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April 13, 2013



--Yet there are signs that the politicians have failed to learn that lesson.--

I live in hope of someday reading an article on the economy, foreign policy, health care, etc. etc. etc. where that sentence would not fit right in.

James D.

OT, but also not OT at all. What did squaredance say yesterday? We are ruled by cowards and traitors?

You can add "brazen MFing thieves" to that you the IRS can read OUR private email with impunity, but:

" The Senate has severely scaled back the Stock Act, the law to stop members of Congress and their staff from trading on insider information, in an under-the-radar vote that has been sharply criticised by advocates of political transparency."



Similar story at the LUN.


washington Post nibbles on crow today:(1) after days of claiming the control folks had won the fight, they have a front p story indicating the Amendments to the existing background check bill are likely to further weaken it; (2) After ignoring the Gosnell case as "a local matter", it finally joins AP and others in reporting on it, albeit in a much watered down, sanitized way; (3) After reporting the McConnell taping as if McConnell's session had been a bad act, today it runs a front pager throwing the tapers under the bus but now claiming they let McConnell pose as the victim.

Army of Davids

John Mauldin on ObamaCare

Optimistic GDP projections mean that whatever revenue projections accompany them are also likely to be overly optimistic. Given the federal government’s lack of control over expenses, and its track record in forecasting expenses, it is likely that expenses will be underestimated, making actual deficits larger than they expect. One example: we have already seen Obamacare costs rise by over 40% from the projections just two years ago.

(That 40% does not even take into account what your private insurance costs have already risen and are going to continue to rise. Obamacare is going to be a giant economic debacle. That is not meant as an argument for or against universal coverage or coverage of pre-existing conditions. It is just noting that the economics of the way we are going about achieving our healthcare goals are turning our national program into a daunting fiscal disaster.)

Mauldin is a Republican...but his concern is first and foremost to get it right for clients/readers

Army of Davids

found in the comments section at AEI....

Contrary to conventional wisdom, the aging population actually explains none of the labor force participation rate drop yet. The BLS databases were updated early, so I was able to pull the participation rates (all unseasoned because the BLS does not season the 55-and-older sets) for various age groups. The short version ? those under 55 are participating at rates lower than that of the last few decades, while those over 55 are participating at or near historic highs. The longer version…

- 16-24 years old 52.8% (worst March since 1966)
- 25-34 years old 81.1% (worst March since 1983)
- 35-44 years old 82.3% (worst March since 1984)
- 45-54 years old 79.6% (worst March since 1988, with the 50-54 group's 78.0% the worst March since 1991)
- 55-59 years old 73.4% (3th-best March since records began in 1977, behind only 2009 and 2010)
- 60-64 years old 55.0% (4th-best March since records began in 1977, behind only 2009, 2010 and 2012)
- 65-69 years old 32.4% (2nd-best March since records began in 1982, behind only 2011)
- 70-74 years old ?18.3% (tied for 2nd-best March since records began in 1987, behind only 2011)
- 75 years old and older 8.4% (best March since records began in 1987)

I somehow doubt that society is willingly going back to the 1-earner/2-adult household given the ever-growing tax burden.

Army of Davids

headwinds to job formation in ObamaCare

- higher regulatory compliance costs
- new taxes
- mandates
- higher healthcare costs
- implicit uncertainty

business has been dealing w/ all of this for some time...but each day these obstacles weigh on hiring decisions more




Ah, deja vu, I remember how the Libyans were the first to be shopping for yellowcake,

Cecil Turner

What, "more of the same" didn't fix the government-subsidized housing market? Who'da thunk it?

I was under the impression Barney Frank and Chris Dodd had taken all the lessons learned from the way the Republicans fouled up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and fixed it. So obviously this boom is a "good thing" . . . right?

Rick Ballard


Give some consideration to the pathos generated by a WSJ tub thumping re "this boom" when current sales of new houses are running at 29%of 2005 sales and 39% of 2000 sales. The great brothels of Wall Street are much more concerned about being denied re-entry into utopian MBS issuance, with the bloated fees which accompany said issuance, than they are with government subsidy. One might even question whether pigs wallowing in troughs filled with BOzobucks by Bernanke should be greeted by anything but howls of derision when they grunt out a thumbsucker which includes the term "government subsidy".

Rick Ballard

Bruce Krasting has a very interesting piece up on Jack Lew's attempt to jawbone the Japanese. I agree with Krasting regarding Lew being in so far over his head that light doesn't penetrate but I believe he's neglecting the possibility this is an opening salvo to an attempt to impose Yellow Peril Smoot-Hawley tariffs in retaliation for "unauthorized" devaluation by Japan.

The pace appears to be quickening in the Great Unraveling.


How's that "Reset" with Russia Going ?

We’d like to particularly note that unlike the American [Magnitsky list], our list includes in the first place those involved in legalizing torture and indefinite confinement of the prisoners of Guantanamo Bay detention facility, arrests and abductions of Russian citizens to third-party countries, and infringement on their life and health,” Lukashevich explained.

.. the only part that RT got right was that the "Magnitsky List" stemmed from the death in the Russian Butyrka prison of lawyer, Sergey Magnitsky, who died seven days before the expiration of the one year term during which he could be legally held without trial.

Magnitsky was representing a US client, Bill Browder of the investment advisory firm Hermitage Capital Management, from whom Russian authorities were trying to steal his Russian investments. After being ejected from the country, Browder was smart enough to sell all of his Russian investments as soon as he arrived back in the West, before corrupt Russian authorities could get their hands on them. The Russian authorities produced fake documents and witnesses to allow them to plunder the company, but once they determined that there was no actual plunder to plunder, they went after Browder with claims of fraud, based on the debt run up by Russian authorities who tried to seize the companies assets that no longer existed. there.


That seems to work as well as when Tom kept throwing those firecrackers at Jerry.


How interesting. So Browder outsmarted the Russians. Good for him.
There are way too many mysterious deaths of Russian patriots that Putin doesn't like.


he is the grandson, of Earl Browder, the CPUSA leader;

Bill Browder and Edmond Safra founded Hermitage Capital Management in 1996 for the purpose of investing initial seed capital of $25 million in Russia. The business was very successful, profiting from the wave of privatizations occurring in Russia at that time, and increased its investor base substantially. Following the Russian financial crisis of 1998 Browder continued the business of Hermitage investing in Russia, despite significant outflows from the fund. His fund became a prominent activist shareholder in the Russian gas giant Gazprom, the large oil company Surgutneftegaz, RAO UES, Sberbank, Sidanco, Avisma and Volzhanka.[4] Browder exposed management corruption and corporate malfeasance in these partly state-owned companies.[5] He has been quoted as saying: "You had to become a shareholder activist if you didn’t want everything stolen from you".[1]


For many banks, selling loans to Fannie and Freddie is the only game in town. The FDIC reports that banks made $17 billion on loan sales last year. This helped to offset many losses on Other real estate and loan losses. Banks get immediate gains on sales of loans, while if they keep the loans, they have to amortize their fees over the life of the loans. They also keep the servicing rights in many instances.


I think that's quite nearly 'thoughtcrime they've established;



Just another turn in the barrel


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