Who's behind this curtain?
This Is Your Life: The EU, Germany, and Greece seem to be reading from an old Max Sennett script; the euro ended down again, at $1.3529. CDS
gamblers traders are making heavy bets against the euro as a significant plunge is anticipated.
Marginal Margin: A WSJ story quoted Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Zhong Shan to the effect that the profit margin on Chinese export goods is less than 2%. Seems implausible. China must be doing something wrong to fritter away its huge wage advantage. It also means that Chinese goods would not be competitive if the price of oil – and thus transport – were to climb above $110 or so. At a 2% margin, any appreciation in the yuan would cause them to operate at a loss. None of this seems realistic.
Asked & Answered: Is ethical capitalism possible? No, not without gelding.
Down The Drain: Romney says not to worry about your health care costs getting lower under the Dem's plan because as soon as the GOP gets in power again they'll simply refuse to fund government healthcare and let the insurance companies have another go at your wallets directly, rather than through taxes.
Bonanza: Shell announced it has made “a significant oil discovery” 25,000 feet below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico in the same area where previous large deposits have been found. “Significant” was not further defined . Pemex said it had found “up to 2 billion barrels of proven, probable and potential reserves” of oil in shallow Gulf of Mexico waters. Hoss and Little Joe?
Recovery Underway! Nation-wide, the average price of gasoline is the highest it has been since October 2008. You remember Fall 2008, don't you?
Reality Check: Health insurance companies do not like having HIV positive clients and will try to avoid them if possible. Ditto with the chronically ill, those predisposed to genetic diseases, those with pre-existing conditions and so on. Insurance is a business. If you do not like it, support a not-for-profit system such as universal single-payer. But if you are against “government meddling” in health care, don't criticize insurance companies for trying to maximize profits. That's called capitalism.
Quoted: “Currency unions don't survive.” Investor Jim Rogers on the approaching death of the Euro. He also thinks the Pound will go the way of the North Sea's oil production.
Inactivity: According to Great Britain's Office of National Statistics, 28% of British adults are – voluntarily or involuntarily – not working. Yet "Unemployment is sharply down...” because most of the unemployed have given up looking for a job. Sound familiar?
Picture This: Last week Kuwaiti researchers forecast a peak in oil production would occur in/by 2014. If you haven't got time to read the article, look at the chart to fuel your dreams.
Do Unto Some Others: Many evangelical and fundamentalist Christians determinedly ignore two of the pillars of Christian teaching: peacemaking and serving the poor. It is theorized that this may because these believers mistake the USA for the Kingdom of God, confuse the Bible with the Constitution, morality with capitalism, and suspect the US Marines are the Army of God.
How Many Differences Can You Spot? On March 10, Fedex's CEO said the fourth quarter was far below what it ought to be in a cyclical recovery On March 18th, he says the global economic recovery is broadening.
Finally: Less than 60% of freshmen manage to graduate from 4-year colleges. Only 1 in 3 community college students finish. Yes, many are unprepared – and many are un-preparable. It is not as bad as it seems, for most of them will not need a college education for their roles in our economy, especially the dumbed down education common in the US these days, which is more or less equivalent to European high school. If we taught them to think and set them free in a library they'd probably be better off.
Porn O'Graph: May the Force be with you.