North Carolina Legalizes Call Girls For Politicians. North Carolina’s State Ethics Committee has just opened up a major problem for their state — they just made it legal for lobbying firms to purchase prostitutes to service politicians.
The Committee’s determination that sex had no value and that sex between a lobbyist and politician was nothing to report or in any way questionable means that a major loophole has opened up for lobbying firms. Now lobbying firms can hire people with the explicit goal to seduce and fornicate with politicians in order to garner favor. In other terms, lobbying firms can hire people who can offer sexual services for politicians, and they don’t even need to register. Now, before it is said that it is being misinterpreted, here is the actual letter from the Ethics Committee, titled “Sexual Favors or Sexual Acts as a Gift or ‘Thing of Value.'” In it, they declared that these relations have no monetary value, so do not need to be reported. Even more disturbing are the long-term implications. Deeds attack shows that our system is a mess: Column. The stabbing of Virginia state Sen.
Creigh Deeds on Tuesday apparently by his son, Gus, who later committed suicide, is the latest in a string of mental health related violent incidents. Initial news reports said Austin "Gus" Deeds had been turned away from a treatment center because no beds were available -- a claim later denied by state hospital officials. What's uncontestable is that Deeds didn't get the help that he needed. In September, it was Aaron Alexis, the Washington Navy Yard shooter who murdered 12 and wounded three before being shot to death, who made headlines.
Alexis tried at least two times to get help from Veterans Affairs medical centers, but was sent packing with nothing more than a handful of pills for insomnia. The real question that needs to be answered is why can't someone who is in the midst of mental breakdown get help in our nation? First some facts. This is a national problem. HMOs are partly to blame. Our legal system hampers our mental health system, too. Infrastructure Economic Multiplier. A recently published working paper from the San Francisco Fed shows that the fiscal multiplier of infrastructure spending is much larger than the typical government spending multiplier.
Sylvain Leduc and Daniel Wilson studied the effect of unexpected infrastructure grants on state GDPs (GSPs) since 1990 and found that, on average, each dollar of infrastructure spending increases the GSP by at least two dollars. Valerie Ramey, Professor of Economics at UC San Diego and member of the National Bureau of Economic Research, reports that the typical fiscal multiplier is between 0.5 and 1.5. Leduc and Wilson note that their results serve as a validation of Keynesian economics: We find that unanticipated increases in highway spending have positive but temporary effects on GSP, both in the short and medium run. The short-run effect is consistent with a traditional Keynesian channel in which output increases because of a rise in aggregate demand, combined with slow-to-adjust prices.
Death of Former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle Puts Spotlight on PTSD. <br/><a href=" US News</a> | <a href=" Business News</a> Copy The shooting death of former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, an advocate for veterans' mental health, has pushed the problem of post-traumatic stress disorder among American troops to the fore.
Kyle, who was known as America's deadliest sniper, was killed Saturday at a gun range in Erath County, Texas. The suspect, identified by police as 25-year-old Eddie Ray Routh, is a veteran who served in Iraq and Haiti and who police say may have been suffering from some type of mental illness from being in the military. A second man, identified by police as 35-year-old Chad Littlefield, was also shot at point-blank range and killed. "My heart is breaking," Travis Cox, director of FITCO Cares, the non-profit foundation Kyle co-founded to help ease veterans back into civilian life, said in a statement. Routh will be charged with two counts of capital murder, police said today. Taxes, Spending, Regulation and the Economy. An economist explains why the conservative argument that high corporate taxes and burdensome regulation are preventing businesses from hiring an prolonging the recession is false.
It begins with his TV appearance with someone from the Heritage Foundation: A couple of hours after talking to an ABC correspondent about the woeful job numbers and what might be done to improve them, I was in the Bloomberg TV studios debating a guy from Heritage. He went on for several minutes about the damage being done by high taxes, excess regulation, business “uncertainty” about future tax hikes and regulatory burdens. I asked Bloomberg’s host whether he was aware that corporate profits relative to national income had just hit a 60-year peak? He had heard rumors to that effect.
He continues: Then why was uncertainty about taxes and the future burden of the Affordable Care Act holding back business investment and hiring right now? Which regulations are achieving their goals and at what cost? Homeland security spending: We'd have to foil 1,667 Times Square-style attacks every year to justify current spending on homeland security. - By John Mueller and Mark G. Stewart. This is adapted from Mueller and Stewart's new Terror, Security, and Money: Balancing the Risks, Benefits, and Costs of Homeland Security.
Read earlier pieces about why the government refuses to subject homeland-security spending to cost-benefit analysis and how the government overestimates the risk of terrorism. Is it possible to measure the risk of terrorism? Measuring risk can be difficult, but it is done as a matter of course in such highly charged areas as nuclear power plant safety, airplane safety, and environmental protection. There is adequate information about terrorism: There is plenty of data on how much damage terrorists have been able to do over the decades and about how frequently they attack. The insurance industry has a distinct financial imperative to understand terrorism risks to write policies for it.
A conventional approach to cost-effectiveness compares the costs of security measures with the benefits as tallied in lives saved and damages averted. The true cost of 9/11: Trillions and trillions wasted on wars, a fiscal catastrophe, and a weaker America. - By Joseph E. Stiglitz. The Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks by al-Qaida were meant to harm the United States, and they did, but in ways that Osama Bin Laden probably never imagined.
President George W. Bush's response to the attacks compromised America's basic principles, undermined its economy, and weakened its security. The attack on Afghanistan that followed the 9/11 attacks was understandable, but the subsequent invasion of Iraq was entirely unconnected to al-Qaida—as much as Bush tried to establish a link. That war of choice quickly became very expensive—orders of magnitude beyond the $60 billion claimed at the beginning—as colossal incompetence met dishonest misrepresentation.
Indeed, when Linda Bilmes and I calculated America's war costs three years ago, the conservative tally was $3 trillion to $5 trillion. Today, America is focused on unemployment and the deficit. Ironically, the wars have undermined America's (and the world's) security, again in ways that Osama Bin Laden could not have imagined. Out of Control: The Destructive Power of the Financial Markets - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News - International. The enemy looks friendly and unpretentious.
With his scuffed shoes and thinning gray hair, John Taylor resembles an elderly sociology professor. Books line the dark, floor-to-ceiling wooden shelves in his office in Manhattan, alongside a bust of Theodore Roosevelt and an antique telescope. Taylor is the chairman and CEO of FX Concepts, a hedge fund that specializes in currency speculation. It's the largest hedge fund of its kind worldwide, which is why Taylor is held partly responsible for the crash of the euro.
Critics accuse Taylor and others like him of having exacerbated the government crisis in Greece and accelerated the collapse in Ireland. People like Taylor are "like a pack of wolves" that seeks to tear entire countries to pieces, said Swedish Finance Minister Anders Borg. The German tabloid newspaper Bild sharply criticized Taylor on its website, writing: "This man is betting against the euro.
" Taylor grimaces and sighs. Markets Control Politicians Incalculable Risk. William Barclay: The Bush tax cuts: A decade of economic disaster. Call Off the Global Drug War.