Panorama: Deflation Nation

November 20 2008, 8:32 AM

Mile-High Headlines for Thursday, November 20 Sign up here to receive Panorama every weekday morning--before it's published on our website. Riding the Economic Roller Coaster "After gyrating wildly for weeks," writes The New York Times, the Dow Jones industrial average closed below 8,000 yesterday, its lowest mark in nearly six years. New reports raise the possibility of "deflation," which would force prices down, hampering the economy and jobs. Signs of economic uncertainty abound in Colorado. There's a "glut of homes" worth more than $1 million on the market that just aren't selling, according to The Denver Post. Would-be sellers are becoming landlords instead, even though in most cases the rent doesn't cover the mortgage. But according to one Washington Post article, the slowing of home construction will help in the long run: "The fewer new homes built, the sooner the economy can work through an oversupply of housing." The state's auto dealers are laying off workers, according to CBS4, which notes new car sales are anticipated to drop 20-25 percent as dealers slash prices on existing stocks. And a ski-resort operator has announced cuts that are likely to affect some Colorado slopes, according to the Rocky Mountain News. Queuing Up for Secretary of State Colorado Secretary of State Aaron Harber. The Channel 12 political talkshow host likes the sound of that. He makes a case to Westword that he's the best of the 20 applicants for the job that's being vacated by Congressman-elect Mike Coffman. Harber holds degrees in international affairs and government from Princeton University and Harvard. He also worked with companies that deal in the kind of hi-techery perhaps useful to someone in charge of ensuring the rights of the state's voters in these increasingly electronic times. Not convinced? There's always state Representative Bernie Buescher, who was recently ousted by a Republican. He makes his case to News 8 in Grand Junction. PolitickerCO has assembled a comprehensive list of the potential candidates, but some of the A-listers include House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, a Denver Democrat who leaves the Legislature this year because of term limits; Republican attorney Scott Gessler; and Democratic Party executive director Sherry Jackson. FBI Renews Hunt for Vail "Eco-Terrorists" Renewing the hunt for ecologically minded "terrorists," the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced a $50,000 reward yesterday for information leading to the arrest of four extremists suspected in the 1998 arson at Vail ski resort, the most high profile of a series of attacks in several Western states. That's according to the Rocky Mountain News, which says Josephine Sunshine Overaker, Joseph Mahmoud Dibee, Justin Franchi Solondz, and Rebecca Rubin are members of a group called "The Family" and are probably in hiding outside the United States. So far, 17 people have been indicted and 13 have been convicted. Flashback to a decade ago, when The New York Times Magazine quoted Craig Rosebraugh, a student at Marylhurst University, as a spokesman for Vail arsonists. He said the attacks were meant to protect lynx habitat from Vail's ski expansion. A recent submission to the Huffington Post argues that definitions of terrorism are often made by "burgeoning right wing bullies and super patriots" and may seem too broad and vague. More on the AWOL Marine and the Fort Carson Murder Trial Boulder Marine Lance Hering, accused of staging his disappearance two years ago and arrested earlier this week in Washington state, grew his hair long, called himself "Nine," and worked on a Quaker tree farm in 2007, according to the Rocky Mountain News, which sent a reporter to Port Angeles, Washington, to chip away at the mystery surrounding Hering's disappearance, spawning the largest rescue search in Boulder County history. The 23-year-old is facing desertion charges--a crime that could be punished by death--for failing to return to the Marines for a second tour in Iraq. He is expected to be turned over to the Marines if he posts $5,000 bail. Meanwhile, in an unrelated case, Louis Bressler was found guilty of conspiring to killIraq war comrade Spc. Kevin Shields in 2007 but escaped first-degree murder and aggravated murder charges in an a state court trial, according to the Colorado Springs Gazette. The Baggage of Traveling Miami college student Lelan LeDoux is looking forward to getting off campus this Thanksgiving. But she'll spend time in the Bahamas with a friend instead of returning to Denver because it's cheaper. That's according to United Press International, which reports that high airfares this year will prevent some students from going home to be with their families. Airfares for students like LeDoux were up by 27 percent compared with last year, according to UPI's analysis at the Live Search Farecast travel research site. And watch those bags. If you're toting more than 50 pounds, airlines can add up to $125 in charges, reminds CBS4's Rick Sallinger, who reports that scales at Denver International Airport aren't always accurate. Although scales run by United Airlines at Denver International Airport have reportedly failed four times, that's not nearly as bad as scales in south Florida, Sallinger reports, where records show one in four have failed. Teen Death at Hayden High Fifteen-year-old Robert Donelson was walking on Hayden High School's track on Tuesday afternoon when he grabbed his chest and fell over with convulsions. School nurses rushed to help, and paramedics rushed Donelson to the hospital, but their efforts weren't enough, according to 9News. By Wednesday, hundreds of messages to Donelson and flowers adorned the place where he fell. 9News reports the cause of Donelson's death is a heart attack, but The Associated Press says a coronor has not officially released results, which are expected later today. U.S. Soccer Team Dashes Guatemala's Hopes The U.S. men's soccer team defeated Guatemala in a qualifying match for the World Cup, which will be held in South Africa in 2010. Kenny Cooper and Freddy Adu each scored in the second half before a crowd of more than 9,300 on a chilly night at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City. The victory was meaningless for the United States, which has moved to the final qualifying round for the international tournament, according to the Colorado Springs Gazette. Guatemala, which needed a win and a Cuba loss, was eliminated from play and won't get another shot at the cup until the 2014 games. The Americans are now ranked 24th in the world and aim to better their best performance to date in the drawn-out tournament--a bronze medal in 1930. Audiodose: Colorado officials are investigating mortgage lenders, property appraisers, and real estate brokers as the state reels from foreclosures. KUNC reporter Brian Larson speaks with Tom Hacker, the editor of the Northern Colorado Business Report, about the latest trends. Cheapest Gallon of Gas 'Round Here: $1.60, Westminster Sunmart, 7170 Pecos St. (via www.gasbuddy.com). Email relevant articles to [email protected].