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Number of uninsured Americans hits record high

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Health

Link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39215770/ns/health-health_care/

Latest Census report shows 50.7 million people don't have health insurance. In a reflection of the battered economy, the number of people without health insurance rose sharply last year to 50.7 million — an all time high — according to data released Thursday by the Census Bureau. That pushed the rate of uninsured Americans to 16.7 percent last year from 15.4 percent in 2008, when there were 46.3 million uninsured. It was one of the largest single year increases since the Census starting tracking the figure in 1987.

The other housing crisis

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://socialistworker.org/2010/09/16/the-other-housing-crisis

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor examines an aspect of the housing crisis that the media pay little attention to--the struggle of renters to find affordable housing. MOST OF the news coverage of the housing crisis has focused on the plight of homeowners: declining home sales, the continuing and unabated rise of foreclosures on single-family homes, and the growing number of mortgages that are "under water"--that is, the loans are for more than the actual value of the homes, with the decline in home values.

More Americans are Poor than Ever Before, Census Finds

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/09/16-4

The withering recession pushed the number of Americans who are living in poverty to a 51-year high in 2009 and left a record 50.7 million people without health insurance last year, the Census Bureau announced Thursday. The 43.6 million Americans who were poor in 2009 - up from 39.8 million the year before - was the most since poverty estimates were first published in 1959. The national poverty rate of 14.3 percent, up from 13.2 percent in 2008, was the highest since 1994.

Is US ready to act against Chinese manipulation of the yuan?

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2010/sep/16/united-states-china-currency-manipulation

It's autumn, so it's time for Washington to ask, as it does every six months, whether any of its major trading partners are currency manipulators seeking to gain an unfair competitive advantage. China, as ever, is the prime suspect. In the world outside Washington, most people might say the question has an easy answer. Of course, China manipulates its currency: the yuan is allowed to trade in only a very tight range against the dollar and China's export success is built partly on that foundation.

Exporting Jobs, Importing Workers

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://www.truth-out.org/jim-hightower-exporting-jobs-importing-workers63319

Maybe you're one of the thousands of young lawyers in America working in some low-skill, part-time job because law firms have cut so many of the starting positions you were educated to take. If so, I have good news: Jobs for young lawyers are now mushrooming in companies that provide legal services to U.S. corporations. Unfortunately, you'll have to move to India to get one. And the pay will be -- how shall I put this? -- "disappointing."

Banks seize record number of homes - Video

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39207626/ns/business-real_estate/

High unemployment, other problems point to lingering housing pain Video. A record number of homeowners lost houses to their banks in August as lenders worked through the backlog of distressed mortgages, real estate data company RealtyTrac said Thursday. New default notices decreased at the same time, suggesting that lenders managed the flow of troubled loans and foreclosed properties hitting the market to limit price declines, the company said.

Lessons Unlearned Doomsday for Lehman

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.counterpunch.org/whitney09152010.html

Fear gripped Wall Street on the morning of September 15, 2008, as investment giant Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection following weeks of stock market losses and the steady downgrading of its assets. Traders hoped that the century-old warhorse would be saved in an 11th hour reprieve. But when last minute negotiations with Barclays broke down, Lehman had no choice but to call it quits. The news sparked a frenzied selloff as millions of shares were dumped at firesale prices. As fear turned to panic, turbulence spread across the markets and the grim predictions of a systemwide meltdown began to materialize.

Obama edges to the dark side

September 16th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Police State

Link: http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2010/09/2010916104022372281.html

As consensus grows regarding the futility of US national security policy, concerns arise over Barack Obama's strategy. Possibly the most dramatic mea culpa in Presidential history, Bill Clinton, newly appointed as UN Special Envoy for Haiti, admitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the US policy of compelling poor developing countries to buy US agricultural products at subsidised prices, which destroyed local agricultural sectors, was a disaster. “I did that. I have to live every day with the consequences of the lost capacity to produce a rice crop in Haiti to feed those people, because of what I did. Nobody else."

Two years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers

September 15th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/pers-s15.shtml

Two years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers sparked the greatest financial and economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s, none of the underlying contradictions of the world capitalist system has been resolved. On the contrary, they are assuming ever-more malignant forms as the ruling classes all over the world launch an offensive against the working class to make it pay for the crisis.

Third World America, Here We Come?

September 15th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.alternet.org/books/148192/third_world_america%2C_here_we_come_/

Co-Host Juan Gonzalez: Are middle-class Americans becoming an endangered species? One out of every six Americans are in government anti-poverty programs. More than 50 million are on Medicaid. Forty million receive food stamps. And 10 million receive unemployment benefits. The prospects for a speedy recovery from the Great Recession appear dim.

Poverty in America: 2010

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/pers-s14.shtml

The Obama administration has responded to reports of an epidemic growth of poverty in America to levels not seen since the 1960s by categorically ruling out any anti-poverty programs like those initiated under the administration of Lyndon B. Johnson. In the midst of a week-long campaign of speeches and events aimed at packaging the administration’s pro-corporate policies as populist measures to aid the “middle class,” Obama exhibited callous indifference to the suffering of millions of Americans when he was queried at his Friday press conference about possible anti-poverty measures.

Goldman Expects More QE, Gold Prices Hit Record: Coincidence?

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://blogs.wsj.com/marketbeat/2010/09/14/goldman-expects-more-qe-gold-prices-hit-record-coincidence/

So, Goldman Sachs’ top econowonk Jan Hatzius — here at MarketBeat central we refer to him colloquially as “Johnny the Hat” — says the Fed may announce a new round of quantitative easing as early as November. (Quantitative easing, at least as recently practiced by the Fed, is essentially printing money to by U.S. debt.)

Fewer Hungry, but More Hunger Waits

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/09/14-7

ROME - Figures the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) presented here Tuesday revealing a reduction in the world's number of hungry people in 2010 for the first time in 15 years should be a cause for celebration. In reality it is a hollow success. It is not that the fall is too small to be significant. On the contrary, the United Nations agency estimates 925 million are undernourished this year, a drop of 98 million on the 2009 level of 1,023 billion, almost 10 percent down.

Gerald Celente on Dan Diorio 14 Sept 2010 - Audio

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://revolutionarypolitics.tv/video/viewVideo.php?video_id=12540&title=gerald-celente-on-dan-diorio-14-sept-2010

Economic collapse, world depression, free rides for the banks, more wars...

Ultimately, Don Quixote will Triumph

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://bellaciao.org/en/spip.php?article20218

Bill Murphy, the chairman of the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee, gave chaostheorien.de an exclusive interview, in which he stressed the importance of a clear understanding of the gold market. Moreover, he explained why central banks can’t prevent the gold price from rising anymore, and said: “The Gold Cartel have been winning battles in the last ten years, but they’re losing the war.“

Gold and Silver Explode as Banksters Abandon Market Manipulation

September 14th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.infowars.com/gold-and-silver-explode-as-banksters-abandon-market-manipulation/

Gold has surged to a new high as the prospect of inflation reared its ugly head in the United Kingdom on bad news from a report indicating a weaker-than-expected eurozone industrial production. Germany and France, despite sovereign debt fears, have been able to manage anemic growth but today’s data signals a slow down. Gold traded as high as $1,261.90 on Tuesday. Photo: Bullion Vault. On Tuesday the gold price traded as high as $1,261.90 and as low as $1,246. “The U.S. dollar index was adding 0.03% to $81.90 while the euro was losing 0.19% to $1.28 vs. the dollar. The spot gold price was rising $14.30, according to Kitco’s gold index,” writes Alix Steel for The Street.

IMF fears 'social explosion' from world jobs crisis

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financetopics/financialcrisis/8000561/IMF-fears-social-explosion-from-world-jobs-crisis.html

America and Europe face the worst jobs crisis since the 1930s and risk "an explosion of social unrest" unless they tread carefully, the International Monetary Fund has warned. "The labour market is in dire straits. The Great Recession has left behind a waste land of unemployment," said Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the IMF's chief, at an Oslo jobs summit with the International Labour Federation (ILO). He said a double-dip recession remains unlikely but stressed that the world has not yet escaped a deeper social crisis. He called it a grave error to think the West was safe again after teetering so close to the abyss last year. "We are not safe," he said.

IMF Issues Catastrophic Warning As France Calls For End Of US Hegemony

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, War, Economic, Politics

Link: http://www.whatdoesitmean.com/index1405.htm

In a shock warning to a World entering its third year of Global economic chaos, the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Dominique Strauss-Kahn, stated today that the unemployment situation facing all Nations has now become a “catastrophic situation” that is “unparalleled” and is fast leading to the creation of a “lost generation” of human beings numbering in the hundreds of millions.

US Fed to buy about $27 bln of Treasuries and TIPS

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSNYD00368320100913

The Federal Reserve will buy about $27 billion of Treasuries and Treasury inflation-protected securities in nine operations from Sept. 15 through Oct. 6, the New York Fed said on its website on Monday.

One in seven Americans now living in poverty

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/pove-s13.shtml

Census figures for 2009, to be released Thursday, are expected to show that the poverty rate soared last year to nearly 15 percent. One out of every seven Americans is now living below the official poverty level, the highest proportion since the 1960s. One in five American children is living in poverty. The Associated Press reported the sharp rise in the poverty rate after interviewing six demographers who have been tracking the preliminary census figures, and finding “wide consensus that 2009 figures are likely to show a significant rate increase to the range of 14.7 percent to 15 percent.”

As Recession Bites Deeper, Obama Has Discovered People Can't Eat Hope

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/09/13-4

His achievements are impressive but insufficient, his party is confused. As elections loom, fundamentalists and fantasists are seizing the initiative. Christine O'Donnell, a candidate in Delaware's Republican senatorial primary, is against masturbation and believes that her opponent's supporters follow her home at night and hide in her bushes. For her, last Thursday was a day of mixed fortunes.

Scary People, Scary Times

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.truth-out.org/james-howard-kunstler-scary-people-scary-times63200

In that order. The scary people have already started coming out of the woodwork. The times lately have been mostly uncertain, but soon they'll turn scary, too, as it becomes clearer that the people running things in the USA have no idea what's going on or what they're going to do about it -- and what's going on is an involuntary permanent re-set of the terms of everyday life, from a wet-dream robotic "consumer" techtopia to something more like the first chapter of Tobacco Road, with a family of half-wits reduced by hard times to fighting over a sack of turnips in a roadside ditch. That's the story-arc anyway, and lots of people won't like it. But the theme of dwindling resources is not a pretty one.

White House hopes GOP will accept tax cuts

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/09/white-house-hopes-gop-accept-tax-cuts/

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs says the Obama administration hopes the top House Republican was serious in expressing support for renewing tax cuts for the middle class, adding that GOP hopes to also extend reductions for the rich lack common sense.

Living on the Edge of Caravans

September 13th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=52803

LILLE, France, Sep 13, 2010 (IPS) - Broken bicycles and old suitcases mark the entrance to the makeshift camp. Ankle-deep in mud that is newly wet from a rain-shower, the visitor is taken by the hand by lively children to meet their parents.

Doomsday warnings of US apocalypse gain ground

September 12th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://rawstory.com/news/afp/Doomsday_warnings_of_US_apocalypse__09122010.html

Economists peddling dire warnings that the world's number one economy is on the brink of collapse, amid high rates of unemployment and a spiraling public deficit, are flourishing here. The guru of this doomsday line of thinking may be economist Nouriel Roubini, thrust into the forefront after predicting the chaos wrought by the subprime mortgage crisis and the collapse of the housing bubble.

Handcuffs For Wall Street, Not Happy Talk

September 12th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://blogs.alternet.org/speakeasy/2010/09/12/handcuffs-for-wall-street-not-happy-talk/

The Washington Post has published a very silly op-ed by Chrystia Freeland accusing President Barack Obama of unfairly “demonizing” Wall Street. Freeland wants to see Obama tone down his rhetoric and play nice with executives in pursuit of a harmonious economic recovery. The trouble is, Obama hasn’t actually deployed harsh words against Wall Street. What’s more, in order to avoid being characterized as “anti-business,” the Obama administration has refused to mete out serious punishment for outright financial fraud. Complaining about nouns and adjectives is a little ridiculous when handcuffs and prison sentences are in order.

Doomsday warnings of US apocalypse gain ground

September 12th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.a64b6fa820c23d9ef2058a22276ce3a1.2c1&show_article=1

Economics Professor Nouriel Roubini has predicted the chaos wrought on the ... Economists peddling dire warnings that the world's number one economy is on the brink of collapse, amid high rates of unemployment and a spiraling public deficit, are flourishing here. The guru of this doomsday line of thinking may be economist Nouriel Roubini, thrust into the forefront after predicting the chaos wrought by the subprime mortgage crisis and the collapse of the housing bubble.

Obama press conference on the economy: An exercise in demagogy and lies

September 11th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics, Police State

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/obam-s11.shtml

President Barack Obama used his White House press conference Friday to continue his pre-election efforts to portray his pro-Wall Street economic policies as a boon to ordinary Americans and a radical departure from the policies of the Bush administration. The news conference, the first since May, topped off a week of demagogy and shameless lying that began with a Labor Day speech in Milwaukee and continued with a Wednesday speech on the economy in Cleveland.

US ruling class prepares attack on Social Security

September 8th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/pers-s08.shtml

Prominent figures in the US ruling elite have recently made a series of statements that forewarn of massive cuts in social spending, up to and including Social Security, the bedrock federal insurance entitlement for elderly and disabled workers. These comments reveal that, whatever the precise outcome of the midterm elections on November 7, they will set the stage for a bipartisan assault, in the name of “fiscal responsibility,” on what remains of the social reforms of the last century.

A Chronicle of America’s Very Great Depression

September 8th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://bellaciao.org/en/spip.php?article20200

America’s 2007 Very Great Depression has indeed begun; and represents the US dimension of the phase of impact of the global systemic crisis LEAP/E2020 anticipated early 2006, knowing that the US are the central pillar of the global order created after 1945. The structural weakening of the US is therefore both the cause and consequence of the global systemic crisis, international trends directly influencing the US domestic situation. At this stage, LEAP/E2020 researchers identify that two aspects of this « very great depression » are now established and emerge clearly from the current statistical, economic, financial and strategic chaos:

Obama on Labor Day: No measures to address jobs crisis

September 7th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/pers-s07.shtml

In a speech delivered to mark Labor Day in the US, President Obama made clear that there will be no significant government measures to address the most severe jobs crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Speaking in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Monday, Obama trumpeted a plan for investment in infrastructure and transportation as a significant jobs program. Despite efforts by the media to play up the announcement, it quickly emerged that the administration is simply asking Congress to reauthorize a bill that is routinely passed every five years. His proposal for spending is little changed from previous years.

Mocking the Meaning of Labor Day The Misery of Mass Unemployment

September 6th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.counterpunch.org/washington09062010.html

The Obama administration and Congressional Democrats deservedly receive criticism for failing to take decisive action on the nation’s deepening crisis of prolonged joblessness – inaction constituting gross negligence. The defiant intransigent of congressional Republicans painfully aggravates this unemployment crisis.

Our Long National Nightmare Isn't Over, It's Just Beginning

September 5th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article26306.htm

In the 1930s, the only thing we had to fear was fear, itself. Today, the main thing we have to fear is us, ourselves. Looking out over the horizon, I'm starting to wonder just how many shades of dark there are on the pallette. Lately, I get the feeling that we're about to find out.

unemployment rose in August

September 4th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://wsws.org/articles/2010/sep2010/jobs-s04.shtml

US payrolls fell by 54,000 and the official unemployment rate rose to 9.6 percent in August from 9.5 percent the previous month, according to the monthly employment report released Friday by the Labor Department. The net job loss in August marked the third straight month in which the US economy shed jobs. The private sector added a mere 67,000 new jobs during the month, about half the total needed just to keep pace with the normal growth of the labor force. It is estimated that 250,000 to 300,000 new jobs have to be generated every month to recoup the 8.4 million jobs lost since the recession that began in December 2007 and significantly reduce the unemployment rate.

Don’t Cut Social Security, Double It

September 4th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2010/09/04

In the aftermath of the Great Recession, a debate over Social Security, is heating up. This debate raises fundamental questions about what kind of society Americans wish to live in. So far, the debate has been between those deficit busters who say Social Security must be trimmed back to reduce government indebtedness, and others who want to maintain it as is.

Does Our Economy Really Have to Run on Fraud?

September 4th, 2010
Categories: News, Economic, Politics

Link: http://www.counterpunch.org/hudson09032010.html

What is the difference between today’s economy and Lehman Brothers just before it collapsed in September 2008? Should Lehman, the economy, Wall Street – or none of the above – be bailed out of bad mortgage debt? How did the Fed and Treasury decide which Wall Street firms to save – and how do they decide whether or not to save U.S. companies, personal mortgage debtors, states and cities from bankruptcy and insolvency today? Why did it start by saving the richest financial institutions, leaving the “real” economy locked in debt deflation?

Global food shortage fears as Russia extends wheat ban

September 3rd, 2010
Categories: News, Environment, Economic

Link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/7978954/Global-food-shortage-fears-as-Russia-extends-wheat-ban.html

Vladimir Putin has announced Russia will not lift a ban on grain exports before next year’s harvest, extending the embargo for another year, sparking fears over a global food shortage.

The Great Jobs Depression Worsens, and the Choice Ahead Grows Starker

September 3rd, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.truth-out.org/robert-reich-the-great-jobs-depression-worsens-and-choice-ahead-grows-starker62957

The Great Jobs Depression continues to worsen. The Labor Department reports this morning that companies created ony 67,000 new jobs in August. That’s down from the 107,000 they created in July. And because the government laid off temporary Census workers, the economy as a whole lost 54,000 jobs.

Why the Big Lie About the Job Crisis?

September 3rd, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article26295.htm

The August unemployment numbers are ugly, yet again. Nearly 30 million Americans are still jobless or forced into part-time jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics official unemployment rate is 9.6%. It's borader and more telling jobless rate (U6) of 16.7% confirms that we're stuck in our own version of the Great Depression. We'll need more than 22 million new jobs to bring us back to full-employment. Happy Labor Day.

The cuts that will leave nothing behind

September 3rd, 2010
Categories: News, Economic

Link: http://socialistworker.org/2010/09/03/cuts-that-leave-nothing-behind

The scale of the budget cuts being carried out by state governments is so vast that some programs and agencies will disappear for good. Lee Sustar reports. Weekend service cuts leave a New York City subway station empty STATE BUDGET cuts across the U.S. are wiping out entire networks of social service providers--and worse is to come, according to studies of the states' fiscal crises.

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