Saturday, December 21, 2013
“We have forgotten the basic lesson of the crash: Global problems need global solutions. And because we failed to learn from the last crisis, the world’s bankers are carrying us toward the next one.” Gordon Brown, former British PM
The Lasting Word: The vitriolic outrage from the religious right in defending some bearded backwoodsman's homophobia misses a simple point: 10 million gay consumers (plus their families and friends) are far more important to advertisers than a handful of bigots. Hidden beneath all the noise from The Duck Hunter's fans, a Federal court overturned Utah’s marriage equality ban and New Mexico became 17th state with legal same-sex marriage.
Priorities: Most Americans would cut the defense budget before cutting Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and spending for the poor.
Windmill Tilting: A federal appellate court has ruled that a lawsuit against Saudi Arabia for providing support to al-Qaida in the 911 attacks. While the exact amount of money and training the Saudi's provided is classified, the odds of any of this seeing daylight in court are about as long as that of a bunch of Saudis flying planes into NYC skyscrapers.
Have You Stopped Beating Your Wife? The NSA task force report includes a recommendation that NSA “not use their offensive cyber capabilities to change the amounts held in financial accounts or otherwise manipulate the financial system.” Wonder why that came up.
The Message: . Our current lackluster economy is a reflection of the phenomenal productivity of capitalism. Labor's productivity has increased to the point that very little labor is needed, thus the excess and unemployed workers. Interest rates are low because so much capital has already been accumulated that more is not needed. We can produce far more than we can buy; the problem is distribution.
Either / Or: Headlines report that Walgreen's quarterly profits soared 68% while it's profit margin slipped. Seems they did better investing in other companies than they did with diapers.
Do Not Adjust Your Set: The government now guesses that the nation's GDP grew at an annual rate of 4.1% in 3Q2013 instead of the 2.0% that was their first guess.
Head Bone Connected To The... First Wall Street and the banksters threw everybody out of their houses. Then Wall Street and the banksters bought up all the houses and began renting them out. Then Wall Street and the banksters raised the rent. Now we have another group of the evicted as rents and incomes head in opposite directions. Wonder who's to blame?
Evolution: Capitalism was originally based on thrift, saving part of the production to invest in new production. Then it became based on credit. These days it seems to involve less thrift than theft.
Just Saying No: A Portuguese court has ruled that the government cannot cut pension payments to retired workers – which the government was planning on doing under guidance from the IMF/ECB/EU.
The Parting Shot:
Posted by Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III at 6:47 AM