Copenhagen, more precisely. Big fancyt hotel. Build-a-burgers are back.
That’s where the one-worlder’s richie rich are gathered to cut up financial reality and talk about where they’re dragging society next. Money affords that luxury, but obviously not to you and me.
One of the debates this year, according to this report, will be a discussion of privacy. The discussion point is “Does privacy exist?” and anyone who has been following the stampede of the public in electronic finance and into massive Big Data platforms should already have figured out (without too much help) the answer is an emphatic “No!”
Thursday Special Offer: If you’re a Bilderberger member and would like additional help with such simple answers, send me $250,000 via a wire transfer and a new top of the line Panamera and I’ll provide plenty of other “one word solutions” to whatever OTHER stupid questions ya’ll might have.
Here’s one, although not-so-dumb: Is there a Global Agreement on Robotics, Jobs, and Economic Preservation of Earth, for the roll-out of the convergence technologies (3D printing, Net, robotics including driverless cars) that will prevent wholesale global financial collapse?
No???!!!! Has it occurred to anyone but Ures truly that dumb shits come in all income categories? (See my consulting page where our motto is “If you have money, we have billable hours”.)
Reports of press intimidation and arrests are an insult to the globalpop and Denmark should face sanctions similar to Russia’s for failing to uphold reportorial and human freedoms.
But, oh, wait, Denmark is already a card-carrying country in the EU’s financial BDSM club….so forget I mentioned it. We’ll just sit back, copin’ & hoggin’.
The Obama administration series of (illegal, but it doesn’t seem to matter to them) policy deviations from published law has opened floodgates of immigration along the US border with Mexico.
Since people in Mexico aren’t stupid, they are crossing the border like never before and the rank and file of ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) have their hands tied by (illegal) policies that are part of the administration’s agenda.
Result? Headlines like “Wave of immigrant minors present crisis for Obama, Congress.”
Refer to earlier remarks about what comes in all income categories.
Related: Now that people in Europe are waking up to the idea that immigration from Africa and the Middle East is quickly sending the majority Anglos of Britain toward minority status, the press is labeling it using terms like racist and reactionary.
So it’s not surprising to see the question pop: “Are we all racist now?”
Refer to earlier Thursday Special Offer on one word answers.
More after this…
Kiss Off Recovery? G.D.P. All Over the Place
Yes, time for the second estimate of Gross Domestic Product for Q1 of this year. But before we go there, a statistical ponder:
Assume for a minute you have a factory. Assume you want to see how well your factory is doing.
There is a simple way, and a hard way.
The simple way is to look at however many units of product your factory is turning out. Say you’re making adult toys. You make 1,000,000 last year, and now thanks to various government policy changes and mandatory new programs you’re on track to make 1.500,000 this year.
Obviously, on a units basis, there would be 50% growth, and assuming you kept costs in line on a unit basis, maybe you too, could go to Copenhagen.
But now suppose, you wanted to do things the “hard way.”
You would measure what money was coming in from sales, but you would be as precise in your thinking. Reason?
- The Federal Reserve prints up money like crazy. In a 2% CPI world, printing up 6.2 percent more dough (M2, annual) sort of muddies the water.
- But then let’s also suppose that the central bank also added $4 trillion to its balance sheet; that too would wobble things a bit.
- And how about all that money gone to China, which is coming home via real estate purchases which drive up costs in odd ways…all this gets to be pretty sordid accounting.
Still, it is what it is and that’s the kind of thing that the GDP report tries to gloss over. But as you read this, remember, the GDP report doesn’t count actual goods made. Instead it is a dollarized estimate that includes salaries for (among others) all those programmers who worked on the ACA software project, for example.
Is that really part of GDP? Well, yes. Which is why Mark Twain’s observation (lifted from Benjamin Disraeli) about statistics is really the only accounting handbook you need. Absent unit counts, I can argue GDP all over the place.
Here’s how it’s being argued this morning – bad:
Real gross domestic product — the output of goods and services produced by labor and property located in the United States — decreased at an annual rate of 1.0 percent in the first quarter according to the “second” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
In the fourth quarter, real GDP increased 2.6 percent.
The GDP estimate released today is based on more complete source data than were available for the “advance” estimate issued last month. In the advance estimate, real GDP was estimated to have increased 0.1 percent.
With this second estimate for the first quarter, the decline in private inventory investment was larger than previously estimated (see “Revisions” on page 3).
The decrease in real GDP in the first quarter primarily reflected negative contributions from private inventory investment, exports, nonresidential fixed investment, state and local government spending, and residential fixed investment that were partly offset by a positive contribution from personal consumption expenditures. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.
Since GDP is largely a monetarily-driven report, we can’t help but wonder if some of that global deflation stuff that the EU has been muttering about might be coming over here?
Aspiring fiction writers will need to report at the same time tomorrow for the “Personal Income and Expenditures Report” which includes the Personal Savings Rate, which is even more incredible than Hogwarts.
Say, you don’t think I could get into the Hogwarts School of Economics, do you? I’ve been reading and writing about the “Presto, change-o” long enough.
In the meantime, paradoxically, deflation prospects should drop the yield of Treasuries even more and that ought to help the stock market until we his Ure’s Discontinuity which I define as:
When stock market players wake up to the fact that stock prices have been going up only because real returns suck so badly.
At this moment of sobriety, the paucity of earnings and growth prospects crystalizes and the economic ship of state collapses into Greater Depression.
The fact is argued that we’re in a recession again (defined as three months of declining GDP which – pardon me) isn’t that what a Q1 is?
“Stock Futures pare gains after disappointing US growth data.” Headline writers who use terms like “growth data” when the data shows a decline are one of those great “financial industry hoodwinks” that most people completely miss.
Meantime, Japan is conducting new/further experiments in stupidity: They haven’t figured out that if you raise sales taxes, people will cut back on spending. D’oh! See earlier consulting offer.
Hasn’t anyone besides us read about the Great Depression?
(A brief pause for blood pressure to drop before we continue…)
Here it comes: Mandatory chip implants of the future have long been a “mark of the Beast” issue, but now DARPA is passing out the dough to make implants to control (and even project moods) in order to help servicemen with post-traumatic stress.
I’m gonna step out on a limb here and recommend Tim’s Cascade or Lays as the only chips you oughta be putting in your body…
(Another pause for BP)
Ukraine: Still Smoldering
Think the fighting is over in Ukraine now that elections are over and done with? Nope. A Kiev forces chopper was downed by pro-Russian forces and 14 were killed.
MH370 (again and again…)
Hard to believe that this missing plane story is still in the news. Went missing around what, March 8?
Now just…uh….82 days later, we’re reading about how the missing plane is “Not believed to Be in Search Area.
This is likely to turn into one of those “perpetual news stories” that will just never end…
And: The Rich Keep Getting Richer
But in the end, none of our clear thinking on snooze events or markets, or the banking system seem to matter. The FDIC’s latest report shows in the latest Quarterly Banking Profile than big banks earned $4.4 billion
- Net Income of $37.2 Billion Is $3.1 Billion Below Year-Ago Level
•Reduced Mortgage Activity Contributes to Decline in Revenue
•54 Percent of Banks Report Year-Over-Year Improvement in Earnings
•Balances at Federal Reserve Banks Account for Almost Half of Asset Growth
America’s #1economics policy problem seems to be banking can be shrinking and still increase earnings increasing in the majority of banks. Where’s the pain for the bond and the shareholders? The working class has been bent over enough! No more raises, no more bailouts – ever.
This kind of payoff for national suffering just ain’t right. But is sure is ‘Merican, ain’t it?