As U.S. embassies and consulates face protests in the Muslim world over an anti-Islamic film, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is walking a fine line. She is distancing herself and the State Department from the video that has sparked anger among Muslims, but stressed the US commitment to free speech.
"To us, to me personally, this video is disgusting and reprehensible," she said Thursday in Washington, D.C. "It appears to have a deeply cynical purpose: to denigrate a great religion and to provoke rage."
The U.S. population is growing. In normal times, the labor force — working or not — would be growing too. But these are not normal times, and the labor force is actually smaller than it was four years ago, meaning millions of people who should be there aren't.
The reasons people drop out of the workforce are myriad. People go back to school. Others have health issues or family priorities that keep them from looking for work. But some stop looking because they are discouraged.
As controversy rages regarding the government's right to regulate health, some have been quick to compare the ideas of government regulation to preventing obesity, to legislation against lung cancer and smoking. While obesity and lung cancer are both health issues, research shows that they aren't as analogous as one might expect. Men who smoke a pack of cigarettes per day have a relative risk of mortality nearly four times higher than the national average. The relative risk of mortality from obesity isn't even close to that; it's 1.5 times the average.