Numbers for Breakfast and a Side of Sausage

A nice cold, snowy, wintry morning deserves something nice and hot for breakfast.  So along with the usual two-cups worth of reading material today we’ll serve up some hot economic data and a side of sausage.

Our first serving is the Jobs Almighty number which lives more formally in the Employment Situation Report just released by the Labor Department.

The unemployment rate declined from 7.3 percent to 7.0 percent in November, and total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 203,000, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in transportation and warehousing, health care, and manufacturing.

Household Survey Data

Both the number of unemployed persons, at 10.9 million, and the unemployment rate, at 7.0 percent, declined in November. Among the unemployed, the number who reported being on temporary layoff decreased by 377,000. This largely reflects the return to work of federal employees who were furloughed in October due to the partial government shutdown.

As always, we look at the Labor Participation Rate which is 63% this morning, and in a Christmas-sized miracle, it’s up 2-10th’s of one percent.

Dow futures have spikes to 86 up on the Dow.  Crack may be this good, but the jobs number is legal.

“OK, Ure, how’d that come about?”

Heck if I know.  Looks to me like the economy might really be getting some traction.  Free money has to go somewhere.  And how many quantitative whatchamacallits are we at now?

Even the CES Birth/Death Model which estimates jobs into existence decreased the happy talk by 15,000 jobs.

As to whether people who had extended benefits run out this month (many more in coming months) are in some kind of statistical limbo won’t be known for a few months.

Meantime, we have the monthly PhD’s flipping burger’s number which is the underemployed and underutilized people which show up in the U-6 data.  This improved a good bit down to 13.2% from 13.8% last month.

Magic of seasonal employment, methinks.  Pardon me if I hold the Ho-Ho until March.

Or, at least hold it until you read about disappearing incomes in the Bureau of Economic Analysis data which is also out this morning:

Personal income decreased $10.8 billion, or 0.1 percent, and disposable personal income (DPI) decreased $23.6 billion, or 0.2 percent, in October, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $32.7 billion, or 0.3 percent.  In September, personal income increased $64.3 billion, or 0.5 percent, DPI increased $62.1 billion, or 0.5 percent, and PCE increased $23.8 billion, or 0.2 percent, based on revised estimates.

More people working – for less money!  Exactly the kind of thing to expect in a lifestyle collapsing economy, like I’ve been saying.

The punch line part is the Personal Savings Rate reference; always a knee-slapper:

“Personal saving — DPI less personal outlays — was $604.9 billion in October, compared with $660.7 billion in September. The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income — was 4.8 percent in October, compared with 5.2 percent in September.

You may have had your fill of numbers by now, but if your appetite for financial numerology returns, about 3 PM today the Federal *(in name only) Reserve  releases the Consumer Credit report.  It’s called that because the Fed (and bankster spawn) are the creditors and they keep a close eye on how you’re doing so they can come after your car, house, and first-born if you skip a beat.

That’s why around here I insist on calling it the Consumer Yoke of Debt Oppression and Interest-Slavery Report.  Think of me as your pet Grinch.

For reasons that escape me, the Fed has yet to retitle this report in a manner than more clearly spells out what it is.  But I’ll keep yellin (sic) about this misleading labeling until I’m pushing up daisies, I figure.

In the meantime, and in keeping with our headline, keep an eye out for that sausage. Lifestyles can decline even while the cheerleaders are on the field.  This ain’t even half-time.

Costs of Government/ Free Robotics

Speaking of el sausage, we notice this morning that L.A. County social workers have gone on strike over the timing of a 6% salary increase.  Not to irritate here, but  have they looked at what Social Security increases or retired military pension increases have been?  Lucky to even have jobs, I figure, but I don’t live in California anymore, comrades. 

This is part of the thinking that crushed Stockton, which although they may technically emerge from bankruptcy, as the NYT Times points out, even with the banko talks, there’s been no facing down huge pension fund demands.  It’s like touching up the paint while ignoring the 900 pound gorilla in the room has picked up a machine gun.

But if you look closely (and outside LA County) you’ll be struck that:

a.  Salaries are continuing to slide in Japan.

b. Billionaire AOL creator Steve Case claims immigration reform will offset Middle Class job losses.  Except he doesn’t explain where the jobs are going to come from. 

Devil’s in the details, dude.  Med up. Machines and automation are on the march!

c.  Ask Honeywell aerospace workers about how jobjacks work as they may get some trade readjustment assistance.  That’s blood money from a government that knows (and is complicit in how) our trade policies are robbing us blind.  And except for the Tulsa World, who else knows about it?

The fact remains that I may have to start up (yet another) Peoplenomics-funded website this coming year: A site to start promoting taxation of robotics and other human replacement technologies on the simple theory that the reason money is flowing so quickly to the top is that those are the people who own the means of production and they have (cleverly!) concealed the fact that only humans have income taxes levied on them.  Not their machines.

Machines don’t.  And these pissiful  (not a word, but WTF) whiners  of the Uber Klassen have done is convinced the gullible (in the hip pocket) political hacks that not only should machines not be subject to income taxes, but they should be essentially FREE to the ownership class by the time investment tax credits and accelerated depreciation are figured into the mix,

People are too stupid to see this shit and are struck when government runs out of money and lifestyles collapse.  “Oh, how could it be!  Woe is with us…”  Really?

The sheeple can’t see far enough up the pyramid, or see accounting in clear enough detail, to figure out that replacing humans is the WHOLE FREAKING GAME in making money.  If they can’t be replaced, find a dime-an-hour cretin in some third world craphole.  Profit!  “All for me and less for all!” 

Wrap it up in a cause and salute!  Free trade, amen, grovel, grovel… WTF?

Farm automation , business process automation, production line automation, expert systems automation, 3D printing automation, data automation…jeez….am I talking to a brick?

Am I the only guy who has noticed that Google has bought up seven companies that are in Robotics and that probably means something – I mean besides the autonomous cars (and then trucks) which will end that whole class of jobs, too?


ViceGrips!  Whisky!  Meds!   Has anyone founded the Economic Reality party yet?

More after this…


Passings: Nelson Mandela

If you notice that flags are at half mast today, it’s due to the passing of South African leader Nelson Mandela.  Which is interesting and somewhat paradoxical, since Mandela was long branded as a “terrorist” by your own US government.

No surprise if you’ve been following hints for the past week, or two.  From chief coders Grady…

For quite few days I’ve noticed Nostra has been kicking out

words such as the ones below. And when the word President

is uttered, because of publicity, we think of the President of the USA.

But yesterday,  Nelson Mandella died.

President Life complete     President life former and  President protocol dead

President protocol dead

If you search back you’ll find others.

Yeah, like the Thursday data line Thursday:  “president soon dead.”

Nostracodeus:  Flu Near Breakout

Speaking of death, dying, and data:  The flu is making it large in runs from our data reading project which looks for word patterns and uses things like the Fine Number Constant and various forward-referencing words and phrases to size up the future.

The one that is making it up to the top of the list (which means an increased chance this will be splashed large in headlines in the coming week) is the uptick in mentions of H7N9.

Watch for the word “pandemic” in headlines making the rounds and the ugly talk about mandatory vaccinations, possibly, too.

Just for fun, let’s toss in a meningitis outbreak at a couple of colleges, too.

Your Tax Dollars at Work

Navy launches a drone from a submerged submarine.”  Yippee frigging deal.

Meantime, Chinese tax dollars at work as the Peoples Liberation Army Navy (odd labeling, but whatever) is saying that their navy now rivals ours.

We will never be outspent! “Give me liberty or give me deficits!” Or, something like that.

It’s Not Winter


But sure as hell isn’t Global Warming, either. 10’s of thousands here in Texas are without power due to an ice storm.

We’ve got nothing but damn cold rain here at the ranch this morning.  I credit the hot air in my column for keeping the ice of power lines around here.

Seasonal Happy Talk

Jobs picture cloudy, cities going bust, flu in the wings and great leaders dying?  What we need to end the week on is some happy talk.

How about this one:  Christmas tree sales are off to a good start.

If they don’t start the house on fire, you can cut it up and burn it for heat.  At least some things still make sense.

Sort of.

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George Ure
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