Good morning. Here’s the news:1. The Financial Times reports: “German economic growth slowed to a near standstill in the second quarter of this year, dealing a further, unexpected blow to the crisis-hit eurozone.” European markets were down as a result. US stock futures are also down at this hour.
2. French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel meet in Paris today to discuss what further moves they might make to contain Europe’s debt crisis, which has now spread to the continent’s core.
3. The Wall Street Journal reports: “Germany and France are being forced to reconsider an unpalatable idea as the euro zone’s debt crisis spreads to its core economies: Making the currency bloc as a whole responsible for its member nations’ debts.” The short-hand for this idea is “the euro bond.”
4. In the fires of the London riots, the normally upbeat Joel Kotkin sees the coming of global class warfare. His is a bleak view of the future.
5. President Obama began his bus tour of three Midwestern states yesterday, lambasting Congressional Republicans in Washington for lacking common sense and slamming the GOP presidential candidates for being shortsighted.
6. Texas Governor Rick Perry yesterday lingered at the Iowa State Fair to work the crowd. Late in the day, he said this of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke: “If this guy prints more money between now and the election, I dunno what y’all would do to him in Iowa but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas. Printing more money to play politics at this particular time in history is almost treasonous in my opinion.”
7. Governor Perry is now the front-runner for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination. His unalloyed conservative views mesh should serve him well throughout the Republican primaries, but may prove problematic in a general election.
8. Governor Perry is positioning himself as the governor with the best record of job creation in the nation. Others suggest that the “Texas miracle” has more to do with the energy boom than it does with Perry’s leadership.
9. Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney yesterday touted his record as a businessman, saying “I have the credibility to talk about the economy in a way that nobody else on that stage will. I will not need a primer on how the economy works.” By “nobody else on that stage,” he meant Rick Perry.
10. The Gallup Poll today reports: “Americans’ evaluation of the job Congress is doing is the worst Gallup has ever measured, with 13% approving, tying the all-time low measured in December 2010. Disapproval of Congress is at 84%, a percentage point higher than last December’s previous high rating.”