Radio commentary, December 24, 2009

Just a few words on the economic news today because we’re jam-packed with interview material. Iceland, whose economy collapsed when its bubble burst last year, is getting the full IMF treatment. At first, I’d wondered if a Nordic country would get some special ethnic exemption from the typical austerity program, imposed on desperate countries in exchange for loans from the Fund. It hasn’t. On the “advice” of the IMF, the country is raising its sales tax to 25.5%. Low-income taxpayers will get a break on their income taxes as partial recompense, but… Read More

Radio commentary, October 3, 2009

[No, not time travel—this is the version that will be delivered on the KPFA version of the show on Saturday morning. Much of it was on Thursday’s WBAI show, except for the bit about the September employment report, which was added for the KPFA and podcast audiences. Oh, and Chicago didn’t get the Olympics, but the analysis of the politics behind Obama’s huckstering is still relevant.] Breaking news from the change we can believe in front! The Obama administration is opposing Congressional legislation to protect reporters from being jailed for refusing to… Read More

Radio commentary, plus and minus, May 7, 2009

[This isn’t a typical radio commentary post. The broadcast version included material on the UAW’s role in the Chrysler deal drawn from earlier posts on this site. And the bits about the April employment report were written just for LBO News, since it came out about 15 hours after the show aired. The show itself was a fundraiser with no original content, so it won’t be posted to the radio archives. But please do contribute to WBAI if you can (specifying “Behind the News” as your favorite show!). The station is in desperate straits,… Read More

Radio commentary, April 23, 2009

Gotta keep the comments short today because it’s a packed lineup today. economic news First-time claims for unemployment insurance rose by 27,000 last week to 640,000. Though somewhat below the highs of a month ago, this is still quite elevated. So, continuing the theme of the last few weeks, things are still quite bad, though not getting worse at an accelerating rate. Sales of existing houses fell by 3% in March, after rising almost 5% the month before. This number has been bouncing around a depressed level since late last year. So, similar conclusion here, too:… Read More