By increasing after-tax rewards for saving and investing, the 2003 tax-rate cuts worked precisely as advertised. Since May 2003, the U.S. economy has expanded by a quarterly average of 3.7 percent (annualized) and has added 6.6 million new jobs. As of the close of the markets on Monday this week, a total of $5.7 trillion in new shareholder wealth has been created since the tax-cut agreement was reached on May 20, 2003. Total dividend and share repurchases increased an astonishing 123 percent to over $600 billion for the 12-month period ended in June. Total household net worth is up $14.4 trillion, or 37 percent, since the tax cut.
Middle East and Asia
Iran Paid To Stop Captive’s Release, Israeli Tells U.N.
Addressing the Security Council during a periodic discussion on the Middle East yesterday, Mr. Gillerman referred to a report yesterday in Israel’s Yediot Ahronot, saying Tehran paid $50 million to Mr. Meshaal, “to sabotage the negotiations on the release of Corporal Gilad Shalit and prevent his release.”
In this case, we have heard about the Israeli use of cluster munitions for weeks before HRW finally admitted that both sides used them, and still without failing to note the deliberate targeting of civilians as a matter of policy by Hezbollah
A catalog of the book’s omissions and revisionisms would require a book in itself, but two stand out as especially egregious. The first is his account of the kidnapping and murder of Daniel Pearl–whom he describes gratuitously as “a citizen of both the United States and Israel,” even though Pearl was in Pakistan on an American passport and working for an American newspaper (to wit, The Wall Street Journal, publisher of this site).
Gen. Musharraf neglects to mention that Omar Saeed Sheikh, the mastermind behind Pearl’s kidnapping, turned himself in to Brigadier Ijaz Shah–the home secretary of the Punjab, a former spook of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) and a bosom buddy of Gen. Musharraf–a whole week before Sheikh’s “arrest” was announced by the police. What was Sheikh doing with Brig. Shah and why has Gen. Musharraf never acknowledged this week-long ISI cocoon? The book doesn’t deign to tell us.
The second distorting omission concerns India. Gen. Musharraf makes no mention in his book of the attack on the Indian Parliament in December 2001, conducted by a terrorist group based in Pakistan and armed by the ISI. Instead he writes merely of “war hysteria” in early 2002, as if India’s ire came from nowhere. Typically, he spins the episode his way, in a comic passage of machismo: “We went through a period of extreme tension throughout 2002, when Indian troops amassed on our borders during a hair-trigger, eyeball-to-eyeball confrontation. We responded by moving all our forces forward. The standoff lasted ten months. Then the Indians blinked and quite ignominiously agreed to a mutual withdrawal of forces.”
My advice to readers is this: Believe little of what you read in “In the Line of Fire.”
More Dem scandals
Dem/Labor Leader Arrested in NYC
Brian M. McLaughlin, a seven-term Democratic state assemblyman and leader of nation’s largest municipal labor council was arrested on federal racketeering charges. McLaughlin is accused of stealing more than $2 million from the state, labor unions and even a Little League fund.
Doug Ross meets Don Suber on a scary thought.
Victor Davis Hanson on Liberals Gone Wild!
My thanks to Larwyn for many of the links.