The eurozone might be cracking up, but as far as debt goes, America appears to be in worse shape than the entire eurozone in the long run. According to a new chart set to be released later today by the Republican side of the Senate Budget Committee, America is on track "to add three times more debt than [the] eurozone over [the next] 5 years."
"We will lose some of our shareholders’ money — and for that, we feel terrible — but no client, customer or taxpayer money was impacted by this incident. We have let a lot of people down, and we are sorry for it."
The mayor of New York does not believe that a willing buyer in search of a 32-ounce soft drink and a willing seller of the same should be allowed to make the deal. This, in a city that is famous for deals that involve quite a bit more than a few pints of sugar water and do a whole lot more societal damage. But never mind. People may have gone bust when Lehman went toes up, but nobody got obese as a result of its over-indulging in credit default swaps.
This month, the Los Angeles city council is expected to ban single-use plastic bags. “[T]he ban is an attempt by the city to reduce litter,” says the Los Angeles Daily News. But it is likely to reduce something else: jobs.
"Independent agencies" occupy an odd corner of American government. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, National Labor Relations Board, Federal Communications Commission, and others are nominally "independent" of the president's control—usually thanks to limits on the president's power to fire the agencies' leaders—and thus enjoy seemingly unlimited discretion to regulate American industry.
Until last week, Mitt Romney had trouble getting potential voters to care so much that they would crawl over ground glass to get to the polling station and vote for him. But now, the man and moment may have come together, thanks to employees of the General Services Administration and the Secret Service.
Last Friday, President Obama asked Congress for the power to consolidate government agencies, saying he’d start by rolling Commerce and five lesser departments into a single business and trade department.
Looking at Washington these days, one suspects that this is the way things will be for a long time to come. Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day (and all that), the massive tangle of dependencies, entitlements, political payoffs, and perpetual pork barrel schemes that is our national government cannot be either taken down or rebuilt along rational lines – if, indeed, it is possible at all – in much less than the 50 years it took to create it.
CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley asked President Obama whether he “can tell the folks at home that, no matter what happens, the Social Security checks are gonna go out on August the 3rd?” President Obama replied that it wasn’t just Social Security checks that would need to go out and that “I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven't resolved this issue, because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it.”