NEWS AND OPINION:
The nation’s economic woes have made headlines for many days, complete with some distinct finger-pointing, much of it directed at President Biden.
“Biden’s reckless budget has potential to crush America’s economy, and trigger a massive recession” predicted Fox Business all the way back on June 12, 2021.
“Coming soon: Biden’s full-blown recession,” declared The Hill four months later on Oct. 13.
Dire news continued, judging from dozens of major headlines since then. Just two examples:
“America is lurching from pandemic to major recession,” predicted the Heritage Foundation on Jan. 18. “This Week in Bidenomics: Recession whispers,” noted Yahoo Finance on Feb. 25.
The voting public is paying attention.
“Americans’ confidence in the economy remains very low, and mentions of economic issues as the most important problem in the U.S. are at their highest point since 2016. Inflation, which registered as the top economic problem last month and continues to be, was previously at this level in 1984,” noted a new Gallup poll released Wednesday that revealed only 2% of the respondents said the economy was “excellent,” or “good,” cited by 18%.
“Recession fears are mounting. Here’s how to protect your money,” advised a CNN Business analysis on Thursday.
The White House appears to be shrugging off these worries, despite the fact that “Bidenflation” frequently appears in news coverage.
“I’m not concerned about a recession,” Mr. Biden said on Thursday.
“There are only 194 days between today and the November 2022 election. In political terms, that is a very short window to turn around peoples’ perception of the economy — particularly if inflation (and gas prices) remain anything close to their current levels,” wrote CNN columnist Chris Cillizza following the president’s comment.
“If things stay roughly where they are today — in terms of economic measures like GDP and CPI and Americans’ perceptions of the state of the economy — Democrats will experience a cataclysm at the ballot box this fall,” he predicted.
MEANWHILE IN ALASKA
Alaska officials have just sent out 560,000 ballots to voters who will choose the winner in a special primary election on June 11. There are 48 hopefuls on the ballot, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Santa Claus; voters will decide who will temporarily fill the U.S. House seat left vacant following the death of Rep. Don Young in March. The top four candidates will advance to a special general election in August.
And Mr. Claus?
“He lives, of course, in North Pole — a town of about 2,000 in Alaska. He has a big white beard and a kindly manner, and Santa Claus is indeed his legal name, though, as a Bernie Sanders supporter, he does not exploit elf labor. He won a city council seat in 2015, to the delight of observers around the world. Now he’s ready to take his political career to the next stage,” explained The Guardian in a profile of the candidate.
Meanwhile, the Alaska Division of Elections is ready to assist voters in the vast state and have ballots available in 14 languages. They include English, Spanish and Tagalog — along with those written in Yuut Qalarcaraitgun Ikayullrit, Yuut Qalarcaraitgun Ikayuriyaraq, Seward Peninsula Inupiaq, Koyukon, Nunivak Cup’ig.
“The Division of Elections is committed to ensuring that every eligible Alaskan has a meaningful opportunity to cast a ballot and have their vote count,” the division says in a mission statement.
“Alaska’s language assistance plan provides translated election materials for languages that are historically written and oral language assistance for languages, such as Alaska Native languages, which are historically unwritten,” the division said.
ON THE RADAR
An event of note: The “Heroes Honor Festival 2022” honors some specific heroes — Vietnam veterans.
Country superstar Toby Keith headlines this big event over Memorial Day weekend at Daytona International Speedway in Florida — alongside special musical guests Justin Moore and Craig Morgan plus iconic actress Ann-Margret, who journeyed to Southeast Asia with the USO twice during the Vietnam War.
Also appearing: Oliver North and retired Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin, one of the original members of the U.S. Army’s Delta Force; and retired Major Gen. Patrick Brady, a Vietnam War-era helicopter pilot and Medal of Honor and Distinguished Service Cross recipient; and Armed Forces Radio And Television Service talent Chris Noel.
Among the special moments: A-10 Warthog, Huey helicopter and bald eagle flyovers; a patriot’s parachute team, military reunions, a resource expo, a Sunday motorcycle demonstration ride, and a remembrance vigil for those who didn’t make it home.
“This celebration is long overdue,” said Ben Peterson, an Iraq veteran and founder of Engage Your Destiny, which has organized the event — free to all military veterans, active-duty military plus their spouses and children under 12.
Find the details at HeroesHonorFestival.com.
WEEKEND REAL ESTATE
For sale: Hollows Farmstead, gracious but classical farmhouse built in 1810 on nine acres near Washington, New York. Five bedrooms, four baths, original floors, woodworking, fireplace, fully renovated chef’s kitchen, beamed ceilings; 1,900 square feet. Includes 1,600 square foot guest cottage with two bedrooms and 2 baths. Stone Church Brook flows through the property, “magical views,” two barns, fenced pastures and two scenic bridges. Priced at $965,000 through SothebysRealty.com; enter 141740 in the search function.
POLL DU JOUR
• 88% of U.S. adults say their state should require high school students to complete a semester or yearlong personal finance course before they can graduate.
• 80% say they wish they had been required to take a personal finance course to graduate high school.
• 75% say understanding spending and budgeting is important for high school students to learn.
• 55% cite managing credit, 49% cite saving money, and 47% cite earning income.
• 33% cite understanding investing, and 12% cite managing financial risk.
Source: A National Endowment for Financial Education poll of 1,030 U.S. adults conducted March 17-21 and released Monday. Respondents were offered multiple-choice questions.
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Correction: A previous version of this article misspelled the names of the languages Yuut Qalarcaraitgun Ikayuriyaraq and Koyukon.
• Jennifer Harper can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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