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What U.S. Economic Recovery? Five Destructive Myths

by rhody
Tags: destructive, economic, myths, recovery
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rhody
#127
Nov8-11, 05:50 AM
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Quote Quote by WhoWee View Post
I have to wonder how much of the commerce on your list was accounted for in this internet calculation?
WhoWee,

No guarantees but I plan to contact their research department to see if they can provide me with the source of the reported data. Will see if they respond. It can be a hit or miss process, depends on whose inbox the request lands and how swamped they are. Will report if I hear anything.

Rhody...
JonDE
#128
Nov8-11, 10:08 PM
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A little late, but the October jobs report was less then spectacular in some areas, but maybe slightly improved overall. Job growth for the month was 80k (less then 125k needed to keep up with population growth). but previous months were revised up 102k.
Personally I like to add the revised numbers into the current month i.e. 80k +102k = 182. Which is better then the 125k needed. I do this because, I can't go back in time to change how I felt about previous jobs reports (stupid relativity).
The other bright spot I see is that government layoffs is starting to trend downwards. This has been one tough spot for employment as the government sector has laid off around 500k people since the beginning of 2010.
Astronuc
#129
Nov9-11, 06:45 AM
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Poll: 76 percent think economic structure is out of balance
http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...155330346.html

Polls taken in recent weeks have suggested that the basic message of the Occupy Wall Street protesters--that too much of country's economic gains go to the very richest Americans, and too little to ordinary folks--is popular. And a new survey offers further evidence.
, but the solutions vary.
WhoWee
#130
Nov9-11, 08:34 AM
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Quote Quote by Astronuc View Post
Poll: 76 percent think economic structure is out of balance
http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/...155330346.html

, but the solutions vary.
From the link - how many times have we heard the second half of this argument?

"The government should not provide financial aid to corporations and should not provide tax breaks to the rich.""

If the "tax break" allows a person or a company to deduct money (they actually spent) from revenues - it's hardly a break. It's more a fair accounting. Most poor people don't need tax breaks - do they? On the other hand, poor people do receive tax money - that's something of a "break" perhaps?

As for the financial aid to corporations - does that include "jobs Bills", stimulus spending, "green energy investments" by the Government, financial aid to attend private schools, research grants, etc.?
rhody
#131
Nov9-11, 12:28 PM
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Here is a new twist: Borrowing for instant cash against future pension payouts
The advisers' pitch: For a lump-sum amount, investors could purchase pieces of the pensions—offered up by pensioners wanting instant cash in exchange for their future monthly checks—that could yield them 6% or 7% a year. The retiree would sign a contract pledging to hand over part of each month's check for a specific number of years.

The burgeoning business of investing in someone else's pension has never been easier—or more controversial and risky.
Does anyone want to jump in here ? What if the person repaying the debt has his pension go south through no fault of his own, where does that put the institution holding the note ? And the person getting the one time payment is not much better off either, giving up more than half his pension for the one time payout. Looks like legal Loan Sharking to me.
For some pension recipients, the deals seem like the way out of a financial crisis. Joseph Serina, a metal-fabrication worker who spent 21 years in the Navy, received $57,450 three years ago from a group of investors in return for promising them $125,280 in pension payments over eight years.

The difference of $67,830 is paid to investors as interest payments and as fees to the financial arrangers.
Rhody...
WhoWee
#132
Nov9-11, 01:25 PM
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Quote Quote by rhody View Post
Here is a new twist: Borrowing for instant cash against future pension payouts

Does anyone want to jump in here ? What if the person repaying the debt has his pension go south through no fault of his own, where does that put the institution holding the note ? And the person getting the one time payment is not much better off either, giving up more than half his pension for the one time payout. Looks like legal Loan Sharking to me.


Rhody...
Putting my insurance hat on - I have to wonder if they required a physical exam and access to his medical records?
rhody
#133
Nov9-11, 02:02 PM
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Quote Quote by WhoWee View Post
Putting my insurance hat on - I have to wonder if they required a physical exam and access to his medical records?
Yep, that is one angle I failed to forsee. Your post reminds me of a story of a friend of mine who bought a house that had been abandoned by its previous owner who was a doctor who had incurable cancer. He went to a bank, took out the biggest home loan he could manage, and then disappeared and was never seen from again. Leaving the bank holding the bag.

Rhody...
rhody
#134
Nov21-11, 05:40 AM
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Nine Jobs of the (Near) Future
  • Precision Toolmaker
  • Genetic Counselor
  • Elder Care Worker
  • Patent Lawyer
  • Cyber Security Specialist
  • Vertical Farmer (roof-top farms cropping up in urban areas)
  • Statistician
  • Underwater Welder
  • Sustainability Professional
My guess is that the three items listed highlighted in blue above do not have matching college curriculum to prepare students for these jobs. I am sure there will be many more jobs created by changing demand in our rapidly changing times. This is an example of how fast paced our needs will be in the fuiture. The challenge as I see it is to develop strategies into our education system to deal with it. As always, the leaders in these emerging job categories will be bright forward thinking entrapaneurs (people like Bill Gates, the late Steve Jobs) who will lead the way without needing formal training to do so.

Rhody...
WhoWee
#135
Nov21-11, 08:44 AM
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Quote Quote by rhody View Post
Nine Jobs of the (Near) Future
  • Precision Toolmaker
  • Genetic Counselor
  • Elder Care Worker
  • Patent Lawyer
  • Cyber Security Specialist
  • Vertical Farmer (roof-top farms cropping up in urban areas)
  • Statistician
  • Underwater Welder
  • Sustainability Professional
My guess is that the three items listed highlighted in blue above do not have matching college curriculum to prepare students for these jobs. I am sure there will be many more jobs created by changing demand in our rapidly changing times. This is an example of how fast paced our needs will be in the fuiture. The challenge as I see it is to develop strategies into our education system to deal with it. As always, the leaders in these emerging job categories will be bright forward thinking entrapaneurs (people like Bill Gates, the late Steve Jobs) who will lead the way without needing formal training to do so.

Rhody...
I have a friend that's doing very well developing green rooftops. He has a method of sealing the roof and covering with multiple layers to create a working eco-system. His specialty is tall buildings (not certain of the limits of the pumping equipment).

It only makes sense this activity would create a need for "Vertical Farmers".
rhody
#136
Nov30-11, 11:16 AM
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Sigh... as if we needed to be reminded why Congress's approval rating is 9%.

The 5 Biggest Failures of the 112th Congress
  • The Supercommittee
  • The FAA Shutdown
  • The Near-Shutdown
  • The Debt-Limit Stalemate
  • Nominations
If the 113th Congress was a Shakespeare character, it would be Hamlet. Perhaps, on one of their April night-trips to the White House, where they negotiated around a probable government shutdown, John Boehner and Harry Reid saw the ghosts of Reagan and FDR, and were spooked.
Rhody...
rhody
#137
Dec2-11, 09:13 AM
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WSJ Article: European debt crisis in eight graphs
The place to start with the European debt crisis is, well, with European debt. Put simply, the crisis in the euro zone is that the market doesn’t trust that Greece, Italy, Spain, Ireland and Portugal can pay back their debts, and so they don’t want to lend them more money except at exorbitant rates.
With the US economy inextricably linked to Europe, negative effects on us as a result of their debt crisis can only slow our economic recovery.

Rhody...
lisab
#138
Dec2-11, 01:06 PM
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Quote Quote by rhody View Post
WSJ Article: European debt crisis in eight graphs

With the US economy inextricably linked to Europe, negative effects on us as a result of their debt crisis can only slow our economic recovery.

Rhody...
Great link, Rhody. The explanation of why Germany has done so well is really good, I think:
Typically, as a developed country becomes more productive and its exports become more popular, its currency appreciates, which makes its exports more expensive, and less popular. Conversely, when weaker countries see their economies fall apart, their currency depreciates, and that makes their exports cheaper and helps them recover.

But Germany’s currency hasn’t appreciated very much, because it’s tied to the euro, which is dragged down by the weak economies in southern Europe. And the southern European countries haven’t seen their currency depreciate very much, because they’re tied to the euro, which is propped up by stronger economies like Germany. The net result has been a big, artificial boost for Germany’s export sector, and a big obstacle to recover for much of the rest of Europe.
Also the graphs showing the exposure of French banks to Italian and Greek bonds are surprising.
rhody
#139
Dec2-11, 05:12 PM
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That must be the reason I have engineering blood running through my veins, Lisa, when the economies of the major European countries can be described in a few crisp precisely worded sentences or paragraphs, exposing the big picture along with graphs of supporting data to back their claims, I am impressed. IMHO, the WSJ researchers (Ezra Klein and Sarah Kliff) did a good job with this story.

Rhody...
mheslep
#140
Dec3-11, 05:44 PM
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Quote Quote by rhody View Post
... IMHO, the WSJ researchers (Ezra Klein and Sarah Kliff) did a good job with this story.

Rhody...
That's the Washington Post, not the Wall Street Journal.
rhody
#141
Dec4-11, 08:36 AM
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Quote Quote by mheslep View Post
That's the Washington Post, not the Wall Street Journal.
Yes, you are correct, I hope Ezra Klein and Sarah Kliff of the Washington Post can forgive me. Rhody face palms... knocks head against wall.

Rhody...
MarcoD
#142
Dec4-11, 10:58 AM
P: 98
Quote Quote by rhody View Post
WSJ Article: European debt crisis in eight graphs

With the US economy inextricably linked to Europe, negative effects on us as a result of their debt crisis can only slow our economic recovery.

Rhody...
Personally, I agree with the analysis but not the conclusions. We have a fiscal union with fiscal ramifications for those who spend too much, that's exactly what the markets are doing now. There isn't even much need to change that, the markets were just late in understanding how the Eurozone system works. Second, we have stimulus funds for weaker economies.

Exposure and stuff is nice, but that's like studying the exposure of New York/Wall Street with respect to Michigan. It doesn't say a lot. (Okay, the exposures are real, the system might collapse that way, but that's about it.)

The only, but real, risk is that the whole system explodes; i.e., the Euro becomes worthless because no government bonds are trusted anymore. That's about it.
SixNein
#143
Dec5-11, 03:51 AM
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Quote Quote by rhody View Post
WSJ Article: European debt crisis in eight graphs

With the US economy inextricably linked to Europe, negative effects on us as a result of their debt crisis can only slow our economic recovery.

Rhody...
I would wager it has already contributed greatly to our weak recovery.
MarcoD
#144
Dec5-11, 04:31 AM
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Quote Quote by SixNein View Post
I would wager it has already contributed greatly to our weak recovery.
And I would say that if anybody is to blame it is Wall Street and the (resulting) cheap borrowing costs in Europe. Seriously, the collapse of the housing bubble in the US left a debt hole partly owned by Europe, and that debt hole exploded because people got scared and withdrew funding. Let's guesstimate that on about 1-2 trillion. The whole problem in Europe now is the result of some debt-ridden governments -that's their own fault- and banks -same idiots here- trying to fix a debt hole without sufficient funds. The money is gone, and some people in Wall Street now must be exorbitantly rich.

No offense meant. It's not a blame game, it's just a US investment which went wrong.

(The Greeks rigged the books, so that's a different story, but I do feel a bit sorry for Italy. If money would have remained cheap, they could have gotten through with structural reforms (granted, not under Berlusconi). But the increase in costs of money, and a probable capital flight from that nation, means that they're stuck in a hole, maybe for decades.
And I wonder what percentage of pension funds evaporated in my own country because of the debt hole.)


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