The Denver Post - - BUSINESS - The As­so­ci­ated Press

Pil­lo­ried for their role in the epi­demic of pre­scrip­tion painkiller abuse, drugmakers are ag­gres­sively push­ing their rem­edy to the prob­lem: a new gen­er­a­tion of harder-to-ma­nip­u­late opioids that have racked up bil­lions in sales, even though there’s lit­tle proof they re­duce rates of over­doses or deaths.

More than pre­scrip­tions are at stake. Crit­ics worry the drugmakers’ na­tion­wide lob­by­ing campaign is dis­tract­ing from more pro­duc­tive so­lu­tions and de­lay­ing cru­cial ef­forts to steer physi­cians away from pre­scrip­tion opioids — ad­dic­tive pain med­i­ca­tions in­volved in the deaths of more than 165,000 Amer­i­cans since 2000.

Bor­der ci­ties worry that end­ing NAFTA would hurt economies. Don­ald

Trump’s only visit to the U.S.-Mex­ico bor­der while run­ning for pres­i­dent was a stop in Laredo, Texas, that lasted less than three hours.

On some days, that’s not long enough for 18wheel­ers haul­ing for­eign­made dish­wash­ers and car bat­ter­ies to lurch through the grid­locked cross­ing.

Trump’s campaign prom­ise to tear apart the North Amer­i­can Free Trade Agree­ment helped win over Rust Belt vot­ers who felt left be­hind by glob­al­iza­tion. But the idea is un­nerv­ing to many peo­ple in bor­der ci­ties such as Laredo and El Paso or No­gales in Ari­zona, which have boomed un­der the 1994 treaty.

About 14,000 trac­tor­trail­ers cross the bor­der daily in Laredo, the na­tion’s busiest in­land port. Lo­cal of­fi­cials say roughly one in ev­ery three jobs ben­e­fits from in­ter­na­tional trade.

Yellen sig­nals cau­tion about Trump’s eco­nomic stim­u­lus plan. Pres­i­dent-elect

Don­ald Trump has pledged deep tax cuts and in­creased in­fra­struc­ture spend­ing to re­store lost jobs, ac­cel­er­ate the econ­omy and bring pros­per­ity to more Amer­i­cans.

Janet Yellen has her doubts.

Af­ter a pres­i­den­tial campaign full of blunt words and sweep­ing prom­ises, the Fed­eral Re­serve chair­woman sought Wed­nes­day to make a nu­anced point: The mo­ment for a deficit-fu­eled stim­u­lus to im­prove job cre­ation has prob­a­bly passed.

With un­em­ploy­ment at a low 4.6 per­cent and hir­ing con­sis­tently solid, Yellen said she thought em­ploy­ers no longer needed large tax cuts and heavy in­fra­struc­ture spend­ing to cre­ate jobs.

Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion files trade chal­lenge against China. Amid

new ten­sions with China, the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion on Thurs­day launched its 15th chal­lenge against Bei­jing at the Word Trade Or­ga­ni­za­tion, es­ca­lat­ing a longsim­mer­ing de­bate over prac­tices that U.S. of­fi­cials say limit Amer­i­can farm­ers’ abil­ity to ex­port rice, wheat and corn to the Asian pow­er­house.

The ad­min­is­tra­tion says it is try­ing to hold China to its com­mit­ment to al­low set quan­ti­ties of grain and corn to en­ter the coun­try sub­ject to a lower tar­iff rate.

China agreed to the terms when it joined the WTO, the ad­min­is­tra­tion said in a state­ment an­nounc­ing new the com­plaint.

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