nytimes.com — If I were a close adviser of President Obama’s, I would say to him, “Mr. President, you have two urgent and overwhelming tasks in front of you: to put Americans trapped in this terrible employment crisis back to work and to put the brakes on your potentially disastrous plan to escalate the war in Afghanistan.”
blog.aflcio.org — While we take the time to honor the courage and sacrifice shown by our veterans, we should also rededicate ourselves to making sure vets have a secure and stable life after they finish their service. The U.S. Labor Department reports the unemployment rate among Iraq and Afghanistan veterans is 11.3 percent, significantly above the overall rate of 10.2 percent for the nation as a whole. Some 185,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans are out of work.
thenation.com — While most of official Washington was all hot and bothered about health care reform last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was paying attention to a far more serious concern. The unemployment rate had spiked, moving into double digits for the first time in more than a quarter century. Reid's response was the right one.
This week, Barack Obama trips to China as part of an eight-day trip to Asia. The White House paints a full agenda: Afghanistan, human rights, North Korean nukes, climate change, trade relations, and the economy. But it's really just the economy, stupid.
In clean energy, countries get what they pay for. If the United States won't invest in cleaner manufacturing, other countries will, and their workers will benefit from being able to supply their markets and others. more »
inthesetimes.com — To confront the growing poverty and social misery that is engulfing the poorest 40 percent of Americans, the United States will require a national jobs program based on significant public investment in the economy.
blogs.wsj.com — With the unemployment rate in double-digit territory, the Obama administration is turning to trade policy as a potential balm for the ailing labor market.
By increasing exports to rapidly growing countries like China and India, the U.S. could put a dent in joblessness and foster long-term economic growth without stressing the federal budget. But overhauling export policy is part of a White House approach that is in the early stages of execution.
Obama officials want to change outdated U.S. export controls, make it easier for foreign executives to travel to the U.S. and strengthen protections of intellectual property. One difficulty they face is making it easier for companies shipping products overseas to obtain necessary financing and credit from banks. And firms still face intellectual property rights and foreign-exchange issues.
Some, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, complain that as long as a trio of stalled free trade agreements remain unratified, the administration is shunning the most direct way to quickly lift exports. Its stance on trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama is still unclear.