Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Week in Review Discussion on The Critical Hour (10/4/2019)

Will the Ukraine Scandal Turn Out to Be a Double-Edged Sword for Dems?

It's Friday, which means it's panel time!

On Thursday night, investigators from the House of Representatives released a trove of text messages obtained from former US Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker, in which US State Department officials and Rudy Giuliani — US President Donald Trump's personal attorney — negotiated with a top aide to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The texts show that US officials felt Trump would not agree to meet with Zelensky at a summit unless the Ukrainian president publicly promised to investigate both the 2016 US presidential election and a Ukrainian energy company that employed Hunter Biden, the son of current Democratic presidential candidate and former US Vice President Joe Biden. As this continues to play out, where’s the leverage? Who has the advantage?
[My related article: Dead Man’s Hand: The Impeachment Gambit]

While the US' private sector added more jobs in September than forecasts predicted, the pace of job growth flagged, and there are increasing indications that the labor market is tightening, according to a Wednesday report from ADP and Moody's Analytics. "Manufacturing activity is contracting across advanced economies, according to a raft of data released on Tuesday that pointed to the impact of US President Donald Trump’s trade policies," the Financial Times reported. "Output this summer was lower than a year earlier across all 36 advanced economies and sentiment indicators show that it is the most geographically widespread manufacturing downturn for seven years. The global purchasing managers’ index in September recorded its fifth month below the 50 mark, the level that divides expansion from contraction. That was the longest period that indicator has been so low since 2012." Are these blips of data outliers, or should we be paying attention to them as indicators of what’s to come?

A Florida law signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in May allows some teachers in the state to carry guns in the classroom. The controversial measure was drawn up in response to the February 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, in which 17 people were killed. According to the new law, school districts may designate at least one school-safety officer for each public school, who would be allowed to carry a weapon. The pool form which such officers can be drawn is broad, including district-employed law enforcement officials, security guards, school resource officers and school guardians.

We'll have all these stories and more!

Jim Kavanagh — Political analyst and commentator and editor of The Polemicist.

Caleb Maupin — Journalist and political analyst who focuses his coverage on US foreign policy and the global system of monopoly capitalism and imperialism.

Linwood Tauheed — Associate professor of economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

The Critical Hour is a daily 60-minute news analysis and talk radio program on Radio Sputnik hosted by Dr. Wilmer Leon. Introduction above is theirs, with related articles of mine referenced in brackets.

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