Peoplenomics: Socioeconomic Revolution, II

Want to have a little fun and do some serious brainwork? Pick a country (any country) in the world where you think there could be a revolution in the next 20-30 years. That’s what we do this morning and come up with a surprising answer. And no, it’s not the USA; it is somewhere else but fairly important. Before we get into darts and Molotov’s, though, a few headlines to wake up the mind….

Immigration Laws? WHAT Laws?

The latest  “insults to injury” come with reports that the Obamanistas in charge of immigration have turned thousands of illegal immigrants loose at bus stations in Arizona and elsewhere.  400 were flown to Arizona – yet Mexico would have been a close flight!  Unbelievable!

What you get a sense of, when you read reports like this one, is that the Obamanistas have been caught with their hand in the cookie jar and we will now see partisan butt covering out the wazoo.

Right on cue, as if to prove my point about partisanship, we read now how the republicorps are moving to increase investigation funding into the O-crowd’s defacto amnesty, but the vote was (look surprised) along party lines.

Chicago schools have been caught in an apparent lie, seems.  This as a question about immigration in a test database about a hypothetical immigration position written by “Ari Payo” is – they insist – not a rip oif Phoenix area sheriff Joe Aripaio, who’s indignant that the schools’ didn’t “have the guts to use my real name” is the quote.

But for the ChiSchools to say it was wholly fictional?  We don’t have time for Mr. Ure’s lesson in factorial math, but 26 letters in an alphabet and some spare calculator batteries and at some point, you’ll sniff the odor of bullshit on this one, just as pungently as I do.

Dropping known criminals back into American society?  There ought to be heads roll over this one, but (as in Gun Walker) look for a political cover-up to follow.

It shouldn’t be an investigation.  Try impeachment.  Because it sure looks like flagrant disregard of the laws on the books. And the Jeh Johnson’s deeper understanding leads to one of our favorite socioeconomic mantras.

You can’t fix stupid.  But I suppose that it will mask the Chinese takeover when they buy ‘Merica out from under us using our own bonds to do it.

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Coping: Automatic Writing Blowback, Retrograde, Chance?

As you know, I did an experiment last weekend with “automatic writing” and  wrote up the interesting experimental results Monday, or so, of this week.

What’s interesting is that several readers warned me against such an endeavor, noting that to mess about which such processes is to risk getting in contact with entities that may not have my best interests at heart and some suggested that “evil sticks” to people who get around such stuff.  Danger in tinkering with magick is their context.

On the other hand, no harm in it (although yes, the information in the note from Chris at was a bit odd), I figured since magick is well-documented as an acceptable thing to do.  In fact Aaron was to keep his “truth stones” (Urim and Thummin) close to his chest at all times.

Wiki it and you’ll find these consulting stones use goes back a long time…

In the Hebrew Bible, the Urim and Thummim (Hebrew: ?????? ????????, Standard ha?Urim v?haTummim Tiberian h??Ûrîm w?hatTummîm) are associated with the hoshen (High Priest’s breastplate), divination in general, and cleromancy in particular. Most scholars suspect that the phrase refers to specific objects involved in the divination

When you go through the Bible, you’ll find “the stones” are consulted here and there, and as one researcher notes, it’s not the practice of magick, per se, that is bad.  It’s the kind of magick that gets people into trouble.  And that circles around to intent.

Worth reading: Divination of God: The Obscure Ancient Tool of Prophecy Revealed  (Urim and Thummin).

Which related to this morning, how?

Well, as you know, I finally got my “missing RPM” back on our old airplane this week.  But that turned out to be only my “first blush” with things mechanical.

I left the house about 9:30 Thursday morning to go pick up sheetrock and get a new safety inspection and license for our old farm truck.  Pulled in,; went to drag out the registration and  insurance card and….no card!

That in and of itself was strange since I am a fanatic about all paperwork in its place.  So back up to the house, scan the one from Elaine’s car (shows both vehicles) and then back to the inspection joint.

Along comes the inspector.  “Sorry, you’ll have to get four new tires.  See these front ones?  Too much toe-in and you can almost see cord on them.  And the back ones are down to the wear lines…

The next 45-minutes was spent wandering around town getting quotes (best is $600) for four new truck tires, mount and balance, and a front-end alignment.

Still, got the sheetrock, made it back to the house, and since the inspection sticker doesn’t run out until the end of June, I picked up the registration (they don’t look at the inspection sticker, they just want money), and that was that.

A typical busy day around here followed.  Elaine had cooked a phenomenal pot roast, so I took a nap about 4 PM and woke up about 5 asking “Is it a little stuffy in here?

Well, sure as heck, the air conditioner had crapped out.

After some initial checks (we’ve had some power bumps out here) and cycling through all the breakers and making sure there was power going down to the unit, I called the local air conditioning emporium to get them out here (later this morning).

About here, though, I got to wondering  “Say, usually I lead a kind of charmed life” and usually there isn’t this much….uh…..”

You mean mechanical stuff going wrong?” Elaine suggested.


And that’s where this morning’s big ponder is: is this all some kind of “spiritual payback” for my automatic writing experiment, or is it really just how “additional protection” works out?

This last point is a bit odd, so let me explain.

By going hunting for the “missing RPM” in the place, we found a seriously defective carburetor which could, under the right kinds of conditions, have caused a major inflight fire.  Having a fire one mile up in the sky is not my idea of a good time.  So maybe my meticulous maintenance antennae were just going off.

On the truck tires?  Maybe I needed to change them because to fail to do so might expose Elaine and me to unnecessary risk while driving the truck into town to pick up what are usually heavy loads.  Like the 12-sheets of sheetrock I picked up yesterday.

And on the air conditioner?  I might be something as simple as a low-pressure cutout switch since the system hasn’t had a lick of maintenance needed (other than filters) for six years now.  Maybe it’s time.  But that’s where the 10-year warranty picks up, I suppose.

But now – here’s the really weird part:  When I was in town earlier this week (Tuesday) I had stopped by the local Wally-World where they had 20-inch box fans on sale for $17.

I just had a sense that I would need one….in the shop.  So I picked one up.

Elaine went down to the car, brought up the box fan and we slept a peaceful night, sans air conditioning.  It can be done. Conveniently

But as the week rolls to an end, I find myself wondering which of the three leading candidates is going on in my life with this:

a) Payback for delving into automatic writing, in which case is it:

1) protection for me, getting potentially bad things out of the way, or

2) screwing with me because I wasn’t supposed to try automatic writing

b) a MORE COMMON phenomena:  Mercury going retrograde in a week, and since I tend to front-run Mercury, and so it’s just how “my stars lined up”

c) Or…the highest probability to the rational mind…is it sometimes shit happens in clusters?  As Sagan noted in “Demon Haunted World” maybe we are still those superstitious bipeds, although he was much more polite about it.  Toss in old and overweight and I’m the trifecta winner.

My spiritual advisor will no doubt want to do some “clearing” work of the energetic sort (no problem there!).  And I hope our consulting semi-retired astrology expert (Michelle) can look into this.

In the meantime,  it makes for an interesting review of how “As above, so below” works. 

One thing’s for sure, three mechanical items in a week is way outside of what I’m used to:  One – once or twice a year – is more what I’m accustomed to.  This clustering?  Not my cuppa tea.

Oh, and if you do try automatic writing?  Might help to have $3-thousand dollars worth of cushion in your checkbook.

Oh, the Car Discussion

In yesterday’s column, where I generously offered my consulting services to the Bilderbergers ($250K plus a Porsche Panamera) I hope you appreciate that the chance of this every happening is about as close to zero as imaginable.

Still, reader Mark has a point as he writes this “bamboo under the fingernails” bit on my car choices……


A forward thinker like you, should be dreaming about cars of the future…not of an ancient past. The top rated luxury car in just about every publication is the antithesis of vehicles of the past 100 years. Tesla is what all car manufacturers should aspire to create. They have invented and continue to improve on what has become the holy grail of the new car consumer.

Here in California, they are the dominant luxury car in terms of sales…and their leader, Elon Musk,  is to cars what Steve Jobs was to the entire electronics industry…an innovator and winner in everything he touches.

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‘Bergers or Buggers? Something’s Rotten in Denmark

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’.

Immigration Clusterfooble

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.

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    Coping: Thursday in the Mail Bag–National Security

    Sadly, there has been a decline in World of Woo-Woo events in recent weeks, so we’re fresh out of those kind of reports for you.

    But the mail keeps coming in covering points on this and that, much of which is interesting and worth sharing.

    For example, without going into the larger context, I mentioned the speech by President Eisenhower on the “military industrial complex” in Wednesday’s report. And that prompted reader Atom to send in his little-know fact:

    military industrial complex. the actual written speech, per his daughter, was “the-military industrial-congressional complex”, but because he was enjoying good relations (not sure who was on top) with congress he omitted the congressional reference. The military-industrial complex can not exist without a funding source…congress.

    Thanks for listening.

    And speaking of which (the military) I can’t keep but mentioning several other military-related items while I’m at it.

    I often take the Obama administration to task for failing to follow through on the campaign promise to close down the penal facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.  In fairness, however, the administration is not entirely to blame.

    The record shows it was the US House (yep, the republicorp dominated House) that blocked administration plans to close down the detention facility there.  It’d be hard (not to mention an ugly crapstorm) for the president to unilaterally move against specific legislation.

    The problem this brings into focus is that both political parties love to play dirty and switch sides on issues.  In this case, one can see how the republicorps are holding up the agenda.

    All of which is not to exonerate the Administration, however.  They get other things wrong, as I see it.

    For example, this Bill Gertz piece in the Washington Examiner note how the Obamanistas keep “tuning” on the rules that permit (under specified conditions) US military involvement in ther enforcement governance on American soil.

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    A Broad View of Socioeconomic Revolution, I

    This morning we present the first of two parts of how technology seems to exhibit a 35-37 year periodicity, which has tremendous social and economic implications. The process begins with a discussion of how media “hems in” decision-making by policymakers, compares media density and rollout times between radio, television (and cable) and the Internet and proposed what’s likely ahead. Next, we consider analogs between the 1929-1932 decline and more recent events of the Housing Bubble collapse. And from here (in part 2 Saturday) we will stir it all up and see what the ongoing socioeconomic revolution looks like. But before we dig in, some lighter fare in the form of morning headlines and a check of how our Trading Model is doing (just fine, but with additional details.

    Summer of ‘29? The “Vomit Comet” Economy

    Elaine thinks I was being lazy this weekend,  Lounging in my overstuffed leather recliner, staring at the big screen computer display once in a while, I can see where that might be the impression.

    But the reality is I’ve been doing a lot of deep-thinking on the application of neural networks to markets.  Multilayered feed-forwards, and other such tools, as gaming the market takes a lot of time.

    Today, the Dow figures to tack on 50-points in the early going today  – ostensibly for any number of “headline reasons” including:

    Election in Ukraine is behind us.  Still, this could blow up again this week as dozens of pro-Russian fighters died in Donetsk.

    The right (small /EU/ groups made gains in European Union voting, but it could have been worse.  Global world government lite seems to be the fallback chatter.

    And oh, another mass/outrage killing will spur more gun control discussion.

    Fine, on the surface.  But there’s something much more serious going on.


    There’s a dirt simple equation for rising markets and it works out thisaway:

    Say you have one share of a stock and it is earning $1.

    If the prevailing investment environment is giving people returns of 10%, then you would own $10-dollar stock.  The markets are competitive like this.

    But, suppose that you still have $1 worth of earnings and the prevailing yield of competing investment choices drops to 5%.  What happens to the stock price?  It  tends to rise to $20.  (Ceteris paribus, all other things being equal.)

    Now suppose that the same $1 worth of earnings exists and the prevailing interest rate drops to just 2%.  What is the stock price likely to be (again, cet.par.)?  $50!!!

    So the Big Story that no one is explaining worth a crap behind the headlines is that the reason stocks could hit new highs is that rates are heading toward deeper, lower, lows!

    If this was only a US phenomena, it wouldn’t spell global economic disaster down the road (when rates rise).,  But look out!  When rates do begin to rise, then things will turn exactly the other direction and what has been the “virtuous cycle” will turn into a vicious cycle.

    And that gets us to the most important financial lynchpin story of the morning:  “Europe’s deflation threat may be growing” says the Boston Globe.

    Provided companies can hang on to at least some earnings, record Dow highs are just ahead, as are highs in the S&P.  The NASDAQ has some catch up to do, but we could be in one of those “Summer of ‘29” events shortly.

    I don’t say this lightly.  The greatest challenge the Federal Reserve will have to face over the next three years will be how to manage the eventual “turn” in rates.  Put simply, rates will have to reverse as some point, or the world collapses in a heap.

    But if they get it even slightly wrong, as happened when rates were being raised in 1929, things can collapse – globally. 

    Here’s a snip from a San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank Economic Letter “Monetary Policy and the Great Crash of 1929: A Bursting Bubble or Collapsing Fundamentals?”  (From 1999):

    “Price-dividend ratios continued to fall until July 1929, but then prices began to take off. In August, the Fed raised the discount rate by another percentage point to 6%. The stock market peaked in the first week of September. It is worth noting that at its peak the price-dividend ratio was 32.8, which is well below values reached in the 1960s or 1990s. Share prices declined in a more or less orderly fashion until the end of October, but then the market crashed. From its peak, the price-dividend ratio fell roughly 30%, to a level roughly similar to that prevailing at the beginning of 1928, when the Fed began to tighten.

    In the immediate aftermath of the crash, the New York Fed took prompt and decisive action to ease credit conditions. When investors attempted to liquidate their equity holdings, many lenders also called their loans to securities brokers. With the encouragement of officials at the New York Fed, many of these brokers’ loans were taken over by New York banks, who were allowed to borrow freely at the discount window for this purpose. The New York Fed also bought government securities on its own account in order to inject reserves into the banking system. In this way, they were able to contain an incipient liquidity crisis and prevent the crash from spreading to money markets.

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    Coping: Automatic Writing II & “The Franchise”

    Last Friday I told you about my fascinating experiment with “automatic writing” and offered a few comments on it.

    As you might recall, the “main character” in that even referred to an entity called “Hundspine” (or “Hudspine”) and I found it curious that the name of the entity speaking was carefully avoided.

    So then comes a note from Chris Tyreman, who you’ll recall is the head of The Chronicle Project up in Canada.  It’s a group of young Jewish scholars who are busily reconstructing the contents of Old Testament.  Turns out, they discovered something called “Self-Defining Hebrew” (or SDH).

    The guts of the idea is that each of the letters in Hebrew translates to a motion, position, or posture of a human. Which is like finding an “error correction system” in a language; a way to keep straight on the original meanings.

    And of course, what they’ve been finding is that much mistranslation is present in the modern Bible, as well as the story of Creation which, in the SDH translation of Bible sounds more like angels & archangels do a “terraforming planet” project for Creator/Source who’s in charge of things.

    And this ties in to my automatic writing experience, how?  Read the note from Chris…

    Hello G

    Everything has a name. In ancient Hebrew (using the SDH restorations) the word forname is which means to locate.

    “To project to raise up (think of sticking your arms out and then putting them over your head)

    The reason There is no name given by the thing speaking with you, is because a name gives location. Location can then be “located” and they will not give their location because they can then be commanded and controlled, hence the B.S. About names.

    The name given (to you in the session) is Hudspine, ruler of the Earth.

    The actual name it says is in another language. Again he won’t give the real name.

    Try ancient Hebrew: Using the sounds closest to the spelling It becomes “Hadashapan”

    Using SDH it can be broken down multiple ways and each way will point to the main concept.

    To most people, this would be nonsense, but not if you know who this applies to.

    In Genesis restored using SDH page 26 on our website

    “Ch 2 v1 And the overseer of the creation was to be opening all which represented the field, those that Creator of the Originators made to establish (the earth).”

    This is the Nakhash, the overseer of Earth’s terra forming that legally stole control of the planet from Creator. The bible has him as a snake talking to Eve. 

    He was the one in control of the production of all life developed and spread out over our planet.

    Now look at the words again:
    The (one) therefore to grow, to look to
    The (one) to put across, to expel, to follow (following his treason, Creator expelled him from his ranks))
    Therefore to flow out, to decide, define (who that is)

    Freaking out yet?”

    The thinking point (off automatic writing for a moment) is the implications of the Nakhash stealing control of this region of space-time from the Creator using law.  Is this telling us that at some grand/divine cosmic level lawyers are forever trying to screw one another out of things – even whole worlds?  Doesn’t say much for Law, does it?  Back to point…

    I haven’t had the urge to do any more on this “contact writing” – besides, there are a number of problems with continuing.

    First, dabbling in any of the “magickal” arts is frowned upon for a couple of reasons.  First is the possibility of doing unintended damage to the “higher self.”  In other words,; while messing about with such stuff may not produce negative effects on the physical body, there may be impacts on the higher body (spirit/soul levels) that may not be apparent until long after the fact.

    (I define “magic” as stage tricks and illusions, differentiated from “magick” which is working with the spiritual quicksilver.)

    A second reason is that those who profit by mistranslation (and going into the “fear sell” (hell, fire, brimstone, etc. if you don’t offer enough in the collection plate) aren’t very tolerant of newcomers who might impact franchise revenue.  It’s also useful to remember than just 400-years ago, we were burning people at the stake who got in the way of “The Franchise.”

    But mostly, I just don’t have time for such sidelights and indulgences.  A email from reader Tom is on point:


    Interesting bit that automatic writing experience.

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    Is Bitcoin Back from the Dead? A Technical Note

    There’s a Lazarus story to be told in the charts this morning, and since other media are reactive (not proactive) here we go again looking into the future ahead of the pack.

    Yes, I am still a skeptic.  But an honest one at that, and we can see in the latest chart I’ve drawn up for you to look at, how the Bitcoin revolution could be back – with a vengeance and new highs – over the balance of summer.

    But it’s not a sure thing, by any stretch, because we don’t yet know whether the decline from all-times highs was impulsive or corrective, in nature.

    What I will mention is that Bitcoins are now closing in on the $600 (dollar) range again, and a break out over the $700 area will likely mean a fresh run of Bitcoins to the $1,700 to $2,100 area.  For those who have been patient, this gets to be pretty nice prospects.

    However, the cautionary note is that it could still collapse before the $700 level and go down to fresh lows…it all depends on how the markets work out.

    Let me run through the chart I’ve cobbled up – based on a chart from which is a fine source for the underlying data.

    First, a discussion about how I draw charts.  It’s my own kluge of a system, but it works well for me.

    You begin with a major decline and draw a line ‘a’ down the successive tops on the way down.

    Next, you copy this line and slide it down to the bottom of the first major spike down.  This is labeled line ‘b’ in my chart.

    The next step is to use a graphs tool to draw a line indicating the distance from line ‘a’ to line ‘b’ and we call this line ‘c’.

    Now, you copy line ‘c’ and place it above line ‘a’ so that you can then copy line ‘a’ and place the copy (line ‘e’) equidistant from the ‘a’ line.

    In other words, you have ‘b’ the same distance down as ‘e’ is on the upper side.

    This defines a price channel.

    No, it is not as mathematically precise as crunching the 2-standard deviation trend channel, but it’s easy as pi and it’s easily shown to the visually oriented learner.

    You will see that I have also labeled an Elliott wave 1 down, a 2 up, and 3 down on the chart.

    The impulsive/corrective question devolves to estimating whether this is a wave 4, which implies a 5 (and new all-time lows) or whether it is a major fresh move.

    A more aggressive way to draw the chart suggests that the breakout is already in play and took place around the $525 area.  But that doesn’t end the daunting problem of the Elliott wave 2 peak which will define the current move as a wave 4 (with 5 down to come) or a new C move to the higher highs.

    There are two “deal points” implied by the charts.

    First is that either the $700 range will be critical or the breakout is well underway already, depending on how you draw charts.

    The reason is simple:  A move above $700 will infer that the price of Bitcoins is “going out of channel” to the upside and that may be time to climb aboard.  Or, the move over $525 or so, was the breakout and it’s now game on.

    There’s time to be thoughtful.  Remember in Elliott wave theory, the new highs (that $1,700 to $2,100 kind of range) is not entirely “in the bag” until the old decline peak (2) has been exceeded.  That would be in the $920 area, approximately. 

    If Bitcoins break above this level, then it becomes a (relatively) lower risk to acquire some and settle in for what could be a 3-6 month ride to new all-time highs.

    No, I’m not a buyer of Bitcoins yet, but I’m watching.

    Also, don’t forget that according to IRS, in an advisory published in March, Bitcoin “profits” are taxable:

    IR-2014-36, March. 25, 2014

    WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today issued a notice providing answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) on virtual currency, such as bitcoin. These FAQs provide basic information on the U.S. federal tax implications of transactions in, or transactions that use, virtual currency.

    In some environments, virtual currency operates like “real” currency — i.e., the coin and paper money of the United States or of any other country that is designated as legal tender, circulates, and is customarily used and accepted as a medium of exchange in the country of issuance — but it does not have legal tender status in any jurisdiction.

    The notice provides that virtual currency is treated as property for U.S. federal tax purposes.  General tax principles that apply to property transactions apply to transactions using virtual currency.  Among other things, this means that:

    • Wages paid to employees using virtual currency are taxable to the employee, must be reported by an employer on a Form W-2, and are subject to federal income tax withholding and payroll taxes.
    • Payments using virtual currency made to independent contractors and other service providers are taxable and self-employment tax rules generally apply.  Normally, payers must issue Form 1099.
    • The character of gain or loss from the sale or exchange of virtual currency depends on whether the virtual currency is a capital asset in the hands of the taxpayer.
    • A payment made using virtual currency is subject to information reporting to the same extent as any other payment made in property.

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    Peoplenomics: A Few Memorial Day Socioeconomic Notes

    Markets being closed for the holiday, our comments today will be brief as we’ll be considering the key metric that any customer of any organization gets to ask – any time and anywhere. Sure, we pour untold billions into defense, and yeah – maybe you can’t put a dollar value on it – but this being Memorial Day, we ask anyway: Are we getting our monies worth? I think I can show you convincingly that military might doesn’t come from the checkbook. It comes from what’s between our ears.

    Fine Line for Preppers: When Does It Become Hoarding?

    I don’t often mention my little sister who retired from Boeing HR a few years ago, but she’s got an absolutely fascinating job in her “semi-retired” state working with people who have serious hoarding issues. This week, we had a discussion of what makes a hoarder, and what does not, and we’ll discuss the economics of it and outlook this morning. While it’s true that “not everyone has to be a Minimalist” hoarding dysfunction comes in all kinds of flavors and with it (and here’s where it gets interesting) comes the question about where prepping fits. So pull up some coffee (and your breakfast MRE) and sitcherbuttdown. Gonna do us some housekeeping between the ears.

    A World Changing Weekend Ahead?

    This morning it’s a little hard to call….we don’t know how it will work out.

    But the election this weekend in Ukraine could set all kinds of balls in motion (or under the chopping block) depending on how orderly, believable, and acceptable to all parties the results of the Sunday polling turn out.

    The rebel government in Kiev (the Western media won’t call it that, but it was a coup, let’s at least be honest, shall we?) attacked the OTHER rebels (those in the eastern part of the country who want nothing to do with Maidan and who are closer to the Russians than they are the European Union.

    Since peacefully settling things is not happening (yet), the answer is gunfire and at least two died in overnight fighting in the Donetsk region this morning.

    But a few dead bodies about may be the least of the world’s problems.

    Prince Charles recently likened Vlad Putin to Hitler, and mentioning the Germans when the Russians lost something like 20-million in World War Two (going from memory, fact check that) is not what you do if you’re trying to build bridges and friendship.

    So it’s not surprising that the Russians are demanding an explanation for what the Kremlin is calling outrageous remarks.

    The West is doing its best to do a replay of Ted Mack’s  The Original Amateur Hour with the Russians so far pivoting on Ukraine and signing a nearly half-trillion dollar gas pipeline deal with China.

    And, as if that’s not enough, the End Timers will be running to Scripture to see how Russia and China holding naval warfare drills this week might fit into where the world is going…beyond to hell in a handbasket.

    Not to give any hints, but Isaiah 11:6  (KJV) goes something like “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.” But it doesn’t mention naval exercises.

    What’s more, many of the End Timers refer to “lion laying down with the lamb” as a major marker of [whatever] but that phrase doesn’t appear in the Bible.  Just so’s you know…just a marketing deal, near as I can figure it, but it stuck.  Like “…things go better with…” or “Quality is job…”  Positioning, marketing, sticky words for soft minds.  “Oh, oh, oh, what a feeling…” and so it goes.

    Back to point ( I know…do we have to? Yes, I need breakfast at some point.)…

    Besides Ukraine, the other biggie the market is trying to overlook is the existing home sales were still lower than year ago numbers and we may see that in the Tuesday report next week from Case Shiller/S&P (etc.) on 20 city home prices.

    Why, I can hardly wait, for these things to work out.  It’s the same kind of “can’t hardly wait to see how this ends” that went through my head as a kid when I was racing on my bike, hit some gravel and was falling, falling, falling toward the ground wonder “Gee, I wonder how this ends?”

    We should get some answers next week, but the markets so far this week seem to be hitting the holiday sauce a little ahead of schedule.

    We usually get a run-up into major holidays, but this is nuts.  Therefore, I’ll go out on a limb and predict new highs in at least the S&P before Memorial Day.

    Any forecast I make is sure to drive a silver stake into the market, so plan on down a hundred by the close.


    Speaking of this Ad

    I don’t usually comment on ads, but just so you know, tomorrow wraps up National Dog Bite Prevention Week.

    And I’m proud to report that I have made it through another year without biting a dog.

    Hagel Said WHAT?

    “21st Century World Order” being built.   On The Pentagon Channel:

    May be a bit slow due to millions of pings on the site…

    Playing Your “Hot Buttons”

    It’s what sells ad space, after all, so let’s see what gives this morning:

    On the other hand, and to re-center a bit:  We note that Boulder, CO has moved a rubber duck race Monday to an inflatable pool.  This is fallout from those record rains last fall up there.  Somehow, won’t be the same….


    Iran:  Defending or Warmongering?

    We have to wonder when “Iran publicly boars of attack plan against the US Navy…”

    And this comes amidst this other “don’t miss” report.

    Russians may be additional (8) nuclear reactors for Iran.

    Interesting discussion of the Saudi role in what’s going on may be found over here.

    Driving: US Crazy

    With the arrival of the summer driving season next week we are seeing a lot of headlines about trends in the auto world, and this year’s crop of pre-summer reports is less than encouraging.

    Detroit, for example has become CarsJack City, says a report over here.

    And if the carjackers don’t get you, gas prices might:  They’re at their longest stretch ever at over $3 a gallon.

    I used to be really pissy about gasoline prices, blaming the oil industry for the holdup.  But then I got to looking at the tax load placed on gasoline.

    California and New York are both in the 50-cent range with state taxes alone.  Hawaii is about 47-cents.  Here in Texas, it’s 20 cents a gallon of state tax.  Look up your state on the Tax Foundation website over here.

    And then you read how the governor of South Dakota is looking at this goldmine of government tax money.  South Dakota is presently ranked 28th in gas taxes (24 cents a gallon) but political types just can’t keep their hand out of your pocket, can they?

    When you toss in the 18.4 cents of federal tax on gasoline (24.4 cents on diesel) you can quickly see how the first 25 to 70-cents a gallon of gas price is really taxes.

    Most people bitch about the price, but 20% of price is tax, darned near (depending on state).

    Where There Is Growth

    Three of the top 10 fastest growing spots in the country are in this here state:  Texas.  Also, Houston is now about 938,000 bigger than Dallas.  But Dallasonians can count Fort Worth, so the battle over who is biggest in Texas will continue.  San Antonio (1.4 mil) is bigger than Dallas, too, but don’t tell J.R. that.

    Jobs:  Helps to be a Foreigner

    You can’t make up things like this from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

    The unemployment rate for the foreign born in the United States was 6.9 percent in 2013, down from 8.1 percent in 2012, the U.S.

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    Coping: “Automatic Writing” in the WoWW

    World of Woo-Woo time, again.  So gather round the coffee cup and follow this morning’s adventure into places people don’t go…

    I mentioned in Thursday’s column that I was planning to conduct a little experiment with “automatic writing” and we talked a bit about what that is (psychography).  One of my undisclosed (until now) motivation was that occasionally when I am writing (which I do a fair amount of) I occasionally “connect with my Muse…” 

    Turns out there is more than one Muse to connect with, because when you Wiki Muse, you find this:

    The Muses, the personification of knowledge and the arts, especially literature, dance and music, are the nine daughters [2] of Zeus and Mnemosyne [3] (who was memory personified). Sometimes they are referred to as water nymphs, associated with the springs of Helicon and with Pieris. According to Pausanias in the later 2nd century AD,[4] there were three original Muses [5] , worshiped on Mount Helicon in Boeotia. In later tradition, four Muses were recognised: Thelxinoë, Aoed?, Arche, and Melet?, said to be daughters of Zeus and Plusia or of Uranus. In Renaissance and Neoclassical art, the dissemination of emblem books such as Cesare Ripa‘s Iconologia (1593 and many further editions) helped standardize the depiction of the Muses in sculpture and painting.

    Which one of the “nine daughters” I connect with (now and then) would be interesting. 

    Still, it gets to the idea that writers (after a long stretch of writing) may be more inclined to “tap” automatic writing.

    When my “Muse”  shows up, words appear in my head that lead writing off in one direction, or another, often in directions that I hadn’t expected to go.  But until Thursday afternoon, I hadn’t really tried to hold a “session” with these words.

    The process is simple enough:  There’s a kind of dark gray LCD “screen” in my mind’s eye and all I need to do in order to tap into new thoughts and ideas is glance at it once in a while.  That’s it.  Mind’s eye, gray screen, black letters in no particular kind of font, and words appear.  Odd?  Sure.  Useful?  Well, I never run out of words to write, if that’s the question.

    But what would happen if I just shut down the rational side of brain for a while and wrote the words that flowed onto this “screen””?”  Would they make any sense?  My conscious words (self-directed) are contained in brackets.  The responses from “the screen” are in italics.  Here’s what happened….

    [ So write something for me…]

    This automatic empirical contact within the topic hangover ordinarily shuts down conversation. Whenever you’ll find truculent happiness, and lust, overhaul your thinking.

    Potatoes carrots and beets gardened in season in order for truffles to grow persist, emulation of humanity flourishes.

    Hundspine overflows archetypically within/between the world, spiraling through the cosmos.

    [Hundspine? Who is Hundspine?]

    Hundspine is overlord of this planet and he is Gettysburg. Resourceful convincing and oppulent his savings are resources shared among peoples of Earth.

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