A buddy of mind (local ham radio op) forwarded an email that you might see making the rounds. It features an assortment of pictures of people in various settings absolutely glued to their phones.
At the end is a picture of Albert Einstein with the quote “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots…”
While it’s appealing, and we do seem to have a world of idiots, we note that it’s not really an Einstein quote. It is actually dismissed in a thorough discussion over here at Snope.com. But it does get to our first point along the path of Urban Survival: Check your sources. And ask if they are reporting or opining.
The matter first rattled in my head around 3:30 AM today when I was moderating the discussion and Comment section of this site.
A reader has put out (like trolling bait) a request for comment about something a CNN opinion promoter had written. I declined except to note that the so-called “news” item was more an individual’s opinion of events (not new information that was sourced) and EVERYONE has an opinion. Like everyone has one of those things you sit on.
The shotgun wedding between concepts?
Well, the Einstein quote wasn’t real – and most ALL the “opinion writers” take a few very scant and mostly unproven “facts” (assertions really) and weave them into a whole cloth which they then sell to huge audiences in return for ad dollars.
So we have a bottom line to begin with today: Check the Bona Fides and Credentials (B’s & C’s) of anything you read on the ‘net.
A huge amount of the net’s “fake news” is really “Opinion in drag.” Despite this, it goes into the blender of general public opinion just as though it were real.
Hell of a phenomena.
Over on our 24/7 headline serving site (www.computationalfuture.com) we are very suspect (and usually don’t open) any RSS feed link that begins with a person’s name (first, or last and a colon after it). Unless it’s as news maker, not an opiner or whiner.
It’s a pretty simple filter, but useful. You’re welcome to use it.
Baking the Fed, Printing Dough
Time for our Friday look at the real driver of the markets, economy, Modern Monetary Theory, and most everything else: The Federal Reserve’s two weekly confessionals about how much money is being “made up.”
In other words, in April, May, and June, the rate of increase of M1 (cash and demand deposits, essentially) was being puffed up at a 6.7% (annualized) rate. But in the most recent window (confession period ending July 17) we’re going up 9.5% (annualized).
Can you say pedal to the metal?
An idiot like me will see this much dough coming in to the economy and automatically assume (rightly or otherwise) that there will be gobs and oodles of “leakage” into the markets.
Fortunately, I expect a short, sharp (and hopefully profitable) pullback today and with any luck sufficient follow-through so we can bounce off the bottom of our current trend channel and I can fatten up the ol’ trading account more.
No telling what will actually happen, but the market is bound to Feel the Pain of the health insurance outfits who didn’t get their BUYOFF/BAILOUT since John McCain’s decision to vote against repeal of Obamacare…
Look for the market to shed some tears – and points – as it’s always so sad from the corporate standpoint when lobbying money doesn’t BUY as much as expected.
On to GDP Results
Just our from the Bureau of Economic Analysis: New GDP figures to ponder:
“Real gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the second quarter of 2017 (table 1), according to the “advance” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the first quarter, real GDP increased 1.2 percent (revised).
The Bureau emphasized that the second-quarter advance estimate released today is based on source data that are incomplete or subject to further revision by the source agency (see “Source Data for the Advance Estimate” on page 3). The “second” estimate for the second quarter, based on more complete data, will be released on August 30, 2017.
The increase in real GDP in the second quarter reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), nonresidential fixed investment, exports, and federal government spending that were partly offset by negative contributions from private residential fixed investment, private inventory investment, and state and local government spending. Imports, which are a
subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased (table 2).”
This is especially useful to study because it gives us an idea what the annual money creation run rates ought to be. In order for your money to hold its purchasing power, you would like to see the growth rate of money just about equal to the growth in GDP.
But, since THAT ain’t hap’nin, bubba, we know that the Feds long term watering down of the money’s purchasing power – which is on the order of 3.5% annually since the Banker’s Coup of 1913 – is alive and well.
We will skip the longer discussion of how currencies are debased then repackaged and resold periodically, since you haven’t seen any Silver Certificates in circulation here later.
On Personal Income and Savings?
“Current-dollar personal income increased $118.9 billion in the second quarter, compared with an increase of $217.6 billion in the first quarter (revised). The deceleration in personal income primarily reflected decelerations in wages and salaries, in government social benefits, in nonfarm proprietors’ income, and in rental income, and downturns in personal interest income and in farm proprietors’ income. These movements were offset by an upturn in personal dividend income.
Disposable personal income increased $122.1 billion, or 3.5 percent, in the second quarter, compared with an increase of $176.3 billion, or 5.1 percent, in the first Quarter (revised). Real disposable personal income increased 3.2 percent, compared with an increase of 2.8 percent.
Personal saving was $546.8 billion in the second quarter, compared with $553.0 billion in the first quarter (revised). The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income — was 3.8 percent in the second quarter, compared with 3.9 percent in the first.
When you’re looking in the rearview at all this, don’t forget to look ahead via Federal Reserve Working Papers (and at the regional Fed branches) because it’s pretty obvious – or should be – that the next blatant currency replacement scheme will be “Government Required Cashless” – which will better facilitate totally made-up “Money.”
But you knew that, we presume?
The Worm Turns
RealClearPolitics story worth reading deals with a former Lt. Col. Anthony “Shaffer: Evidence That Wasserman Schultz Used Pakistani Imran Awan For Malevolent Activities Against Bernie Sanders.”
Honestly, I’m a bit sketchy on how the so-called Just-Us Department hasn’t gotten on the stick and looked into possible to likely criminal activity as the D.N.C. screwed Bernie Sanders out of a fair chance at the Democrat Nomination.
Moreover, why is she still a congressoid? You might think given what happened to old Bernie, the GOP would censure you-know-who (or kick her out). But these are RINO’s.
Then there’s the piece in The Hill “Intelligence chairman accuses Obama aides of hundreds of unmasking requests.”
And one other runaway personality to watch in Washington: “Maxine Waters interrupts Treasury Secretary’s single answer — 12 times!” This as Waters, et al, are trying to get the Treasury Department to talk about Russia-Trump financial ties… All of which to us looks like the keep-alive effort for the Trump-Russia story while Mueller’s folks continue their summer fishing trip. Sheesh.
Dow looks to open down 38, or so. After going to cash earlier this week, we will eye a short-term downside position next. We’ll show Peoplenomics readers why in tomorrow’s report.
Time to saddle up the riding mower…again. Is it fall, yet?