The future's not what it used to be.
In A Strange Land: The markets, the hotbed of capitalism, all went up because the various governments seem ready to bail out the banks again. Wish I a ran a lemonade stand that the government would bail out every few months. It's not like the Occupy Wall Street folks needed the free advertising.
The Loans Ranger: According to the American Bankers Association, we're not really very good risks. Personal loan delinquencies are up, and we're even later on payments for our cars, boats, home equity and RV loans. We are, however, not quite so delinquent on the double-wide.
This Just In:“The IMF, ECB, and EC are Prepared to Wreck the World Economy to Squeeze a Few Extra Dollars Out of Greece.” In other news, the Emperor has
new no clothes.
Layoffs On: In placing your bets on the Friday jobs report, keep in mind that employers said they were going to
get rid of lay off 115,730 workers in September – more than twice the number of casualties layoffs in August. Even the military is cutting 50,000 positions as it gets more production (i.e. killing) out of drones.
Apply As Needed: Even though mortgage rates are lower than any time since the 1940's, both the purchase index and the refinancing index decreased. Realtors think potential buyers are “unimpressed”. More likely they are scared silly.
On Message: Mitt Romney, who sees Occupy Wall Street as dangerous class warfare, isn’t the only Republican candidate condemning the movement. Wannabe Herman Cain sees the protesters as your usual bunch of whiny losers. “Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks,” he said. “If you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself!”
Silver Lining: Surveys show that cities with the highest unemployment rates show the greatest decrease in time spent commuting to work and the greatest drop in traffic fatalities.
“They” Did It: Saudi Arabia, claiming that the uprisings in the Eastern Province are the work of an unidentified foreign country, vows to use “an iron fist” to quell unrest among the Shiite minority there. Shiites make up about 30% of the population in the Eastern Province, which produces about 80% of Saudi Arabia's oil.
Us and Them: The richest 1% of Americans own well over 30% of the nation's wealth, while at least 30% of Americans would be unable to pay the rent or the mortgage for more than a single month if they lost their jobs. Over 60% would be unable to pay for their housing for more than 5 months – and finding a new job takes that long. And most of these people have children...
Been There, Done That: One-third of US veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan say the wars are not worth it, not worth the costs, not worth the injuries.
Contagion: The next election will be the workers against the rich, again. The difference is that the rich and their politicians will use marketers to mine data from all the social media in an attempt to a) suborn the protest energy and channel it into their candidate's camp, or b) use the same data to scare the rest of the citizenry into supporting their candidate. Expect more police riots.
Child's Play: The Obama administration has once again waived financial penalties for countries that continue to enslave children no older than Malia and Natasha and force them to be soldiers for brutish war-lords in hopeless wars in hopeless countries. The White House says two years has not been long enough for these countries – Sudan, Yemen, Chad and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (where US troops train the kids) – to stop using kids. Maybe there's a twelve step program they could join.
Blowing Bubbles: China is subsidizing the sales of building materials in rural areas in an effort to
keep its housing bubble going improve living conditions in the countryside.
Off The Reservation: Walter Jones (R-NC) says the US should pull all its military forces out of Afghanistan. Now. He said that if the GOP is serious about “budgets and cuts and deficits and debts” it was time to quit posturing and act. Instead of “eying cuts to school lunch programs for American children and cuts to benefits for American senior citizens” we should stop wasting billions in the war.