FROM Craig Merrilees
Port Slowdown: Worrisome News for the Economy Since July, unionized dockworkers and shipping companies had been negotiating a new contract behind closed doors -- until a recent exchange of angry public accusations. Retailers, agricultural interests and others have warned President Obama about a slowdown at West Coast ports that could escalate into a strike or lockout, with tens of billions in economic losses. The Pacific Maritime Association says the International Longshore and Warehouse Union has orchestrated a slowdown at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Today, there’s an added problem of a strike against two of the 1000 trucking firms that serve the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. Thanks to Sasa Woodruff for production assistance.
Seventh Day of Strike at the Ports of LA and Long Beach Several hundred clerical workers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach – without a contract for two-and-a-half years – began a strike last week. Other longshoremen honored the picket lines, and on the front page of today’s LA Times, you can see the result – a large photo of idle cranes and very large ships at anchor beyond them. The mayor says get this settled. And a question about that billion dollar number – from the man who says – that’s my estimate, and I don’t like it anymore.
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?