August 2nd, 2011
06:00 PM ET

Is U.S. economic leadership at an end

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

There's a saying that "When America sneezes, the rest of the world catches a cold."
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/images/08/02/art.cap.money.jpg caption=""]
And that's why the ripple effect of the debt ceiling crisis in Washington reaches far beyond our borders.

The whole world has been watching - and worrying - as Congress carried on like children the past few weeks, threatening to send the U.S. into default.

A piece in The Daily Beast suggests that the debt ceiling debate was "the most disturbing sign to date that a global economic system that hinges on the United States is a system waiting to crash."

A growing number of experts suggest it's past time to come up with an alternative to the dollar and to U.S. Treasuries in the global market.

One of the first signs that America's economic leadership was unraveling came with the financial meltdown of 2008. And since then, the situation has only become more dire.

Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is accusing the U.S. of living beyond its means "like a parasite" on the global economy.

Putin says if there's a "systemic malfunction" in the U.S., it will affect everyone. And he's right about that.

So it's no surprise everyone from Saudi Arabia to China to Canada has questioned the antics in Washington surrounding the debt ceiling.

And - even though President Obama has now signed the debt bill into law raising our borrowing limit, there are still jitters in international markets that the U.S. credit rating could be downgraded.

For countries that hold billions - or trillions - of dollars of U.S. Treasuries that's not good news.

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Government • United States
August 2nd, 2011
04:12 PM ET

When it comes to federal govt., what will stop the madness?


The plaza on the east side of the U.S. Capitol. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The debt ceiling crisis proves once again that it doesn't matter who's in charge in Washington. Democrats and Republicans both treat the public with the same disregard and lack of respect.

The hasty vote in the House to raise the debt ceiling by as much as $2.4 trillion breaks the Republican pledge to post bills online for three days before voting.

The complicated 75-page bill was written Sunday night and posted around 2 a.m. Monday morning. The House voted on it Monday night.

This means - yet again - members were voting on something that many of them hadn't even read. It's a bill that includes complex structures for raising the debt ceiling. there's also the possibility of amending the constitution by creating a new "super committee" with special powers and changing the historic strength of the senate filibuster.

But that didn't seem to stop them.

Remember back when the Democrats shoved health care reform through Congress - a 2,200 page monstrosity?

Then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, "we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it." Republicans were outraged at the lack of transparency and the closed door dealings. And they were right.

Yet here we are. Again.

Members of Congress, up against a hard deadline, have no time to let this bill go through the regular process of hearings, getting outside opinions, etc. instead - we're getting another bill crafted by a handful of members of Congress, under a cloak of secrecy, with party leaders and the White House.

It's disgraceful - and no wonder a new CNN-ORC poll shows congress with a measly 14% approval rating.

Here’s my question to you: When it comes to the federal government, what will stop the madness?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Government