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Archive for Tháng Mười 16th, 2011

Cuộc Vận động Tranh cử và Đề cử vào Chức vụ TT Mỹ 2012 – Người dân Mỹ đang ủng hộ đảng nào – Hiện nay, Kinh tế nước Mỹ như thế nào-

Posted by hoangtran204 trên 16/10/2011

Buổi hòa nhạc sống (A Decade of Difference) đang diễn ra ở Hollywood, lúc 9 giờ 30 sáng (giờ VN) Chủ Nhật 26-10-2011).

Với sự trình diễn của các ca sĩ nổi danh như: Steve Wonder, Kenny Chesney,  K’naan,  Juanes, Usher, Lady Gaga, The edge and Bono và nhiều ca sĩ khác…

Chương trình nhạc rất hay, các bạn có thể vào nghe ngay bây giờ.

*Trong quý 3 vừa qua, TT Obama đã gây quỷ tranh cử được 70 triệu đô la. Trong quý 2 năm nay, TT Obama đã gây quỹ được 86 triệu đô la. Các cố vấn của TT muốn gây quỹ vượt quá mức 745 triệu đô la của năm 2008.  Trong 3 tháng qua, đã có 606,027 đóng góp tiền vào quỹ vận động tranh cử cho TT Obama, số người này cao gấp 2 lần số người đã đóng góp cho TT Obama vào cùng thời điểm năm 2008, và vượt quá mức kỷ lục về số người đã đóng góp cho ông ta vào quý 2 của năm nay.  Tông cộng đã có  982,967 người đã đóng góp tiền cho TT Obama ra tranh cử vào năm tới, con số nầy rất gần tới số 1 triệu người mà ban vận động tranh cử đã trông đợi về một sự hậu thuẩn rộng rải trong dân chúng.

Thống đốc tiểu bang Texas  Rick Perry chỉ gây quỹ được 18 triệu đô la trong 3 tháng qua. Cựu thống đốc Mitt Romney chỉ gây quỹ được 17 triệu đô la vào tháng 4, 5 và 6 và  ông ta chưa công bố số tiền gây quỹ vào 3 tháng vừa qua.

Ủy ban vận động tranh cử toàn quốc của đảng  Cộng  Hòa đã gây quỹ đạt mức kỷ lục 60 triệu đô la vào năm nay, là năm không có bầu cử.


Có thể chiến lược sau cùng của TT Obama là: cứ để cho những người của đảng Cộng  Hòa ra tranh cử   tiếp tục nói…

(sẽ dịch tiếp sau)

Obama, Democrats raise $70 million in quarter

By Kim Dixon and Patricia Zengerle

October 13, 2011

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama and the Democratic National Committee raised more than $70 million from July to September for his re-election bid, the campaign said on Thursday, topping a $55 million target.

The campaign contribution report shows that Obama’s money train did not stall in the third quarter, despite protracted summer debt talks and complaints from his base that he lacks the fervor to push a Democratic agenda.

Obama raised a record $745 million in cash during the 2008 campaign, and his advisers want to raise even more for 2012.

In the second quarter, the campaign raised $86 million, besting the record set by former President George W. Bush, a Republican. The Obama campaign had said it would raise $60 million in that period.

The campaign said that 606,027 people donated during the third quarter, which it said surpassed the record set in the previous quarter and was more than twice as many donations as the campaign had at this point in 2008.

The campaign said at last count 982,967 people have donated to the campaign, within striking distance of the 1 million donors it seeks to show a wide base of support.

Republicans, still in the process of picking a nominee to take on Obama, are behind in fundraising.

Texas Governor Rick Perry, once a front-runner whose support has been falling in the polls, raised $17 million in the third quarter, giving him fuel to keep the campaign going despite concerns over recent stumbles in debates.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney has not released third-quarter figures yet, but he raised more than $18 million in the second quarter.

The Republican National Committee has been raising record amounts for a non-election year, hauling in about $60 million so far this year.

(Reporting by Kim Dixon and Patricia Zengerle; Editing by Eric Walsh and Vicki Allen)


Republicans’ Overexposure

Oct 14, 2011

Matt latimer

Maybe President Obama has an election strategy after all: let the others guys keep talking.

What have those of us who have endured the endless televised GOP debates over the past several months gathered about the men (and woman) seeking the highest office in the land?

Michele Bachmann has 135 foster children…

_Ron Paul has an issue with volume control

_Newt Gingrich bought his wife some pretty nice jewelry…

_ Mitt Romney says things like “gee whiz” and “golly”

_and Rick Perry needs to sleep longer before engaging in forensic exercises.

This week, Tuesday, Oct 11, 2011, the Bloomberg TV people sought to shake things up by giving the candidates a chance to talk to one another (a revolutionary concept).  The trouble is, they have nothing useful to say.

*Each of these self-proclaimed conservatives supposedly believes that governments, and therefore presidents, do not create jobs.

Yet they simultaneously take credit for being some of the greatest job creators in history. No one asks them how this can be. Almost no one puts forward a step-by-step action plan that wanders close to the controversial or practical.

*Herman Cain deserves tremendous credit for at least offering something people can actually discuss and debate—his 9-9-9 plan (a 9 percent tax on income, a 9 percent tax on corporations, and a 9 percent national sales tax.) Mr. Cain has not explained how such a sweeping, ambitious, and massive overhaul of our entire system of taxation will be passed in a closely divided Congress.  Nor has he explained how long it would take to implement. Nor has he discussed what his “Plan B” is in the (likely) event that Congress, lobbyists, the press, and special-interest groups bring his program to a halt.  (A 10-10-10 plan, anyone?) Leave it to Michele Bachmann (who else) to make the most memorable critique: that the Cain plan when turned upside down is the “mark of the beast.”

None of the truly difficult questions were asked in Tuesday’s debate, of course, because none of the candidates really takes Cain seriously. Nor for that matter do most of them take the voters seriously. And, one can ask, why should they? America has the campaign and the candidates we deserve.

*Consider: If any candidate dares to offer a proposal or idea that departs from orthodoxy, the media and their opponents quickly pounce. Governor Perry, for example, once noted that the nearly bankrupt Social Security program is a Ponzi scheme, language used by any number of people, including leading Democrats. Yet he was lashed for his impolitic gaffe. Newt Gingrich’s entire campaign was mortally wounded when he challenged the feasibility of the Paul Ryan budget plan (which by the way has been all but abandoned by the GOP leadership anyway). Mitt Romney will never be totally forgiven for his health-care proposal as governor of Massachusetts. But Romney, the perfect politician for a superficial era, continues to get away with a non-position, neither fully embracing his own plan nor completely repudiating it.

Witness Tuesday night: Rick Perry tried to question Romney on his health-care proposal, noting that one of Romney’s own supporters said it was identical to Obamacare.

Romney responded with several self-congratulatory sentences while totally avoiding Perry’s original query.  This was considered the perfect answer; no reporter pressed Romney on substance—nor did any other candidate. The entire discussion of health care in these debates is limited to what platitudes a candidate can utter in under two minutes.

_But why pick on only Romney? Has any candidate explained what exactly he or she would do to pass economic legislation through a divided Congress? Or explained why they will get things accomplished more effectively than Presidents Bush or Obama, who both promised to change the tone in our nation’s capital and “get things done”?

*The candidates have learned the perils of independent thinking.  They are on the lookout for “gaffes.” What more can one say about the status of our political system when a candidate can say “It’s time for America to be America again” as if it were high-minded discourse.

-And therein lies Obama’s opportunity—at this point, maybe his only one.  The president’s already talked the country to death with endless “major speeches” and a multitude of “major press conferences”—now it’s the Republicans’ turn.  Let the country take a long, hard look at the bland, uberpolitical talking heads pretending to be contenders for the most important office in the land. Let the other side issue their canned talking points, their unimaginative, simplistic policy positions (“create jobs” “cut taxes” “help our kids”) and their “gotcha” attacks, on every cable channel in America.  Then maybe a bored-out-of their-minds electorate will take a look at President Obama and realize he ain’t that much worse.  Come to think of it: If the White House can manage it, they ought to sponsor the next GOP debate themselves.


TIME Poll: Obama Still Ahead of GOP Rivals, Voters

Side With Dems on Taxes

Oct 15, 2011


The poll, conducted for TIME by Abt SRBI, surveyed 1,001 adults — 83% of whom described themselves as likely voters — between Oct. 9-10.

Despite sweeping pessimism about the nation’s fortunes and his own sliding approval ratings, President Obama leads potential Republican rivals Mitt Romney and Rick Perry in hypothetical general-election match-ups, according to a new TIME poll.

Obama leads Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who sits atop the GOP presidential field, 46% to 43% among likely voters. The President has opened a double-digit lead over Perry, 50% to 38%, highlighting concerns percolating through the GOP that the Texas governor would face a steep uphill climb should he capture the nomination. Obama also boasts a 49% to 37% edge over businessman Herman Cain, whose strong Tea Party support has propelled him toward the top of Republican ranks in recent weeks. In each case, the President was buoyed by his performance among female voters. Women prefer Obama over Romney by eight percentage points (49% to 41%), by 17 points over Perry (53% to 36%) and by 21 points over Cain (53% to 32%). (See photos of Republicans taking over New Hampshire.)

Obama’s strength in head-to-head match-ups with potential Republican rivals belies his own shaky footing with a weary electorate. Just 44% of voters approve of the President’s performance, a slip of four points since a similar poll was conducted in June. Four out of five respondents say the U.S. has veered off track, and 71% think the country’s clout in the world is waning. A scant 5% report feeling positive or unconcerned about the state of the nation.

The President’s positive personal qualities have cushioned voters’ frustration with the sagging U.S. economy, the exodus of capital to overseas markets and the declining value of the dollar. Most voters see Obama as tough enough to shepherd the U.S. through this rough patch (50% to 44%), and empathetic (59% to 37%) to the concerns of Americans like themselves. By a 48% to 37% margin, respondents consider him a better President than his predecessor, George W. Bush, who won a hard-fought battle for a second term amid falling approval ratings and an opposition galvanized by the war in Iraq.

For Democrats, the silver lining in a gloomy series of electoral rebukes and legislative setbacks is that voters remain partial to their chief economic principles, at least compared to the alternatives. Forty-two percent of respondents say they place greater trust in the Democratic Party to deal with the nation’s problems, compared to the 31% who side with Republicans. In particular, some two-thirds of those surveyed say they prefer the Democrats’ blueprint for trimming the federal deficit — a mix of spending cuts and tax hikes — to the GOP prescription, which would solely slash spending. At the same time, more voters think reducing spending is a better way to juice the moribund economy than an additional round of stimulus, the approach advocated by liberal economists. (See “Obama’s Tax Plan: ‘Fair Share’ vs. ‘Class Warfare.'”)

The survey also revealed that respondents have a better impression of the left-leaning protest movement known as Occupy Wall Street than they do of the Tea Party movement. Fifty-four percent of respondents harbor a positive view of the burgeoning protest movement, well above the 23% with a negative opinion. By contrast, just 27% of those surveyed have favorable views of the Tea Party, while 65% say its impact on U.S. politics since its inception in 2009 has been negative or negligible.

Those results reflect a strain of economic populism common to the new movement’s backers. Among those respondents familiar with Occupy Wall Street, nearly 80% argue the wealth disparity in the U.S. has grown too large and 68% say the rich should pay more taxes. Even so, this cohort is aware of the challenges facing the movement. Fifty-six percent predict Occupy Wall Street will have little impact on American politics, and another 9% say its effect will be negative.

The poll, conducted for TIME by Abt SRBI, surveyed 1,001 adults — 83% of whom described themselves as likely voters — between Oct. 9-10.


JPMorgan Q3 net slips; shares lower in premarket

By David Henry

(Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase & Co’s third-quarter earnings fell 4 percent as the European debt crisis pushed investment banking clients to the sidelines, but results were helped by an accounting gain the bank can take when markets are in turmoil.

Excluding that gain, JPMorgan’s earnings dropped about 25 percent. Shares of the second-biggest U.S. bank fell 1.5 percent to $32.70 in premarket trading Thursday.

The results are the first for the quarter from a major U.S. bank and underscore how market turmoil has clobbered investment bank revenue. With stock markets plunging, companies are more reluctant to issue securities or acquire rivals.

“The underlying trends are quite subdued for JPMorgan, and I don’t see any reason to think they’d be different for Goldman or Morgan Stanley,” said Nancy Bush, a bank analyst and contributing editor at SNL Financial.

JPMorgan said earnings were $4.3 billion, or $1.02 per share, down from $4.4 billion, or $1.01 per share, in the same quarter last year. The bank’s outstanding share count fell 3 percent because the company bought back stock.

“All things considered, we believe the firm’s returns were reasonable given the current environment,” Chief Executive Jamie Dimon said in a statement.

The results were muddied by adjustments for the market value of the bank’s debt, which gave it a $1.9 billion pre-tax gain. When the bank’s debt weakens relative to U.S. Treasuries, it can record an accounting gain.

Wall Street analysts had estimated on average that the bank earned 91 cents a share. It was not clear if the bank’s results were comparable with that estimate.

JPMorgan bought back $4.4 billion of stock during the quarter.

“They are putting their money where their mouth is” with the buybacks, said David Dietze, chief investment strategist at Point View Wealth Management in Summit, New Jersey.

“It shows a degree of confidence. They don’t see a cash crunch. The takeaway here is to be more optimistic about regional bank results but not be jumping up and down about the prospects of Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs.”

Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group Inc are due to report third-quarter results next week.

JPMorgan’s investment banking fees were down 31 percent from a year earlier to $1 billion. Revenue from stock and bond trading was down 14 percent, not counting the accounting gain from the weakening of the bank’s debt.

(Reporting by David Henry in New York, additional reporting by Clare Baldwin; editing by John Wallace)


Why The Economy Looks Like Expansion, Feels Like Recession

Oct 14, 2011

There’s a great mismatch between the way people feel about the economy and many of the underlying trends. The sentiment says recession, but much of the underlying data suggest growth.

The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan measure of consumer sentiment, released Friday morning, showed consumer confidence fell and that consumers’ expectations for the future are at their lowest level in 30 years. They’re not the only ones worried. Lakshman Achuthan of Economic Cycle Research Institute, perhaps the most reliable forecaster on changes in the business cycle, recently told the Daily Ticker he believes a recession is unavoidable.

And yet the numbers continue to tell the story of a grinding, continuing recovery that, in some ways, appears to be accelerating. Amid the rising gloom, the data flow in recent weeks has generally been positive. Retail sales, reported this morning, were up strongly in September, up 1.1 percent from August; August’s figure was revised upwards. Compared with a year ago, retail sales are up 8 percent. They were led by strong car sales. After putting up a bagel in August, the economy added 103,000 payroll jobs in September, including 137,000 private sector positions. Overall GDP growth, which fell dangerously close to flatlining in the first quarter, in which it grew at just a .4 percent annual rate, grew at a 1.3 percent rate in the second quarter. Macroeconomic Advisers, which tracks and continually updates estimates in real time with each new data point, currently has the third quarter expanding at a 2.7 percent rate. The Conference Board Leading Economic Index pushes higher every month.

So what’s going on? Is all the data fudged? Is it simply backward-looking information telling us a positive story? I think of it as follows: The grind-it-out recovery continues. The underlying trends are moving in a positive direction, in many instances better than most people think and expect. But there’s an overwhelming sense of fragility due to three significant factors.

First and foremost, there’s the weak labor market. Go back and look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ depressing monthly employment market update. It’s not simply that the unemployment rate is at an elevated 9.1 percent, or that the U-6, a broader measure of un- and underemployment, is at 16.5 percent. Rather, the equation between management and labor has shifted drastically in the past several years. Simply put, capital is beating the living daylights out of labor. Personal income fell in August from July. Corporate profits bounced back impressively since 2009, but between June 2009 and June 2011, real household median income fell 6.7 percent. Workers’ share of income has fallen to historic lows. (Check out this chart, courtesy of Mark Thoma at Economists’ View).

Second, call it muscle memory, or post-traumatic stress disorder, or the new normal. But Americans remain shocked and traumatized by the events of the fall of 2008 and the deep recession of 2008-2009. A dog that’s been repeatedly abused cowers the minute someone — even someone with good intentions — raises his hand. The American public is like a dog that’s been kicked one too many times. The cascade of failures, the massive job loss, and the huge declines in home equity, have altered sentiment, psychology and actual behavior. Each time there’s a new trauma — a month in which there is no jobs growth brinksmanship that almost results in default, a downgrade by Standard & Poor’s, a damaging hurricane — Americans suffer flashbacks.

Third, beyond imagined threats, the world is a pretty dangerous place, full of potential shocks that can harm the U.S. economy. And because consumers and companies were caught unawares by the 2008 credit shock, they continue to take preventative action and be on the lookout for warning signs. Many companies in 2008 suffered near-death experiences in 2008 due to a lack of cash; so today they stockpile it, and hesitate to invest or boost dividends. Meanwhile, there are plenty of potential shocks for which people should prepare: a Greek default, a new recession in the heart of Europe, instability in the Middle East, a sharp slowdown in China.

As the mood sours, the U.S. economy continues to grind its way, slowly, out of the deep hole of 2009. At present, the economic data we have points to a continuation of the current expansion, now in its 30th month, even if many people feel as if the recession never ended.

Daniel Gross is economics editor at Yahoo! Finance.

Email him at; follow him on Twitter @grossdm.


Warren Buffett would likely pay no income taxes under Cain’s 9-9-9 plan

By Zachary Roth

If the “9-9-9” tax plan promoted by Herman Cain, a leading Republican presidential candidate, had been the law of the land last year, Warren Buffett would very likely have paid no income taxes, according to an analysis prepared for Yahoo News and The Lookout by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. At most, Buffett would have paid taxes on just 1 percent of his income.

Cain, a Georgia businessman, has risen to the top of several polls for the 2012 presidential campaign. A centerpiece of his platform is his 9-9-9 tax plan. Devised by Rich Lowrie, an Ohio wealth manager for Wells Fargo, the plan would scrap the current tax system–including payroll taxes, capital gains taxes and estate taxes–and replace it with a tax code that imposes a 9 percent personal income tax, a 9 percent national sales tax, and a 9 percent corporate income tax.

If the plan is to impose a 9 percent tax, why would Buffett pay only 1 percent–or zero percent? Why so little?

Using information Buffett has released about his total taxable income and his effective tax rate under the current system, Melissa Labant, an accountant with the American Institute of CPAs, said that the bulk of Buffett’s taxable income came from capital gains. Cain’s 9-9-9 plan would eliminate taxes on capital gains.

According to Labant’s rough calculation, Buffett’s ordinary income, outside of capital gains, comes to around $4.9 million. At Cain’s proposed rate of 9 percent, Buffett would pay around $440,000 in income tax–1.1 percent of the approximately $40 million in taxable income, after deducting for charitable giving and local taxes, Buffett earned last year.

Buffett’s returns show he made $62.9 million last year, but his taxable income was around $39.8 million. He has said the roughly $23 million difference is thanks to charitable contributions and local taxes.

“Last year my federal tax bill—the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf—was $6,938,744,” Buffett wrote in an op-ed article in the New York Times in August. “That sounds like a lot of money. But what I paid was only 17.4 percent of my taxable income—and that’s actually a lower percentage than was paid by any of the other 20 people in our office. Their tax burdens ranged from 33 percent to 41 percent and averaged 36 percent.”

A tax rate of 17 percent is significantly higher, of course, than a tax rate of 1 percent. But even a tax rate of 1 percent is likely too high of an estimate, Labant’s calculations suggest. Cain’s 9-9-9 plan allows individuals to deduct charitable contributions, and Buffett’s charitable giving almost certainly exceeded $4.9 million.

If that’s the case, as it appears, then Buffett would have paid no income taxes at all last year under the plan, Labant said.

Labant stressed that her calculation required her to make several assumptions, because Buffett hasn’t released his full tax returns and because Cain’s plan lacks specifics in some areas. Several factors, she said, make it impossible to calculate with certainty the exact portion of Buffett’s income that’s derived from capital gains, and therefore the exact figure he’d pay under a 9-9-9 tax code. For instance, Buffett may or may not be subject to the alternative minimum tax, and he may or may not have foreign tax credits created by taxes he paid in other countries. We also don’t know the exact amount of his charitable giving. Nor do we know whether Cain’s plan would exempt all such giving, or make distinctions between different types of contributions, as some tax systems do.

Income taxes aren’t the only taxes Buffett would pay under Cain’s plan. There’s also that 9 percent sales tax. But this, too, would likely hit him less hard than it would hit less affluent Americans. We can’t calculate the exact effect of the sales tax on Buffett without knowing how much he spends each year. But as a general rule, shifting the tax system away from income and toward sales shifts more of the burden onto lower-income Americans. The poor spend a larger share of their earnings than do the rich, because they don’t have the luxury of having extra money to save. (Also, Buffett is said to live quite modestly.)

So, if Buffett thinks he’s getting off easy under the current tax system, he should try life under Cain’s plan. Then he’d really be complaining.

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