TODAY FROM AMERICA:
There is some good news. It seems that Bill Geyer may survive. According to Naida he is breathing on his own again and is conscious but will still need some dialysis for a while. Unfortunately he is unable to walk and will need to remain in a skilled nursing facility.
As for me, I feel more and more inadequate in dealing with a growing seven-year-old. I never believed I had much of an aptitude for parenting.
On the other hand the warm weather during the last few days has brought out the spring colors in the neighborhood.
B. 2012 Predictions:
In December I made a bunch of predictions for 2012 that I sent to a few of you. Now with the first quarter of the year almost compete, I thought I would see how those conjectures are doing. In my previous post, I discussed my predictions regarding the American Presidential election and control of Congress. Here are a few more:
1. US Economy:
December prediction: Experiences a mild rebound. Among other reasons because:
a. As money floods into US treasuries on account of the perceived lack of “safe” alternatives, it alleviates pressure to deal immediately with public and private debt allowing for some minor stimulus actions by the administration, such as;
b. encouraging an escalation of inflation both “natural” and government induced, and;
c. there may be a slight temporary improvement in trade balance.
The economic upturn will reverse by years end (but not in time to effect the presidential race) and the nation should sink into another recession, because:
a. the European crises will get worse and the US administration no longer has a political reason to prop it up ,
b. the value of the dollar will rise eliminating any balance of trade benefits and
c. inflation will surpass deficits as the focus of Republican wrath.
March update: None. The mild upturn the nation currently is experiencing has been stronger that expected. No reason to alter downturn prediction has appeared.
December prediction: The area’s financial system will limp along until about early February due to money flooding into the banking sector from the UCB and others that staves off immediate collapse. The collapse nevertheless occurs but in relatively slow motion as the technocrats, who created the problem in the first place and are now in almost absolute charge, begin to realize their error and start to act. There, however, is no reason to believe it will not be too little and too late. American intervention contributes to slowing the collapse. Nevertheless, the European financial system and economy eventually collapses. As evidence of this Gordon T. Long, in a report called Collateral Contagion, lifts a hitherto little known part of the veil:
“There are approximately $55 trillion of banking assets in the EU. This compares to only $13 trillion in the US. Bank assets in the EU are 4 times as large as in the US.
In the US, debt held by the bank is smaller because retail deposits are a primary source of funds. EU banks use wholesale lending and, as a consequence, the debt held by banks is close to 80% versus less than 20% by US banks.
Wholesale bank lending in the EU approximates $30 trillion versus only $3 trillion in the US, a 10 X differential.
Wholesale lending is fundamentally borrowing from money market funds and other very short-term, unsecured instruments. The banks borrow short and lend long. It all works until short-term money gets scarce or expensive.
Both have occurred in the EU and this recently placed Dexia into bankruptcy, forcing it to be taken over by the Belgian and French governments. The unsecured bond market fundamentally closed in the EU in Q3 2011, as fears mounted that an EU solution was not forthcoming.
Assuming $30 trillion of loans is spread over three years, EU banks have a requirement for $800 billion a month of rollover financing for wholesale lending outstanding.”
March update: No change. Prediction remains spot on. The Greek bailout is no bailout at all, only an attempt to slow the financial debacle, while newly imposed stimulus policies (imposed by the very people who delayed them in the first place) are given time to work on the general economy. The effectiveness of the intervention may force me to alter my prediction.
(to be continued)
MOPEY JOE’S MEMORIES:
My most recent discussion of my observations of events during legislative deliberations on the Coastal Act are undergoing final edits.
THE NAKED MOLE RAT CHRONICLES and JOEY’S MYSTERY NOVEL:
PAPA JOES TALES AND FABLEs:
First ever actual photograph of atoms vibrating within a molecule.
Please see the blog: http://papajoestales.wordpress.com/
Pookie’s platform includes a minimum of $600 million over the next 4 years in budgetary savings by immediately ending the following welfare programs:
1. Oil and Gas Tax Subsidies.
There appears to be no conceivable impact on the nation’s oil and gas supply by removing these subsidies. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $80 billion.
2. Deferment of Taxes on Income of US controlled Corporations Abroad.
This subsidy seems to have little public benefit and only encourages offshoring of American jobs. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $200 billion.
3. Accelerated Depreciation on Equipment:
This is most often used by companies to avoid taxation entirely. It should only be allowed (as it was originally) as part of temporary stimulus legislation to encourage companies to purchase equipment during recessions. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $140 billion.
4. Deduction for Domestic Manufacturing:
This deduction is simply a direct subsidy to companies. It is welfare pure and simple and has no place in the tax code. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $75 billion.
5. LIFO (Last in First Out) Accounting:
This is simply a method to hide true profits. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $25 billion
6. Agribusiness Welfare:
Another unnecessary welfare program. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $25 billion.
7. Allow Government to Negotiate Prices for Medicare:
A direct subsidy to providers. Estimated Savings over next 4 years: $75 billion.
8. Annual tax break for drug companies direct to consumer advertising:
Why should we pay for drug company marketing to us? Estimated savings over next 4 years: $20 billion.
“If you have two guys on stage and one guy says ‘I have a solution to the Middle East problem,’ and the other guy falls into the orchestra pit, who do you think is going to be on the evening news?”
Roger Ailes President of Fox News (1988)