Saturday, March 28, 2009

SAR #9087/Weekender

Talking about the future of free market capitalism

assumes facts not in evidence.


Crash Report: This was no accident. Wall Street, Ben and Tim, and their Congressional co-defendants keep saying this was a horrible, unforeseeable accident. Nonsense, it was the result of conscious, planned looting and will be followed by more conscious, planned looting. Who you going to believe, Bernanke and Obama, or your own lying eyes?

Semi-Retirement: S&P reports that the pension funds of the S&P1500 now meet only 74% of future obligations. One out of four of you will have to keep working.

Vietnamization Redux: Over the next year several Brigade Combat Teams will be given a couple dozen officers to dispense advice to the Iraqis and thus become Advisory and Assistance Brigades. Mind you, they'll still be 99% combat troops, but names count.

Agenda, Hidden: PIMCO says the Fed needs to double its balance sheet to $6 trillion. It also said it would be willing to make billions on the next $3 trillion in bond issuance it that would help.

Big Gulp: Finance - the pushing of numbers about on the screen - does not produce anything, although it sometimes (seldom?) makes it possible for someone else to actually make something. Before the current downfall it had grown to be 35% of the economy and provide 40% of the profitability of the S&P 500. In what version of a real world is this remotely possible?

Report Card: American Society of Civil Engineers took a look at the country's infrastructure and was not impressed. Gave it a D. Schools, water, roads, levees, all D's. Recommended a lot of remedial work, just to catch up. Beats rebuilding AIG.

No Exit: Turns out that hell is other people, white guys with blue eyes.

High Finance: The administration has figured out (with unacknowledged help from the regulated) a way to secretly subsidize the banking industry and claim that it is private enterprise. It is a transfer of nearly a trillion dollars to the commercial banks (for which read BofA, Citi with Goldman secretly at the trough). Call it the Geithner put.

Economics and the Madness of Crowds: Much the same thing, actually.

Sausage: Obama is sending 4,000 more US troops to Afghanistan to train their security forces to take on the untrained Taliban - who are winning this one. And he's going to establish benchmarks and if the Afghan's (and Pakistanis) don't meet them, they will get sent to bed without milk and cookies. Or we'll send more troops. Or more toy airplanes. And kill at least twenty-eleven of alQaeda's top leaders. Again.

New Records: Jobless claims, new highs, GDP, new lows. Profits are down. House prices, at new lows. Anger and unrest, new highs.

Hip-bone, Back-bone: Follow the dots: Higher temperatures in late summer in Great Britain are killing the most cranefly larvae. In the spring the crop of new adults is reduced by 95%. Golden plovers feed their chicks on craneflies. No food, no plovers. Golden polvers will be extinct within 100 years. Good thing humans don't eat craneflies.

Cheapskates: Japan’s consumers cut their consumption by 5.8% in February.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

The "Big Gulp" link doesn't work.

CKMichaelson said...

Thanks for bringing tht to my attention - can't put my finger on the original source....
ckm

kwark said...

"Japan’s consumers cut their consumption by 5.8% in February."

Well, if a sizable percentage of folks in the U.S. cut their spending as much as I have, the Japanese will look like spendthrifts.

aitrader said...

In what version of a real world is this remotely possible?

(Finance at 40% of S&P profits)

Seems to work in Harry Potter and Star Wars films, so why not in real life?

When fantasy proves superior to reality it's time for the former to supercede the latter.

Bit of a rationalization of events these days (at least for me).