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Rhode Island Tip Sheet: Where are the jobs?

August 12, 2011

STATE OF THE STATE: The Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation has a super-secret announcement set for 2:30 this afternoon at the RI Convention Center. What isn’t so secret is how RI has struggled to reinvent its economy since the decline of the Industrial Age. As the US continues to face its own problems with unemployment, the way forward often splits along partisan lines. Conservatives tend to call the federal stimulus program a failure; liberals say the problem is too little government investment in job-creation. Can President Obama turn this issue to his political advantage by using a jobs bill as a cudgel against congressional Republicans? Stay tuned.

STATE GOVERNMENT: Ken Block says he’s on track to become a no-cost waste & fraud-buster for the state.

PENSIONS: What is it about disabled firefighters and weightlifting?

MEDIA: Tucked within Mike Stanton’s recent Sunday ProJo feature on the General Assembly’s decision not to act against pay day lenders was an interesting bit of self-scrutiny for the ProJo; it detailed how former House Speaker William Murphy brokered a meeting between opponents of a tougher approach and the ProJo’s publisher and editorial page editor. The inclusion of such details was noteworthy given how the ProJo has sometimes had a pronounced inclination to not examine itself.

HEAD TO HEAD: Bob Plain captured the audio of a recent courtroom scrap between Representative Jon Brien and a union supporter.

HOUSE DEMOCRATS: TPM reports that Gallup has encouraging news for them.

IT AIN’T BEANBAG: Charles Krauthammer says that despite the ugly appearance of Washington politics, the system works.

MUST-READ: Ryan Lizza‘s New Yorker profile of Michele Bachmann. Key excerpt: “It is a peculiarity of the current political moment that a politician with a history of pushing sectarian religious beliefs in government has become a hero to a libertarian movement. But Bachmann’s merger of these two strands of ideology is not unique.”

GREAT NORTH: Britian looks to Boston for clues on curbing violence.

NESI: Ted tracks how the National Popular Vote is gaining favor outside of RI.

BIRTHDAY: Nick Hemond.

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