Friday Morning News Roundup

  • If you read just a little bit about the Great Recession, then you know that whenever one of the big Wall Street firms was in trouble, Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers and even Morgan Stanley, they all at one time or another called Warren Buffett for an emergency loan. So it is interesting that Bank of America just got an infusion of $5 billion from Warren Buffett. Bank of America is having trouble fending off lawsuits over its Countrywide acquisition. It appears that several parties believe that countrywide acted in a fraudulent manner and continue to sue countrywide for large sums of money, with which Bank of America needs to settle. Warren Buffett’s infusion of cash does help.
  • Hispanics are currently the largest minority group in college. They have just recently surpassed Blacks. All I can say is that we need more Americans in college. We need more Americans to graduate college. We need more government loans and grants to help pay for the ever-increasing expense that is college.
  • Ben Bernanke, the Fed Chairman, and the rest of the world’s financial gurus are all gathered at Jackson Hole, Wyoming. This is the annual Fed meeting. This is the meeting where you would expect a lot of discussion and then finally a brilliant intervention to fix what is ailing our economy. Don’t expect it. With Republicans mired in reactionary policies which are going to hurt the economy and the Democrats mired in indecision, as usual, the Fed is stuck in molasses.
  • Pakistan is becoming the new wild wild West.
  • The US economy is growing, although it is growing at a very slow pace.
  • One of the few programs that the government has instituted to help homeowners was buried in the Trouble Asset Relief Program. Over $45 billion was set aside to help homeowners fend off foreclosure. Only $2 billion of that has been used. Somehow, that money is going to be rolled back into the treasury in order to pay down the deficit.
  • The manufacturing sector expanded modestly this month.
  • Our own obesity is starting to cost us billions of dollars. Estimates that obesity is going to cost us over $66 billion by the year 2030 are hard to swallow (pun intended). As we struggle with our healthcare costs, we’re going to have to address the obesity crisis in the United States.
Jill St. John as Tiffany Case in the James Bond movie – Diamonds Are Forever
  • A new planet has been found in another galaxy. This planet is made entirely of crystallized carbon – it’s a diamond. How cool is that?
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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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