Violent, Lying Right-Wing Protesters Continue to Wreak Havoc (and Other News)
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Unemployment rate ticks down to 9.4%. AP: "Employers throttled back on layoffs in July, cutting just 247,000 jobs, the fewest in a year, and the unemployment rate dipped to 9.4 percent. It was a better than expected showing that offered a strong signal that the recession is finally ending."
NYT reports government spending stimulating more than tax cuts: "Economists say that the president’s $787 billion stimulus package has helped blunt the downturn in limited but discernible ways ... the punch from increased government spending has helped the economy begin to bottom out faster than it would have otherwise. The tax cuts included in the plan, economists said, have had less of an impact because people tended to save the money or use it to pay down debt rather than spend it ... Private analysts say they think it added at least 1 percentage point to economic growth in the second quarter..."
Violence Increasing At Town Halls
Outbreaks of violence in Tampa. and St. Louis town halls. HuffPost notes in Tampa: "Many of the hundreds of protesters said that they had been inspired by a conservative activist group promoted by Fox News host Glenn Beck and some received emails from the county Republican party ... some protesters carried racist caricatures of President Obama..."
More from HuffPost on dishonesty from protesters: "Congressman Steve Kagen, (D-Wisc.) found himself interrupted during a town hall meeting on health care on Thursday evening which, considering the boisterous protests going on at these events all week, wasn't much of a surprise. But towards the end of the Wisconsin Democrat's health care forum something a bit peculiar happened. A woman who initially identified herself as 'just a mom from a few blocks away' who was 'not affiliated with a political party' was outed by a reporter as a GOP operative who worked for Kagen's election opponent John Gard as well as the Republican Party of Wisconsin and the Republican National Committee ... [the] deliberate misleading of the local NBC reporter feeds into the suspicion that she - like other protesters at these events - are there because of political reasons not policy disagreements."
Bill Scher is the executive editor of LiberalOasis.com and the online writer/editor for Campaign for America's Future . He is the author of Wait! Don't Move To Canada!: A Stay-and-Fight Strategy to Win Back America , a weekly contributor to Air America Radio's The Sam Seder Show and a fellow at the Commonweal Institute .