Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Another Mass Shooting in a Pro-Gun State

Will we ever learn. How many Americans have to die before we realize that allowing just about anyone to get a gun is suicidal. And when will we learn that the NRA owns the Congress and White House. And they don't give a damn about the lives of their fellow citizens. They want  to sell guns. And it doesn't matter who buys them:

Police say the man who opened fire in a suburban Portland shopping mall apparently killed himself after fatally shooting two people and wounding a third.

Clackamas County sheriff's Lt. James Rhodes says law enforcement who flooded the Clackamas Town Center in response to the afternoon shooting didn't fire any shots.

Witnesses described a scene of chaos and disbelief as a gunman wearing some sort of camouflage outfit and a white mask shot an initial burst of fire and then more rounds near the mall's food court.

Many shoppers fled and others hid in the backrooms of stores.

HSBC to pay $1.9B to settle money-laundering case

This leads to the obvious question: If corporations are people why isn't anyone going to jail?

HSBC avoided a legal battle that could further savage its reputation and undermine confidence in the global banking system by agreeing Tuesday to pay $1.9 billion to settle a U.S. money-laundering probe.

Europe's largest bank by market value will pay the biggest penalty ever imposed on a bank after facing accusations it transferred funds through the U.S. from Mexican drug cartels and on behalf of nations such as Iran that are under international sanctions.

Corporate Profits Hit Record High While Worker Wages Hit Record Low

Source: Thinkprogress.org:

A constant conservative charge against President Obama is that he is inherently anti-business. However, businesses keep defying the storyline by making larger and larger profits, rebounding nicely out of the Great Recession.

In the third quarter of this year, “corporate earnings were $1.75 trillion, up 18.6% from a year ago.” Corporations are currently making more as a percentage of the economy than they ever have since such records were kept. But at the same time, wages as a percentage of the economy are at an all-time low, as this chart shows. (The red line is corporate profits; the blue line is private sector wages.):

CBO: Economic Recovery not Guaranteed

There is nothing to suggest that the economy will get better in the foreseeable future. We have a government and economy that is dysfunctional. Corporations are simply hording money and not investing in the economy. Workers are working longer hours for less pay. Assuming they have a job. This means no consumption. Which is essential to economic growth. Disaster only looms ahead:

One effect of the Great Recession was to massively widen the gap between the amount of wealth the economy could be producing and what it actually was producing. GDP production dropped almost $1 trillion from its pre-recession trend line, and between 2008 and 2011 the United States lost around $3.6 trillion.

CBO’s “current law” baseline, which assumes the nation goes over the so-called “fiscal cliff,” does not show a return to potential GDP until 2018. However, as the Economic Policy Institute noted yesterday, CBO’s predictions over the last three years have repeatedly pushed back the date of the recovery, suggesting there’s no guarantee it actually happens...

Video: Law prohibiting union agreements to pass in Michigan

Republican lawmakers in Michigan are pushing to pass a right-to-work law, which could have an impact in union-heavy states across the U.S. Elaine Quijano reports.