Daily Digest 3/24 - Top 10 Euro Economies, The Rise Of Disability In America
“Green Giant” (rdinr08)
It was great to share a Kale Hero Smoothie with my former colleague, Martin Bashir, and talk more about putting our money where our mouth is.
In the past three decades, the number of Americans who are on disability has skyrocketed. The rise has come even as medical advances have allowed many more people to remain on the job, and new laws have banned workplace discrimination against the disabled. Every month, 14 million people now get a disability check from the government.
Accusations of treachery, mostly aimed by poorer nations at Germany for demanding budget cuts and other painful steps in return for help, have become a regular feature of Europe’s three-year-old debt crisis. But what began in Cyprus as just another episode in a now-familiar narrative of stingy, rich Northern Europeans versus put-upon, poor southerners has escalated into a bigger drama tinged with cold war-style language and strategic calculations involving not just money but also energy and even military power.
The America That Works (Nervous Nelly)
Yet there is also another America, where things work. One hint comes from what those bosses like to call the real economy. Recent numbers from the jobs market and the housing sector have been quite healthy. Consumer balance-sheets are being repaired. The stockmarket has just hit a record high. Some of this is cyclical: the private sector is rebounding from the crunch. But it also reflects the fact that, beyond the District of Columbia, the rest of the country is starting to tackle some of its deeper competitive problems. Businesses and politicians are not waiting for the federal government to ride to their rescue. Instead, as our special report this week shows, they are getting to grips with the failings Congress is ignoring.
Graphic: The Top 10 European Economies (westcoastjan)
The outbreak of the crisis in Cyprus this week is putting renewed focus on the economic health of Europe. So far, only smaller European economies, such as Greece and Ireland, have needed bailouts to prevent a collapse. But how economically stable are the continent’s biggest countries? Below, we lay out the numbers for Europe’s ten biggest economies,
including a quick look at what their biggest pressures are.
Three times in the last 11 months, that was all the justification a self-described anarchist group needed to kick out the restaurant’s windows to give them a “taste of the class war,” in the words of an online screed posted in the wake of the attack.
And Famoso was only the latest victim. Last month, similar sentiments compelled a band of sign-wielding poverty protesters to mass outside Pidgin, a high-end restaurant opened in a long-vacant building on the nearby Downtown Eastside.
Graphic: The Governomics of Canada (westcoastjan)
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty tabled a budget Thursday that projected growth and few surprises as it tries to slay the $26 billion federal deficit by 2015. But how did Ottawa get to this point and how do all the financials break down? Drawing from Department of Finance data, figures from the Royal Bank of Canada and numbers from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, we offer a breakdown of Canada’s financial past and present.
FAA to close 149 air traffic towers as budget cuts bite (westcoastjan)
"We heard from communities across the country about the importance of their towers and these were very tough decisions," Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement.
But he said the closures of the control towers were an unavoidable response to the spending cuts known in Washington as the sequester.
Mayor Asks Montrealers Whether City Should Fill Potholes (westcoastjan)
He said a shortage of asphalt means that after a current contract expires on April 15, Montreal’s potholes will go unfilled — unless these companies are granted the contract.
Applebaum is asking Montrealers to go to the City of Montreal’s website to vote on whether they feel the contracts won by these seven companies based on their bid and geographic location should be honoured.
Many people who have attempted to utilize frequent-flier miles to obtain free or upgraded travel in the past few years, and who had also done so years earlier, have experienced tremendous inflation. Even in situations in which point requirements for a specific flight have not officially inflated – that is, prices expressed in terms of miles needed have not officially risen – the addition of fuel surcharges, cash co-pays for upgrades, “premium” mile requirements for specific fares, and other fees and/or extra-point-requirements have become commonplace, dramatically reducing the de-facto buying power of frequent-flier miles, and of the dollars spent to acquire them when people earn them via paid travel.
Editorial: Prevention key to tanker safety (westcoastjan)
The government emphasized that only double-hulled tankers would be allowed to operate in our coastal waters. But only 50 single-hulled tankers remain in the world, and none have been allowed to operate here for years, Green party MP Elizabeth May said. The International Maritime Organization is banning them as of 2015.
The Government was forced to issue a statement today strongly denying suggestions that Britain’s gas supplies are about to run out, after a series of concerning developments around the energy grid. As the cold weather continued to wreak havoc on the grid, the wholesale price of gas jumped by as much as 50 per cent at one point to a record 150p a therm after a water-pump failure forced the closure of a key import gas pipeline.
Gold & Silver
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