you ever did find the courage to do some real thinking and self realization, your little green head would explode. 

Tero
Tero

@SirDonQuixotic @ahandout @Tero 

I'm not sure it's Rusty. This d-bag ahandout does not put in any effort at all. Rusty Rod used to work a little harder at being stupid and uninformed...

Tero
Tero

@ahandout @Tero 

Yes, because YOU are the expert on intelligence right? Plus your posts are so original... it's not like we haven't heard these same stale talking points from some other troll.