I'd be happier about a strong dollar if I had more of them.
Succinctly: This has been the third largest weekly drop in the DJIA in history, behind 9/11 and the Lehman event. But the week's not over yet.
Friends: The US is pretty sure that Pakistan's intelligence service had a significant role in the Haqqani bombing of the US embassy in Kabul last week. Pakistan says the US should mind its own business, which is not a ringing denial.
Futurama: The EIA projects that global energy demand will grow 53% by 2035, that it will largely br met by fossil fuels, mostly coal, and that greenhouse-gas emissions will increase by over 40%. Won't that be grand?
Over in the Real Economy: Mr. Bernanke wants you to buy a house, so he's trying to hold down long term interest rates. That those who cannot afford a 5% or 4.5% mortgage won't be able to afford a 3.85% one either. What they need is a job, not a mortgage. But the private sector will not borrow and build if they do not see increasing demand for goods and services. The federal government is going to spend less money. States and cities are laying off additional staff. Social support payments are going to get trimmed. And Bernanke wants to revive the housing bubble with cheap money. Didn't we try that just the other day?
Downfield Blocking: Yahoo apologized yesterday for preventing people from using its e-mail service for messages about the anti-wall Street protests. They didn't do it, they claimed, and if they did it was inadvertent, besides, it's been fixed and they know who you are.
One More for the Road: Seasonally adjusted initial unemployment claims dropped a tad to 423,000 from last week's 428,000.
Qualifications: The majority of Republican voters believe in young-earth creationism, think climate change is a 'contrived phony mess', fear political and economic equality, are ashamed of their own ignorance and express it as a hatred of 'educated liberals', and wallow in evangelical religious twaddle. Which is sadder, that Republican wannabes pretend to hold these views, or that they're not pretending?
Points of View: Nearly 70% of Israelis think Israel should accept Palestinian statehood. About the same percentage of US Congressmen disagree. The difference seems to be that Israeli citizens do not receive
payments talking points from AIPAC.
Silly Question: “Can the I.M.F. Save the World?” No, but it was never supposed to save the world, just the bankers.
Bumblebees: The US government is developing small – model airplane sized – drones with onboard cameras and computers to identify 'targets' and to call in strike drones to 'neutralize' them. The target could be something as small as the GPS chip in your cell phone. It is also building secret bases from which to launch drones. Right now the bases are being clustered in the Horn of Africa and Arabian Peninsula as part of the undeclared wars there, but times change.
On Stare: Has it ever bothered you that GM's OnStar system knows where you are, 24/7? it should. , OnStar says it has the right to collect and sell information on your vehicle, including speed, location – even whether you are wearing your seat belt.
Inflation Check: Right now, before Bernanke's QE3 drives down interest rates, US 10-Year Treasuries are yielding 1.77%. So we'll apply another round of austerity, cut the budget, avoid all that ruinous borrowing for fear of inflation.
Verities: Why is it that the pro-life, anti-abortion faction is so strongly in favor of the death penalty?
Collateral Damage: Nano-this, nano-that, nano-technology is high on the list of next big things. Commercially. But now comes research that shows that nanoparticles - which are a lot more common than you suspect – cause tiny holes in vertebrate brains, causing nerve cells in the brain to die. And they may accumulate, like mercury, and become a persistent and progressive hazard to wildlife. And humans.