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The Friday Roundup

February 6, 2015

Too smart for his own good?

In the recent speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, President Obama managed to stick his foot in it once again. The President’s defenders are calling the moment “a speech calling for tolerance and inclusion by pointing out that not all followers of Islam are terrorists.”  Instead, Mr. Obama seemed to convey by both words and body language the attitude that Christians are inherently violent anti-Islamists, white people are inherently racist and America really isn’t such a good place after all. Coming from a person his supporters call the smartest man they’ve ever met,  that was a particularly tone-deaf moment.  Whether the speech was another “failure to communicate clearly” or something else entirely, it surely wasn’t the speech one might expect at that venue.

Uptick in unemployment rate highlights the “drop out” effect.

The news Washington-style is that more people re-entering the job market is what raised the rate to 5.7%. Odd, given that number of people who stopped looking for work was never touted by Washington wonks as the reason the rate fell.

Gas prices heading north again?

Hopefully you filled all your gas tanks last week. The annual “summer blend reformulation price adjustment” seems to have started a bit early this year. Oh well, if you are heavily invested in energy stocks, maybe you can still have some extra cash to spend.

The kind of pork we actually like.

If grilled pork chops or pulled pork sandwiches are your nirvana, you may be able to use some of your gas money to enjoy them more often, at least for the summer. Reportedly, the hype-induced price increases for lean hogs are in retrograde, with near-term futures trading about 35% off previous highs. How much of that decrease actually shows up at your local meat counter is yet to be seen, but hopefully pork will once again be priced where it isn’t a luxury.

From → op-ed

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