Is Reversing Biden’s Working-Class Slump Even Possible?

Source: American Prospect
by Harold Meyerson

“As you may have noticed, President Biden isn’t polling very well among working-class Americans. A New York Times/Siena national poll from last month shows Biden’s level of support among non-college voters of all races is down to 39 percent, which is nine percentage points beneath his level of support from those voters in the 2020 election. If he can’t make up that gap or get close to it between now and November, his goose, not to mention civilization’s, is cooked. One reason why that decline looms so large is that working-class voters constitute a disproportionately large share of the electorate in three must-win swing states: Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.” (05/20/24)

Gold Surges to Record on Fed Rate-Cut Hopes, Rising Haven Demand

Source: Yahoo! Finance

“Gold surged to a record, boosted by increasing optimism the Federal Reserve will start easing monetary policy this year and by rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East. Bullion jumped as much as 1.4% to hit $2,450.07 an ounce in Asia on Monday, surpassing a previous intraday high reached in April. Traders have been boosting bets in recent sessions that the Fed may reduce borrowing costs as early as September, a scenario that would bolster gold since it doesn’t pay interest.” (05/20/24)

Lai to PRC regime: “Stop threatening Taiwan”

Source: BBC News [UK State Media]

“Taiwan’s newly inaugurated president William Lai has called on China to stop threatening the island and accept the existence of its democracy. He urged Beijing to replace confrontation with dialogue, shortly after being sworn in on Monday. He also said Taiwan would never back down in the face of intimidation from China, which has long claimed the island as its own. China responded by saying, ‘Taiwan independence is a dead end’. ‘Regardless of the pretext or the banner under which it is pursued, the push for Taiwan independence is destined to fail,’ China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at the daily press briefing on Monday afternoon. Beijing dislikes Mr Lai and his Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which they see as pro-independence. And it has ramped up military incursions around Taiwan’s waters and airspace since his election win in January.” (05/20/24)

Why Arab leaders aren’t helping the Palestinians in Gaza

Source: Responsible Statecraft
by Giorgio Cafiero

“Amid the gruesome Gaza war, passions are running high throughout the Arab world. Huge Palestine solidarity protests have been occurring across the region, and this terrifies many ruling elites who fear the Palestinian issue. They view it as dangerously destabilizing, and starting months ago, a handful of Arab states, including Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, began clamping down on pro-Palestine activism in their own countries. Such a crackdown in these Arab countries is no surprise and should be understood on two levels. The first applies to protests in these countries at a foundational level. The second is specific to the Palestinian issue.” (05/20/24)

NAO: Post-Brexit border checks forecast to cost UK taxpayers £4.7 billion (not including increased prices)

Source: The Guardian [UK]

“The government expects to have spent at least £4.7bn on introducing post-Brexit border controls, which have been repeatedly hit by delays, the public spending watchdog has warned. Plans to bring in border checks on goods coming from the EU faced ‘significant issues’ including critical shortages of inspectors before their introduction last month, the National Audit Office said in a report. … The government estimates it will spend at least £4.7bn on the 13 most significant border-related programmes over their lifetimes, of which £2.6bn had been spent by March 2023.” (05/20/24)

Letting DEI Die

Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“The good news? The Massachusetts Institute of Technology will no longer require applicants to make DEI statements. MIT President Sally Kornbluth says the school can ‘build an inclusive environment in many ways, but compelled statements impinge on freedom of expression, and they don’t work.’ Correct on both counts, but a bit blah as indictments go. And inadequate. Forget ‘inclusive.’ This is merely a pledge to refrain from being arbitrarily exclusionary.” (05/20/24)