Tuesday, October 11, 2011

SAR #11282

Reality is what stymies wishes.

Our Sponsor: Monday's market foolishness was brought to you by: China is going to bail out its banking system and thus prop up its stock market. Europe has put off solving its problems (the crowd is betting on another round of pay-offs). France and Germany are giving the banksters (through the Dexia 'rescue') $120 billion for making poor investments. And US economic numbers can't get much worse, so maybe they'll turn around. Please ignore the fact that none of these are positive signs for anybody's real economy, Wall Street does.

Selfishness: The Obama administration got a secret court order... Stop right there. Where in the Constitution is provision made for “secret courts” and “secret court orders”? Why are the news media not outraged? The government was seeking email data from a WikiLeaks volunteer. The effort is, obviously, to deter others and to crush those who helped the WikiLeaks project. If all they wanted was the emails, they could have just asked NSA.

Assumption: The question “How long will it take labor markets to recover?” assumes they ever will.

Re-Wording: European banks will lose more than $135 billion on their poor investment decisions and want German and French taxpayers to cover their losses. Merkel and Sarkozy are trying to figure out how to dress up this bail-out as something other than a bail-out, just as the Franco/Belgian/Luxembourg bailout of Dexia is being sold as "a solution to secure the future" of the bank. Eventually the lipstick will stick and the pig will be hailed as another triumph for free market capitalism. Or piracy.

Experienced Guess: Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's Italy suspects the country's troubles can be traced to excessive cocaine use.

Reality Check: During the official recession (December 2007 to June 2009 for those who missed it), median income fell 3.2%. “After the recession ended”® median household income fell another 6.7% through June of 2011. Those who lost jobs during the recession and later found work now make 17.5% less than the did in their old mobs. Do you want fries with that?

Doomsayers: John Mauldin says it starts with the Irish. British Prime Minister David Cameron says Europe's only got a couple of weeks to avoid causing a global financial disaster. Japan warns of parallels with the Lehman moment. IMF adviser Robert Shapiro predicts a cascading meltdown of the world's banking system. Robert Shiller explains why economists are part of the problem, not part of the solution. And this was all before Nirvana arrived with Monday's dawn.

Ah, So... For a decade or more we've been told that Japan faces a terrible future as its population ages – they've been held up as the poster child (well, not child, but you get the drift) for what will happen when the Baby Boomers in the US bust the system. But those predictions seem to have been wrong for three reasons: 1) Japan's aging population is saving more, consuming less. 2) Japan's debt is self-financing. And 3) the prediction was made by economists.

Do Not Fold, Spindle nor Mutilate: "There is no greater threat to democracy than the unbridled access that corporations have over our media. There are no guns, no bombs, no armies as lethal to the spirit of the American people as the two-headed colossus of corporate wealth and media influence." The rulers know this, that's why they fear success by the Occupy Wall Street movement and want to curb coverage of the Occupy movement. And monitor every word of it.

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