Thursday, December 22, 2011

SAR #11354

Is it better to be prematurely right, or wrong and dead?

The Half-Trillion Euro Question: Will the 523 banks that quickly swapped their questionable assets for the ECB's low-interest three year loans (half of it being repackaging of old laundry) actually use the money to buy up over-valued sovereign bonds as the ECB hopes? Pretty much, no. But mistletoe doesn't actually work, either.

Silly Question: “Can the U.S. Government close social media accounts?” Yes, the US Government long since gave up any pretense of upholding the Constitution or of being “ the people, for the people.”

See-Saw: The NAR claims sales of existing houses rose 4% m/m and 12% y/y. It also says a burst of enthusiasm resulted in sales from 2007 thru 2010 being overstated by 14.3%. But what's 2.9 million houses among friends? The NAR also says there are only 2.58 million houses for sale, but CoreLogic says there are another 1.6 million in the "shadow inventory".

Rounders: Now Monsanto's RoundUp is accused of being responsible for a brand new micro-fungal-type organism that has been linked to “Sudden Death Syndrome” which causes infected animals to have spontaneous abortions. Animals like cattle, horses, pigs, sheep, and poultry. The researchers also note that there has been an increase in miscarriage and infertility in human populations in the last decade.

Experience Factor: Saudi Arabia, which claims to be able to produce 12 mbd any time it wants plans on running at least 130 drilling rigs in 2012. Just to keep their hand in.

Cracks: The conservative Republican Party has been slowly coming apart for several decades, and the cracks are getting hard to ignore. The Eisenhower era GOP is now the Centrist Democrats and what once was the right wing of the GOP, when they're not behaving badly on the Hill, is slugging it out with the wingnuts of the Tea Party – the mostly white, mostly rural, mostly Southern, spiritual refugees of the Confederacy who don't want to govern as much as just lash out. Brinkmanship has replaced compromise, obstruction has replaced negotiation, threats and tantrums have replaced normal political maneuvering. Newt is just a symptom.

Secrets: The National Labor Relations Board wants companies to put up posters informing workers that they have the right to form or join a union and the right to have that union bargain collectively for them. The Republicans think that it is not the government's place to tell people what rights they have, only to take them away. That's why the GOP is "investigating" the NLRB for enforcing the law, and promises to do all it can to prevent the NLRB from getting involved in labor relations.

Choices: Medicare costs 1.7% of US GDP and will cost 3.0% of GDP in 2040. The question “Can we afford Medicare?” presumes there is some other option. The Defense Department costs 4.7% of GDP. We can afford to keep 'em safe, we just can't keep 'em healthy, is that it?

Word Game: Define 'significant' and 'could be' as in: Ohio “could once again be a significant source of domestic [petroleum] supply... Ohio could be producing 200,000 barrels of crude a day by 2020.” In 2010, Ohio pumped 13,108 bpd and in July of 2011 it zoomed to 15,500 bpd.

Vive la différence: The main difference between your debts and the government's debts is this: You have to pay your debts. Governments – those with their own sovereign currency – do not. They have to pay the interest when due, but they seldom pay off the debt. They pay it down a bit now and then, but if the government were to pay off the debt, the main engine of money creation would vanish and with it most of the vitality of the economy. We have not paid off the debt we incurred for WWII. “We are not paying off the debt left by our parents and grandparents, and our children and grandchildren will not pay off ours.” To pretend that deficits matter is disingenuous at best. Don't worry about your grandchildren having to live in poverty to pay off the debt, they won't have to pay off the debt. Nor will their grandchildren.

1 comment:

kwark said...

re "Word Game": CKM, you're just being a "Davy Downer". Why, I've heard BOTH parties tell us fracking and whatnot will lead us to energy security! . . .heavy sigh. . . Ponzi schemes always need greener pastures. One wonders how long they can play this game. Or is how long they can game this play?