Thursday, November 17, 2011


301. According to a November 15, 2011 report of the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University, the Obama Administration is on track to file 1,365 prosecutions for financial fraud. This is the lowest number in 20 years. It is especially egregious coming as it does after the biggest financial frauds in history leading to the 2007 housing bust and the 2008 meltdown, and the lack of any real change in banker behavior since those events.

302. On October 31, 2011, the Obama Administration stopped its funding to UNESCO, the UN's main cultural institution, after this organization admitted Palestine as a member. In response, UNESCO announced that it would have to suspend its programs to the end of the year.

303. An August 11, 2011 survey showed that 42% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. The data are a slight improvement over the 2010 results but remain at levels seen at the height of the recession which began in December 2007. Even 14% of Americans with six figure salaries belong to this group.

304. On August 11, 2011, the US Postal Service (USPS) proposed cutting its workforce by 120,000 and reneging on healthcare and retirement plans for its workers. The reason for this was a 2006 Bush-era law that required the Post Office to prefund its healthcare benefits for the next 75 years and come up with the money to do so over the next 10 years. As a result, it is running spuriously inflated deficits. With this funding mandate, the Post Office lost $20 billion over the last four years. Without it, the USPS made a profit of $700 million. No other agency in government funds its benefits this way. What is really going on here is an attack on public sector employees by creating a fake budget shortfall. And although the Obama Administration has been in office 3 years, it did nothing to stop this from happening.