The Obama administration, recognizing the obvious, issued a 31-page report advocating the abolition, over ten years, of mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. In a speech before the Brookings Institution, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner admitted that the time had come for destructive big government to reduce its “footprint in the housing market.” That is certainly an appropriate starting point.
You have to hand it to New York Times columnist and Nobel Prize winner, Paul Krugman. He refuses to blame the rise in commodity prices on the seemingly endless quantitative easing measures of the Federal Reserve, and that inflated prices for food and fuel are what’s behind the unrest building around the world – most especially in Egypt.
TALLAHASSEE -- With just three days left before the Florida governor formally unveils his budget, Governor Rick Scott is already giving Floridians a sneak peek at the numbers. "I'm putting different agencies together, I'm moving things around and I think by doing those things we're going to save $2 billion in tax money over the next two years," Scott told businessmen in St. Petersburg Thursday. Scott proposes to reduce the budget by cutting the corporate income tax from 5.5 percent to 3.3 percent. Under his plan, the tax would be phased out completely by 2018. Scott said it would creat more jobs.
PATRIOT Act is set to expire in just FOUR WEEKS, but Congress is trying to rush through a last minute extension! Since it was passed almost a decade ago, some of the most noxious portions of the PATRIOT Act have burrowed their way deep into our legal system. A year ago, President Obama signed a bill extending three provisions of the original PATRIOT Act; last week Congressman Mike Rogers (R-Michigan) introduced legislation to extend them agai
Obama and the Congressional Democrats are planning another round of massive spending. Breaking the bank with unprecedented spending over the first two years of his presidency just wasn’t enough – as it seems to have only wet their appetites for more new spending.
The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission issued its 576-page report that blamed the 2007-2008 financial meltdown on lax regulatory oversight by Federal Reserve chairmen Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke and the US Treasury Department, reserving a few wraps on the wrist for presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. Of the commission’s findings, the New York Times happily reported, “It [the report] says the low interest rates brought about by the Fed after the 2001 recession; Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage finance giants; and the ‘aggressive homeownership goals’ set by the government as part of a ‘philosophy of opportunity’ were not major culprits.”
Since 2007, Arizona has lost 300,000 jobs, more than 10 percent of total employment. So it’s understandable our elected officials are anxious to bring more jobs to the state. Governor Jan Brewer and other state officials want to create a Commerce Authority armed with $25 million for grants to businesses as enticements to locate here. They often point to the Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF) as a model. A close look at the TEF, though, raises questions about how effective it really is.
The federal workforce might first feel the wrath of the new GOP-run House’s budget cuts as a 10 percent reduction in the amount of government employees tops the list of $150 billion in slashes Congressman Kevin Brady, Texas Republican, is recommending. Brady’s cuts would shrink the annual budget deficit by about 12.5 percent. In his “Cut Unsustainable and Top-Heavy Spending (CUTS) Act of 2011,” Brady pushes for a “start” to spending cuts in Washington. Recommendation for spending cuts include the 10 percent Washington workforce reduction, immediate cuts to the White House and congressional Budgets and the elimination of several “obsolete” programs, as Brady calls them. Some of the “obsolete” programs include the “Safe and Drug Free Schools” program, “Public Broadcasting funding,” and the LEAP college scholarship program.
The dismal fiscal situation in many states is forcing governors, despite their party affiliation, toward a consensus on what medicine is needed going forward. The prescription? Slash spending. Avoid tax increases. Tear up regulations that might drive away business and jobs. Shrink government, even if that means tackling the thorny issues of public employees and their pensions.
While the housing sector's troubles continue to drag down the U.S. economy, manufacturing is doing well, largely because of strong sales overseas. The exports boom has helped the manufacturing sector grow at a pace three times faster than the rest of the economy. According to federal data released last week, exports rose for the third straight month in November to nearly $160 billion.
President Obama's top economic advisor, Austan Goolsbee, warned today against "playing chicken" with raising the country's debt ceiling, saying it would cause "a worse financial economic crisis than anything we saw in 2008."
Movement at the state level to boost the minimum wage next year could give President Obama some much-needed juice in his stalled push to raise the federal minimum and peg it once and for all to inflation.