Still saddled with this crummy flu/cold./plague/or pox upon me, I almost crawled back into bed this morning upon discovering that the world would be ending sometime in August of this year. Yes, there’s a story out on the Turner Radio Network (no relation to Ted, so far as we know) that assures us that a “Professor gives coordinates of planet inbound toward Earth.”
Of course, the story’s cited source, a “Dr. Kaplan” (no first name given) seems to have a video up on YouTube, which would be terribly important except for one thing: the UT Austin Astronomy Dept. doesn’t have any Dr. Kaplan listed on it’s personnel directory (here) and so it doesn’t look legit, so we continue our quest for how the world is likely to end this year.
The smart money is on the world ending because of financial destruction, instead of errant planets. Errant financial policy is far more likely…
In the early-going today, the Dow which was up 109 points yesterday, is likely to drop more than a hundred-fiddy around the opening, and as a result, we expect the week to end down around its lows, or under. Remember, below the S&P 1,770 level is where Robin Landry and a lot of other experts in market analysis expect things to get really interesting.
While we await the market opening today, we can begin munching on a side order of quick-fried numbers – personal income and expenses. Have your ViceGrips at the read as you read this one…
“Personal income increased $2.3 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) decreased $3.8 billion, or less than 0.1 percent, in December according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $44.1 billion, or 0.4 percent. In November, personal income increased $29.8 billion, or 0.2 percent, DPI increased $14.4 billion, or 0.1 percent, and PCE increased $74.8 billion, or 0.6 percent, based on revised estimates. Real disposable personal income decreased 0.2 percent in December, in contrast to an increase of 0.1 percent in November.
Real PCE increased 0.2 percent in December, compared with an increase of 0.6 percent in November.
No surprise, however I do have on my questions to ask BEA list this one: Are ya’ll counting healthcare tax in your accounting?
And then there’s personal savings:
Personal saving — DPI less personal outlays — was $495.2 billion in December, compared with $541.0 billion in November. The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income — was 3.9 percent in December, compared with 4.3 percent in November.
How they can come out with such stuff month after month is mystifying. But the real numbers to wait for will be the January numbers (a month from now) after all the healthcare changes roll in. Or, will they simply not count that as a tax? Jokes on us.
But meantime, if there’s a decline in your standard of living, if you tear into their underlying spreadsheet, you’ll see they do things like count home equity as “savings” and such, you’ll see that the last YTD increase in personal savings for 2013 was 4.5% while in 2012 it was 5.6% and In 2011 it was 5.7%.
Gee, do you think this economic reality has anything to do with why the Dow will open down 150 this morning?
Which gets us to….
I’m looking to collect actual reader experience with healthcare reform, so please click one of the following links and send me a note:
Oh, sure, there have been other polls out there, but I want to find out what actual UrbanSurvival reader experiences are. If the poll comes in good – then fine – we’ll be pleased to report that. However, if the poll comes in negative, well, that too will get reported.
I don’t have any axe to grind one way other the other, except to note that Justice Roberts says it’s a tax and therefore, I would think all expenditure mandated would be deductible, since you shouldn’t be taxed on tax…but I’m sure even that it going to fall apart.
But like I said, I just want to collect reader experience – before and after numbers are optional – just whatever you’d like to share.
GOP Leaders Sell Immigration Blueprint
Not that we need one: There is already a clear set of steps that any foreigner can take to become a full-fledged citizen of the USA., Yet here we have the republican hierarchy lining up to sell the corporate-backed easy citizenship plan.
And no, the administration is still not meeting with the ICE labor leaders who would like their workers to enforce existing laws.
My liberalista friends hate it when I point out the word “deport” and “felony” are not being enforced. To them, it’s OK to selectively enforce l;laws they don’t agree with. So why bother having them in the first place?
Job Creating? Ha!!!
President Obama is set this morning to ask CEOs of major companies to hire on additional folks – particularly the long-term unemployed.
Slick-talk, like predicting the “effects will snowball” is some of the most ridiculous I’ve read in a good while: In order to grow spending by regular, everyday people, you have to put money in the working man’s (or woman’s) pocket. After what’s be aptly described as the biggest tax hike in American history, there’s only one way for consumer spending to go (down, kaput) and the reason the stock market is in decline (since end of December, if you haven’t noticed) is that consumers are tapped out.
Tapped out means less spending which rolls to no growth, and then shrinkage and then the second leg down of the Housing bubble collapse. You’re already seeing glimpses of it in the housing numbers this week showing a huge decline in December numbers. But don’t blame me for pointing out a little reality in the middle of the BS festival on jobs.
Oh, and come to think of it, since families are not being covered by a lot of plans now, look for more disincentives when comes to family formations. And that, in turn, provides for even longer-term declines and that means we will need even more immigrants to pay taxes so the free lunchers can get theirs in the future.
Ain’t the new socialism great?
But, of course, we don’t expect that even though healthcare is a tax, that any of the statistical reporting agencies will do “weekly wages after taxes” or anything nearly so honest. And that’s why we have a country full of idiots who swoon to the free luncher’s songs and dances. Like the one today on jobs.
If Obama WAS really serious about fixing jobs, he would put tariffs on crap coming in from China and India and would tell CEO’s that they can only write off US costs, not overseas costs of production.
Will anyone listen to such a common sense answer to flipping the job-jacking around? Hell no. Because every politician is led around by a financial pechewzelwhacker. Obama doesn’t tell business anything. They tell him. That’s how national money to buy elections works. Demos and Repubs alike. All hands are out for dough. And it’s why the Mexification of America is a done deal.
The rest is all shuck and show.
Disparate Messages From On High
Our resident war gamer points out quite clearly how facts and myths have gotten muddled of late coming out of DC…
The WaPo published the transcript of testimony given this week to the U.S. Senate’s annual intelligence committee hearing on the nation’s most significant security threats.
Testifying were: director of national intelligence, James Clapper; the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, John Brennan; the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Jim Comey; the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Lieutenant General Michael Flynn; and the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, Matt Olsen..
The first thing that stands out to Ure’s truly is the glaring discontinuity between the testimony of several of the U.S. administration’s prominent intelligence and security officials and the President’s SOTU address delivered this past Tuesday.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper bluntly offered his assessment: “Looking back over my more than half a century in intelligence, I have not experienced a time when we have been beset by more crises and threats around the globe.”
This statement appears to stand in rather stark contrast to President Obama’s declaration Tuesday night that “America must move off a permanent war footing.”
The second salient point I noticed while reading the transcript is the obviously choreographed side-stepping of pointed committee questions directly relating to domestic intelligence collections. Every queried official who was offered the opportunity to provide testimony instead used some version of the “this is classified and the wrong venue for such a discussion” retort.
So – in a nutshell – we’re not on war footing as al Qaeda reorganizes, the Middle East unzips, North Africa is undergoing rampant civil war, China flexes its regional muscles (starting in the S. China Sea) and Russia beats the Ukraine into economic submission, and our tight lipped intelligence officials will only inform (s)elect representatives of matters regarding domestic surveillance and intelligence gathering behind closed and locked doors.
There’s no reason to be pessimistic about this testimony or the SOTU address. Move along. Enroll in ObamaCare. Pay your taxes. Keep your money in the bank. Watch more network news and mindless cable TV.
“People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome.” ~George Orwell
Oh, and let’s not forget the NWO’er are back with the new and improved TransTexas Corridor which will be rubber stamped by TXDOT so all those drug lord tourists can take high speed rail up to Oklahoma City.
Yessir, we are led by geniuses who have no clue how complexity works.
Oh, quick: Look surprised as headlines are popping up about how “California may have hit its driest point in 500 years, and the effects are frightening.”
While some people may be predicting huge rains and floods to come, you might want to take that with a grain or toke: Modesto, CA has only 0.42 inches for the year against normal of 2.52 and no rain in sight now for a week or longer. Last year at this time, they’d had almost three times as much and that was a disaster. Jes’s sayin’
Sacramento has 0.14” in the gauge for the month against an average of 3.52 inches for this date. That growing dark brown patch on the map is your food prices going up this summer…watch and see…
Texas could make a return to disaster, too: 7-10ths of an inch this year here in the heart of cattle country, against almost 3 inches average and 3.74” last year. So invest in water, what can I say?
OK, another swig of cold medicine…