Monday, August 29, 2011

SAR #11240

Remember free markets?

Oracleizing: “Temporary factors can account for only a portion of the economic weakness that we have observed... Most of the economic policies that support robust economic growth in the long run are outside the province of the [Federal Reserve].” Chairman Ben, letting the cat out of the bag.

Translation Exercise: What does 'cooperation' mean in the German phrase "closer cooperation is the only way forward?" Or this: "Let us hope that being German and being European are now one and the same, today and forever."

Someone Finally Noticed: Why does this rate a headline? "Wall Street bailout failed to rescue Main Street" Where the hell you been for the last three years?

Place Your Bets: How long can the ECB prop up Europe's sick banks? Dunno, how long can you hold your breath? Or play make believe? Hints: Royal Bank of Scotland, down 45% in August, Société Générale, down 39%, US money funds started abandoning European banks in July . "Some European banks hold almost half a trillion euros in questionable government bonds. They’re relying on ECB funding to stay in business."

Some of the People Some of the Time: 75% of Americans disapprove of congressional Republicans ( better than the Dems, who garner a 68% disapproval rate). The voters also disagree with the Republican 'no-new-taxes' mantra, with 69% saying increased taxes are a necessary part of balancing the budget.

Conundrum: Why, if the government can finance its operations by borrowing money at a real, inflation adjusted, negative interest rate, are they trying to scrimp and save? Today it would be far cheaper for the government to borrow all of its cash and pay it back over 5 to 7 years. Yet our whole national discussion is pathologically focused on the idea that we are borrowing too much money.

Balanced Budget: In Pennsylvania, Governor Corbet cut $2 million from the education budget and granted $833 million in tax breaks to corporations. That’ll teach ‘em.

Something New: A previously unknown river flowing deep under the Amazon rainforest has been identified by Brazilian scientists. Named the Hamza, if flows slowly eastward abut 13,000 feed beneath the surface and empties into the ocean deep underground.

Wheat/Chaff: "U.S. regulators have asked some banks to take more deposits from large investors even if it’s unprofitable..." Interesting times indeed, when banks don't want your money in either dollars or francs.

Storm Surge: In the first quarter of 2011, nearly 11 million homes – 23% of all US houses with a mortgage – were underwater. In Florida it's 46%, in California 31%. Why do these folks keep wasting their money?

Business Weak: A smaller percent of prime working-age men (those 25 -54) have jobs today than at any time since the end of World War II. The percentage of men working and the median wage they earned has dropped steadily since the 1970's, the decline was masked by the increasing numbers of women in the workforce. The portion of men holding a job- any job, part or full time - fell to 63.5% in July. This is the lowest number since 1948. —These are the lowest numbers in statistics going back to 1948. And men who do have jobs get paid less – their wages have dropped 27% in the last 40 years.

To Tell The Truth: Rick Perry says that Social Security is a “monstrous lie”, “a Ponzi scheme.” Fact is Perry is a politician. If his lips moves, it generally is a lie. Not always monstrous, but nearly always a lie. Nature of the beast.

1 comment:

kwark said...

RE Oracleizing: You missed the off-mike, Soto-voice comment ". . . but that's not keeping us from using what we got to fleece the American public."

RE Some of the People Some of the Time: That's why Michelle Bachmann ". . . told Floridians Sunday that Hurricane Irene and the earthquake felt along much of the East Coast last week were messages from God to warn "politicians" to start heeding divine guidance, which she suggested is being channeled through small government conservatives." Gotta scare-up some divine help, otherwise people will behave rationally and conclude that she is either a raving lunatic, or a con-artist. Oh, that's right, both would be correct conclusions.