Hot DOOM and cold steel

DOOOOM

This falls into the "damn, I wish I'd written that" category: David Wong, humorist and editor at Cracked.com, wrote a really splendid essay about Effort. Here's a taste:

I really think Effort Shock has been one of the major drivers of world events. Think about the whole economic collapse and the bad credit bubble. You can imagine millions of working types saying, "All right, I have NO free time. I work every day, all day. I come home and take care of the kids. We live in a tiny house, with two shitty cars. And we are still deeper in debt every single month." So they borrow and buy on credit because they have this unspoken assumption that, dammit, the universe will surely right itself at some point and the amount of money we should have been making all along (according to our level of effort) will come raining down.

All of it comes back to having those massively skewed expectations of the world. Even the people you think of as pessimists, they got their pessimism by continually seeing the world fail to live up to their expectations, which only happened because their expectations were grossly inaccurate in the first place.


(VIDEO) Historian Ralph Raico on the Industrial Revolution. Long, but well worth your time. It's a powerful antidote to the liberal myth that it was government regulation and oversight that "tamed capitalism". (Don Boudreux's note is trenchant, too: "Note, by the way (from around the 30-minute mark), Ralph’s important emphasis on the fact that war is emphatically not an economic stimulant.")

A confused, obviously-insane bag-lady mumbles a lot of crazy nonsense. I'm not sure why the news media is bothering this poor woman. She really should be in a home where professionals can monitor her and give her the help she so desperately needs.

Mario Loyola writes a good, in-depth piece about the Federal-State crack-up. I have a feeling that many States will gain a new appreciation for federalism in coming years. The burdens of complying with federal mandates (ObamaCare not least among them, as well as Medicare and Medicaid) will hamstring states just as they need to find creative solutions to their own budgetary difficulties -- such as skyrocketing public-employee pension and healthcare costs.

Jim Rogers advises you to go short on US Bonds right now. I'm no fan of holding public debt of any kind right now -- nothing I've seen in the past four years gives me any hope at all that the industrialized nations of the world have any intention of reforming their out-of-control spending habits.

You know what sounds like a great idea? Taking out a second mortgage on the house so I can afford to put in that new home-theater I've been dreaming of! Yeah, I know that things didn't go so well on the home-equity front last time...but this time it'll be different! Right?

Just 6 in 10 Millennials have jobs, and half of those are part-time. I sometimes wonder if the younger generation's love-affair with Bammer is going to fade with time as they realize how ruinous his tenure has been to their lives, or if they will continue to think of him as the Depression-era citizens thought of FDR. FDR was the author of many of the woes that beset people during the Depression, and yet forever afterward many poor people revered him almost as a secular saint. (In fact, he is still a secular saint to Democrats.) Ultimately I think it's just human nature at work, our ability to see what we want to see. None of us wants to see flaws in our beloved.

Maybe it's just me, but when I hear the term "credit supernova", I get a little anxious. This is from PIMCO's Bill Gross, who thinks we've bitten off more inflation than we can swallow.

America's "new normal" (taking on massive amounts of new debt, and printing more worthless currency to back it up) is developing imitators abroad.

Defined-benefit pension funds are not magic -- when investment returns are low, as they are now, you have to contribute more of your own cash to keep them afloat. And when your return assumptions have been outlandish for years and years, the amount of money you have to put into them may cripple you. And this is true whether you are in the public sector or the private sector...except in the case of the private sector, you can't jawbone taxpayers into making your worthless promises good.

Over time, SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) has become the popular long-term unemployment option for more and more people. For many people, it's both easier and more lucrative to feign a crippling mental problem or phantom back-injury than it is to work. After all, there's an endless supply of suckers out there to fund this publicly-funded largesse, right?

Just another reminder, in case you forgot: China will not save us.

All the words are in English, but the way they're strung together makes no sense at all: Duncan "Atrios" Black dreams of a world where people can get lots of money in retirement without having had to go to the bother of earning it. Or something to that effect. Because apparently it's unfair to make people responsible for their own poor choices earlier in life.

Virginia advances bill to establish its own currency. It won't happen any time soon, of course, but if federalism gains strength as the US Dollar weakens, don't be surprised to see alternative currencies popping up. (In fact, there already are some in common use.)

Chicago cops want a 12 percent pay raise. From the article:

Police also want to pay less for their health insurance and get more money for their uniform allowance.
They also want the department to fund their blankies, juice, and graham crackers; and give them more recess time.

This is the healthcare system that Obama wants to bring to the United States.

cat drinking from toilet

Posted by: Monty at 08:15 AM



Comments

1 Awwww, poor kitteh fell in.

Posted by: HeatherRadish™, Crankypants Extraordinaire at February 11, 2013 08:20 AM (hO8IJ)

2 Barack Obama is a stuttering clusterf*ck of a malignant traitor.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:22 AM (8y9MW)

3 so all it takes is money to get the chicago police to work? nice.....

Posted by: phoenixgirl at February 11, 2013 08:24 AM (GVxQo)

4 It's OK. Imma throws some words at these problems Tuesday night.
If things are still jacked up on Wednesday, we blame the GOP, with a side of Bush, and hold Clint Eastwood in reserve.
Cheers, sheep.
--#OccupyResoluteDesk

Posted by: #OccupyResoluteDesk at February 11, 2013 08:26 AM (7QU6R)

5 One of the reasons so many people are going on SSDI is that the psychotropic drugs they're being given have terrible long-term outcomes. Combine economic hardship, a desire to escape and drug-induced psychosis, and SSDI starts to look like a way out.

Posted by: Jeanne of the North at February 11, 2013 08:26 AM (wPhLi)

6 so all it takes is money to get the chicago police to work?

Face it, it's "protection money." The difference between the Chicago Cops and the Mob is that average citizens don't have anything they can do to avoid paying off the Cops.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:27 AM (8y9MW)

7 Posted by: phoenixgirl at February 11, 2013 08:24 AM (GVxQo)



Dial 911 and have your credit card ready! Operators are standing by!

Posted by: Hrothgar at February 11, 2013 08:27 AM (Cnqmv)

8 One of the reasons so many people are going on SSDI is that the
psychotropic drugs they're being given have terrible long-term outcomes
it is a crooked scam and has been from the beginning.


Sorry, hate to say that, but it's more true than false. Certainly there are people who have real problems that prevent them from working. People taking psych drugs (especially if they're taking any of the various "cocktails") are most definitely among them.

But the primary driver of people to SSDI is that it is really, really easy to get some doctor to sign off on you having a "crippling condition" (many practices are set up specifically for that, in fact) and then get a less-than-honest-even-among-lawyers lawyer to help you file your claim.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:30 AM (8y9MW)

9 3 so all it takes is money to get the chicago police to work? nice.....

---

We could have told you years ago that all you need is cash.

Posted by: The Rutles at February 11, 2013 08:31 AM (e0xKF)

10 Dial 911 and have your credit card ready! Operators are standing by!

There's a book called Jennifer Government where there's a scene exactly like that. It's well written, but the entire premise is drek.

If you want to laugh at a leftist's projection writ as distopian fiction, it's a good target for that.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:32 AM (8y9MW)

11 People have been taught in school and by the media that if you work hard and finish school you can get a good job and succeed.


The reality is that you have to learn a trade of some kind in an industry that is doing good after you get out of school. A lot of times that is pure luck. The other thing that is often ignored is the "know somebody" factor. That is often the most telling thing for getting a job.


As for SSDI I have been screaming about that for years. There are no auditors for that program and fraud is rampant. I have seen estimates as high as 50%.

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 08:32 AM (53z96)

12 and then get a less-than-honest-even-among-lawyers lawyer to help you file your claim.

Outrageous!

Posted by: Saul Goodman at February 11, 2013 08:33 AM (NF2Bf)

13 I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 08:33 AM (DcbLC)

14
But the primary driver of people to SSDI is that it is really, really easy to get some doctor to sign off on you having a "crippling condition" (many practices are set up specifically for that, in fact) and then get a less-than-honest-even-among-lawyers lawyer to help you file your claim.

---

Bingo.

The whole thing is pretty much a scam these days, as you need to find someone who knows how to work the system in order to get onto it.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 08:33 AM (e0xKF)

15 I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency.

Word.

Posted by: The Burning Times at February 11, 2013 08:34 AM (NF2Bf)

16 Ralph’s important emphasis on the fact that war is emphatically not an economic stimulant."



A more truthful saying would be that government spending is not an economic stimulus. It just hides the problem in the short term. Gov spending should not even be counted as GDP since it is a circular money transfer.

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 08:34 AM (53z96)

17 >>I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency. <<

After all, he who has the lead eventually gets the gold.

Posted by: steveegg at February 11, 2013 08:35 AM (o44nj)

18 Pope Benedict is resigning at the end of the month. Given the times we may as well brace ourselves for the first affirmative action papacy.

I think Peter Turkson is a good man, and I am pleased for his rise in the Church. But as the election of Obama showed, it s far more important to get the right man than merely a black man for the world's most important jobs, content of character rather than color of skin and so on.

Turkson is young and smart and vibrant, but his election would needlessly split the Church's billions of followers. Nonetheless, the modern Church is weak and keenly aware of politically correct appearances. Expect the wrong decision just like in November.

Posted by: Blacksheep at February 11, 2013 08:35 AM (bS6uW)

19 Defined-benefit pension funds are not magic



Not only are they not magic but they are also disappearing faster than a "conservative Democrat". Almost all major non-union companies have elliminated them in favor of a money account or a 401K or both.

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 08:36 AM (53z96)

20 17 >>I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency.

I wonder if this is why the government is buying up ammo - knowing that in any post-collapse society it will be the most valuable thing.

Posted by: Bevel Lemelisk at February 11, 2013 08:36 AM (tmzN0)

21
The average home equity line in October of 2012 was just below $90,000 compared to October 2006, when lines averaged just over $100,000, according to Equifax.




Hmmm -- a 100k line on a house with a 2006 bubblicious estimated price is proportionally less than a 90K line at today's assumed value.

CNBC -- Math? Wut dat?

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 08:36 AM (kdS6q)

22 I got out of investing in stocks and bonds in 2001, went to brass, lead and steel and things have of late, really been looking up.

Posted by: Gmac - Waiting for the revolution at February 11, 2013 08:37 AM (IanLz)

23 "what I deserve" unrealistic expectations ... illustrated via economic demands, whether the individual or union "effort"

'Grow up' used to be the response to disillusionment. Now it's Rx dependency. String 'em along...blood from turnips.

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:37 AM (MhA4j)

24 Poor Kitteh

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 08:37 AM (53z96)

25 CNBC -- Math? Wut dat?

/...from new math to revisionist numbers.

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:38 AM (MhA4j)

26 The reality is that you have to learn a trade of some kind in an
industry that is doing good after you get out of school. A lot of times
that is pure luck. The other thing that is often ignored is the "know
somebody" factor. That is often the most telling thing for getting a
job.


I disagree with most of this, really.

First off, you have to define "trade." Most people define that as something working with your hands- mechanic, machinist, plumber, electrician, etc. Few people consider banking, or software development, or accounting "a trade."

So you have to clarify that.

Secondly, it is rarely "pure luck" to pick a field which will be hiring when you get out of school. The world will always need those plumbers, electricians, bankers, and accountants. It only becomes a gamble when you start going afield and into more narrow fields. TV broadcaster, for instance (one of my brothers made that mistake in the early 90s).

Finally, it is certainly true that "who you know" helps get a job, but it is not "the most telling thing." The most telling thing is your own effort and determination. You certainly need less of that if you know the right people, but even knowing the right people won't help you if you won't get off your lazy ass and try to get a job. Contrariwise, if you're willing to work your butt off to succeed, very little will be able to stand in your way, even if you start out with few or no contacts.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:38 AM (8y9MW)

27
A more truthful saying would be that government spending is not an economic stimulus. It just hides the problem in the short term. Gov spending should not even be counted as GDP since it is a circular money transfer.

That's so true.

I've never seen so many just plain wrong assumptions being made in the economy in my life. The only constant seems to be FUMU.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 08:39 AM (+z4pE)

28 Actually, 5.56mm/.223 ammo is a pretty good substitute for the US Dollar. It's running at about $0.90 cents a round (when you can find it), but I've seen people paying a dollar a round. It serves pretty well as money these days: easy to exchange for goods or services, well-known and understood exchange rate, relatively hard to counterfeit, relatively scarce, and in very high demand.

Loaf of bread? Four 5.56 rounds. A gallon of gas? Three rounds. A night out at the movies with the wife, complete with popcorn and drinks? A box of 20 rounds.

Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 08:40 AM (G8OwX)

29 Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:38 AM (8y9MW)


I was using "trade" as a generic term, not the blue collar trades that are often used that way.


As for the rest I think you are naive.

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 08:40 AM (53z96)

30 18 Pope Benedict is resigning at the end of the month. Given the times we may as well brace ourselves for the first affirmative action papacy.

---

The media has been cheerleading for a Hispanic pope since PJP II died.

I have no objections to that in theory, given that there is a huge Catholic population within Mexico and South America, but I'm well aware that leftist "social activism" has been a part of the church in that part of the world for decades. Any Central American or South American cleric up for the vote better have a clean record on that crap.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 08:42 AM (e0xKF)

31
First off, you have to define "trade." Most people define that as something working with your hands- mechanic, machinist, plumber, electrician, etc. Few people consider banking, or software development, or accounting "a trade."

Then you have to hope that your betters in the government don't target that trade for elimination. We reached the point long ago where the federal government is too powerful and intrusive in the economy.

When an entire formerly vibrant sector of the economy can be destroyed by one bad law, we're screwed. You can't plan when your future is decided by politicians instead of market forces.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 08:43 AM (+z4pE)

32 You loved them in American Gladiators!

You'll love them even more in:

American Gladiators: Mighty Blades and Hot Forges

Starring: Hot Doom and Cold Steel

Posted by: Lurking Canuck at February 11, 2013 08:43 AM (NF2Bf)

33 >>I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency. <<


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5uiiXw2WqV0

Another great John Wayne line...

Posted by: American Dawg at February 11, 2013 08:43 AM (trA4n)

34 33 >>I still prefer my ammo based alternative currency. <<

---

I believe they refer to it as the "silver or lead" policy south of the border.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 08:44 AM (e0xKF)

35 $23 per 1 BitCoin.

Last month it was $13 per 1 BitCoin.

I see which way the wind is blowing.

Posted by: HoboJerky, now with 74% more DOOM! at February 11, 2013 08:45 AM (FsUAO)

36
Become a tradesman, mechanic or carpenter. Don't let a boss own you. You will be much more marketable after the collapse.

Also, work off the books whenever possible, and stash these earnings in marketable post crash assets.

Posted by: tony redenzo at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (lVrhB)

37 The world will always need those plumbers, electricians, bankers, and accountants.
__
Plumbers, absolutely (Brazil by Gilliam, heh). Electricians, yes, so long as they evolve with the science. Bankers and accountants, bwahaha. Give it up to futurist technological programs and data bases (not referencing self preserving Boards of Directors as "bankers" -- but loan officers will be outmoded eventually, as our credit/etc.data already in the network).

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (MhA4j)

38
Heh, even without looking, I knew who the crazy bag lady was.

I have ESPN.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (+z4pE)

39 If things are structured correctly you can have both a 401(k) and a defined benefit plan, each of which are treated as pre-tax vehicles despite the usual one qualifying account rule.

Posted by: Blacksheep at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (bS6uW)

40 As for the rest I think you are naive.

There aren't many people who would call me that.

Yes, it is true that there are a lot of degree plans in some "up-and-coming" industry. Wise parents will encourage their kids to stay away from those (or take them only as a Minor), and wise kids will listen.

An accounting degree will get you a job, almost 100% of the time. So will many math/science/comp-sci degrees. Medical degrees- not just doctors, but nursing degrees (which can normally be completed in 2 - 3 years, and nurses can make some bank), will also do well. Sad as it is, degrees in Education are the same, most of the time (assuming you're willing to relocate, if necessary). No guessing necessary, no "luck" necessary there.

As for the "who you know" business- certainly it helps (which I said in my comment) but it is not the single most determining factor. I can say that, because I know far more people who got into the industries they're in (from banking, to accounting, to software development, to nursing, to education) based not on who they knew, but on how determined they were to get that job. (Yes, plural of anecdote != data, but enough plural of anecdote at least becomes a trend)

It's hardly naive to suggest that good sense and hard work will take you much further in life (as a rule) than hopping on the next "big thing" and "knowing people."

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (8y9MW)

41
California State Controller John Chiang has axed a multimillion-dollar software agreement with Pennsylvania-based SAP after a small roll-out of its payroll program failed -- and government officials learned of the failures from affected employees.

SAP had taken on an $89.7 million contract to implement MyCalPays/21st Century project software it developed, but small test runs of about 1,300 paychecks included 100 types of errors, everything from child-support payment mistakes to outright pay miscalculations. Employees and staff research flagged the problems.

The state plans to use "all means available" to recoup the $50 million paid to SAP so far and could sue for up to 150 percent of the contract amount, Roper said.

In an emailed statement from SAP's headquarters, spokesman James Dever said, "SAP is extremely disappointed in the SCO's actions. SAP stands behinds our software and actions. Our products are functioning flawlessly in thousands of government agencies around the world. SAP also believes we have fully satisfied all contractual agreements in this project."

Sacbee

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 08:47 AM (kdS6q)

42 18. 30. according to yahoo headline.

Nothing posted at the vatican website.

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:48 AM (MhA4j)

43 OK, BBC link made it to Drudge now.

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:49 AM (MhA4j)

44 When an entire formerly vibrant sector of the economy can be destroyed
by one bad law, we're screwed. You can't plan when your future is
decided by politicians instead of market forces.


That's true, but that's true of everything. That's like saying "You can't plan your future when a SMOD might come hurdling down at any moment." It's true, but pointless.

Give it up to futurist technological programs and data bases (not
referencing self preserving Boards of Directors as "bankers" -- but loan
officers will be outmoded eventually, as our credit/etc.data already in
the network).


Banking (and accounting) are much more than just the data in the computer. In fact, it was people believing only what was in the computer, instead of some human being's good sense, which largely led to the collapse of '08. There are lots of banks (mostly small-ish, state-chartered banks, but some larger national banks, too) which learned that lesson, and have reinvested in actual loan officers.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (8y9MW)

45 Permit me to weigh in here a moment in support of my old friend AllenG who, rumor has it, has a blog:

"Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."

Posted by: Zombie Calvin Coolidge at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (BAS5M)

46 Amazon is rolling out it's own currency as well though supposedly it's only for in app purchases. Uh. Huh. The ubercynical part of me wonders if that's not why Bezos all of a sudden in the last few years starting caving into demands that Amazon be more socially involved or what have you when before his response was sod off swampy. He's paying the indulgence so he can set up his own alternate financial system.


I'll admit to falling prey to stand there whining but but but it isn't faaaiiiirrr I've worked so haaarrrrrddd. The difference is that I know it's bullshit. All that working really hard does is maybe possibly kind of give you the chance to work even harder to have some minor success. That's it.

Okay, this seems an appropriate place to insert this rant. The FSA and its ilk appear to believe that they should get free shit because life is hard and they deserve it. You know what, sweeties? I've been working to get to where I am since I was eight years old. You give me back every party I didn't attend, every drink I didn't drink, every drug I didn't do, every person I didn't screw, every pair of shoes I didn't buy, every night's sleep I didn't have, every moment spent working for people I loathed and who treated me horribly, every trip I didn't go on, every day away from my family and friends, you give me all that back first, then we'll talk. Until then? STFD and STFU.

Posted by: alexthechick - SMOD. Team Stompy. at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (VtjlW)

47 Vic and AllenG,

A lot of the problem in our labor market right now has not to do with the lack of jobs, per se, than of a mismatch between workforce skills and the working population. There are still plenty of jobs in some fields: nursing, IT, engineering, and some of the blue collar trades (pipe-fitting, welding, electrician, etc.). The key to all these jobs, though, is *specialized training*. A general liberal arts college degree won't cut it. The working world is highly technical, and getting more so.

The job skills among the bulk of working-age folks (especially the younger cohort) do not align well with the jobs currently available. Young people aren't studying STEM fields in nearly the numbers they need to in order to fill the jobs -- hence the screaming of firms for imported labor (at lower wages, of course).

The problem (as illustrated in Wong's essay) is that too many people underestimate the amount of time and dedication that it takes to be good at highly-technical work. It takes years and years of school and on-the-job training before you get good, and the money isn't all that great when you're just starting out. And many young people are simply un-trainable once they leave school -- many are innumerate, unable to write or communicate clearly, and have deeply unrealistic notions of both their own capabilities and the expectations of the modern workplace.

If you're a young person who's just spent years of your life in the academy chasing a degree in a "humanities" field, you've probably ruined yourself for gainful employment anywhere outside the academy itself. You're going to leave college with a huge amount of debt and few good job prospects, and chances are that your personality and skillset will resist a change to some other career track.

Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 08:53 AM (G8OwX)

48
42
18. 30. according to yahoo headline.

Nothing posted at the vatican website.

This has been up for nine hours, at Vatican Radio.
http://tinyurl.com/ae6mo2d

Posted by: Crew of the Challenger at February 11, 2013 08:53 AM (fwARV)

49 Plumbers, absolutely (Brazil by Gilliam, heh).
Electricians, yes, so long as they evolve with the science. Bankers and
accountants, bwahaha. Give it up to futurist technological programs and
data bases (not referencing self preserving Boards of Directors as
"bankers" -- but loan officers will be outmoded eventually, as our
credit/etc.data already in the network).


Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 08:46 AM (MhA4j)

I think to some degree medical diagnoses may end up in the computer stream at some point. When we get to the point robots are actually functional, i'm wondering if this will affect the labor market.



Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 08:53 AM (bb5+k)

50 The Great Recession may have officially ended
in June of 2009 (according to the National Bureau of Economic
Research), but many Americans are still extremely pessimistic about the
economy. That’s the conclusion of a national survey conducted by the
John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University.
Nearly 1,100 employed and unemployed Americans participated in the survey from Jan. 9 to Jan. 16

Eight in 10 Americans are skeptical that career and employment opportunities will be better for the next generation.

More than half of Americans say the economy will not fully recover from
the 2007-2009 recession for another six years; 29% believe the economy
will never fully recover.






WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE?!?!?! If it didn't matter during the election, why does it matter now? The important things are obviously abortion, gay marriage and women in binders. This economic stuff is too difficult to figure out any way

Posted by: TheQuietMan at February 11, 2013 08:54 AM (1Jaio)

51 Exactly Monty, .22 is a penny, .38/9mm your dime/nickel, .45/12g is your quarter, 5.56/.223 your half dollar, and 7.62/.308/30-06 your dollar. Our course Obama has inflated the .223 to insane levels.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 08:54 AM (fW/Ev)

52 Okay, this seems an appropriate place to insert this rant. The FSA and
its ilk appear to believe that they should get free shit because life
is hard and they deserve it. You know what, sweeties? I've been
working to get to where I am since I was eight years old. You give me
back every party I didn't attend, every drink I didn't drink, every drug
I didn't do, every person I didn't screw, give me all that back
first, then we'll talk. Until then? STFD and STFU.


I made an apple pie. Please, have a piece.

Posted by: HeatherRadish™, Crankypants Extraordinaire at February 11, 2013 08:55 AM (hO8IJ)

53 It’s doubtful that anybody will shout “You lie!” at President Obama as he delivers his State of the Union speech this week (unless it’s at home in front of the TV). Rep. Joe Wilson (R) of South Carolina had to apologize and he was formally reprimanded by the House of Representatives when he did that during a joint session of Congress the President was addressing in 2009.
But Mr. Obama will face a tough crowd Tuesday night – at least among Republicans, who still control the House and have filibuster power in the Senate – as he lays out his plans for job creation and economic growth at a time when unemployment remains high.









Oh noes. Poor Barry, those evil Republicans won't just worship him like the MFM does. Only the MFM could think that the White Flag Republican Party is going to be a tough crowd

Posted by: TheQuietMan at February 11, 2013 08:57 AM (1Jaio)

54 I have no objections to that in theory, given that there is a huge Catholic population within Mexico and South America, but I'm well aware that leftist "social activism" has been a part of the church in that part of the world for decades. Any Central American or South American cleric up for the vote better have a clean record on that crap.

Unfortunately, social activism comes with the territory these days. Here in Texas I am blessed with both a conservative pastor and a conservative archbishop, but that is a rare thing these days. The Church is packed to the rafters with liberal thinkers more caught up in making a change for the moment than preserving the sacred traditions. No man is smarter than everyone, but we live in a world of media-fueled idolatry where temporal social causes outweigh centuries of collective wisdom.

A South American or Central American Pope who stood up to the region's corruption and brought the region into the last century (if not this one) would be a welcome sight. But social activism only feeds corruption and exploitation, and thus I fear the worst.

Ultimately people must free themselves from the chains of ignorance, you cannot force someone to be free of such constraints. Otherwise, as we have seen time and again, dependence breeds resentment and an unhealthy lack of humility and appreciation for what has been earned rather than given.

Posted by: Blacksheep at February 11, 2013 08:58 AM (bS6uW)

55 Posted by: Crew of the Challenger at February 11, 2013 08:53 AM (fwARV)

/sock.

Moar coffee!

Posted by: Washington Nearsider at February 11, 2013 08:58 AM (fwARV)

56 Banking (and accounting) are much more than just the
data in the computer. In fact, it was people believing only what was in
the computer, instead of some human being's good sense, which largely
led to the collapse of '08. There are lots of banks (mostly small-ish,
state-chartered banks, but some larger national banks, too) which
learned that lesson, and have reinvested in actual loan officers.


Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (8y9MW)

I have read various theories on what caused the financial problems in 2008. This is one I haven't seen. Do you have references for it?


Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 08:58 AM (bb5+k)

57
That's true, but that's true of everything. That's like saying "You can't plan your future when a SMOD might come hurdling down at any moment." It's true, but pointless.

SMOD would be a blessing right about now, at least for me.

But I still find it strange that politicians don't encourage economic growth and the security (such as it is) of existing sectors. You'd think it would be in the best interest of gubmint to have a booming economy because of the greater tax revenue that would come from it. Of course, that would be true in a sane world where everything wasn't backwards.

As it stands today, we have a bunch of idiots in charge. But we all knew that. Their power is what's important to them.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 08:59 AM (+z4pE)

58
I made an apple pie. Please, have a piece


What?! No ice cream!?

Posted by: FSA at February 11, 2013 08:59 AM (+iUsQ)

59 41
California State Controller John Chiang has axed a multimillion-dollar software agreement with Pennsylvania-based SAP after a small roll-out of its payroll program failed -- and government officials learned of the failures from affected employees.

SAP had taken on an $89.7 million contract to implement MyCalPays/21st Century project software it developed, but small test runs of about 1,300 paychecks included 100 types of errors, everything from child-support payment mistakes to outright pay miscalculations. Employees and staff research flagged the problems.

---

Sounds like SAP has the shittiest QA testing known to man.

If they were going to be working on 1300 paychecks as a project, they should have generated them in their test system and compared them to the production data side-by-side to look for differences between what they got paid out of the old system and what they're getting paid under the new software.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:00 AM (e0xKF)

60
"Nothing in the world can take the place of
Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful
men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press
On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."

Posted by: Zombie Calvin Coolidge at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (BAS5M)


Good quote. I've seen it summed up as "Success is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration."





Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:00 AM (bb5+k)

61 Yeah, so glad it's easy to find work nowadays as long as you try.
10 yrs of experience and the learning ability and "get after it" work attitude to start at the bottom and work your way up to GC/MS, teaching BS chemists (and learning from them along the way) how to run the instruments and you can't get past HR people who require an AD in chem and 1 yr experience.

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:00 AM (W50F+)

62

Over/under on Obama Pierpont Finching his was into the soon to be vacant Papacy?

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 09:01 AM (kdS6q)

63

Oh ess -- I just realized. Perfect and timely job opening for the Anti-Christ.

End of Days, folks!

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 09:02 AM (kdS6q)

64 Amazon is rolling out it's own currency as well
though supposedly it's only for in app purchases. Uh. Huh. The
ubercynical part of me wonders if that's not why Bezos all of a sudden
in the last few years starting caving into demands that Amazon be more
socially involved or what have you when before his response was sod off
swampy. He's paying the indulgence so he can set up his own alternate
financial system.





Posted by: alexthechick - SMOD. Team Stompy. at February 11, 2013 08:52 AM (VtjlW)


God, I wish someone would. I really really really want to get off this current fiat based system. It is automatic thievery of value.



Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:03 AM (bb5+k)

65 Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 08:53 AM (G8OwX)

Oh, absolutely. My initial comment on this subject mentioned that wise parents will recommend degrees that wise children will pursue.

I'll actually go further. Wise parents will know that their 18 year old kids are not normally "wise" and, further, still require their support even to go to school (when you're that young, it's actually your parents filling out the FAFSA, most of the time, or, rather, it's normally their financial information that matters). As such, wise parents will tell their children, "You can get any degree you can pay for. Me? I'm paying for a degree in (insert range of fields here)."

My parents didn't do that with either of my brothers. One got an Associates in Radio and TV Broadcasting from a Jr. College here in Texas. Yeah, that didn't work out. He supports himself (well enough, actually, he doesn't have a lot of bills) as a part of the Tech Services department of the Arlington Public Library.

The other started a STEM degree at TAMU. Then he transferred to Abilene Christian University and got a degree in "youth and family ministry." Yeah, that didn't work out either. He went back to school, got some extra math credits, completed an alternative certification program and became a teacher. After he deployed to Iraq, he used his GI Bill to get a masters in Education Administration. That's been working out a lot better.

I never bothered to finish college. I worked my way up through various para-professional jobs (customer service stuff, mostly) and eventually broke into software development- where I've been since.

Right now, Educator brother and I leap-frog each other in salary. I was making more than he was until he got his latest jump. Next time I move companies, I'll probably start making more than him again.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 09:03 AM (8y9MW)

66 End of Days, folks!

---

Ugh, that was a shitty movie...

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:03 AM (e0xKF)

67
Wait, where are people getting equity? Seriously.
My dad just refi'd since rates were low. He said he's down $20k from his last refi a few years ago. (He's a banker so he always has his finger on the pulse of the market and when refinancing saves him money considering the costs to do it.)
I bought in 6 months ago (6 months last week in fact) at the basically bottom of the market in this area. If I'm lucky we've gained a few thousand, but that is more of a guess than anything (and unlikely to be honest).

So Home equity loans are up? Where the fuck is that equity?

Posted by: tsrblke at February 11, 2013 09:04 AM (GaqMa)

68 I thought Obama lost a great number of Millenial votes this time. I don't think they worship him.

Posted by: JustLikeDavidHasselhoff at February 11, 2013 09:04 AM (71iUa)

69 AllenG

I'm not arguing that people bankers should be eliminated from their industry. Of course local governance is the most effective means of operation, immediate oversight/transparency as available for scrutiny.

"You can't plan when your future is
decided by politicians instead of market forces."

But the point we're discussing is what POLITICIANS mandate. And it was the merging of politics with the investment industry which leads to such collapses as '08 that so readily utilized electronic trends to corrupt the market. But don't fool yourself, blaming the electronic mechanisms for the overt decisions made at the highest levels, including Paulson and our Federal Reserve Board of Directors.

Look, for example, to health care, a matter that most significantly should be between a patient/doctor. Politicians, despite the Tea Party outrage, "voted" without due Congressional protocol the so-called ObamaCare into law. It will not so much be health care treatment, but "management" that patients will receive; and I don't expect decent management of my health needs from any god damned politician or government official.

It would not surprise me in the least were technology to develop in medicine so that a computer could take a drop of my blood and analyze what I need, and facilitate the order to a pharmacy. But whether that is how politicians will allow medicine to move, or what politicians will do with the information gained by practitioners or computers, is dangerous to "trust".

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 09:04 AM (MhA4j)

70 Teej, audit a chem course, put your degree in the future and see what happens. The HR clowns are just notch filters, you need to get thru to the actual managers.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 09:05 AM (qjFNd)

71 One thing I left out of my comment that I meant to put in was that its not just the ability to get a job that is the issue. Anyone can get a job even in today's economy if they are willing to take "any" job available.


Its the ability of getting a "good" job that is going to pay well even into the future. The kind of job that allows you to get a house after a few years of saving and allows you to salt away money for retirement instead of struggling from day-to-day to eat and pay the utilities.


Anyway. Gotta go now. bbl

Posted by: Vic at February 11, 2013 09:05 AM (53z96)

72 Loaf of bread? Four 5.56 rounds. A gallon of gas? Three rounds. A night out at the movies with the wife, complete with popcorn and drinks? A box of 20 rounds.
Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 08:40 AM (G8OwX)


Damn, you are cheap. A night out with my wife is about 120 rounds.

Posted by: Oldsailors Poet, Author of Amy Lynn available on KINDLE finally at February 11, 2013 09:05 AM (l86i3)

73
I have read various theories on what caused the financial problems in 2008. This is one I haven't seen. Do you have references for it?

Grab yourself a good, stiff shot of Valu-Rite, then read this and click the link inside the postif you dare: http://tinyurl.com/3opafra

Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 09:05 AM (+z4pE)

74 I sometimes wonder if the younger generation's love-affair with Bammer
is going to fade with time as they realize how ruinous his tenure has
been to their lives, or if they will continue to think of him as the
Depression-era citizens thought of FDR.


A) They are idiots, and B) why would they blame Obama for anything when they can blame the House? The House, after all is run by those Mean Republicans, and they're the ones to blame for everything.

I remain convinced that the Democrats will mount only a token effort to re-take the house in 2014. With one part of the government controlled by Republicans, the Democrats have a ready-made blame machine for all the problems we face.

Posted by: BeckoningChasm at February 11, 2013 09:06 AM (xjpRj)

75 Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:00 AM (e0xKF)


Testing be like hard work!

Posted by: Hrothgar at February 11, 2013 09:07 AM (Cnqmv)

76 This is one I haven't seen. Do you have references for it?

Only my own observations and those of my friends and family who are still into banking.

They sum it up as "bank greed," but it really means much more than that, and goes much deeper. Banks were willing (in some cases forced, but not all) to give loans they shouldn't be giving in the first place. They relied too much on computer data and models, and too little on human intervention.

A lot went into it, don't get me wrong, but they believe (and I agree) that simply having a more human element involved would have stopped, or at least mitigated, much of the damage.

Yeah, so glad it's easy to find work nowadays as long as you try.


Who said anything about easy? I never said "easy."

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 09:07 AM (8y9MW)

77
Giant condor tries ice skating as it escapes handler during national anthem at hockey match then terrorizes the players

DailyMail




"I'm looking for a baby bumble bee....."

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 09:08 AM (kdS6q)

78 I made an apple pie. Please, have a piece.
Posted by: HeatherRadish™, Crankypants Extraordinaire at February 11, 2013 08:55 AM (hO8IJ)



Thank you. *noms*

Posted by: alexthechick - SMOD. Team Stompy. at February 11, 2013 09:09 AM (VtjlW)

79 Morning, all! Nice to see there's a nice hot, heaping helping of DOOM to keep me warm this morning, with the snow falling outside and the promise of freezing rain this afternoon.

*sigh*

Sometimes I wonder why I bother getting up in the morning.

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Assault Hobbit at February 11, 2013 09:09 AM (4df7R)

80 75 Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:00 AM (e0xKF)


Testing be like hard work!

---

It's harder than anyone gives it credit for.

I've found that the first rule of testing is "You never know what a program can do until you let a user start playing with it." I've seen stuff broken in such a way that I'd never have been able to create a test scenario like that on my own.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:10 AM (e0xKF)

81 So Home equity loans are up? Where the fuck is that equity?

Quicken Loans is running ads on the radio saying, "So you owe $300K on a house worth $150K? Call us, we can still help you."

I guess so long as the resulting note is still under the regional conforming amount for Fanny/Freddy insurance (in other words, all non-primary notes the borrower may have are absorbed and subordinated under the regional conforming cap), it's OK that the equity is illusory even after everything that's happened. And why not, the taxpayer is on the hook if the lender can get it approved.

I see serious trouble ahead.

Posted by: Blacksheep at February 11, 2013 09:10 AM (bS6uW)

82 But don't fool yourself, blaming the electronic mechanisms for the overt
decisions made at the highest levels, including Paulson and our Federal
Reserve Board of Directors.


No, you can't do that. The fault was entirely one of human decision. But the human decision involved was to remove from the process, as much as possible, human decision.

People actively decided, "Hey, these actual loan officers are kind of expensive. I think I'll hire anyone who can read, write, and use a calculator, spend much less money on them, and let my computer system make all the decisions." Then faulty assumptions (and often faulty data) were programmed into those computer systems.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 09:11 AM (8y9MW)

83 78 I made an apple pie. Please, have a piece.
Posted by: HeatherRadish™, Crankypants Extraordinaire at February 11, 2013 08:55 AM (hO8IJ)

---

I figured you would be making cherry pie instead. I hear it puts a smile on your face ten miles wide.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:11 AM (e0xKF)

84 I go to Cracked.com every day. Some of their columnists and regular staff are clearly lefties, but you know what? They're STILL one of the most evenhanded sources for trivia and newsiness on the web.

Oh, and anything by Adam Tod Brown is bound to be a regressive gag fest, so I tend to avoid his stuff.

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Assault Hobbit at February 11, 2013 09:12 AM (4df7R)

85
Grab yourself a good, stiff shot of Valu-Rite,
then read this and click the link inside the postif you dare:
http://tinyurl.com/3opafra


Posted by: BackwardsBoy, who did not vote for this shit. at February 11, 2013 09:05 AM (+z4pE)


This is one of the theories I read; That the 2008 financial crises was caused by intentional manipulation of the markets. I'm still keeping an eye on this theory.



Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:12 AM (bb5+k)

86 There are a number of Cracked writers that I avoid regularly because of their worldview. Sad, but there it is.

Posted by: BeckoningChasm at February 11, 2013 09:14 AM (xjpRj)

87 Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 09:07 AM (8y9MW)


Having a person involved in a decision leaves one liable to a series of lawsuits. Programs can only be blamed in the abstract!

Posted by: Hrothgar at February 11, 2013 09:15 AM (Cnqmv)

88 This is one of the theories I read; That the 2008 financial crises was caused by intentional manipulation of the markets. I'm still keeping an eye on this theory.

---

Lots of people have been putting the 2008 crisis at Soros' feet since the day it happened. This just seems to have a few more actors in play.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:15 AM (e0xKF)

89 Giant condor tries ice skating as it escapes handler during national anthem at hockey match then terrorizes the players

*facepalm*

I can only imagine the condor was thinking, "WTF? It's COLD! Get me out of here, dammit! I don't care if I'm born and bred to fly around the mountain peaks of my natural habitat in the Andes - this is frigging California. I want sun!"

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Assault Hobbit at February 11, 2013 09:17 AM (4df7R)

90 Having a person involved in a decision leaves one liable to a series of lawsuits. Programs can only be blamed in the abstract!

Yep. There's that, too. But don't think the cost savings of not having actual loan officers didn't figure into it.

Posted by: AllenG (Dedicated Tenther) Channelling Breitbart at February 11, 2013 09:17 AM (8y9MW)

91
Lots of people have been putting the 2008 crisis
at Soros' feet since the day it happened. This just seems to have a
few more actors in play.

Posted by: Brandon In Baton Rouge at February 11, 2013 09:15 AM (e0xKF)

I don't know if you read "Curmudgeonly and Skeptical" but at the bottom of his website there is a permalink called "Who piloted 9-18 plane" and it postulates that the Saudis were behind it. It argues that no one else could swing 500 billion in assets.

It's an interesting read anyway.



Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:17 AM (bb5+k)

92 Brandon, you should read the initial test reports on DoD systems, after Live Fire Testing and LUT, shit happens that could never have been anticipated and whole rooms of engineers just shit themselves.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 09:18 AM (3f/jH)

93 84 I go to Cracked.com every day. Some of their columnists and regular staff are clearly lefties, but you know what? They're STILL one of the most evenhanded sources for trivia and newsiness on the web.

They have the hipster tendency to over-analyze pop
culture items from yesteryear and try to uncover 'dark' hidden meanings.

It's funny if done well but it's become stupid of late.

Posted by: Bevel Lemelisk at February 11, 2013 09:19 AM (74T7W)

94
Detroit gun shop stops selling Bin Laden skeleton targets

A Muslim rights group has praised a gun shop after it agreed to stop selling targets of a skeleton wearing a turban and a robe, armed with an AK-47.

The owner of the shop Target Sports, in Royal Oak, Michigan, agreed to stop selling the item after a meeting with Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

The Detroit Free Press reported Mr Walid raised his concerns with the shop Target Sports as he was worried the item may cause gun owners to see any Muslim wearing traditional clothes as an enemy, according to the Huffington Post.

DailyMail



I thought Muslims hated Bin Laden because he wasn't acting like a real Muslim.

What's the problem guys?

Posted by: Laurie David's Cervix at February 11, 2013 09:19 AM (kdS6q)

95 Its the ability of getting a "good" job that is going to pay well even into the future. The kind of job that allows you to get a house after a few years of saving and allows you to salt away money for retirement instead of struggling from day-to-day to eat and pay the utilities.

---------------

The world has changed. The days when you could get a good middle-class lifestyle in a blue-collar job with only a high school education are long gone. Long, long gone. A middle-class life of the kind you describe requires one high level income, or two mid level incomes -- which means, usually, technical or professional work. Which requires specialized training.

This goes back to the expectations thing. The Constitution only guarantees the freedom to *pursue* happiness; it doesn't guarantee happiness itself. A "good job" is not a right granted to all citizens upon birth. You have to work for it, and there's an element of luck and timing involved. (Though, as Blaise Pascal pointed out, luck favors the well-prepared.)

Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 09:20 AM (G8OwX)

96 Brandon, you should read the initial test reports on
DoD systems, after Live Fire Testing and LUT, shit happens that could
never have been anticipated and whole rooms of engineers just shit
themselves.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 09:18 AM (3f/jH)

The Best systems are evolved. Thinking you can think of everything before the fact is virtually begging Murphy's law to comes smack you. Boeing's "Dream liner" is an example of this.




Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:20 AM (bb5+k)

97 Saudis are lucky OBL didn't get Bush, I suspect the Warcock would have taken their oil

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 09:21 AM (Io7hX)

98
This goes back to the expectations thing. The
Constitution only guarantees the freedom to *pursue* happiness; it
doesn't guarantee happiness itself. A "good job" is not a right granted
to all citizens upon birth. You have to work for it, and there's an
element of luck and timing involved. (Though, as Blaise Pascal pointed
out, luck favors the well-prepared.)



Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 09:20 AM (G8OwX)


Where Unions have gotten into trouble is by operating on the presumption that a middle class income *IS* a guarantee. They have been slowly pricing themselves out of the market.

There is no negative feedback mechanism for Union wages. (At least not one that works quickly.)




Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:23 AM (bb5+k)

99 Jean, you mentioned that before. I took 101 back when after a divorce to have something to do on off nights from martial arts. Got an A.
Online apps, which is about the only thing companies do any more won't let you put a degree "in the future".
I also have 5 years experience doing geotech strength analysis. And, check with the engineers I did it for, did it well in all phases. Nothing there either. 10 years locksmithing? Ask my old boss if he'd still have a business if not for me doing it all for 2 out of 3 years while he was on interferon.
Sorry, business is really slow right now.
I could go on but...
Someone up there is trying to tell me something. Wish I knew what it is.
Like I said last night, I'm down to selling my house and then... ?

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:24 AM (JxJPF)

100 Where Unions have gotten into trouble is by operating on the presumption that a middle class income *IS* a guarantee. They have been slowly pricing themselves out of the market.

Good an opportunity as any to say *clearing throat*

Disband and dismantle ALL unions!

Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Assault Hobbit at February 11, 2013 09:24 AM (4df7R)

101 Good an opportunity as any to say *clearing throat*



Disband and dismantle ALL unions!





Posted by: MWR, Proud Tea(rrorist) Party Assault Hobbit at February 11, 2013 09:24 AM (4df7R)

They are doing it to themselves. They simply refuse to recognize the economic reality of their situation. If their employer can't make a profit, they will go under.

General Motors is an example of where a company allowed the Union to drive the company's finances. I blame the various CEOs who knew their Union Contracts could not possibly work out in the long term, but chose to give the Unions what they wanted rather than fight with them in the short term.

I blame those CEOs for getting "theirs" and leaving the company to go hang.

GM became (based on finances) primarily a Medical care/Retirement system Company with a sideline in Automobile manufacturing.


Posted by: DiogenesLamp at February 11, 2013 09:29 AM (bb5+k)

102 One more thing about the "middle class" lifestyle -- it's become a nonsense political term, and it means different things to different people. It no longer means a tidy house in the suburbs, and a 9-5 job in a factory cranking out widgets. It never really did mean that, of course, but that was the gestalt.

But that notion is obsolete in an era when 60% of marriages fail in the first ten years and more kids are born out of wedlock than in. "Middle class" has no meaning -- it's a nonsense term. It's a leftover from the industrial age. We'd do well to just forget about it and stop using it as some kind of benchmark for "the good life".

The "good life" is the best life you can manage on the wage you earn. It means finding happiness in fulfillment in your job, your life, your family, your hobbies, your friends, your religion. Happiness in life is to some extent predicated on your wealth, true, but there are plenty of happy poor people and miserable rich people. There is no finishing tape that you can break through and say, "NOW I have succeeded! The middle-class dream is mine!"

We need to think about employment, personal life, happiness, and wealth in 21st century terms.

Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 09:29 AM (G8OwX)

103
Inre US Bonds....

My kids received a bunch of US Savings Bonds when they were born. After watching the spectacle that was the Fiscal Cliff, I cashed them all out and bought gold with the proceeds. Alarmist? Unwise? Well, maybe...but then I'm more comfortable that those Golden Eagles will have more worth in 20 years than the piddling return my kids could expect from those bonds.

Posted by: Homer at February 11, 2013 09:30 AM (eytER)

104 Teej, I'm just saying your résumé should say : experience, experience, specific experience, then education AA Chemistry 2015. It might be enough to get you through the HR filter.

Are you pinned down by personal reasons? If not, renting the house and heading out to NDak might be an option.

Posted by: Jean at February 11, 2013 09:31 AM (sTfkB)

105 I believe Monty's knowledge of the financial system is second to none. However, talk of a collapse that politicians would allow to structurally shake the U.S. is not in the cards.

Economics is worldwide, with everything interlaced to form a system where what affects one affects all. If something is added to a balance sheet somewhere, it must be subtracted from somewhere else.

The rules apply universally, except for the U.S. Because we have the most powerful military and the dollar is the world currency, we can do anything we want. No politician would leave this power on the table in the midst of collapse scenario. We would do whatever needed to be done and tell the rest of the world, "fuck you, accept it".

That's just how it is.

Posted by: jwest at February 11, 2013 09:33 AM (ZDsRL)

106
With all of this financial DOOM I'm curious as to why there are so few links to Zero Hedge anymore.

Posted by: Ed Anger at February 11, 2013 09:34 AM (tOkJB)

107 @102 - And once again, Monty brings the smarts.

You know monty, you could have given us an "Emperor of the Universe" beat down with that amount of typing.

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:35 AM (SYS+p)

108
This is one of the theories I read; That the 2008 financial crises was caused by intentional manipulation of the markets. I'm still keeping an eye on this theory.

Me too.

Posted by: Paul Kanjorski at February 11, 2013 09:37 AM (tOkJB)

109 I have no objections to that in theory, given that there is a huge Catholic population within Mexico and South America, but I'm well aware that leftist "social activism" has been a part of the church in that part of the world for decades. Any Central American or South American cleric up for the vote better have a clean record on that crap.

The Catholics even sell the souls of the aborted babies for social activism. Sickening.

Posted by: madamex at February 11, 2013 09:37 AM (+kvQd)

110 Because we have the most powerful military and the dollar is the world currency, we can do anything we want.

---

So thought the Romans, and we know how that turned out. Or Athens during the time of Pericles. Or the Victorian-era British. Or Charlemagne. Or King Harold of England, just prior to the Norman invasion of 1066. History is littered with great powers that grew weak and then fell.

Nothing lasts forever. And while Adam Smith is right that "there is a great deal of ruin in a nation", our wealth is not endless. Nor is our strength of arms. It takes responsibility, probity, and civic virtue to keep civilization on a paying basis, and all of those things are in increasingly short supply.

And a thing to remember is that when mighty civilizations die, it's almost always by suicide, not by conquest.

Posted by: Monty at February 11, 2013 09:39 AM (G8OwX)

111 The low refi interest rates advertised around these parts are only fixed for 5 years, at which point, expect increases as history repeats itself.

Posted by: panzernashorn at February 11, 2013 09:40 AM (MhA4j)

112 morons expectation of good government means continual angst

Posted by: occam at February 11, 2013 09:43 AM (ELmLD)

113
war is emphatically not an economic stimulant

I refer you to the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition, 34 and 35:

War is good for business.
Peace is good for business.

Posted by: I R A Darth Aggie ® at February 11, 2013 09:43 AM (1hM1d)

114 But that notion is obsolete in an era when 60% of marriages fail in the first ten years and more kids are born out of wedlock than in. "Middle class" has no meaning -- it's a nonsense term. It's a leftover from the industrial age. We'd do well to just forget about it and stop using it as some kind of benchmark for "the good life".

There's still a middle class, it is simply shrinking back to its historical size and being relegated to the same role it has always had - providing the elite with sophisticated services or products.

A shame too - the middle class is the only fair ruling group in history.

'The good life?' Impossible if the middle class no longer has the most power.


Posted by: Bevel Lemelisk at February 11, 2013 09:45 AM (UjSt7)

115 Jean, HR departments don't actually read resumes. I keep getting emails from Mars about positions that require degrees. There is no degree listed on my resume outside of my nidan certificate. Open a school? I'd never be able to keep students with what I'd require for advancement. They hand out two year Miranda certificates like candy these days.
Work the oil fields? I'm 58. They'd figure out that age range from my resume and just assume I'm a "normal" 58.
Ah well, library time to keep trying to find something.
Prayers welcome.

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:45 AM (iW2D2)

116 "...when mighty civilizations die, it's almost always by suicide, not by conquest."

No doubt. The U.S. will pull enough bone-headed moves that, over the course of a hundred or so years,we will slip into the same fate as Italy is now.

However, in the interim,the leaders of this country will use either the financial or military assets we've invested trillions in to maintain their power by not allowing a large scale collapse.

Posted by: jwest at February 11, 2013 09:48 AM (ZDsRL)

117 nice doom....

yeah basically the "dream" is they get to tax my kid and grandkids while not having had any of their own...we call it Social Security and Medicare.

Posted by: sven10077 at February 11, 2013 09:48 AM (LRFds)

118 Damn you auto correct. Miranda = nidan

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:49 AM (JxJPF)

119 Later good people.

Posted by: teej at February 11, 2013 09:50 AM (JxJPF)

120 With all of this financial DOOM I'm curious as to why there are so few links to Zero Hedge anymore.

Between the conspiracy theory, Occutards, and anti-semitism, the Zeros make Morons look downright respectable by comparison.

Posted by: Brother Cavil, Keeper of Ampersands and Breitbart Login Spaces at February 11, 2013 09:50 AM (GBXon)

121 120 Cavil,

it's a neat trick...

Posted by: sven10077 at February 11, 2013 09:51 AM (LRFds)

122 It is a stinging indictment of democracy that Nancy Pelosi is an elected representative much less that she is the minority leader in that body.

That is all.

Posted by: toby928© for TB at February 11, 2013 09:56 AM (evdj2)

123 David Wong is awhiney little bitch and his article is poison for other whiney little bitches. Here's what he and other like him do: grow up, put your little, shiney dreams away, pull up your big boy paints and go to work.My bet is someone who whines about putting so much effort into lifehasn't really put that much effort inat all.

Posted by: Silent Majority at February 11, 2013 10:06 AM (KydDZ)

124 18
Pope Benedict is resigning at the end of the month. Given the times we
may as well brace ourselves for the first affirmative action papacy.



I think Peter Turkson is a good man, and I am pleased for his rise
in the Church. But as the election of Obama showed, it s far more
important to get the right man than merely a black man for the world's
most important jobs, content of character rather than color of skin and
so on.


xxx

Just for giggles, search "St. Malachy Prophecy of the Popes." Or "Nostradamus and Popes." Interesting stuff.

Posted by: Vyx at February 11, 2013 01:11 PM (z63Tr)






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