Some of learn from their mistakes, others will vote for more deregulation.
Mini Skirts and Hula Hoops: People adopt whatever's 'in' no matter what it is or how bad they look. Austerity is in fashion. Not for any good reason, and against a lot of prior experience. So now the British are donning economic mini-skirts and entering the hula hoop competition. They won't win and it won't be pretty. Why are they doing this? Because the leaders see a way of demolishing the welfare state. Pay attention and be prepared.
Some Things Just Gotta Be True: “Man quit Qaeda over lack of health care.”
Bad News Leads: Only 37% of Americans feel the GOP vendetta to repeal the Affordable Care Act makes sense, and another 36% want an even more ambitious modern health care system, not less. If those who buy the GOP line understood what they will lose if the Republicans get their way that 36% would soon be over 50%, pleading for more, not less. And why do the 37% conned by the GOP get all the press while the 36% who want even more government sponsored health care reform never get mentioned?
It's A Job: Christine O'Donnell, professional candidate now running for the Senate for the third time, admits she has used $20,000 from campaign contributions to pay her rent and other personal expenses.
Appetizer: California home sales dropped 17% in September y/y and 3.1% m/m. The median price, however, was up 1.9% m/m and 5.6% y/y. More coming to a neighborhood near you, soon. Clear Capital is reporting a dramatic nationwide 5.9% drop in house prices in the last two months. Winter's coming.
Gathering Nuts: When Congress straggles back after the election they will be faced with another 1.2 million unemployed whose jobless benefits expire November 30th (besides the '99ers who have already exhausted all available benefits). Only the upcoming election got the Republicans to let the last extension pass, now the former workers will have to depend on basic human decency. Wish 'em luck.
Hush Money: The US is giving another $2 billion in “military aid” to Pakistan as payment for letting the US continue to kill its citizens in the Northwest Territories.
Good News: High-ranking Republican says there is 'not a chance' a GOP Congress will impeach President Obama. Actually, they said “not a chance at this point.” Makes you wonder why they brought it up.
How Much is A Lot? Bailing out Fannie and Freddie will cost upwards of $363 billion through 2013. How many fraudulent mortgages is that, Ollie?
Attention Span: We've forgotten Haiti, just as we've forgotten New Orleans.
That Sinking Feeling: The Obama administration is downplaying the foreclosure scandal because they don't want to encourage the trusts that bundled mortgages and issued MBS to force investment banks to buy back the underlying (fraudulent, undocumented) mortgages at the original cost. Those mortgages are now worth far less now and even a relatively modest forced buy-back would put paid to the lie that the big banks are solvent.
Gilding the Rose: After spending $19 billion in the last 6 years trying to develop ways to detect explosives, the gold standard is still a dog's nose.
E Pluribus Unum: In 2009 there were hundreds (well, 294 plus 124 by Irish nuts) of terrorist attacks in Europe, most the work of ethnic separatists. About 40 were credited to extreme leftist movements and a few from the far right. One was by a Muslim.
Tutorial: A lot of charges and counter charges have been made about China's rare-earths. An excellent discussion of the various factors – from global economic and political maneuvering to simple considerations of resource longevity and environmental damage – is just what was needed. Luckily, this is one.
Boogeyman Watch: A University of Michigan study found the major underlying factor driving the foreclosure crisis was loan originators' aggressive marketing of refinancing using adjustable rate mortgages. 'Aggressive marketing' sounds so much better than screwing the buyers, doesn't it?