I have little faith in the past; none in the future.
Conundrum: Any move towards greater fiscal integration in the eurozone will take years, but the eurozone does not have years to spare. Days, weeks, maybe even a few months; not years.
No, Virginia... European banks have run out of their supply of greater fools and are stuck with a pile of supposed assets that are losing value every day – which is why they can't sell them. This leaves the banks desperately needing to raise cash to survive. And no one wants to buy what they have or to lend to them.
Firstly: On close reading, nothing in the Constitution says that you can't be assaulted, clubbed, dragged, pepper-sprayed, shot with rubber bullets or – for all we know – disappeared, for wanting to reverse most of what happened in the last third of the 20th Century in the land where money is speech and corporations are people.
All Together Now: The generals managed to turn out a crowd of “thousands” to demonstrate in support of Egypt's ruling military junta, chanting “The military, the police and the people are one.” And in that order.
Over the Horizon: Our economic problems will not end with the 2012 elections, they are likely to be around a decade from now. At 90,000 new jobs a month – our recent average – most of the 14 million unemployed will be permanently unemployed, for it takes the 90,000 new jobs just to keep up with the month's new workers. That sets up a vicious cycle where lower spending leads to slow job formation. Expect the millions of discarded workers to demonstrate for a piece of the pie, while the haves put up walls to guard their privilege. Money will command the corridors of power while the people take to the streets. Eventually, new directions and new approaches will arise. Eventually.
Heads I win, Tails You Lose: Temporarily leading GOP wannabee Newt Gingrich wants the government to make good on your investment losses: " If someone with a personal account retires with benefits lower than those offered by the current system, the Treasury will send them a check to make up the difference." Remember - and this is true of the whole herd of midgets - if you want 'em, don't cry when you get 'em.
The Dickens You Say? In more than a third of US states, debt collectors can get arrest warrants for people who are behind on their bills.
Where the Bouys Are: Since the 'end of the recession'™ in 2Q09, nominal national income has increased 11.6%. But inflation has risen 4.7%, the population has grown 1.9%, and real wages have risen less than 1%, which means that the real per capita labor income has fallen by 1%. However, the FDIC reports that banks earnings in 3Q11 were up 48% y/y at $35.3 billion.
Location, Location... A senior executive at the Bank of England predicts that the UK housing market is “unlikely to recover”, that home ownership rates will fall and that house prices will never return to their former levels.
Kettle, Bubbling: Four were killed and nine wounded in clashes between Shiite commoners and Royal Saudi security forces in the oil-rich Eastern Province.
Report Card: The nation's food banks report that one in five children – and nearly 1 in 3 African-American or Latino households - are at risk of hunger. Hungry children have trouble focusing in school, get sick more often and struggle daily with stress at home. Many are eligible for free or reduced-price food at school, but often have no food available at home at night or over the weekend. Many schools provide backpacks of food for their hungry students' weekends. Remind me again how poor student performance is the teachers' fault.
Calm Down & Look at the Data: Denialists are enthused over a report that suggests global climate change will produce a slower rate of warming than previously suggested. The difference is between the IPCC's estimate of a rise of 3ºC with a doubling of CO2 levels, and 2.3ºC.