National Press Club

IRS commissioner urges Congress to act swiftly to avoid 'Taxmageddon'

April 6, 2012 | By Justin Duckham |

IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman urged lawmakers to address a series of tax cuts that have either expired or are expiring in order to sidestep what some D.C. insiders call “Taxmageddon.”

“Unfortunately, Congress has gotten into the habit of passing tax legislation very late,” Shulman said during a luncheon Thursday at the National Press Club. “If Congress can’t act by the end of the year … you could have a real disaster in the filing season.”

Read more

Chopra says technology and spiritual awareness can create ‘global identity’

April 4, 2012 | By Lorna Aldrich |

The most fundamental fact of existence is not the universe nor even space, time or gravity, but that we are of aware of the universe, Deepak Chopra, author or co-author of over 60 books on spirituality and mind-body connections, told a National Press Club luncheon audience Wednesday.

“When you come into this world, you come with awareness,” Chopra, a physician, said.

Expanding that awareness is the theme of Chopra's latest book, Spiritual Solutions.

Read more

Boomer retirees face uncertain future, Pension Benefit director says

April 4, 2012 | By Terry Hill |

Americans are living longer, healthier lives, but many retiring baby boomers haven't saved enough to guarantee a financial secure future, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. Director Joshua Gotbaum said Wednesday at a Newsmaker briefing.

About10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65 each day, but many don't have enough money to retire, Gotbaum said.

Read more

NewsHour's serious approach to news more relevant than ever, PBS newsman Lehrer says

April 3, 2012 | By Gil Klein |

PBS' NewsHour is facing major financial problems with the sudden steep decline in corporate underwriting, but its mission is more critical than ever as the public tries to make sense of a flood of information, the NewsHour's founder Jim Lehrer told host Marvin Kalb on Monday in the latest edition of The Kalb Report.

"Corporate money dropped just like that." Lehrer said with a snap of his fingers. "We have to deal with it.”

Read more

Republican lawmakers say Pakistan tramples Balochistan, supplies Taliban

March 27, 2012 | By Lorna Aldrich |

Pakistan suppresses the rights of people in its Balochistan province and supports enemies of the United States, three Republican congressmen said Tuesday at a Newsmaker press conference.

Republican Reps. Dana Rohrabacher of California, Louis Gohmert of Texas and Steve King of Iowa co-sponsored a resolution in the House that calls for self-determination for Balochistan.

Read more

Portugal needs entrepreneurial spirit to dig out of crisis, finance minister says

March 25, 2012 | By Peter Hickman |

For Portugal to emerge from its economic troubles, the Eurozone country must create an environment that encourages entrepreneurship and adjust is financial regulations, Finance Minister Vitor Gaspar said March 19 at a Newsmaker event.

While most Portuguese lead a "reasonably comfortable life", Gaspar said he is disappointed in the nation's slow economic growth. He said the government's new privatization efforts will aid the recovery. Portugal's export base is growing, which will also improve the country's international competitiveness, he said.

Read more

Steve Jobs may have reinvented journalism, biographer Isaacson tells 'Kalb Report'

March 22, 2012 | By Gilbert Klein |

The late Steve Jobs may have created the technology that will revive the news business, his biographer, Walter Isaacson, told host Marvin Kalb on the latest edition of “The Kalb Report” at the National Press Club March 20.

Jobs' creation of the iPad offers is a new way of distributing news, Isaacson said. And the creation of apps, he added, provides a new way to sell news to subscribers, which will bring new revenue to journalism. The app, he said, allows for “enormous creativity” and provides a good business model.

Read more

Islam scholar advocates merging Islamic values with democracy for success in Tunisia

March 20, 2012 | By Lorna Aldrich |

Tunisia represents the best hope for a successful transition to democracy in the Arab world, provided it succeeds in merging secular democracy with Islamic values, according to Radwan Masmoudi, president and founder of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy. He spoke at a March 20 Newsmaker.

Although free elections in October, 2011, produced a coalition government headed by the moderate Islamic party An-Nahdha, Masmoudi said he worries that an increase in activity by radical Islamic groups could hinder progress.

Read more

Iran expanding influence in Latin America, think tank scholar tells Newsmaker

March 20, 2012 | By Peter Hickman |

Iran is "making inroads and provoking worries" in Latin America in an attempt to "project an image of global power...far beyond its actual impact," according to a report by the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) released at a March 16 Newsmaker.

Read more

Two former congressmen launch ‘civil rights’ drive for mentally ill, drug addicted

March 14, 2012 | By Robert Webb |

Former U.S. congressmen Patrick Kennedy and Jim Ramstad called at a March 14 National Press Club Luncheon for a nationwide crusade to ensure that the millions of Americans with mental illness and/or drug addiction problems receive parity in the nation’s insurance and health-care system.

The two former legislators, both recovered substance abusers, came down hard on insurance companies and other providers that continue to stigmatize mental illness and drug addiction, thus robbing victims of the care they need.

Read more