James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

So goes Australia on cap-and-trade ….

Dec 2, 2009 19:52 UTC

This is one piece of non-Hugh Jackman news that is resonating in Washington:

CANBERRA (Reuters) – Australia’s parliament rejected laws to set up a carbon trading scheme on Wednesday, scuttling a key climate change policy of Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and providing a potential trigger for an early 2010 election.

Acting Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the government would re-introduce the carbon trade bills in February to give the opposition Liberal Party one more chance to support the scheme, adding the government was not looking at an early election.

COMMENT

I guess they’re skeptical about evironmental scares after that hole in the ozone turned out to be no big deal.

Corker: Bernanke confirmation may not be a done deal

Dec 1, 2009 20:44 UTC

From The Hill:

Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.), a GOP member of the banking committee holding hearing on Bernanke’s nomination to a second term in charge of the Fed, said he wasn’t sure yet whether the chairman had the votes on the Banking committee or in the Senate as a whole.

“I don’t know where that sits,” Corker told reporters when asked if Bernanke would have the votes to get a second term, adding he wasn’t sure whether Bernanke would have the votes in the 23-member Senate Banking Committee, either.

Is the ambitious Obama agenda freezing the US labor market? CEOs think so

Dec 1, 2009 17:17 UTC

Just took a break from the Innovation Economy Conference sponsored by the Aspen Institute. Particularly interesting was a joint Q&A with GE’s Jeff Immelt and Intel’s Paul Otellini.  The latter said he was concerned about the “amount of variability in the system” created by Washington. Fluctuating policy when it comes to healthcare, energy, taxes. “It is very difficult for anyone to make a hiring decision” when the future is so uncertain, he said. Immelt added he would just like to “know what the rules are.” About ObamaCare, Immelt said healthcare “costs probably aren’t going to be coming down.” He is also worried about cost shifting due to proposed Medicare cuts

COMMENT

WOW, Jimmy-P, we must have been on a parallel today, I was just talking to my boss about this afternoon, so many variables, unknowns, rules changing daily.Our company is treating it like “crossing the desert” the more water you keep, the slower you sip it, the longer you can last.24 months into the recession, and is there anything in sight, “less-bad” is no longer good enough, or might this be the “new-norm”. 2.8% 3rd quarter, minus all the spending, cash-4-clunkers, FTHB Credit, all the road projects, and we only squeak out 2.8%? What now, the crack is almost gone!?

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