Stock markets mislead the logical.
Big Brother: After careful consideration, the EU has decided to help Greece by watching carefully as Greece tries to solves its problems without any help from them. Meanwhile the Greeks seem in no mood to save themselves and the Germans, who apparently will do the job eventually, are not thrilled about it. Everyone will unite in blaming Goldman Sachs.
Teaching Point: One of the first steps Greece took to tighten up its finances was to ban all cash transactions over 1500 Euros. How they gonna know?
In Short: There is not enough surplus productive activity in all of Europe to support the populations in the manner they've become accustomed to. The same is true for the US – but the US is still pretending otherwise. There are no ifs, not for the Europeans and not for the Americans, short of a rapid retreat to some affordable level of existence. It will not be pretty. Not there, not here.
The Roof: Global warming deniers say the science is faulty and rather than spending more on expanding the scientific investigation, we should put the money into Creationist Theme Parks. It's like fixing a leak in the roof by taking off all the shingles.
Lies, Damned Lies, & Goldman Sachs: Investment brokers used to trade on their sagacity, now they're known for their duplicity. Will Goldman Sachs, caught with it's hand in the Greek cookie jar, be punished? Probably not. “There is a case to be made that the money center banks, in particular Goldman and JPM, are sometimes acting as instruments of US foreign policy.” Quite possibly the reverse is also true.
Discount World: Dubai World is seeking to restructure $22 billion of its debt by offering to pay 60 cents on the dollar. Seven years from now.
State of the States: Utah plans to do without 12th grade. Nevada is rationing day care diapers. Harrisburg, PA seeks bankruptcy protection. A town in Rhode Island fired every high school teacher. And Los Angeles has a $212 million budgetary shortfall that will approach $500 million next year. Despite the begging, the Senate does not seem inclined to hear the pleas of the people, for fear that in saving them they'll be blamed for deficits.
Turnabout: Government regulators used to monitor the stability of their banks. Now the banks watch the governments, worried about their stability.
Aftermath: In many markets over 50% of homeowners could not buy a house if they did not have federal help in the form of the tax credit bribe, the FHA insurance scam, and Fannie/Freddie buying up the paper – which the Fed then buys. These programs are all coming to an end. So is whatever it is that's passing for a housing recovery.
Where Are We Going? The future seems “unremittingly bleak” when the social and cultural consequences of diminished expectation, chronic unemployment and sullen separation from the American Dream descend to crush much of the population.
Oxymoron: People are debating the future of the Euro as though it had one.
For Your Entertainment: For the economy to recover, the consumer has got to spend, spend, spend. They've been told that and still insist on “saving” - which is becoming a cultural norm and is not going turn out near as well as the savers think.
Nothing Happing Here: Researchers report that the world's oceans are acidifying at the fastest rate in the last 65 million years. I doubt it, for the world is only 6000 years old . Besides, what's a little acid indigestion in the great big ocean?
Reposessions: Of the $730 billion in outstanding private and federal student loans, 60% is not being “actively repaid.” They’re just overdue, like library books. Education – an investment in your future.
Porn O'Graph: Parallel universes.