Saturday, January 30, 2010
anyone who wants my weekly emailing of miscellaneous & selected links, most from the posts, contact me....
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Monday, January 18, 2010
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
…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.
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.
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
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
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!
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
- Matt Tabbi, “Inside the Great American Bubble Machine”
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.
Monday, January 4, 2010
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…