FROM Bernard Simon
Mounting Layoffs a Sign of a Deepening Economic Downturn The US is expected to lose 200,000 jobs this month and unemployment, now 6.1 percent, could rise to 7 or 8 percent. Xerox, Coca-Cola, Whirlpool, Merck and Yahoo are laying off workers, as are most of the airlines. But cuts are expected to hit the auto industry hardest of all. Cars are not selling, and unemployment in Michigan has already reached 9 percent. Even if General Motors and Chrysler merge, jobs will be lost, and if one of the Big Three goes bankrupt the ripple effect could be in the millions. Will Washington bail out another industry? Would another stimulus package invigorate the economy? Can money to be found in defense cuts? We look at those issues today as rising unemployment adds to the income inequality that separates Americans from each other.
"Tough on crime" rhetoric sees a revival at Sessions' DOJ The pendulum swings between treatment-focused approaches to drug abuse and tough law enforcement. Now, after years of Obama-era "reforms," President Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions wants local police freed from federal restrictions to fight another "war on drugs."
The flight bumping heard around 'round the world Recent video of a passenger forcibly removed from a United Airlines plane is a worst-case example of what's happened since consolidation into just four US-based carriers. Management seems to be tone-deaf to a decline in service — and even abuse — of passengers.
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.