Ure’s truly did not win the PowerBall last night, and if you have time to read this, neither did you by the looks of it, although a number of lucky people did. Turns out the winners included one in Minnesota and two in New Joisey. (sic) The good news, such as it is, may be that there’s another column to read although I was anticipating being able to post my farewell, audios, sayonara letter. Maybe (hopefully) next time.
This leaves me stuck in my “get rich slow” rut, which isn’t bad, but I’m an impatient cuss. Markets are due for a modest rally at the open today since even a bleary-eyed amateur chartist should be able to count five waves down, so we should get a wave two in hear sometime, perhaps seven points up to the S&P 1,700 level, but we shall see.
One of the charts we serve up for Peoplenomics.com readers is a Global Index I devised a number of years ago. And looking at it, reader Yohan wonders if I have considered an unhappy ending of global finance that would look like this (with his counts added)
It migtht work out that way, after all Japan was down another 1.59% overnight, but Europe is up a tad this morning, we the real key will be whether we get a quick bounce to S&P 1,700 for a day or less and then head down globally next week.
The bad news is that if we have just been through a Wave 1 down, and we scramble up a bit for a Wave 2, then Wave 3 down could be interesting since economic fundamentals are less than encouraging. Particularly the Federal Reserve’s Consumer Debt report out late yesterday which showed, importantly I think, that Americans are back to sitting on their credit cards.
In the report, credit cards and the like are called “revolving” credit (like a revolver being pointed at you, I suppose) while “non-revolving credit” includes mobile homes and education loans. The part that matters is shown to the right.
Yes, overall consumer debt was still going up at the 5.9% rate, but revolving debt (which I think of as largely consumer discretionary, except by people who have to bend plastic to eat) was down nearly 4%. Again we see non-revolving debt (like student loans) up 10% but a lot of what’s driving that is likely to be people driven (from desperation) to buy education thinking there might be a job out there if they could just complete that online brain surgery degree. Either that, or the number of people who said “Screw it!” and just bought a pair of jet skis and headed to the lake is up.
Hard times make desperate people, and desperate people recognize that low interest rates won’t last forever and when they go up, no telling how bad things will get for the US dollar.
Oh, and on an inflation-adjusted basis since 2000, the Dow would have needed to hit 15,897 by January 1st of this year. Since we can kick in another 3% for the year-to-date’s wild-eyed printing, that would point to an inflation-adjusted double top of the ultra long-term Dow around 16,373 but this isn’t an exact science because I haven’t been able to find any credible papers on the effects of quantitative easing on the effective long-term inflation rate.
Still, if it’s any help (and from an inflation standpoint it is) the reason we don’t see more inflation like we should from all the printing by the Fed is that the money is going into dark pools on the sidelines and consequently, M2 Velocity continues to crater. With it, job creation and some other inconveniences (government running out of dough and such) wander along. But, we can’t have a delicious concentration of wealth omelet without breaking a few workers now, can we?
Which is not to call workers “eggs” – more like chickens or sheep would fit – so come this fall it’ll be “over easy” as the corps skate on ‘Bamacare and we the people will go nicely with cheese and toast again as we get “crack up” and the yoke is us.
Say, This is Exciting
Well, not really, but it is an employment indicator that some people (with no lives otherwise to speak of) follow closely:
In the week ending August 3, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 333,000, an increase of 5,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 328,000. The 4-week moving average was 335,500, a decrease of 6,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 341,750.
The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.3 percent for the week ending July 27, unchanged from the prior week’s unrevised rate. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending July 27 was 3,018,000, an increase of 67,000 from the preceding week’s unrevised level of 2,951,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,023,750, a decrease of 2,250 from the preceding week’s unrevised average of 3,026,000.
If you have a job, this may not matter much…
New Concept: MultiWar
In most of the MSM (mainstreammedia) there’s a propensity to cast wars into a simple binary model for ease of reporting purposes. But, in fact, due to heavy communications, massive social and religious complexity, we are beginning to appreciate that there is a new form of warfare emerging which we call the “multiwar.”
From a design standpoint, it means a war with multiple sides and instead of a traditional mano y mano (man and man) binary, we see developing in Syria the idea that there may be three (or more) sides.
Obviously, the MSM reports on the Assad (existing) government, which is backed by the Russians. And, in good binary simplifications, the “rebels” are oft shown as “freedom fighters.”
But now we see some US intelligence types as drifting toward our multiwar construct with as Deputy CIA Director Michael Morell considers that al Qaeda taking over the Assad government is becoming a real possibility.
This trilateral war might even become quadular (other Ureism) in nature, depending on interests of nearby Gulf states.
From an analytical standpoint, we hark back to early Star Trek days and 3-D chess. Yet even here, the propensity to confine the game to simply two players was persistent. In hypercomplexification, the global geopolitical game is multiplayer and multilevel. So perhaps as a thought model, the Langley crowd should drag out the 3-D chess set, make up some basic rules, and have three players now, instead of the binary baseline?
From the War Gamer’s Desk:
EBM Holds True, Again!
Love to see my high-powered theories work out in real-life:
Good Morning George,
Here’s a supporting piece of evidence for Ure axiom that “everything is a business model.”
Eisenhower’s farewell address warning comes to mind:
“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist.”
~ President Dwight D. Eisenhower, January 17, 1961
An uncorroborated rumor has it that the speech originally used the term “war-based” industrial complex. I personally think that phrase would have been far more appropriate.
A book penned in 1956 titled The Power Elite by C. Wright Mills claimed a new class of leaders from industry, the military and politics were beyond the mechanisms of civilian control afforded by our representative form of democracy. Thus the triple-headed power elite were the ones who were actually pulling the strings of the U.S. government and, by default, the American public.
Of course Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan have done little to disprove this notion. And when major defense contractors hire retired 4-star generals, it does make one stop and wonder.
Speaking of Cops and Lawyers
There’s a report out of CBS-2 NY that the NYPF will stop keeping records of those stopped and frisked in computer system. As the station reports, pretty much the whole population of NY had been marked as criminal suspects.
While NY civil libertarians are cheering this one, Ure’s truly remains skeptical. Why? I don’t want to spill all the beans here, but imagine that certain areas within police departments have “cloaked” logins, just for instance. (Internal affairs and such.) And then let’s suppose that databases are not single level affairs and access can be easily coded such that street-level people will see such information go away, but those with more elevated credentials won’t, and oh, they’d not be inclined to mention it…. just a thought prior to our meds kicking in, of course.
Without a table & index-level compliance audit by a disinterested third party…just saying….The American public will believe anything, don’tcha know, including the notion of “flat databases” and that world ain’t flat anymore, kiddies. Off-site tables and PWD control and…..all hypothetically, of course!
We won’t offer an opinion on the conduct of a certain judge in Ohio, but I will go so far as to say I have never heard of a judge balling out a jury acquitting a defendant before. Four jurors had the sense to call foul so now the judge is under review…
NSA Probing Deeper
Oh, and as long as we’re speculating about computer abuse, how about this morning’s NY Times report about how the NSA really is reading emails to people outside the USA? And since the only qualifier seems to be “foreign persons” I expect my communications with www.nostracodeus.com developers in Canada and the odd email to my sister in that terrorist hotspot (Edmonton, Alberta) will keep lots of our tax dollars at work. I mean think about it: Can we trust a retired librarian with an MLS or a retired bank programmer ort a Microsoft MPV developer?
Illegal Searches by DEA?
As revelations about the IRS detailing DEA’s use of hidden intelligence information, and we wonder just how far the use of illegal surveillance has really gone (we still don’t know yet) I’m regretting by the day getting a lousy MBA when the real money is in lawyering.
Seems to me the bad convictions cases, appeals, retrials and such – which seems destined to come from this – will make more than a few lawyers busy. And since there’s no such thing as a “civil attorney” this is likely a goldmine in the offing. How many drug cases were “made” this way? We expect it will go back at least pre-2005….Do I still have time to do law school?
Excessive Force Dept..
I don’t know about you, but a fair number of people I know who are really, really old (which these days is anyone older than me) who say “If I need really major surgery, or if I’m going to be kept alive by machines, or my quality of life is gone, then just let me go…”
So with this in mind, we read with some interest about a 95-year old man, reports WND, who was tasered and shot with a 12-gauge beanbag round from a shotgun. His “crime?” Seems he didn’t want to undergo high-risk surgery! Oh, he’s dead from internal injuries, by the way.
Seems the tallest slum in the world is 45-stories and is in Caracas, Venezuela. Spied by Charles, who stays up nights late and finds weird stuff like this, which we really appreciate.
How long before the f.u.’ed worlds sees its first on-line squatter vacation sharing website?