Silver Chips Online

National News for Feb. 14 - 27

By Kevin Teng, Online News Editor
February 27, 2009
This is not original reporting. All information has been compiled from the Washington Post, U.S. News and World Report and CNN. Silver Chips Online posts this news summary to provide readers with a forum for discussion.

Washington, D.C.

Feb. 16 - President Barack Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 into law after pushing it through both houses in Congress. The law will spend $787 billion in various areas including healthcare, education, infrastructure, energy, housing and research. About $288 billion will be allocated to tax relief. Many Republicans in both houses criticized the bill for not giving enough tax cuts. Some economists that favor the idea of a large stimulus to increase spending believe that the stimulus amount is too low. Obama has promised governmental oversight into the stimulus plan to ensure that no money is wasted on corporate bonuses and earmarks.

Feb. 24 - Obama conducted a joint address, similar to a State of the Union speech, to both houses of Congress in an attempt to instill hope in the American people during the economic crisis. In his speech, he hinted at solutions to many problems that plague the economy today, explicitly asking Congress to pass legislation that could improve the economy in the areas of energy, healthcare and education. He also announced that he intends to reevaluate the position of the United States in the Middle East so that the army can responsibly withdraw from the conflict. Overall ratings for the speech were high as 68 percent of viewers felt "extremely positive" and 24 percent of people felt "somewhat positive" about his address, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent. On Feb. 26, Obama unveiled the unprecedented prediction the federal government would operate under a $1.75 trillion deficit this fiscal year.

New York

Feb. 17 - Federal investigators with the National Transportation and Safety Board released evidence that the cause of the plane crash of Flight 3407 in a Buffalo suburb was due to icing on the plane's wings, not a mechanical problem as previously thought. Several planes that took off before and after Flight 3407 reported icing; one plane even reported "severe icing," which is the most dangerous category based on the Federal Aviation Administration's guidelines. The plane crashed on Feb. 12 into a man's house, which lead to the deaths of all 49 passengers and crew members and one man on the ground.

Feb. 21 - Several students were suspended from New York University after demanding that the school create 13 scholarships for students in Gaza. The protesting students took over one of the university's cafeterias and occupied it for two days, only coming out after school officials agreed to negotiate. The occupiers, members of Take Back NYU, were supported by hundreds of other students on Feb. 20. One protester was arrested for disorderly conduct in the incident.

http://silverchips.mbhs.edu/story/8974