Saturday, May 17, 2008

SAR #8138

We are not going to save civilization
one twisty lightbulb at a time.

Takes One To Know One: Former Fed Chair Volcker says the Fed should take forceful steps now to avoid a repeat of the inflation and stagflaion of the late 70's and early 80's. "Forceful steps", you may recall, were double digit interest rates.

Electioneering: Being Republicans and knowing there would be a November ballot initiative to overturn their ruling, the California Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. This insures a huge turnout of the born againsters, none of whom are likely to vote for Barak. Rove would be proud.

Third Time's A Charm: Saudi Arabia turned down Bush's second hat-in-hand appeal for increased oil production. Is is possible the Saudis are saying, "No, we can't." and not "No."

It Is Your Fault! NASA scientists, after reviewing 30,000 studies, have concluded that almost all the bad things in the world are pretty much of human causation, from the loss of ice sheets to the collapse in numbers of many species of wildlife. "the evidence that mankind was altering the world" is overwhelming. Watch where you step.

Half A Loaf: April's job report didn't account for the shorter hours being worked - which was enough to equal the loss of 400,000 jobs, and full-time employment actually fell 375,00 jobs. Government statistics, again.

Singing The Song: Bank of England Governor Mervyn King has told Brits "the good times are over". No refunds for the unused portion of your ticket.

Creamy Nougat Center, Not: While the visible government agencies are wringing their hands over the fate of people caught in the disasters in Myanmar and China, Washington's security aparatchiks have decreed that in order to leave a future US disaster zone - hurricane, flood, earthquake, GOP victory - refugees will have to show proof of citizenship. Can't wait to see those pictures on Al Jezeera.

Buddy Can You Spare A Dime? US Bank borrowing from the Fed has reached $14.4 billion, while Wall Street investment houses are into Uncle Sam for 16.6 billion. We've socialized finance, not healthcare.

Contract Law? Houston's National Power Co. has told customers it will not honor its long-term power contracts and will increase rates 28 %. Neither the customers nor the Public Utilities Commission is amused.

Lyrics: Import prices for non-petroleum goods rose 2.9% in March and another 1.8% in April. That's an annual rate of nearly 25%. That's not inflation, this I know, for the government tells me so...

Shaken, Not Stirred: Polar Bears are 'threatened', not 'endangered'. The difference is that "endangered" requires the government do something about protecting them - which would require stopping global warming, which would require severe restrictions on fossil-fuel drilling and burning, which is damned-well not going to happen.

By The Numbers: Banks have written off $338 billion so far, but have only raised $260 billion in new capital. I'm not sure what this means, but I suspect we're having soup for supper again.

Porn O'Graph: The Fed has spent about half its allowance. Peek here.

1 comment:

Samuel Fridman said...

Inflation - Really high or REALLY high?

Re "Lyrics: Import prices for non-petroleum goods rose 2.9% in March and another 1.8% in April. That's an annual rate of nearly 25%."

How so? The annualized compound rate is, I believe, an even larger 32.1%
[i.e., (1.029*1.018)^6 - 1 = 0.3212...]

But, hey, what's the difference if you drown in a 9' deep pool as opposed to an 11' deep one?