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Sunday, April 20, 2014 10:28 PM


Glen Greenwald Wins Pulitzer Prize for Exposing NSA Spy Scandal; His Reaction on Video; My Reaction: Greenwald and Snowden are Heroes


A big round of well deserved applause for Glen Greenwald is in order for willing a Pulitzer Prize for public service. Greenwald says the announcement was "really gratifying."

Please consider Glenn Greenwald Reacts To Pulitzer Prize

Glenn Greenwald told CNN's Brian Stelter on Sunday that receiving the Pulitzer Prize for public service was "really gratifying."

On Monday, Greenwald and other journalists at The Guardian and The Washington Post were awarded the Pulitzer for their reporting on the National Security Agency. The big question as the awards approached was whether the Pulitzer Prize committee would recognize their work, and they did just that.

On Sunday's "Reliable Sources," Greenwald told Stelter that he was having lunch with his phone on the table when the announcement came, and described his reaction.

"I think there was an expectation that the committee had to recognize the reporting in one way or another, and the question was going to be how," said Greenwald. "To learn that it was the public service award and that it was given to The Guardian and to The Washington Post for the work that we had done was really gratifying, because I think that is the ideal that we always tried to fulfill, which is doing the reporting in public service."

Congressman Peter King, like other critics of Greenwald, reacted to the news less kindly, calling the win a "disgrace." When asked about King's condemnation of the award, Greenwald said it was "an enormous badge of honor." He compared it to the reactions of those who called for prosecuting Daniel Ellsberg and The New York Times for releasing the Pentagon Papers.
Greenwald and Snowden are Heroes

Glen Greenwald and Edward Snowden are heroes. Those looking for cowardly disgrace can find in in the reactions of President Obama, Senator John McCain, Congressman Peter King, and numerous other legislators who have no idea what the constitution even says.



In the above video, Pulitzer Prize winner Glenn Greenwald joins Brian Stelter for an exclusive interview.

Congratulations to Greenwald, the Guardian, and the Washington Post.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com

2:06 PM


"Low Inflation has Positive Impact and Helps Spain's Competitiveness" Says Economy Minister


Luis de Guindos, Spain's Economy Minister, sings the praises of low inflation.

Via translation from El Economista, please consider Economy Minister Says Deflation Has "Positive Impact".

James Daniel, Spain's mission advisor to the IMF, said that inflation close to zero in the country increases the burden of debt and real interest rates and difficult to reduce unemployment.

Daniel's words contradict the perception Luis de Guindos, the Spanish Minister of Economy and Competitiveness, who also said today at a press conference that low inflation "is having a positive impact" and help the country's competitiveness.

Guindos noted noted that, far from being a threat, "the low level of inflation is allowing Spain win competitiveness."

However, he recognized that low inflation could become a "problem" if it lasts "long" and affects the process of deleveraging in the Spanish economy. The minister expects inflation to fluctuate in the coming months at around 0.5%.
Guindos had it correct until that last sentence. Low inflation, or deflation is never a problem. Rather the buildup of debt that cannot be serviced is the problem.

Since the buildup of debt is the problem, inflationary solutions that encourage people and businesses to expand debt cannot possibly be the solution.

Falling wages have had a positive effect on Spain's competitiveness, so much so that France is bitching about the invasion of Spanish builders undercutting French firms in price.

For discussion, please see Deflation Will Return: Europe First, Then US; Global Supply Arbitrage.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com 

Saturday, April 19, 2014 2:27 PM


Illinois Madness Never Stops; House Committee Wants Taxpayers to Spend $100 Million on Barack Obama Library


Illinois is broke. Its public pension plans are the most troubled in the nation.

Illinois passed massive "temporary" tax hikes to fix the pension problem, but that did not make a dent in  the problem.

Nonetheless, ideas to waste more taxpayer money are always on the table. Here's a recent example.

$100 Million for Barack Obama Library

Today, the Illinois Policy Institute reports by email ...

An Illinois House Committee wants taxpayers to pay $100 million for a Barack Obama library. Somehow, House Speaker Michael Madigan thinks this is an appropriate use of funds despite the state’s more than $100 billion pension crisis and $6.6 billion in unpaid bills.

In accepting hefty taxpayer dollars for this venture, President Barack Obama is setting himself apart from his recent predecessors, former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.

Clinton’s library, located in Little Rock, Ark., was funded solely through private donations, according to the Clinton Foundation. Clinton’s “$165 million facility was built entirely through private funds. It’s just a fact,” said Jordan Johnson, a spokeswoman for the Clinton Foundation.

Likewise, Bush’s library, located at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, was also funded through private donations.

The Barack Obama Foundation, tasked with planning the development of Obama’s presidential library, has yet to determine the site of the future library. In fact, the foundation’s board of directors is receiving proposals through June 16 and does not intend to announce its final decision until 2015. The Illinois House Committee's $100 million proposal will now go to the full House.

On its website, the Barack Obama Foundation defines its mission as developing a presidential library that “reflects President Obama’s values and priorities throughout his career in public service.” Interestingly enough, the first value listed is “expanding economic opportunity.” But more than 600,000 Illinoisans woke up today and didn’t have a job to go to, and thousands more face underemployment. To them and many others, it’s clear the president has fallen short on accomplishing his goal of “expanding economic opportunity” to the Land of Lincoln, where he launched his political career as a state senator 18 years ago.

Obama’s staff expects the library to cost $500 million or more. And the costs won’t stop there. The day-to-day operations and maintenance of the United States’ 13 presidential libraries cost taxpayers $75 million in fiscal year 2013 alone.

This figure strikes an interesting contrast. Illinois politicians, who are demanding that we extend the 2011 tax hike so that “draconian” spending cuts in public and human services do not go into effect – are attempting to subsidize a monument in dedication to the legacy of the most prolific fundraiser in history – on the backs of poor and middle-class families in Illinois.

Jane McEnaney
Manager of Government Affairs
Illinois Madness Never Stops

In March, House Speaker Michael Madigan proposed 3% surcharge on income over $1 million

Also this year, progressives argued for a blank check proposal for more tax hikes. For details, please see Picking-Your-Pocket Numbers: How Much More Will You Pay?

Now the legislature wants to waste $100 million for a Barack Obama Library.

In Illinois, the madness never stops.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com


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