Unemployment numbers, MN nurses, Gaza news, BP cap

Officially, unemployment fell slightly in May, to a seasonally adjusted 9.7 percent. The total unemployment figure, including those who are marginally attached to the workforce, discouraged workers, and those working part-time because they cannot find full-time work – seasonally adjusted at 16.6 percent.

The economy added 431,000 jobs, which looks phenomenally good – but 411,000 of those are temporary census jobs, so the bottom line is a disappointing 20,000 possibly-permanent new jobs. While mining, manufacturing and  temporary help sectors saw job growth, the construction industry lost 35,000 jobs.

Nurses negotiate today, in the last scheduled sessions before the June 10 strike at 14 area hospitals. The Star Tribune characterizes both sides as pessimistic. The big issues are nurse-patient staffing ratios and the hospitals’ demand for pension benefit reductions. Supporters of the nurses plan a vigil on Wednesday, the eve of the strike.

Updates on Gaza flotilla story: And now the rest of the story begins to trickle out. Journalists aboard the Gaza flotilla report that Israeli soldiers fired from helicopters before landing, and that the Israelis confiscated their film, audio and video recordings, and refused to return them (NYT). Juan Cole has more, and also notes that one of the people killed on the ship was a U.S. citizen:

Hey, Tea Party. A foreign navy boarded an unarmed ship flying the flag of a NATO member in international waters and shot dead an American citizen with four bullets to the head and one in the chest on Memorial Day. It did this while the head of the belligerent state was on his way to a state visit to Washington, DC, to be awarded a further $200 million in aid on top of the $3 billion of American taxpayer money the US gives away to him every year.

If you are not upset by this, your tea is weak, man. Weak.

Cole also reports allegations of doctored photos and writes, “Even if the charges of forgery are false, the photos show chains, sticks, an axe– things that would be on any ship.”

Matthew Yglesias has a list of what’s banned by the Israeli blockade of Gaza, and what’s allowed. Among the banned imports: cilantro, sage, jam, chocolate, French fries, notebooks, musical instruments, newspapers. Fishing rods are forbidden, frozen fish permitted. Take a look at the list here.

Nearly half of Gaza’s 1.5 million residents are children (45 percent under age 15) – so the ban on importing toys brings home the real purpose of the blockade: collective punishment, not protection of Israel.

And in the Gulf of Mexico, BP says it has succeeded in placing a cap on the leaking oil well, but says it will take 48 hours to tell whether it is “working.” According to BBC:

US Coast Guard chief Adm Thad Allen said rough estimates showed that 1,000 barrels a day were being captured.

This is only a small part of the 12,000-19,000 barrels a day believed to be leaking and BP says it could take 48 hours to know if the system is working.

Officially, unemployment fell slightly in May, to a seasonally adjusted 9.7 percent. The total unemployment figure, including those who are marginally attached to the workforce, discouraged workers, and those working part-time because they cannot find full-time work – seasonally adjusted at 16.6 percent.

The economy added 431,000 jobs, which looks phenomenally good – but 411,000 of those are temporary census jobs, so the bottom line is a disappointing 20,000 possibly-permanent new jobs. While mining, manufacturing and  temporary help sectors saw job growth, the construction industry lost 35,000 jobs.

Nurses negotiate today, in the last scheduled sessions before the June 10 strike at 14 area hospitals. The Star Tribune characterizes both sides as pessimistic. The big issues are nurse-patient staffing ratios and the hospitals’ demand for pension benefit reductions. Supporters of the nurses plan a vigil on Wednesday, the eve of the strike.

Updates on Gaza flotilla story: And now the rest of the story begins to trickle out. Journalists aboard the Gaza flotilla report that Israeli soldiers fired from helicopters before landing, and that the Israelis confiscated their film, audio and video recordings, and refused to return them (NYT). Juan Cole has more, and also notes that one of the people killed on the ship was a U.S. citizen:

Hey, Tea Party. A foreign navy boarded an unarmed ship flying the flag of a NATO member in international waters and shot dead an American citizen with four bullets to the head and one in the chest on Memorial Day. It did this while the head of the belligerent state was on his way to a state visit to Washington, DC, to be awarded a further $200 million in aid on top of the $3 billion of American taxpayer money the US gives away to him every year.

If you are not upset by this, your tea is weak, man. Weak.

Cole also reports allegations of doctored photos and writes, “Even if the charges of forgery are false, the photos show chains, sticks, an axe– things that would be on any ship.”

Matthew Yglesias has a list of what’s banned by the Israeli blockade of Gaza, and what’s allowed. Among the banned imports: cilantro, sage, jam, chocolate, French fries, notebooks, musical instruments, newspapers. Fishing rods are forbidden, frozen fish permitted. Take a look at the list here.

Nearly half of Gaza’s 1.5 million residents are children (45 percent under age 15) – so the ban on importing toys brings home the real purpose of the blockade: collective punishment, not protection of Israel.

And in the Gulf of Mexico, BP says it has succeeded in placing a cap on the leaking oil well, but says it will take 48 hours to tell whether it is “working.” According to BBC:

US Coast Guard chief Adm Thad Allen said rough estimates showed that 1,000 barrels a day were being captured.

This is only a small part of the 12,000-19,000 barrels a day believed to be leaking and BP says it could take 48 hours to know if the system is working.

About these ads

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s