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This forum has a long history, by interent standards anyway-unfortunately it has been abandoned for far too long due to real life circumstances knocking the heck out of what had been my very real desire to keep this board alive and well forever so that all of us could meet here and communicate with each other everyday.

I'm not sure that a forum like this is even needed nowadays since the advent of facebook, etc...but I hope that this once thriving BB does bring some of us back together again and that maybe some new folks will join us as well!   
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Bush's Dollar Drop Maps Loss of U.S. Clout at Final G-8 Summit

July 3 (Bloomberg) -- When President George W. Bush went to his first Group of Eight summit in 2001, a dominant issue was the dollar -- the strong dollar, that is. The U.S. currency was on a record-setting streak, and the free-marketeering president wasn't going to stand in the way.

On the eve of Bush's last G-8 appearance, the dollar's gyrations are again in the crossfire. This time, it is a weak currency, upended by slumping growth, a housing recession and record gas prices, that is gnawing away at the world economy.

The dollar's 41 percent drop against the euro during Bush's term writes the economic epitaph of an administration that set out to restore American preeminence. Instead, Bush heads to Japan next week for his final international summit with diminished leverage as Russian and Chinese influence grows.

``Between the economic duress facing the United States and the global community at large and the fact that the clock is running out on the Bush administration, Bush does not hold a good hand,'' said Charles Kupchan, an international-relations professor at Georgetown University in Washington. He called the summit a ``damage-limitation'' exercise to show the world that governments are trying to contain food and oil prices.

Global economic-confidence building crowds the agenda at the three-day summit starting July 7 in Toyako, on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, that was meant to tackle climate change, recommit the rich world to development aid for Africa and strengthen nuclear non-proliferation controls.

Growth Lags

Bush represents the worst-performing economy in the G-8 after Italy, with growth of 0.5 percent this year set to lag behind 1.6 percent in the U.K., 1.4 percent in the euro area, 1.4 percent in Japan and 1.3 percent in Canada, according to International Monetary Fund forecasts.

Russia, brought into the G-8 by Bill Clinton in 1998, will eclipse the rest of the club with growth of 6.8 percent this year, the IMF says. Russia's oil and commodity wealth puts it at odds with the western goal of cutting reliance on fossil fuels. China, seen expanding 9.3 percent, has also frustrated the fight against global warming by locking up energy deals in Africa to slake its economic thirst. China will be among eight non-G-8 members that take part on the summit's last day.

America's economic woes with $4-a-gallon gasoline prices will stiffen Bush's opposition to European and Japanese calls for binding, quantifiable targets for cutting greenhouse-gas emissions, blamed by scientists for pushing up global temperatures

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Re: Bush's Dollar Drop Maps Loss of U.S. Clout at Final G-8 Summit

I thought all these economic problems were Bin Laden's fault?

John R...