September 29, 2012
1. NY Times 9/27/12. As US discusses limits on high speed trading, other nations act: Stock markets around the globe are now using the American Stock Market as a model of what they don’t want. Not only are countries like Canada, Germany and Australia curtailing the use of fast trades, some like Canada are also developing rules, by October 15th , to curtail the growth of dark pools , sophisticated trading venues, lacking transparency. Note; fast trades are 65% of all US trades allowing a real redistribution of profits from long term investors to fast traders?
2. NYTimes 9/27/12. While new home sales slipped in August, the price of new home sales increased to $256,000. This news was hailed as good news, but is it really evidence of a healthy economy? While prices are approaching 2007 levels, I would think fewer people are able to afford these homes while still reeling from their debt burdens?
3. FT France is proposing a 75% tax on incomes over $1 million euros, many are claiming foul but the program slated to last 2 years is deemed necessary in these extraordinary times. In France, the sentiment is , those who can do more contribute more then those who can’t. Would this work in America? Somewhat? It might be better to develop a Public Trust Fund with money slated to create jobs and manufacturing here in America. Like France, Patriotism starts at home. Support our home grown talent and create new industries. We can do it!
4. NYTimes 9/28/12 Enrollment drops again in graduate programs!? Americans afraid to take on more debt in a period of severe unemployment have stopped applying for graduate degrees. Among American citizens matriculation fell by 2.3 % while temporary residents increased matriculation by 7.8%. More alarming, temporary residents comprise 16.9% of all graduate students in American Colleges. That figure continues to grow as foreign governments pay for their citizens to obtain an education in US technical programs?….
September 23, 2012
1. How do we link high level jobs to employers & employees? Why is there a disconnect? What does the employer require to start the training process and start large scale production? These are not tough questions. Years ago that was the conundrum of the growing business, cash strapped you had to employ more people to grow. Economics were tight, you borrowed money and survived.What’s different?
2. NYTimes 9/23/12 Ross Douthat. It’s good to be a Congressman or anyone living in Washington DC. This Congress has been labelled, the do nothing Congress, but that’s not true. It took all of their immense self preservation skills to maintain the status quo. I quote Ross Douthat Washington versus America, ” We’re running those trillion dollar deficits because too many powerful interest groups have a stake in making sure the party doesn’t stop. You see a city running on exploitation”.
3. NYTimes 9/23/12 Quoting Thomas Friedman ” I don’t believe the two most powerful forces on the planet, the market and Mother Nature, will sit idle for another decade and let us keep building these huge financial deficits and carbon surpluses without one day delivering some punishing blows that will require Herculean leadership “.
4. LOLParphraising ; Bill Moyer’s Sunday 6PM / The IRS was told to back down from investigating Super PACS by a group of Republican Senators . The IRS started to look into the donations and tried to determine if these funds were legal and gifted. ALL INVESTIGATIONS WERE TOLD TO STOP AND AWAIT DIRECTION AND CLARIFICATION OF THE LAW BY CONGRESS! What’s happening? Too many special interest groups are contributing to Super Pacs. The petroleum industry & Foreign corporations are contributing to Super Pacs, to name a few! Our government has been hijacked, thanks to Citizens United. Nobody is acting in the best interest of our country? Full disclosure of contributions to Super Pacs is mandated , it’s up to the Court’s to follow the trail of money. Why are the justice’s assigned to enforce the original McCain Feingold Full Disclosure Law not seated ? Too many questions remain unanswered as we sit and wonder what happened to our Democracy.
September 21, 2012
1. Now I understand why the Fed is pumping money back into the economy, they want to create more liquidity in the banks so they will want to loan to business. The proposed consequences are relieving the banks of more of their mortgage backed securities, providing them greater solvency. Additionally, the ever buoyed stock market should be able to float to new heights for a few. The key word is the few. Once again we’re into stimulus that will help the few. Nothing has changed, the crony capitalism carousel keeps turning. With no seat at this table, the “people” are left out once again.
2. Why are “the people” left out of the market society? The simple answer is we’ve been taught to give away our knowledge and services. What would happen if we played the game, too ? What would happen, if the people were no longer victims but charged for every service rendered? Perhaps charging for services and experience would create a fee based service at the middle sufficient to create a National Dialog? After all, the middle class is the engine that fuels this economy, if we refused to share our knowledge and services, except for an appropriate fee wouldn’t that create a circulation of wealth with unintended consequences? Worth a try! Learn from some of the younger people, they’re already there!
3. Society like people evolve by the “games” people play. If there is no victim acquiescing , the game changes. We may have been concentrating on the wrong causes and effects. I have been seeking to change the status quo by insisting on changes in the Macro and Micro society. No more. Change will come about by changing the game. Do I still think that securing the monetary system is key to our future, you bet. Do I know that Democrats and Republicans are equally to blame for this market society, I could cite chapter and verse: Merely ask, who created the laws and then who started the law and accounting firms to circumvent the law? The Society has indeed been rigged.
4. LOL. Do it in America, better yet, do it in Brooklyn. NY Times today. , Watermark Designs makes plumbing parts for hotels and sells these parts to China. They’re custom parts, selling at expensive prices using modern 3 D printers for design. We have talent in the States, we need to take advantage of our knowledge and sell it all over the world at ” good” prices. Way to go Brooklyn!
September 15, 2012
1. The horror of the last century is replaying itself around the globe. Remember reading about the fires in the garment district on the lower east side? Didn’t those egregious working conditions bring about the Unionization of the garment workers? I remember being proud to wear Made in the USA. Now I despair that others are suffering the same fate. The Chinese, the Pakistani’s how many deaths have to continue to occur as corporations pursue the cheapest labor price to assemble their products? When is it enough?
2. NYTimes 9/13/12. The country beckons Spaniards as jobs in the city grow scarce. Enterprising people are going back to the towns and villages of their birth. Towns left empty for 60 yrs are becoming the focal point for a new way of life. Services and goods are being traded where money is scarce. It’s a small start, but it’s providing a different way of life for many , without the stresses of the City?
3. NYTimes Fed responds to a grim reality, 20 million Americans cannot find full employment. In an effort to fine tune the economy the Fed will rebalance : focusing on unemployment not inflation. That’s a good gesture, but where is the Public Private Partnership required to actually create jobs? It’ mundane, but how about committing to infrastructure projects and the education of our children? Invest in “kids and teachers” not their facilities? Bring back a stable monetary system? Spend money on people not on a “select group”, repeal Citizens United and Billions could be available for manufacturing in America. So much to do, so little time, if the will exists action should follow?
4. LOL Joe Nocera Two Days in September: The collapse of Lehman Bothers 4 years ago led to the formation of 2 distinct political movements. Based upon anger with the prevailing system, The Tea Party came into being, with it’s hard line anti government position. Through substantial funding by private individuals and corporations, this grass roots movement has grown into a political party capable of placing like minded candidates in Congress.
What happened to the 2 nd group? Occupy Wall Street? It’s now part of our language , we understand there is income inequality, the issue has been raised. Now comes the hard part, ” without political engagement ” by those who want to reverse income inequality, it will continue to widen. ” Occupy Wall Street gave us a memorable slogan, the 99%, but you know what they say, talk is cheap.”
September 13, 2012
1. Bill Moyers 9/9/12: Bernie Sanders ” The Speech”. 2 Democratic Party’s ( The Washington Club vs the rest of the people). Since Mr Sanders, is more closely aligned with the Democratic Party, he is critiquing that Party, but it doesn’t mean the GOP is not equally to blame. With so much money pouring into the coffers of elected officials, we have created an oligarchy. The long term solution is public funding of elections, while short term, repeal Citizens United. Solution 3 , Kick start Town Meetings and get people involved in the elections and issues.
2. Further into the program, they are restating the obvious, The Big Banks Have Become Bigger, they control our GDP and they control the Senate. So , Bernie is advocating a grass roots Political Revolution. How do we use social media to band together to form a 3 rd Party before further ruin of the middle class occurs, This shouldn’t be just rhetoric, do you want a viable alternative to the Clubs?
3. The Financial Times 9/11/12 Barclays leading the way, intend to cut back on their tax unit in an ethics push. Though legal, their methods of helping their clients avoid taxes is no longer politically acceptable. They’re bending to public opinion and will signal further withdrawal from unpopular products to consumers. Takes “guts” to live outside your comfort zone, maybe change is in the wind?
4. LOL /FT 9/12/12. Frank Vogl: Technology can help us win the long war against corruption.”The more then $2Billion that will be spent in total by both political parties in this years political elections has a nasty smell to it.”. who can believe that those who are pouring millions into the campaign are not expecting major benefits in return? Shine the light, continue to use social media for the public’s advantage.
September 9, 2012
1. Debt collectors cashing in on Student Loan round up NYTimes. 5.9 million have fallen behind in student loan repayments: 1 out 6 borrowers in default . The total sum owed $76Billion, exceeds the tuition costs at all universities In the country. Therefore, The government is going to great lengths to collect. One can only wonder why this has greater priority, then restructuring mortgage refinance or Bank fraud collections?
2. NYTimes Gretchen Morgenson: How to find weeds in the mortgage pool? , addresses the mortgage backed security investigations. Simply, there is a company called Triaxx, whose data base can unravel complicated Mortgage Pools, containing 20,000 loans. By doing so expeditiously, they can now pin point all loans which were incorrectly valued and where the level of fraud occurred. This is good news for everyone, since it will result in transparency in a complicated market. So far at the resolution of the ResCap trial $2.17 Billion in fraudulent loans were uncovered out of a pool of $12.8 Billion! Progress….
3. A Congress for the many or the few, NYTimes Fred Bernstein. As our approval rating for Congress has reached an all time low, The Congressional budget has swelled to $4.7 Billion from $2.5 Billion in 2000. In speaking with staffers on the Hill, Mr. Bernstein concludes that a large percentage of the budget goes to helping individual constituents. Service for the few at the expense of the many just doesn’t work. Besides being a costly program, it allows Congress to abrogate it’s responsibility, passing laws! If appropriate legislation was in place, we would not need costly ” private client services”.
4. I’ve cancelled LOL in favor of a story on Resilience. Oklahoma City They grieved and then they came together as a community and rebuilt. By raising their sales tax twice to increase the revenue to their city, they have allocated funds for a performing arts center, a library, schools , a convention center and a river walk. Under the leadership of Mr. Ronald Norick, the city did not remain crippled by terrorists, it set course for improvement in their way of life. As the saying goes, living well is the best revenge.