US headlines last week

From: Rakesh Bhandari (rakeshb@STANFORD.EDU)
Date: Wed Sep 03 2003 - 17:22:54 EDT

Compiled by Les Schaffer on

Headlines in the last week:

    (mainly US news, how the rest of y'all making out???)

1.) Poverty levels are rising:

      Census Shows Ranks of Poor Rose by 1.3 Million

      WASHINGTON, Sept. 2 -- The number of Americans living below the
      poverty line increased by more than 1.3 million last year, even
      though the economy technically edged out of recession during the
      same period, a Census Bureau report shows.

2.) People are working longer hours:

      New Workplace, Old Fight

      Workers Struggle for Overtime Pay as Firms Seek to Boost
      Productivity While Cutting Costs

      By Kirstin Downey
      Washington Post Staff Writer
      Sunday, August 31, 2003; Page F01

...  though our rulers say we are being more productive:

      Report Says U.S. Workers Top World's Productivity

      From Reuters

      U.S. workers topped the world's productivity for 2002, with
      annual output having risen much faster than in Europe and Japan
      in recent years, according to a United Nations study to be
      released today.,1,2770358.story


3.) Meanwhile, emergency rooms, which are the frontline for health
care of poor in this country (US), are being told they can turn people
away (per Bush):

... While the EPA is allowing sale of PCB-tainted sites (per Bush):,1,5527177.story?coll=la-home-todays-times

4.) No-one in gov't or leaders of industry wants responsibility for
power failures:

      Utilities Point Their Fingers at Each Other Over Blackout

      WASHINGTON, Sept. 2 -- Five electricity organizations involved in
      the Aug. 14 blackout have sent letters to the chairman of the
      House Energy and Commerce Committee seeking to implicate one
      another, to varying degrees, in the cascading failure.


5.) All the while, the cappie class purports to clean a little laundry
in public:

      Mutual Funds Allowed Fraudulent Trading, Spitzer Says

      Just six months after reaching a settlement with investment banks
      over tainted research, Eliot Spitzer, the New York attorney
      general, said today that major mutual fund companies had engaged
      in fraudulent after-market trading practices with privileged
      institutional investors.

      OKLAHOMA CITY -- Former WorldCom chief executive Bernie Ebbers
      pleaded innocent today to the first criminal charges brought
      against him in the long-distance company's $11 billion accounting

      Energy Dept. Probing Jump in Gasoline Prices
      By REUTERS

      Filed at 2:01 p.m. ET

      WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Energy Department is
      investigating a recent spike in gasoline prices to a record high,
      Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham said on Wednesday.

6.) Bush pretends to be an internationalist:

      Powell: U.S. to introduce U.N. resolution
      Proposes U.N.-sponsored force under U.S. command
      Wednesday, September 3, 2003 Posted: 2:08 PM EDT (1808 GMT)

      Poland Takes Control in Central Iraq
      By REUTERS

      Filed at 4:31 a.m. ET

      BABYLON, Iraq (Reuters) - U.S. Marines handed over control of a
      patch of central Iraq on Wednesday to a Polish-led multinational
      force in a ceremony in ancient Babylon.

7.) And finally, what can one say???:

      "Things are getting better," Mr. Bush told a subdued crowd here.

quoted in:

      Bush Defends Tax Cuts and Announces Jobs Post

      RICHFIELD, Ohio, Sept. 1 -- Since the last time President Bush
      addressed a Labor Day picnic -- with carpenters in Pennsylvania
      -- the economy has lost 700,000 jobs, most of them in

les schaffer

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