ECM WORLD WATCH: GLOBAL AND NATIONAL NEWS

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August 2, 2012 --  (San Diego’s East County) – ECM World Watch helps you be an informed citizen about important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflecting all voices and views, we include links to a wide variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:   
 
 
 

U.S.

  • Romney would let wind energy tax credits expire, campaign says (Denver Post)
  • Leaders have agreement to avoid pre-election government shut-down (The Hill)
  • Scathing report on for-profit colleges and their $32 billion in tax dollars (Atlanta Journal Constitution)
  • Congress warned that Al Qaeda in Iraq is coming to America (Jewish World Review)
  • Scalia: Guns may be regulated (National Journal)
  • More worries for the wealthy? Inheritance taxes to jump unless Congress acts (Christian Science Monitor)
  • U.S. raises taxes on Chinese wind turbine makers (NY Times)
  • 14 reasons why this is the worst Congress ever (Wonkblog)
WORLD
  • India blackout affects millions, grid failure among world’s worst power outage (Reuters)
  • Japan utility gets $12.8B nuclear crisis bailout (UT San Diego)
  • Cuba broadens economic reforms, plans new measures (Reuters)
  • In pictures: Olympics opening ceremonies (BBC)
  • Thousands flee amid growing ethnic violence in India (NPR)
 
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
 
U.S.
 
Romney would let wind energy tax credits expire, campaign says (Denver Post)
July 30, 2012 -- Mitt Romney’s campaign said today the Republican presidential candidate would let the wind production tax credit expire, drawing a clear distinction between Romney and President Barack Obama on an issue that could affect up to 5,000 jobs in Colorado.
Obama supports the tax credit – which is set to expire at the end of this year – and has urged Congress to extend it. The Romney campaign has indicated in the past that he didn’t think “technology-specific incentives” are a good idea, but until today the campaign has not said if Romney would phase out the credit or allow it to expire this year.
http://blogs.denverpost.com/thespot/2012/07/30/romney/77572/  
 
Leaders have agreement to avoid pre-election government shut-down (The Hill)
July 31, 2012 -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced on Tuesday an agreement to avoid a government shutdown shortly before the November election.
Reid said President Obama has also agreed to the deal.
“This agreement reached between the Senate, the House and the White House provides stability for the coming months, when we will have to resolve critical issues that directly affect middle class families," Reid said in a statement. "I hope that we can face the challenges ahead in the same spirit of compromise.”
http://thehill.com/blogs/on-the-money/appropriations/241277-leaders-expected-to-announce-spending-bill-agreement
 
Scathing report on for-profit colleges and their $32 billion in tax dollars (Atlanta Journal Constitution)
 
July 30, 2012 -- The for-profit colleges are taking billions in tax dollars with little to show for it, according to a report that will be issued today from a U.S. Senate committee.
Despite $32 billion in federal student aid to the colleges, most of the students never earn a degree, indicating that taxpayers are being saddled with a losing investment. However, the for-profits colleges don’t fail everyone, least of all their executives  — the CEOs of the colleges were paid an average of $7.3 million, according to the report.
http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2012/07/30/scathing-report-on-for-profit-colleges-and-their-32-billion-in-tax-dollars/ 
Congress warned that Al Qaeda in Iraq is coming to America (Jewish World Review)
August 2, 2012 -- The terrorist organization that was once the scourge of the U.S. occupation in Iraq and likely is responsible for more than 100 deaths in the country over the past few days has set its sights on launching attacks inside the United States, intelligence officials said.
Al-Qaida in Iraq released a message earlier this week that threatened to strike at the "heart" of the United States, and several associates of al-Qaida in Iraq have been arrested in the United States and Canada over the past two years, said U.S. officials, a sign that the terrorist affiliate has tried to establish a network inside North America.
 
Scalia: Guns may be regulated (National Journal)
 
July 29, 2012 -- Justice Antonin Scalia, one of the Supreme Court's most vocal and conservative justices, said on Sunday that the Second Amendment leaves room for U.S. legislatures to regulate guns, including menacing hand-held weapons.
"It will have to be decided in future cases," Scalia said on Fox News Sunday. But there were legal precedents from the days of the Founding Fathers that banned frightening weapons which a constitutional originalist like himself must recognize. There were also "locational limitations" on where weapons could be carried, the justice noted.
 
More worries for the wealthy? Inheritance taxes to jump unless Congress acts (Christian Science Monitor)
 
July 26, 2012 -- The way Congressional Republicans see it, farmers will have to sell their land and small businesses will have to put their firms on the auction block if nothing is done to prevent the inheritance tax from rising next year.
Their solution: completely end what they call “the death tax.”
But, on the other side of the aisle, Congressional Democrats view eliminating the tax as yet another gift to the ultra-wealthy. Under President Obama’s plan, the rate would actually rise from current levels.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2012/0726/More-worries-for-the-wealthy-Inheritance-tax-to-jump-unless-Congress-acts?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+feeds%2Fusa+%28Christian+Science+Monitor+|+USA%29
 
U.S. raises taxes on Chinese wind turbine makers (NY Times)
 
Chinese manufacturers have been illegally selling steel towers forwind turbines below the cost of production and will have to pay duties of 20.85 to 72.69 percent on imports, the United States Commerce Department said Friday in a preliminary ruling in an antidumping case brought by four American tower manufacturers.
The department said it found similar dumping on the part of Vietnamese manufacturers and set duties at 52.67 percent for CS Wind, a major supplier to the American market, and 59.91 percent for all other Vietnamese companies.
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/28/business/energy-environment/us-raises-tariffs-on-chinese-wind-turbine-makers.html?_r=3&emc=tnt&tntemail1=y
 
14 reasons why this is the worst Congress ever (Wonkblog)
 
July 13, 2012 -- This week, the House of Representatives voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act. On its own, such a vote would be unremarkable. Republicans control the House, they oppose President Obama’s health reform law, and so they voted to get rid of it.
But here’s the punchline: This was the 33rd time they voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
Holding that vote once makes sense. Republicans had promised that much during the 2010 campaign. But 33 times? If doing the same thing twice and expecting a different result makes you insane, what does doing the same thing 33 times and expecting a different result make you?
 
WORLD
 
India blackout affects millions, grid failure among world’s worst power outage (Reuters)
 
July 31, 2012 -- Hundreds of millions of people across India were left without power on Tuesday in one of the world's worst blackouts, trapping miners, stranding train travellers and plunging hospitals into darkness when grids collapsed for the second time in two days.

Stretching from Assam, near China, to the Himalayas and the northwestern deserts of Rajasthan, the outage covered states where half of India's 1.2 billion people live and embarrassed the government, which has failed to build up enough power capacity to meet soaring demand.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/31/uk-india-blackout-idUSLNE86U01G20120731
Japan utility gets $12.8B nuclear crisis bailout (UT San Diego)
 
July 30, 2012 -- The Japanese operator of the nuclear power plant devastated in last year's disasters received a 1 trillion yen ($12.8 billion) bailout Tuesday, putting it under government ownership, while international experts visited another plant that survived the tsunami's impact.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. apologized for the "inconvenience and anxiety" caused by the accident at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant in northeastern Japan, and for raising electricity charges to cover the costs of dealing with the crisis.
http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/jul/30/japan-utility-gets-128b-nuclear-crisis-bailout/
Cuba broadens economic reforms, plans new measures (Reuters)
 
July 26, 2012 -- Cuba adopted a new tax code this week and said it would loosen regulations on some state companies while turning others into cooperatives, as one of the world's last Soviet-style economies moves in a more market-friendly direction.

The plans were announced at a session of the National Assembly, which passed the country's first comprehensive tax code since the 1959 revolution on the communist-ruled island.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/27/us-cuba-reform-idUSBRE86Q00B20120727?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Reuters%2FworldNews+%28Reuters+World+News%29
In pictures: Olympics opening ceremonies (BBC)
 
Thousands flee amid growing ethnic violence in India (NPR)
 
July 26, 2012 -- Around 200,000 people have fled their homes in northeast India after nearly a week of inter-communal violence. At least 40 people are confirmed dead in the violence between local tribes and Muslim immigrants. Many of the bodies found by police have been hacked to death with machetes. Elliot Hannon talks to Robert Siegel.

The conflict is remote, but the numbers are eye-popping. A week of ethnic violence in Northeastern India has left more than 40 people dead and around 200,000 people have fled their homes. Indian security forces sent to the area in the state of Assam near India's border with Bangladesh have had little success in ending the fighting. The conflict between the indigenous Bodo community and Muslim settlers is only the latest outbreak of violence in a long troubled region.

 

 

http://www.npr.org/2012/07/26/157444010/thousands-flee-amid-ethnic-violence-in-india?ft=1&f=2&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+NprProgramsATC+%28NPR+Programs%3A+All+Things+Considered%29