Signs and Wonders
Associated Press/Photo by Manish Swarup

Signs and Wonders 09.10

Newsworthy

Well said. Guatemalan economist Carroll Rios de Rodriquez has some important things to say about poverty, demographics, and dependency. I discovered her on the Acton Institute's PovertyCure site, and I keep coming back to her to see what she has to say about topics I find interesting. She never fails to be interesting herself. Here she is on population control: "Population control is a policy that basically sees that the solution to poverty is eliminating the poor. The whole message behind it is that some people don't deserve to be born or to exist, and I find that very offensive, even racist. Population control … creates this environment that is anti-life. It is offensive that someone in an office in Europe will decide that no more black babies should be born or no more Latin American babies should be born, or that only one baby should be born."

Gill and gays. Software mogul Tim Gill has long funded homosexual causes. According to Time magazine, he's the "gay mogul changing U.S. politics." Now he's putting money into journalism. He's created the Tim Gill Center for Public Media in Colorado. It's in the building that formerly housed the Gay and Lesbian Fund for Colorado, which will continue to operate out of that location. One of the goals of the new facility is to "develop and provide community training programs to educate and engage potential citizen journalists."

Handicapping Obama. President Obama's approval rating is climbing. Gallup and CNN have him at 50 percent. Rasmussen has him at 52 percent. No sitting president with a 50 percent approval rating has ever lost reelection. InTrade, the online "prediction market," has Obama at a very solid 57.2 percent chance of reelection. Of course, most of the hundreds of millions that both campaigns have to spend have yet to be spent, and we've also got debates coming up. So much can still happen. For Mitt Romney, though, it had better happen soon. He needs a game-changer, and fast, if he expects to beat Obama.

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It's not the economy, stupid. Of course, one possible game-changer is the economy. Unemployment fell to 8.1 percent last month, but the fall was largely because so-called "discouraged workers" stopped looking for a job. You have to be looking for a job to be counted in the workforce. But the economy is a complicated issue for both Romney and Obama. Unemployment is highest among young people and minorities - demographic groups that are likely to vote overwhelmingly for Obama. And some folk are doing OK: Unemployment among the college-educated never went above about 5 percent, even during the fiscal crisis. If you ask this group, "Are you better off today than you were four years ago?" they're likely to say, "Yes." That may be why you're hearing that question less and less from the Romney campaign.

Warren Cole Smith
Warren Cole Smith

Warren, who lives in Charlotte, N.C., is vice president of WORLD News Group and the host of the radio program Listening In. Follow Warren on Twitter @WarrenColeSmith.

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