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40 percent of unemployed have quit looking for jobs

by Jeff Cox     •     CNBC

unemploymentAt a time when 8.5 million Americans still don’t have jobs, some 40 percent have given up even looking.

The revelation, contained in a new survey Wednesday showing how much work needs to be done yet in the U.S. labor market, comes as the labor force participation rate remains mired near 37-year lows.

A tight jobs market, the skills gap between what employers want and what prospective employees have to offer, and a benefits program that, while curtailed from its recession level, still remains obliging have combined to keep workers on the sidelines, according to a Harris poll of 1,553 working-age Americans conducted for Express Employment Professionals. [Read more...]

BUSTED: Paul Krugman removed 20 years of data from a chart to show a correlation that wasn’t really there

by Cullen Roche     •     Business Insider

Someone sent me an email Wednesday evening with some details on the Paul Krugman response to James Montier, which I discussed here. I had previously stated that the Krugman response was lacking meat. But it’s actually worse than that. It’s actually highly misleading and appears intentionally so.

In the post, Dr. Krugman tries to show how much interest rates matter by comparing the Fed Funds Rate with Housing Starts. He shows a chart and declares that there appears to be a strong correlation. Except, as this emailer notes, he appears to have shifted the chart to make it appear as though there is a correlation where there isn’t one.

Here’s the Krugman chart:

[Read more...]

The Dead We Honor

by Post Editorial Board     •     The New York Post

Memorial Day inspires mixed emotions: pride in the valor of those who gave their lives in the cause of freedom; sorrow that such self-sacrifice should have been necessary. Pride in past valor may be best expressed in the St. Crispin’s Day speech from “Henry V” (Act IV, Scene iii), delivered by the young king on the eve of the Battle of Agincourt.

[Read more...]

Oops! Updated NASA Data Reveals No Global Warming Polar Ice Retreat

By P.J. Gladnick     •     NewsBusters

warming global climate ice capsTalk about poor timing! Just as President Obama is about to give the commencement address at the Coast Guard Academy on the subject of the perils of global warming, a report has come out in Forbes Magazine that updated NASA data reveals that contrary to the many alarmist stories in the mainstream media, the polar ice caps are not receding.

James Taylor, who has written on energy and environment issues, reveals that the polar ice caps have not receded at all since NASA data measurements began in 1979. Taylor also notes that the MSM has remained resolutely silent on these latest NASA data revelations: [Read more...]

Oregon to test pay-per-mile idea as replacement for gas tax

By Gosia Wozniaka     •     My Way News

Gas Can Man at the PumpOregon is about to embark on a first-in-the-nation program that aims to charge car owners not for the fuel they use, but for the miles they drive.

The program is meant to help the state raise more revenue to pay for road and bridge projects at a time when money generated from gasoline taxes are declining across the country, in part, because of greater fuel efficiency and the increasing popularity of fuel-efficient, hybrid and electric cars. [Read more...]

EPA power grab looks like Obamacare redux

by Peter Roff     •     Washington Examiner

epa-logoEveryone remembers former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s ill-advised comment that the Affordable Care Act would have to pass so that the American people could find out what was in it. Unfortunately, what should have been a cautionary tale has instead been an object lesson in rulemaking for President Obama’s bureaucracy.

Take, for example, the pending Clean Power Plan, an initiative of the Environmental Protection Agency. If fully implemented, it could lead to the mass shuttering of existing power generation facilities, rolling brownouts, blackouts and a significant increase in electrical rates. [Read more...]

Al-Shabab Aims to Turn Jihad in Somalia into Nationalist War Against Kenya

by Dr. Lawrence A. Franklin

Al-Shabab, the Somalia-based terrorist group, appears to have adopted a new strategy to turn its Islamist war into a nationalist conflict targeting Kenya. Following al-Shabab’s military setbacks at the hands of African Union Mission Somalia (AMSOM) troops deployed to Somalia, the group’s operations may have shifted from tactical battles to spectacular acts of terror against Kenyan civilians.

Al-Shabab has been responsible for several recent operations inside Kenya that have commanded the attention of the world’s media. These terrorist spectaculars have included among others, the Westgate Mall slaughter of September, 2013; the killing of bus passengers in the Mandera District of the Northern Province in November, 2014; the assassination of quarry workers near Koromey township on 2 December 2014; and the mass murder of students in the area’s Garissa District in early April of this year. [Read more...]

Why Stephanopoulos tarnished his credibility by hiding his Clinton Foundation donations

by Howard Kurtz     •     Fox News

For 18 years, George Stephanopoulos has tried to leave behind his political past as a Clinton Democrat and establish himself as an unbiased journalist at ABC News.

Now he’s cast a dark shadow over that very question.

By donating $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation, and failing to disclose it, Stephanopoulos has committed an awful blunder. He has handled the story badly. And ABC is giving him a pass. [Read more...]

For Folks Who Just Love Suppressing Free Speech

By Charles Lipson     •     RealClearPolitics

Free speechThe Canadian government of Stephen Harper has a fascinating idea. Use hate-crime laws against groups that advocate boycotting Israel.

It’s a terrible idea. I love it.

It’s terrible because we should protect varied political views, not suppress them. That includes unpopular views and sacrilegious drawings. The only exceptions should be speech that threatens physical harm and does so directly and plausibly. [Read more...]

Pay No Attention to the Aspiring Transnational Behemoth Behind the Curtain

Behind_curtain

By Shawn Macomber Lawfare Tyranny

Perhaps you’ve been concerned about the International Criminal Court because of the shamelessly selective enforcement of its purported mission. Or the rent-seeking tendencies hardwired into its DNA. Or its unjust inefficiencies. Or the vast, profound, and seemingly endemic waste of financial resources that could be put to better use by a host of NGOs elsewhere.

Well, University of Arizona professor and Divided Sovereignty: International Institutions and the Limits of State Sovereignty author Carmen Pavel is here to sweep those piddling trepidations away with a single Oxford University blog post in which she accuses Court opponents of attempting to “evoke dark forebodings of a global leviathan.”

Which is apparently ridiculous…

[I]nstitutions such as the ICC and others whose task would be to protect the most basic level of physical security, such as a stronger policing and enforcement agency, are unlikely to turn into a global government, with the power to create zoning laws, welfare reform, or the right to holidays with pay.

Got that? Until the ICC is actively fiddling with your beloved local zoning ordinances, pay no attention to the aspiring transnational behemoth behind the curtain.

And why?

[Read more...]

The Left’s Silencing of College Campuses

By Kirsten Powers     •     The Daily Beast

FreeSpeech_first amendmentThe root of nearly every free-speech infringement on campuses across the country is that someone—almost always a liberal—has been offended or has sniffed out a potential offense in the making. Then, the silencing campaign begins. The offender must be punished, not just for justice’s sake, but also to send the message to anyone else on campus that should he or she stray off the leftist script, they too might find themselves investigated, harassed, ostracized, or even expelled. If the illiberal left can preemptively silence opposing speakers or opposing groups— such as getting a speech or event canceled, or denying campus recognition for a group—even better.

In a 2014 interview with New York magazine, comedian Chris Rock told journalist Frank Rich that he had stopped playing college campuses because of how easily the audiences were offended. [Read more...]

U.S. Emergency-Room Visits Keep Climbing

By Stephanie Armour     •     Wall Street Journal

Emergency-room visits continued to climb in the second year of the Affordable Care Act, contradicting the law’s supporters who had predicted a decline in traffic as more people gained access to doctors and other health-care providers.

A survey of 2,098 emergency-room doctors conducted in March showed about three-quarters said visits had risen since January 2014. That was a significant uptick from a year earlier, when less than half of doctors surveyed reported an increase. The survey by the American College of Emergency Physicians is scheduled to be published Monday. [Read more...]

Media Gives President a Pass Again

The media has by and large given President Obama’s failed Afghanistan policy a pass—just as it has his larger foreign policy missteps.

by Walter Russell Mead     •     The American Interest

Media Bias - ObamaOnce again, be very glad we don’t have a Republican president right now. If we did, we would be treated to a merciless media pounding, night-and-day, on the series of strategic failures, mistakes and false starts that have characterized America’s war strategy in Afghanistan since 2009. We’d be getting constant reminders of how the President, who repeatedly said that this was a just war that America had to win, and who told us that we should vote for him because he wouldn’t let anything distract him from the vital task of winning said war, hasn’t managed to win it, or even end it, after six long years. [Read more...]

No Escape: How The International Criminal Court Will Impact the 2016 U.S. Presidential Race

unnamed-2By Shawn Macomber • Lawfare Tyranny

Over at The Washington Times today Center for Freedom and Prosperity President Andrew F. Quinlan presents the International Criminal Court as Exhibit A in his case for why, despite the fact that Americans “spare little mind for the goings-on of international organizations,” the activities of these aspiring transnational behemoths nonetheless will “not only have significant impact around the world, but could also play a role in the upcoming electoral contest.”

After noting a few of the same foundational flaws in the ICC’s mission that we have covered in detail in this space, Quinlan writes:

The United States chooses not to participate in the ICC, but that doesn’t mean its actions have no bearing on U.S. interests. Given the history of the Court’s involvement in ongoing conflicts and the negative results it can produce, the next president will have to keep a close eye on the current investigation and any potential proceedings that emerge from it.

He goes on to righteously excoriate the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), before tying the whole room together with this final warning:

The President of the United States is often called the leader of the free world. Increasingly, however, U.S. Presidents are watching from the outside as major world events are decided by unelected global bureaucrats. Whether they want to address the undertakings of these international organizations or not, the candidates vying to be the next president may similarly find that the decision is out of their hands.

Read the whole damning piece here.

‘Irreversible’ Arctic Ice Loss Seems To Be Reversing Itself

by Michael Batasch     •     Daily Caller

ice ship climate change global warmingFor years, scientists have been warning the Arctic was in a “death spiral” and could soon be ice-free during the summertime and shrink to unprecedented levels due to man-made global warming. Such ice loss could be “irreversible,” some scientists claimed.

But new research from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography says that predictions of an ice-free Arctic are based on “oversimplified” theories. Scripps researchers, who were co-funded by the Navy, found that the Arctic sea ice may be “substantially more stable than has been suggested in previous idealized modeling studies.” [Read more...]