Saturday, January 30, 2010

week ending Jan 30th

the review of the week ending Jan 30th has been completed & posted on the globalglassonion blog...it briefly summarizes and links to articles from MSM and the blogosphere on the topics listed below and whatever else, including about two dozen reactions to the so-called spending freeze, and about three dozen on the NY Fed/AIG coverup implicating tim geithner...

anyone who wants my weekly emailing of miscellaneous & selected links, most from the posts, contact me....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

who owns us





view as interactive graphic...each node expands and can be viewed on a seperate page...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Boom and Bust Rap

Keynes vs. Hayek rap video




  More resources including lyrics and a free download of the song are available here.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

week ending Jan 23rd

the review of the week ending Jan 23rd has been completed & posted on the globalglassonion blog...it briefly summarizes and links to articles from MSM and the blogosphere on the topics listed below and whatever else, including about three dozen reactions to the so-called volcker plan, and a dozen to the bank tax which was floated before that, which are about halfway through the post...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

it aint just about california anymore...


unlike the federal government, the states cant print money...the shit hits the fan this summer...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

week ending Jan16th

the review of the week ending Jan 16th has been completed & posted on the globalglassonion blog...it briefly summarizes and links to articles from MSM and the blogosphere on the topics listed below and whatever else...

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

think its bad? its probably worse than you think…

excerpted from Not a Positive Economic Picture

…one way to get a sense of where things stand is to look at how things are playing out relative to the past. On that basis, the notion that the economy is back on track leaves a lot to be desired.
To cite one example, Calculated Risk regularly updates and publishes a chart, "Percent Job Losses in Post WWII Recessions," which reveals that the current pace of job losses is more severe and persistent than during all prior postwar downturns.
EmploymentRecessionsDec

Another chart featured in a recent report by the Rockefeller Institute of Government, "Recession or No Recession, State Tax Revenues Remain Negative,"  paints a similarly disturbing picture of the recent trend of real -- inflation-adjusted -- retail sales.

Rockefeller

In fact, using data from Bloomberg, I put together several graphs that show how key economic indicators -- including new home starts, industrial production, durable goods orders, and consumer credit outstanding -- have fared during every downturn -- including the present one -- since April 1960.

see remaining charts and continue reading “Not a Positive Economic Picture”…

Monday, January 11, 2010

connecting a few dots…

part of a forwarded email i got last week:
Here's how impossible this whole scenario is:
Dad warns the U.S. that his son is "hot." NO QUESTIONS
Close to $3000 cash for a ticket: NO QUESTIONS
No luggage or carry-ons:  NO QUESTIONS
To a city freezing its "ass" off without a jacket: NO QUESTIONS
Leaves pvt toilet to publicly try to set shorts on fire: ?????????????
NO QUESTIONS?  Ask yourself "How screwed up, or conspiratorial, is this terrorist to leave the privacy of the toilet, where he could have taken his shorts off, got a good fire going, opened the door to yell something stupid like Mission Accomplished! and blown the plane out of the sky.
Come on people. This was a set-up. A stupid set-up.

ok, maybe an excuse to go into yemen...but i didnt think much about it until i encountered this article at alternet yesterday:

Who's Getting Rich From the Naked Full-Body Scanner Boom? - The TSA has a dismal record of enriching private corporations with failed technologies. Will the "digital strip search" device just bring more of the same?
(names a few companies with heavy lobbying presence)

i bounced it off RZ and he mentioned a lot of new TSA agents getting hired...then i started thinking that theyre hiring 1.4 million for the census, including, as per RZ, armed guards in phoenix in case of an anti-census insurrection...

so im now thinking stealth stimulus: they want another jobs producing stimulus, but more spending would never fly in an election year, so theyre using these programs to "create jobs", just like the WPA, having guys dig ditches and others fill them up...

the bottom line, though, is that you cant build a sustainable economy with everyone being paid to search each others luggage, count each other, and empty each others bedpans...

Saturday, January 9, 2010

week ending Jan 9th

the review of the week ending Jan 9th has been completed & posted on the globalglassonion blog...it briefly summarizes and links to articles from MSM and the blogosphere on the topics listed below and whatever else...specifically, it includes a couple dozen links to articles analyzing & criticising the speeches by Bernanke and others speaking at the American Economic Association's annual meeting in Atlanta, links to several articles documenting the ongoing CRE collapse, and also a couple dozen articles on the budget problems individual states are having in the new year...

anyone who wants my weekly emailing of selected and leftover links from this post, contact me....

Friday, January 8, 2010

'Withdrawal Tax': How to Stick It to the Big Banks That Got Bailed Out, and Make Money While You're at It. Pass It On!

I've been saying this to everyone I know but very few have actually done it. Arianna Huffington is now coming out with a drive to change your bank. Will you listen now?! tb


by Gary North

The Huffington Post has come up with a nice little protest movement. Let's pull our money out of the bailed-out banks and put it in local banks that lend to locals. Who are the locals? People just like us.

This makes sense economically. If you ever want a loan, get it from your own banker. If it's a local bank, you will be treated well.

The FDIC insures all accounts up to $250,000. Your money is as safe in a local bank as a bailed-out mega-bank.

The folks at Huffington are on the Left. But we can all agree when we see insider bailouts like the ones in September and October 2008.

They have produced a video. This video is biased, mean-spirited, and simplistic; I love it! The more of these low-budget YouTube videos on the Big Bank bailout, the better.

Continue reading......... Please!!!!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

2009: The Year of the Great Vampire Squid

2009: The Year of the Great Vampire Squid

The world’s most powerful investment bank is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.
- Matt Tabbi, “Inside the Great American Bubble Machine
The Great Vampire Squid
For years, it was hard for many of us to fathom the psychopathic nature of our financial elites, or to expand the meaning of Matt Tabbi’s marvelous description of Goldman Sachs, the great vampire squid. Squid seems a fitting name for the financial cartel that drives what I have traditionally called the Tapeworm.
There were some who saw the danger immediately and tried to warn us, like Sir James Goldsmith. There were some, like myself, who tried to prevent the housing bubble and find alternatives to investing our life savings in it.
While those efforts did not stop the squid, they certainly made it clear that the squid take down of the planet was, indeed, part of a plan. That’s all documented now.
The Squid Shifts the Money
I often tell the story of my meeting with a group of pension fund leaders in 1997 in which the President of the CalPERs pension fund— the largest in the country—said, “You don’t understand. It’s too late. They have given up on the country. They are moving all the money out in the fall (of 1997). They are moving it to Asia.”
Sure enough, in the fall of 1997 trillions of dollars began to shift out of North America and into the emerging markets, including Asia and China. This included over $4 trillion that went missing from the US government, which I have referred to for years as “the missing money.”
My back-of-the-envelope estimate was that approximately $10 trillion was moved out legally and illegally between that fall of 1997 and 9-11. Given the implications to US pension funds and retirement savings, I have said for years that perhaps the most important question of our generation is where did the money go and how do we get it back?
To the squid’s credit, shifting investment from places with aging populations to places with younger, more dynamic populations makes sense. Problem is that oftentimes the money left by sneaky means, leaving many high and dry to the benefit of the few engineering the moves. Equity owned by the many disappeared out the back door, and turned up in Asia owned by the few.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Price of Casino-Like Finance Is Higher Than We Think

by Maxine Udall (girl economist) 

With the New Year, Maxine has been thinking about old problems: banks, risk management, prices and wages as signals in well-functioning markets, and the efficient allocation of capital. She has been marveling at the disconnect between what her economics textbooks assert and the realities she has observed lately.

Things that have been especially salient are the misallocations that have resulted from very distorted signals in financial markets. Remember that one of the foremost advantages of capitalism and well-functioning competitive markets is the wonderfully efficient way in which prices and wages (at least in theory) signal profits to be made and value to be added to the economy and to us all. When they work, the signals coordinate a large complex economy far better than any central planner (aka government) could do and they assure that resources are diverted to sectors and productive enterprise that most closely match people’s preferences. To the extent that individual preferences correspond to individual and societal well-being, both individual and societal well-being is also improved. (For an example of a case in which individual preferences do not necessarily correspond to individual or societal well-being, think "drug addict" or "alcoholic." For an example of a case where individual preferences correspond to individual well-being, but not in all cases to societal well-being, think "investment banker who required a bailout.")

Over the last several hundred years, as capitalism and commercial enterprise have come to dominate, there have been a series of cyclical downturns usually brought on by “irrational exuberance” or “animal spirits” in some market. Casino-like behavior aimed at capturing high short-term gains replaced sober, sound, long-term business investment supporting long-term corporate growth and survival. Notice that including “survival” rules out Enron-like "growth."

Economic theory is pretty specific about the characteristics of investors, producers, and consumers that will prevent animal spirit-induced bubbles: reason, self-interest, and full-information. It is not often explicitly stated, but reason and self-interest are taken to mean that the individual is rational and self-interested enough to take a long-term view of their own well-being, their reputation in the market, and their own or their firm’s survival. Full-information means that there is no uncertainty or risk, such as one might find in oh, say, futures markets, mortgage and health insurance markets, stock markets, bond markets. One could go on and on, but Maxine thinks you must get the point.

Unfortunately, an entire cottage industry called the economics profession sprang up, firmly anchored on the shores of Lake Michigan, aimed at creating cultural narratives and myths about how “markets” (meaning some abstract aggregation of semi-rational, often ill-informed, but definitely self-interested points of light) would magically “know” and act rationally and with perfect foresight. In many ways, the birth of the cottage industry known as freshwater economics is a testimony to the power of markets. There was and is a lot of money to be made in that cottage industry, especially if one was willing to drink the “business as usual,” “just ignore the man behind the curtain,” “the business of business is business” kool-aid that until recently has characterized Maxine’s profession.

continue reading The Price of Casino-Like Finance Is Higher Than We Think…

Saturday, January 2, 2010

week ending Jan 2nd

the review of the week ending Jan 2nd has been completed & posted on the globalglassonion blog...it briefly summarizes and links to articles from MSM and the blogosphere on the topics listed below and whatever else...