Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Donald Trump Can't Be Controlled, Causes Major Headache For Mitt Romney

Romney Trump
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney shakes hands with Donald Trump at a press conference where Trump endorsed Romney, on Feb. 2 in Las Vegas.
LAS VEGAS -- "He doesn't want to talk about it."
Or so said Michael Cohen, Donald Trump's spokesman, on the question of where President Obama was born.
Cohen, in a phone interview, called the renewed controversy over Trump's questioning of whether Obama was born in the U.S. "a distraction," and blamed it on "the liberal media."
But five minutes after The Huffington Post talked to Cohen on the phone, a call to Trump's New York offices resulted in the casino, real-estate and reality-TV mogul being patched through on the line, from here in Las Vegas.
Adding to the surreal nature of the day, Trump openly disagreed with his own spokesman's assessment.
"I don't imagine this is distraction at all," Trump said. "In fact, we have a fundraiser that's going to take place in a couple of hours, and I'm just walking through the lobby of Trump international and this place is packed."
And that, in a nutshell, is the problem for Mitt Romney.
Romney is set to mathematically clinch the Republican nomination on Tuesday evening when polls close in Texas and he is expected to finally cross the line of winning the required 1,144 delegates. But it was Trump's theatrics ahead of an evening fundraiser with Romney in Las Vegas that stepped all over the day's triumphs for the presumptive GOP candidate.
Trump went on CNBC in the morning to double down on his comments last week, when he seized on a report earlier this month from a conservative website,, that uncovered a "promotional booklet" from 1991 in which Obama's "then-literary agency, Acton & Dystel … touts Obama as 'born in Kenya and raised in Indonesia and Hawaii.'"
Even the Breitbart site said at the time that they considered the booklet an act of biography embellishment by Obama, and that they have always believed that Obama was born in Hawaii on Aug. 4, 1961, as his long-form birth certificate states.
But Trump told HuffPost Tuesday that he disagreed with Breitbart's assessment, and talked for almost 10 minutes about why the Obama campaign -- which released a web video and a statement condemning Romney for not disavowing Trump's comments -- actually wants the birther issue to go away.

Secret ‘Kill List’ Proves a Test of Obama’s Principles and Will

Pete Souza/The White House
President Obama in the Oval Office with Thomas E. Donilon, left, the national security adviser, and John O. Brennan, his top counterterrorism adviser.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Facebook Investors Are Bitter, Ponder Next Move

Facebook Wall Street Problem
-- To say that Facebook's debut as a public company was bungled is something like saying Facebook is a website you might have heard of.
Either way, a colossal understatement.
The response from small-time investors has been equal parts frustration, confusion and bitterness. Fed up, some are dumping their shares and accepting the losses. Others, while miffed, are holding on and hoping to ride the stock's eventual success.
Some blame themselves for embracing the hype over a company whose underlying value likely didn't merit the price at which it went public. But many accuse Facebook and its underwriting banks of setting the price too high and for trying to sell too many shares.
Others are pointing fingers at the Nasdaq stock market for botching buy and sell orders on opening day. Or they're angry over brokers who pushed them to buy.
And others are irked over reports that Morgan Stanley, which guided Facebook through its public debut, told only some select clients of an analyst's negative report about Facebook before its stock began trading May 18.
Michael Hines had felt uneasy about Facebook. He thought the shares were priced too high, and the excitement overblown – especially once the company raised its target price for the opening two days beforehand. Yet when the chance arose to buy into the company's $38-a-share initial public offering, he seized it.
"I figured: Nothing ventured, nothing gained," said Hines, 61, a retiree and private investor in Boston.
Now, he wishes he'd listened to his misgivings. Instead, Hines watched with dismay as the stock languished on its first day, then slid on its second. On Tuesday, determined to unburden himself of a nagging headache, he sold his shares at $32.76, taking a loss on his investment. He declined to say how many shares he'd bought.

World's Wealthiest Women: Wealth-X

Worlds Wealthiest Women
The richest women may span the globe, but two of them come from the same family: the Waltons.
Two of the Walmart heirs capture spots one and and three on Wealth-X’s list of the world’s richest women. Valued at $29.8 and $28.2 billion respectively, the two women are part of a family that’s worth the same amount as the bottom 30 percent of Americans, according to an analysis from a labor economist at the University of California-Berkeley.
Other super-wealthy women that made Wealth-X’s cut include Australian mining mogul Gina Rinehart, valued at $29.1 billion, and French socialite Liliane Bettencourt, who is valued at $24 billion.
Though she hasn’t made the list yet, Sara Blakely may be poised to crack the rankingsin a few decades. Blakely became the youngest female billionaire this year at 41, thanks to her wildly successful Spanx shapewear businesses.
Here are the world's wealthiest women, according to Wealth-X: 

The World's Wealthiest Women

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Obama On The Defensive On Government Spending, Debt

Obama Government Spending
WASHINGTON -- Government spending and debt are emerging as a campaign tug-of-war, with Mitt Romney blaming President Barack Obama for a "prairie fire of debt" and Obama calling the charge a "cowpie of distortion." House Speaker John Boehner is talking about a debt ceiling that is still more than eight months away.
What gives? In a word, polling.
The American public is growing increasingly distressed about government spending and high budgets. The issue now ranks as high on the worry scale as lack of jobs. And it worked well for Republicans in 2010, who galvanized voters with ads and flyers that drew attention to government red ink and took back control of the U.S. House after four years of Democratic rule.
Republicans are looking for that magic again.
Romney has maintained a drumbeat of criticism over Obama's handling of federal spending and the national debt in recent weeks, forcing the president on the defensive on an issue where public opinion is stacked against him.
In Iowa earlier this month, Romney said a "prairie fire of debt" was sweeping across the nation, threatening the country's future. He accused Obama of inflating the debt that he had pledged to reduce and ballooning the federal budget deficit with the 2009 economic stimulus and 2010 health care bill after saying he would cut it sharply.
Obama, in campaign events in Colorado, California and Iowa this week, argued that federal spending had slowed to rates not seen in decades after he inherited a $1 trillion large debt and later pushed for $2 trillion in spending cuts. The president pointed to Romney's tax proposal, saying it would give millionaires tax cuts at the expense of the debt.
Obama called Romney's claims a "cowpie of distortion" and would saddle the debt with $5 trillion in new tax cuts, likening it to trying to put out "a prairie fire with some gasoline."
"What happens is, the Republicans run up the tab, and then we're sitting there and they've left the restaurant," Obama said at a campaign event in Des Moines. "And then they point and (say), `Why did you order all those steaks and martinis?'"

Memorial Day 2012: Americans Across Country Honor Troops (PHOTOS)

Memorial Day 2012
Donald Stewart, of Somerset, N.J., stands next to his wife, Betty Stewart, at the grave of her son, U.S. Navy veteran Twain S. Bryant, during Memorial Day ceremonies at Brig. General William C. Doyle Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Wrightstown N.J., Saturday, May 26, 2012. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
The Associated Press
(AP) -- Boy Scouts carry a large American flag through the Memphis National Cemetery in Tennessee, where scouts also placed flags on 42,000 graves. In Little Rock, Ark., a 4-year-old girl fills her arms with flags to place on gravesites.
Across the U.S. this weekend, Americans are honoring the fallen, veterans and military personnel in ceremonies and private remembrances.
Here's a gallery of AP photos from Memorial Day weekend.

Memorial Day 2012

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