(The economy is crashing, jobs are scarce, and Obama’s cat-food commission is looking to give U.S. companies a huge tax incentive to send more jobs to India and Indonesia.)
from Sam Stein, Huffington Post
Hoping to trip up or, at the very least, change the language of the president’s deficit commission proposal, labor leaders claim that specific recommendations could accelerate the outsourcing of U.S. jobs overseas.
In multiple forums and venues in recent days, some of the top union officials in the country have begun airing deep concerns about the Bowles-Simpson proposal to shift to a “competitive territorial tax system” — a tax structure that effectively exempts foreign profits from domestic tax laws.
“There is no question that this incentivizes outsourcing, and that’s the opposite direction from the one we want to be going in,” AFL-CIO Deputy Chief of Staff Thea Lee argued, during an interview with The Huffington Post. “It’s directly contrary to how we should change our tax system. We need to change our tax code to remove incentives for offshoring. This changes the tax code to greatly enhance the corporate tax incentive.”
[read the rest, here]
from Business Insider
Another reason the markets may be happy today: It sounds as though Obama is going to cave on taxes.
Robert Gibbs was on Good Morning America today, and confirmed that the only thing Barack Obama won’t do is grant a permanent extension of the tax cuts for the rich. A temporary — probably 3-year extension — is something Obama is willing to deal on.
[read the rest, here]
(Apparently the New York Times didn’t even get their “leaks” from Wikileaks; instead they had them forwarded from other Mockingbirds over at the Guardian. All of this over a 22 year old high school drop-out who supposedly hacked into “SECRET” level documents on SIPRNet, one of the most secure systems in the world – or at least that is the story according to Adrian Lamo, “Lamo was reported as working as a “security specialist” with “Project Vigilant“, a private security institution which also works for the FBI and the NSA.”)
by Michael Calderone, Yahoo News
New York Times editors said Sunday that although the paper’s reporters had been digging through WikiLeaks trove of 250,000 State Department cables for “several weeks,” the online whistleblower wasn’t the source of the documents.
But if WikiLeaks—which allegedly obtained the cables from a 22-year-old army private—wasn’t the Times source, than who was? Apparently, The Guardian—one of the five newspapers that had an advanced look at the cables—supplied a copy of the cables to The Times.
David Leigh, The Guardian’s investigations executive editor, told The Cutline in an email that “we got the cables from WL”—meaning WikiLeaks—and “we gave a copy to the NYT.”
[read the rest, here]
by Scott Creighton
While doing a little spying on the “progressive” PR site Huffington Post, I came across this little gem… “Ten states that could be hardest hit by the lapse in unemployment insurance“
I figured that I would take a look at it seeing as how my state, Florida, is probably on that list. Sure enough, there we are at number 6 (meaning Florida is expected to be the sixth worst hit state). Oddly though, the top 5 states expected to be hit the hardest, are expected to drop “0″ people off the unemployment rolls as a result of this lapse. Which means that Florida, already at 11.9% official unemployment (probably in the 22-24% actual unemployment range) is going to have the most people of any state kicked off the unemployment insurance at 107,000 of ‘em.
According to the information there are already 1.1 million people unemployed (remember, that’s the “official’ number) in Florida, a state with a total population of 18.5 million. We have the highest number of retirees of any state and a large population of children. So working age adults are estimated at what? The numbers are probably too depressing to go into.
But somehow, this just ranks us at #6 when the 5 states above us aren’t estimated to lose any people from the unemployment insurance rolls? How does that work?
107,000 people and their respective families in my home state will suddenly go from scraping by to absolute destitution in the next few weeks just before Christmas.
No. residents losing insurance in December: 107,500
No. of weeks: 26
Total population: 18,537,969
Florida has a high unemployment rate of 11.9% – the third worst in the country – with 1.1 million Floridians out of work. In January, state unemployment taxes will almost triple for most businesses that currently pay the minimum, increasing from around $25 to $70 per employee. Governor-elect Rick Scott has also pledged to create 700,000 new jobs in the state in seven years, although opponents have been highly skeptical of this plan. Huffington Post
That’s 107,000 people who are going to become EXTREMELY desperate in the next few weeks right here in my hometown. I guess we can expect a “free trade industrial zone” to pop up sometime soon offering to put people to work for .38 cents per hour. That and a huge increase in the prison population.
Thank God Bill Clinton passed a bill during his precidency that set a limit on the amount of time someone could collect unemployment benefits and thank God the dems who still control the House and Senate saw fit to ignore the looming crisis.
The tossing of millions of workers—and through them millions more children—into abject desperation is by any measure a social catastrophe. Hunger, which preyed on 50 million Americans last year, will rise sharply. It is reported that soup kitchens and food pantries, already strained to the breaking point, are bracing for record demand. Homelessness and the foreclosure crisis will be exacerbated. Hundreds of thousands more families will lose their utilities in the midst of the winter heating season.
… For their part, Obama and the Democrats—who still control both houses of Congress—have responded with palpable indifference, along with their usual admixture of cowardice and dishonesty. Their line from the beginning has been based on the lie that benefits cannot be extended without Republican support, which they know full well is not forthcoming. Early speculation that the extension of benefits might be wrangled from the Republicans in exchange for extending Bush-era tax cuts for the rich—which are far more costly—has evaporated.
Whatever their empty protestations, the cutoff of unemployment benefits is entirely in line with the strategy of the Democrats and the Obama administration to use mass unemployment to drive down wages, increase exports and expand corporate profits. WSWS
Thank you Dems. Thank you New Dems. And Merry Christmas Florida
(This is just getting silly now)
by Jason Ditz, AntiWar
Of the myriad WikiLeaks cables that war enthusiasts are pointing to in their calls for attacking Iran, one of the few that contained anything substantive included a claim that Iran had acquired 19 advanced missiles from North Korea, giving them the ability to attack Western Europe.
Substantive but, as it turns out, extremely dubious, as experts are now saying that the allegation made in the cable, as experts say the allegation shows a lack of firm evidence that Iran ever obtained any such missiles.