Alert Children to the Dangers of Fentanyl, Understanding the Impact of Interest Rates, and More Expert Insights

Libertarian: It’s the Interest Rates, Stupid

With unemployment low and inflation declining, why do “most Americans remain sour about the state of the economy”?

Flagging a new paper from Larry Summers and others, Reason’s Eric Boehm points to interest rates: “Everything from mortgage payments and car payments to the interest costs charged by credit cards have shot upward, and that is undeniably putting a drain on Americans’ wallets.”

Fact is, “higher interest rates triggered by inflation have made it much more expensive to obtain the necessary dollars to make big purchases. Americans feel, correctly, that those big things are farther out of reach — and might feel more burdened by routine things like credit card purchases too.”

Education desk: Warn Kids on Fentanyl

“Every week in America, about 22 kids die of a drug overdose. Eighty percent of those deaths are linked to fentanyl,” warns James Fishback at The Free Press.

Yet “the CDC has taken a bizarre approach to the fentanyl crisis,” suggesting “the public need only use test strips” and recommending “the nasal spray Narcan as a lifesaving cure for fentanyl overdose victims.”

Pathetic: “It’s up to every teacher, principal, and faith leader in America to relay the risks of this poison now.”

Let the kids know that “in the age of fentanyl, your life will become a coin toss. Heads, you get high. Tails, you die. The only way to win this twisted game is to refuse to play.”

From the left: Europe Must Wake Up

At this year’s Munich security conference, reports Timothy Garton Ash at The Guardian, “western leaders acknowledged the reality of a long war more clearly than they did last year, but most are still failing to communicate a sense of existential threat to their own societies.

Nor are they taking the urgent actions needed to save Ukraine from more battlefield defeats.” Exceptions include “Kaja Kallas, the Estonian prime minister recently placed on a criminal wanted list by the Kremlin,” Danish PM Mette Frederiksen and Petr Pavel, the Czech president.

Yet “on their own,” small nations “can’t possibly do what it takes to enable Ukraine to hold off Russia.” “Europe’s big boys,” and “Germany and France above all,” must “step into the breach” by “acting fast, unbureaucratically and at scale; and explaining to their publics why it’s vital that they do.”

Fact is, “if we don’t face up to the urgency of enabling Ukraine to . . . regroup and ultimately win the war that it’s fighting on behalf of all of us, then a few years down the road we will face an even more direct attack from an emboldened, revanchist Russia.”

From the right: Don’s Keeping Joe in the Race

“By all approval measures, Biden should be heading for the exit, not the campaign trail,” notes J.T. Young at RealClearPolitics.

“So, why is he still running? Because, in a head-to-head matchup with Trump, Biden is outperforming his presidential performance, trailing Trump by two points.”

“Despite his low approval ratings, Biden remains within striking distance of victory.”

“For Democrats, their rationale for sticking with Biden is simple. He’s still close” and “Trump’s continued propensity to hurt himself” is one of many “reasons for believing it will get closer.”

“They only need him to beat one person, and he is the only candidate proven to be able to do so.”

Conservative: China’s COVID Pass

“At least in the venue of American public opinion, those of us who thought a lab leak was a more likely cause of the pandemic won the argument,” observes National Review’s Jim Geraghty.

Yet “there have still been few real consequences for the Chinese government, and certainly no consequences commensurate to unleashing a plague that killed about 7 million people officially” (the real toll is perhaps many millions more), along with “the learning loss,” “missed cancer diagnoses” and a “financial cost of $14 trillion.”

“Sometimes it feels like vast swaths of American society chose to forget about the pandemic at the first opportunity and chose to not keep asking how and why the pandemic started, because they and some of our leaders didn’t like the probable answers.”

— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

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