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NEW CALLS TO CUT OFF TRADE AND AID FROM COUNTRIES ATTACKING OUR ALLIES
RICH KARLGAARD: It's been a bad week for global tranquility but I will say that aid and trade, as practiced by every administration since the end of WWII, has generally been good for global peace. We haven't had a World War since the 1940s and what preceded WWII was a global trade war in the 1930s. So trade is absolutely essential; aid, we can debate. I'd personally like to see more trade and less aid.
RICK UNGAR: This would be to me the key example to where aid is way out of line. I think you have to be a little careful when applying that to every situation around the world. But in a situation where a terrorist organization has partnered with the Palestinian authority, we should have cut off the dollars the day it happened.
ELIZABETH MACDONALD: Speaking to officials in law enforcement, this is a tricky issue because of course we want to protect women and children in these countries with aid packages. But when you give aid to terrorists in government, they tend to just hoard it for themselves and treat those individuals, those innocents, as collateral damage. We should not be giving any aid to the Palestinian government or any terrorist organization involved with government.
MIKE OZANIAN: I think the President has been offering a dishonest narrative of peace and tranquility going back to Benghazi. That was a narrative they were trying to sell then and obviously it wasn't true. So no, I don't think his policies have helped peace and tranquility throughout the world.
JOHN TAMNY: I don't think the Obama administration has improved things but I think that hardly makes it unique. My problem is the aid in general. We talk a lot on this show about the fallibility of politicians but seemingly when it comes to foreign policy they can do no wrong. I would argue that a lot of our global involvement makes us less sake. And I don't like the idea of putting the American worker on the hook for the well-being of countries around the world.
GOP LAWSUIT OVER PRESIDENTIAL "POWER GRAB" SPARKING DEBATE
JOHN TAMNY: Presidents have always tried to grab power but it's a waste of time and that's why I precisely love it so much. It's when politicians are active, passing laws that we are actually worse off. If you can promise me for the next two years that President Obama and the Republican Congress will be in court, I can promise you massive economic growth. When we're left alone is when we grow.
RICK UNGAR: Suing the President is not worthwhile for a simple reason. The lawsuit in all likelihood will get tossed on standing grounds.
RICH KARLGAARD: There's always going to be a border war between the powers Congress has and the powers the President has. I think every once in a while we need clarity which is why I support this suit. I will say it's probably going to be disastrous for the Republicans in a PR sense.
MIKE OZANIAN: It is a big waste of time. I don't think the courts are going to take it. I think the disastrous part of this is that it's going to enfold in President Obama to even issue more executive orders once the courts say they're not going to take it.
ELIZABETH MACDONALD: The President has done things like these executive actions at a slower rate than George W. Bush, Raegan, or Carter. But what he's done is so big and huge qualitatively. His decisions are so big, and it's up to Congress to decide these issues. He's suspending parts of health reform. He's doing this on immigration and other big decisions as well, across the board; issues that Congress is not getting to weigh in on.
REPORT: STATES SPENDING GAS-TAX FUNDS ON BUDGET ITEMS UNRELATED TO ROAD, BRIDGES
ELIZABETH MACDONALD: I get it taxpayers out there want to trust the government. They give money in and hope it's going to go to roads and bridges but a lot of the money does not. A lot goes towards bike-paths, park visitor centers, and museums. Twenty percent of the federal gas tax goes to transit; we have no assurance that the remaining 80 percent goes to roads and bridges.
RICK UNGAR: Elizabeth's point is legitimate. We do need better accounting. What we have to be careful of is not to throw out the baby with the bathwater. The best way to pay for improving infrastructure is the gas tax. In fact we need more money if you look at how we're doing. But it has to come with accounting responsibilities.
RICH KARLGAARD: If we want better roads either we're going to have to raise taxes or we're going to have to privatize more roads. I go for the latter. Indiana privatized a lot of its highways and it's worked out really well.
MIKE OZANIAN: I don't want the gas tax to go up at all. The Highway Trust Fund has money going in and out all the time. I don't want any more money used so John Boehner can become tanner and Nancy Pelosi can get another perm.
JOHN TAMNY: I think traffic is a problem in search of a capitalistic solution. I think Rich is onto something here. Why not experiment a little and allow some of the states to sell off turnpikes and freeways? Let the profit motive fix the traffic that we all loathe. It'd be so interesting to see what they could do if were left alone.
STOCKS FOR UNCERTAIN TIMES
ELIZABETH MACDONALD: (GURU)
FRIDAY'S CLOSE: $26.39
52-WEEK HIGH: $26.80
52-WEEK LOW: $21.50
MIKE OZANIAN: (CHD)
FRIDAY'S CLOSE: $67.78
52-WEEK HIGH: $70.71
52-WEEK LOW: $56.36