Rob Cox: Solving America’s homegrown Putin dilemma

May 6, 2014

Critics say that Obama’s targeted economic sanctions against some Russian oligarchs smack of appeasement. Yet silence prevails when it comes to a Nevada tax scofflaw surrounded by vigilantes. If the U.S. can’t uphold the rule of law at home, it can have no credibility abroad.

At least Obama knows which agencies he’s cutting

January 13, 2012

The president is making good on promises to shrink the bureaucracy by merging six federal agencies and cutting up to 2,000 jobs. Though politically clever, it’s a bitty fix. Repairing America’s fiscal imbalances will require deeper cuts and more creative measures than this.

Obama’s appeal to 99 pct won’t sway a key minority

January 25, 2012

In his last State of the Union address before facing voters, the U.S. president outlined a radical agenda. He would tax millionaires more, target big banks and punish outsourcing. The ideas will resonate, but not with Republicans in Congress. They won’t let Obama accomplish much.

Obama’s corporate tax plan is a good start

February 23, 2012

The president’s proposal to reduce the rate paid by companies to 28 pct and eliminate many loopholes gets the debate moving in the right direction. But there’s plenty of room to improve the plan, too. For one thing, it would make global competition tougher for domestic firms.

Top U.S. judges may drown out healthcare debate

March 23, 2012

The most verbose Supreme Court on record will next week hear a hefty three days of oral argument on President Obama’s landmark reform. If past patterns hold, the justices will spend more time testing each other than listening to lawyers. It’s the legal system at its hammiest.

Obama’s job creation hopes look fragile

May 4, 2012

The U.S. president can at last say he has overseen increased employment in the private sector. But the slowing pace of jobs growth and declining labor force participation could make for a tough sell in November’s elections. Obama will be hoping it’s a soft patch.

Private equity may owe Obama a debt of gratitude

May 30, 2012

Mitt Romney has weakly rebutted the president’s attacks on his Bain Capital tenure. But others who see the good side of buyouts are gradually speaking up. Election-year mud-slinging could end up boosting the industry, especially if LBO firms themselves seize the moment.

Obama’s not the trustbuster he thought he would be

July 24, 2012

The president promised an antitrust crackdown. A new study finds, however, that despite high-profile cases like AT&T, he’s no bolder than his predecessor, who Obama called wimpy on the subject. While tough talk can be a deterrent, the law trumps politics in deal enforcement.

Obama job adds match Bush, Clinton but not Reagan

September 7, 2012

Thirty months after the U.S. nadir, employment is a bit over 3 pct higher. That’s in line with the post-recession record of the last 2-1/2 presidents - but far short of Reagan’s 10 pct. The August picture was also mixed: both presidential hopefuls, and the Fed, get talking points.

U.S. political jamborees alienate Mr. Market

September 10, 2012

The stark contrasts in tone at the Charlotte and Tampa conventions mirror the different options facing Americans. Republicans and Mitt Romney served up fiscal spinach while Democrats and Barack Obama dangled pro-worker red meat. Neither choice is likely to thrill investors.