BP Argues Catch-22: The New York Times reports that BP is warning Congress that if it passes legislation that bars the company from getting new offshore drilling permits, it may not have the money to pay for all the damages caused by its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. BP's ability to further the Gulf restoration process would also be severely limited, the company says.
Gulf Fire Shakes Industry: In related news, The Wall Street Journal reports that the fire that broke out on an oil and gas platform Thursday in the Gulf of Mexico heightened pressure on the energy industry, which is battling greater regulation and a deep-water drilling ban. Some energy experts said the fire complicated the energy industry's effort to portray BP PLC's massive Deepwater Horizon oil spill as a fluke that shouldn't have provoked a drilling moratorium.
Little Progress In Middle East Peace Talks: It comes as little surprise that on the first day of talks between the leaders of Israel and Palestine, not much progress was made. The Los Angeles Times reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas adjourned without progress on their conflict over Israeli housing construction in disputed areas, an issue that threatens to quickly undermine the negotiations. The two leaders agreed to meet again on Sept. 15.
Is Obama Not Hip Anymore? The New York Times reports that fewer young voters consider themselves Democrats. Though many students have liberal leanings on social issues, the weak job market has taken a toll on their loyalties: far fewer 18- to 29-year-olds now identify themselves as Democrats compared with 2008.
North Korean Congress May Discuss New Leader: North Korea is preparing for its largest political gathering in 30 years, which is drawing some to believe that Kim Jong Il may be preparing to pass the mantle of leadership to his youngest son Kim Jong Un. Bloomberg reports that little is known outside North Korea about Kim Jong Un, who may be in his late 20’s.