Friday, April 30, 2010

The U.S. economy and problems from an oil slick...

...continue to grow.

First the economy. This from the Financial Times:

The US economy continued to grow at a healthy clip in the first three months of the year, as measures to stimulate output spurred spending and helped the recovery gain momentum.

Gross domestic product grew at an adjusted annual rate of 3.2 per cent in the first quarter, Department of Commerce figures showed on Friday. That was slightly weaker than Wall Street analysts had expected and followed 5.6 per cent growth in the fourth quarter of last year.

Mind you, we are not out of the economic mess; unemployment continues to be a drag on any optimism about feeling that the rotten recession is behind us. But economic growth is a good sign. Of course, in the culture that is Washington these days, I expect the good news will be spun according to which party a person belongs.

And now the not-so-slick way the White House has handled the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Martin Kady II reports the following on his "The Huddle" blog:

The massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is quickly becoming serious political issue.

The Obama administration's push for more offshore drilling is now coming under serious questioning. The initially slow response opens the White House to criticism. And now members of Congress like Bill Nelson are pushing for the drilling proposals to be halted for the time being.

The ecological disaster has been clear for days, but the political fallout will start to hit hard as the oil reaches the shores of Louisiana and other gulf coast states.

The White House is attempting to regain the political edge on this story, but the environmental edge might be harder to gain control over; the potential for an environmental disaster is developing. One of the president's top advisers says any plans to "drill, baby drill" off the U.S. coastline are on hold until answers are found for this current crisis.

No comments: