Thursday, September 26, 2013

SAR #13269

We are not the nation we pretend to be, and haven't been for a long time. 

Lookin' Good: At first blush, the premiums for coverage under ACA look remarkably affordable. Not, of course, as good as a national single-payer system would be, but much better than Republicans have been claiming. And the insurance vampires still get their unearned profits and BigPharma doesn't get challenged on their price goughing; a nearly perfect world and still Ted Cruse thinks poor people should die if they can't afford medical care.

Pencil It In: On October 17th, the US will officially become a deadbeat, unable to pay its bills. Thank a Republican.

Mother Hubbard's Cupboard, Revised: Wal-Mart has so many unsold plastic salad spinners jammed into its stockrooms that it has to put pallets of arriving Christmas crap in the stores' aisles next to the plastic Halloween crap. Seems customers have not been buying stuff for quite some time, despite the red hot economic recovery. Things are so bad the company is cutting orders for merchandise, hiring back workers fired in a chase for continuing profits, and in generally flailing about like neophytes. Watch for the bargain clearances.

Be Very Afraid: The US government, which spends tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars every year reading every email and every web posting, listening to nearly every phone conversation in the entire world, says to be on high alert because al-Qaeda “might be planning something.” What? They don't know, but something. Can we get a refund?

Tsunami Warning: French Socialists say they will make “unprecedented” cuts to France's 2014 budget. Boy, this'll be fun to watch.

Nothin' Up My Sleeve: JPMorgan Chase seems willing to pay $11 billion to federal and state entities to make prosecution for years of mortgage fraud go away. (JPM is quick to point out the dastardly deeds were done by guys at Bear Stearns and Washington Mutual, long before JPM took them over.) Citigroup has agreed to pay $395 million to Freddie Mac to sweep “potential flaws” (for which read years of fraud) in nearly 4 million mortgages it sold to Freddie. Citi said the settlement would come out of petty cash its existing mortgage repurchase reserves. A couple of months ago it paid Fannie May just shy of a billion dollars to settle similar claims, and in January BofA agreed to give Fannie $3.6 billion to cover “troubled home loans” it had palmed off as the good stuff, and to buy back another $6.7 billion of smelly mortgages.

Words Of One Syllable: The national debt is caused by the Treasury paying for stuff the Congress ordered above and beyond what they were willing to pay for at the time.

Mother Hubbard's Cupboard, Finalle: JCPenny looks to be toast. Goldman Sachs says that a terminal bankruptcy filing seems inevitable because the company does not have any inventory to sell, doesn't have any money to buy any inventory, can't borrow any money to buy any inventory and even if it got some money and some inventory it doesn't have any customers left to buy the inventory. Say Goodnight, Gracie.

Incurable Optimist: Richard Dawkins says there is a 50-50 chance that religious fanatics will get their hands on biological or radiological weapons and kill us all – eradicate humanity from the earth – this century. Just in time to save us from ourselves.

The Parting Shot:
 Eye of the beholder...

1 comment:

Thom Foolery said...

We are not the nation we pretend to be, and haven't been for a long time.

Or, as John Michael Greer put it in today's Archdruid Report: "the implosion of the civil religion of Americanism is taking place right now as a consequence of the collision between what America thinks it stands for and what it’s all too plainly become..."