Climate is what you expect, weather is what you get.
Privatizing Pawlenty: GOP hopeful Tim Pawlenty says that “if you can find a good or service on the Internet, then the federal government doesn’t need to be doing it,” Pawlenty said he would privatize Amtrak, the Postal Service, Fannie and Freddie and the GPO. And the military.
Oops: The German juggernaut hit a speed bump in April, with a 0.6% decline in industrial output. Capital goods, an export strength, dropped 1.5% and consumer durables fell 0.8%.
Pogo's Enemy: “Confirmation bias, where we look for data points to bolster our argument, is a feature not a bug. It helps us to win arguments irrespective of the facts on the ground. In essence, the facts don't really matter: confirmation bias is a behind the scenes influence on everything we do and every values-related opinion we have.”
Setting The Stage: Greek unemployment stands at 16.1%. Among the under 24 crowd, it's 42% and for the 24-32 age range, it's 22%. And the IMF wants them to become more austere?
Stand Clear! Apple is developing technology that will disable your personal devices – computers, tablets, phones, cameras – when you get too close to things you are not supposed to get close to with these devices. In other words, they are going to help Big Brother disable any device you have that might embarrass Big Brother or deprive Big Corporations of a penny in profits. We've seen the future – and it controls us.
Future Present: The difference between the Republican/Ryan health care plan and the Democrats' is the difference is between having a government health insurance system and not.
Hardly Truths: If you're telling your audience what they want to hear, you can't present yourself as telling hard truths. If you tell your audience that big cuts in taxes will increase economic growth by 150%, you are lying.
On The Cuff: The American consumer was $6 billion deeper in debt at the end of April – the increase was not on credit cards (revolving credit actually fell 1.4%) but on things like car loans, student loans, and other installment debt. The previously reported growth for the February to March period was revised downward 20%.
Stand Back: Those who claim the bank bailouts saved us from a repeat of the Great Depression do not understand that it is the first act that is almost over. There's more to come.
Under Construction: Illinois' legislature could not agree on a budget covering such things as road construction, high-speed rail, water and sewerage projects, so 52,000 construction workers will be laid off. That's equal to the entire number of jobs created nation-wide in May.
Factoids: Median real income in the US fell $5,261 over the last decade. Our total revolving debt comes to $796.1 billion. Expansion in credit debt means we're living even more beyond our means. Why do we expect houses to appreciate when everything else we buy depreciates quickly to trash?
Keeping Up: China has confirmed it has an aircraft carrier under construction.
Tune-Up: If small businesses are the engine that drives job creation in the US, someone better give it a tune-up. The number of new start-ups has declined sharply in the last few years and the number of jobs created by start-ups has been declining for over a decade. But don't tell the politicians – they'd have to re-write all those Mom's Apple Pie Company speeches.
Screendoor Summers... Scientists say that this isn't hot, this will be the new normal as global climate changes settles in for the long run. Hot comes later.
Quotations: “What we’re trying to give to the Afghan people and have worked at for 10 years, and given them in blood, sweat and tears – you really, really wonder whether they want what we’re trying to give them.” “If there’s any nation in the world that really needs nation building right now, it’s the United States of America.” “When we’re putting hundreds of billions of dollars into infrastructure in another country (Afghanistan), it should only be done if we can articulate a vital national interest.” “What is the goal?”
Get A Job! Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) is against raising the debt limit because it wouldn't affect anyone with a “real job”. When the government shuts down a quarter million “non-essential” jobs, you think Rep. Broun will notice?
Porn O'Graph: Waiting for an opening...