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09 January 2009

Obama Names CIA Director

Obama named Leon Panetta as the CIA Director and Dennis Blair as the Director of National Intelligence. In addition, John Brennan was named the White House homeland security advisor.

Panetta, who has little intelligence experience has had a 40 year political career, which include being the Chief of Staff during the Clinton administration.

Blair served 34 years in the Navy and led the Pacific Fleet after 911.

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The economy lost 2.6 million jobs in 2008, including a whopping 524,000 in December, a month that traditionally sees a lot of seasonal job creation. Last year was the worst job loss years since 1945, which saw layoffs after the war ended.

The unemployment rate jumped to 7.2% from 6.7%. Additionally, there are over 8 million people working part-time who want to work full-time. The under employed rate, which includes part-time workers jumped to 13.5%.

The total number of unemployed Americans rose 632,000 to 11.1 million. November and December marked the first time in history that job losses totaled over 500,000 in consecutive months.

This morning President-Elect Obama said, "This morning, we received a stark reminder about how urgent action is needed," when talking about his economic stimulus plan.

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Henry Paulson is the man that has put together a plan to save the economy. As an example of one of the deals he made with Goldman Sachs does not distill a lot of confidence that we picked the right guy.

Paulson invested $10 billion bailing out Goldman Sachs and received $882 million in warrants. As a comparison, Warren Buffet invested $5 billion in Goldman Sachs and received $3.6 billion in warrants. Paulson's investment was his terms, not Goldmans.

Analysts say that if Paulson did that while working at Goldman, he would have been fired. Too late for that now.

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