In case you didn’t know from comments he made in earlier part of his campaign, Herman Cain doesn’t like Muslims. During a recent speech, which was covered by Chris Moody for Yahoo News, Cain explained his ease when his learned that his oncologist was a Christian, despite a funny sounding last name:
He begins with a story about how he knew he would survive when he discovered that his physician was named “Dr. Lord,” that the hospital attendant’s name was “Grace” and that the incision made on his chest during the surgery would be in the shape of a “J.”
“Come on, y’all. As in J-E-S-U-S! Yes! A doctor named Lord! A lady named Grace! And a J-cut for Jesus Almighty,” Cain boomed.
He did have a slight worry at one point during the chemotherapy process when he discovered that one of the surgeon’s name was “Dr. Abdallah.”
“I said to his physician assistant, I said, ‘That sounds foreign—not that I had anything against foreign doctors—but it sounded too foreign,” Cain tells the audience. “She said, ‘He’s from Lebanon.’ Oh, Lebanon! My mind immediately started thinking, wait a minute, maybe his religious persuasion is different than mine! She could see the look on my face and she said, ‘Don’t worry, Mr. Cain, he’s a Christian from Lebanon.’”
“Hallelujah!” Cain says. “Thank God!”
The crowd laughs uneasily.
While the global economic downturn continues to take its toll, a new United Nations agency report contends that young workers may have been hit the hardest, pointing to a dramatic rise in the number of unemployed youth around the world. While analysts list a host of reasons why young people can’t find jobs, there is one culprit, at least in the United States, that some economists say continues to rear its head: The minimum wage.
Laws that mandate minimum wages for employees block the lowest skilled workers out of the job market — a demographic largely made up by young people — and contribute to widespread unemployment among the group, economists contend. In order for an employer to justify making a new hire, they must have knowledge that the new employee will contribute more per hour than what they are being paid. So if the minimum wage is set at $7.25 (the current federal standard), unskilled workers who cannot produce that level of income for the company are more likely to be out of a job completely.
“When the government forces employers to pay more, it prices some workers out of jobs,” said Donald Boudreaux, an economist at George Mason University in Virginia. “When you deny teenagers the opportunity to work by pricing them out of the labor market with ridiculous legislation, you create a long term problem because you delay entry into the workforce.”
This past weekend at NetRoots Nation, some liberal and progressive bloggers warned Democrats not to write off the tea party movement:
The panelists, which included well-known authors David Neiwert and John Amato of Crooksandliars.com, warned that regardless of whether people have negative attitudes toward the Tea Party, progressives could lose their footing unless they mobilize their own base and treat the right-wing movement as a force to be reckoned with.
“The thing that has me most concerned about the Tea Party movement is the overarching theme on our side of things that we should dismiss these people because they’re nuts,” said Adele Stan, Washington bureau chief for Alternet.org, a progressive website that covers politics and culture. “We really do that at our peril.”
The panelists agreed that the era of writing off the conservative populist movement must end, adding that serious steps need be taken to combat the growing antagonism to the party in power.
“The answer to the Tea Party is to activate truly the populist wing of the progressive movement,” Neiwert said. “That’s the only way we’re going to have a chance to overcome this very threatening and very powerful movement.”