Thursday, May 17, 2012

  • Journalist, Plaintiff Chris Hedges Hails "Monumental" Ruling Blocking NDAA Indefinite Detention

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    In a rare move, a federal judge has struck down part of a controversial law signed by President Obama that gave the government the power to indefinitely detain anyone it considers a terrorism suspect anywhere in the world without charge or trial — including U.S. citizens. Judge Katherine Forrest of the Southern District of New York ruled the indefinite detention provision of the National Defense Authorization Act likely violates the First and Fifth Amendments of U.S. citizens. We speak with Chris Hedges, a journalist who filed the suit challenging the NDAA along with six others, and Bruce Afran, the group’s attorney. "This is another window into ... the steady assault against civil liberties," Hedges says. "What makes [the ruling] so monumental is that, finally, we have a federal judge who stands up for the rule of law." [includes rush transcript]

  • "End This Depression Now": Paul Krugman Urges Public Spending, Not Deficit Hysteria, to Save Economy

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    Public spending is under assault from the United States to Europe in the name of fighting deficits. Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman argues in his new book, "End This Depression Now!", that the hysteria over the deficit will constrain an economic recovery in a time of high unemployment and stagnating wages. "The economics is really easy," says Krugman, "If we were to spend more money at the government level and ... rehire the schoolteachers, firefighters, police officers who have been laid off in the last several years because of cutbacks at the state and local level, we would be a long way back towards full employment. ... Right now, there just is not enough spending, and we need the government, which can do it, to step in and provide the demand we need. ... We’ve had austerity in the face of a recession, in a way that we have never had before since the 1930s. ... And the results are clear: it’s disastrous." Krugman writes about the economy as a columnist for the New York Times and is a professor of economics at Princeton University. [includes rush transcript]

  • Krugman: Jamie Dimon Should Resign over JPMorgan’s $3B Lost Bet and Campaign Against Financial Regs

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    As the financial giant JPMorgan Chase continues to suffer major losses on its risky derivatives trades, Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman says bank chief Jamie Dimon should resign "precisely because he’s been using his supposed wisdom as a way to campaign against reform, and now it’s turned out that he wasn’t that wise after all. In fact, his bank was doing seriously bad stuff." Krugman says, "I think it would be better for everybody if he went." The Justice Department is now probing JPMorgan amid new calls for tougher regulation of Wall Street. "They’re making these bets with your money, because these are banks that are guaranteed. They have guaranteed deposits," Krugman says. "We’re supposed to have a rule going into effect — the Volcker Rule — that says that they can’t do this kind of stuff. But they are continuing to do it. ... We cannot trust the bankers to use this money safely." [includes rush transcript]

  • Paul Krugman on Eurozone: "The Whole Thing Could Fall Apart in a Matter of Months"

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    The European economic crisis is expected to top the agenda at the G8 meeting tomorrow at Camp David. In Greece, voters will soon head to the polls for another round of elections which will be viewed by many as a referendum on the euro. Our guest today, Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, warns the current bank run in Greece could spiral into the end of the eurozone. "It’s really quite shocking," Krugman says. "I hate to sound apocalyptic." Meanwhile, France’s new finance minister has reiterated that the country’s new Socialist government will not ratify the European Union’s fiscal pact calling for greater austerity. [includes rush transcript]

  • Paul Krugman: Debt Commission Chair Alan Simpson is Wrong to Call For Greater Austerity, Budget Cuts

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    Earlier this week, former Sen. Alan Simpson, who co-chaired President Obama’s bipartisan deficit commission, attacked New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, saying his work "borders on hysteria." We ask Krugman to respond to Simpson, who has advocated for slashing spending despite the economic downturn. "We’re witnessing a gigantic experiment in the kinds of policies that people like Simpson want," Krugman says. "The Europeans have gone whole hog for [austerity]. Catastrophic results." Krugman says now is the time to increase government spending. "We’re not saying ignore the debt forever, but we’re saying it’s actually counterproductive to be slashing spending right now," he says. "It depresses the economy, it depresses long-term growth, it hurts long-term revenues." [includes rush transcript]