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Posts Tagged ‘Health Care

Get Ready for Federal Budget Gridlock

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by Greg Hunter
USAWatchdog.com
Originally posted 15 April 2011

THIS WEEK, PRESIDENT OBAMA GAVE A SPEECH OUTLINING his plan for long term deficit reduction. He invited the Republican leadership for what many thought would be some sort of bi-partisan federal budget 2011 solution. In reality, it was kind of a St. Valentine’s Day massacre because right off the bat, Mr. Obama pulled out the Presidential tommy-gun and started shooting. He said, “This debate over budgets and deficits is about more than just numbers on a page, more than just cutting and spending. It’s about the kind of future we want. It’s about the kind of country we believe in.”

Surprise, surprise.  The kind of country President Obama “believes in” is a lot different than the Republicans. The President said the Republican plan “ends Medicare as we know it.” Sounds to me the President will play the class warfare card during the 2012 election season because he went on to say, “The top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. And that’s who needs to pay less taxes?”  (Click here to read the entire text of the President’s deficit speech.) I can see why the President is playing to lower income people. Recently, a poll revealed a majority of the poorest Americans no longer support Obama. CNSNews.com reports, “President Barack Obama’s approval among the poorest Americans dropped to an all-time low of 48 percent last week, according to the Gallup poll, leaving the president with less-than-majority approval among all income brackets reported in Gallup’s presidential approval surveys.” (Click here to read the complete CNSNews.com story.)

The two big issues will be billions in Medicare and Medicaid cuts (especially Medicaid) and a $1 trillion tax increase. I see these two issues as real sticking points. Relative to the Republican plan, the President only wants to make small changes to health care entitlements. Obama clearly wants health care entitlements to grow, not shrink (remember Obamacare?) Also, the Democrats and Republicans came within an hour of shutting down the government over $38 billion in cuts.

There is no way the two parties are going to agree on some compromise on a trillion bucks in tax hikes. These two issues alone spell budgetary gridlock. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan said the President’s speech was “excessively partisan” and “dramatically inaccurate.” These are not the kind of words you use when you are laying the groundwork for a compromise.  I am sure Congress will play chicken again, over the budget, in the government shutdown game.

I don’t know which party has the best plan, but I do know the U.S. is in deep financial trouble. Gridlock is not going to help with dramatic and badly needed cuts in spending. In March alone, the federal government spent 8 times more money than it took in. The U.S. collected $128 billion and spent more than $1.1 trillion (or $1,100 billion!) Neither party addressed the other new welfare plan we have started for crooked bankers who have ripped-off the country and caused the financial meltdown in 2008. The latest outrage is the $220 million in bailout money given to the wives of two Morgan Stanley bankers.  (Click here to read the complete story.)

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Here’s the Problem…

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by David Galland
Managing Director, Casey Research

Posted originally November 03, 2010

The problem is multifaceted, but with the same outcome.
I’ll get to that outcome momentarily, but first the facts of the problem…

The U.S. and most of the world’s major economies are flat broke. Bankrupt, actually. Forget the whole debt vs. GDP metric… focus instead on debt + obligations vs. GDP, as that’s where the scale of the problem – and the scope of the coming pain – is most apparent. We are literally tens of trillions of dollars underwater. To return to fiscal solvency is now impossible without overt default, or the covert default of a serious inflation.

• It’s too late.
The debt problems are now so extreme that the Republicans, tea partiers, and desperate Democrats now rediscovering good old fiscal sanity have no feasible way of making a dent. Even the stingiest Republicans are only talking about freezing spending at 2008 levels. For the record, that still means an annual federal budget deficit of just shy of half a trillion dollars.

Add to that approximately $150 billion in annual state budget shortfalls. And that’s before the economy is knocked sideways by the onrushing tidal wave of retiring baby boomers… or body slammed by the inevitable increase in U.S. interest rate expenses, as rates move up sharply from today’s unsustainable historic lows.

The point is that, even to get back to 2008’s budget deficits, will require cutting almost a trillion dollars in federal spending. And that’s just for starters. Talk about a pain party.

• In a democracy, there’s always another election.
Today, the “morning after”, the Republicans are feeling pretty happy, as I am sure, are the Tea Partiers. Pats on the rumps and knucks at the water cooler and all that. But in no time at all – a few weeks at most – legions of political operatives will begin focusing on winning the next election… the big one in 2012. With that in mind, let me ask you a question or two…On surveying the political landscape, do you think that Republicans, Democrats or even Tea Partiers will raise their hand in favor of slashing social security to the extent necessary to advert the coming currency crisis? How about Medicare? The military?

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Obama has sown the Seeds of a Budget Crisis with Health Bill

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by Robert J. Samuelson
Originally posted Monday, March 29, 2010

WHEN HISTORIANS RECOUNT THE MOMENTOUS EVENTS of recent weeks, they will note a curious coincidence. On March 15, Moody’s Investors Service – the bond rating agency – published a paper warning that the exploding U.S. government debt could cause a downgrade of Treasury bonds. Just six days later, the House of Representatives passed President Obama’s health-care legislation costing $900 billion or so over a decade and worsening an already-bleak budget outlook.

Should the United States someday suffer a budget crisis, it will be hard not to conclude that Obama and his allies sowed the seeds, because they ignored conspicuous warnings. A further irony will not escape historians. For two years, Obama and members of Congress have angrily blamed the shortsightedness and selfishness of bankers and rating agencies for causing the recent financial crisis. The president and his supporters, historians will note, were equally shortsighted and self-centered – though their quest was for political glory, not financial gain.

Let’s be clear. A “budget crisis” is not some minor accounting exercise. It’s a wrenching political, social and economic upheaval. Large deficits and rising debt — the accumulation of past deficits – spook investors, leading to higher interest rates on government loans. The higher rates expand the budget deficit and further unnerve investors. To reverse this calamitous cycle, the government has to cut spending deeply or raise taxes sharply. Lower spending and higher taxes in turn depress the economy and lead to higher unemployment. Not pretty.

Greece is experiencing such a crisis. Until recently, conventional wisdom held that only developing countries – managed ineptly – were candidates for true budget crises. No more. Most wealthy societies with aging populations, including the United States, face big gaps between their spending promises and their tax bases. No one in Congress could be unaware of this.

Two weeks before the House vote, the Congressional Budget Office released its estimate of Obama’s budget, including its health-care program. From 2011 to 2020, the cumulative deficit is almost $10 trillion. Adding 2009 and 2010, the total rises to $12.7 trillion. In 2020, the projected annual deficit is $1.25 trillion, equal to 5.6 percent of the economy (gross domestic product). That assumes economic recovery, with unemployment at 5 percent. Spending is almost 30 percent higher than taxes. Total debt held by the public rises from 40 percent of GDP in 2008 to 90 percent in 2020, close to its post-World War II peak.

To criticisms, Obama supporters make two arguments. First, the CBO says the plan reduces the deficit by $143 billion over a decade. Second, the legislation contains measures (an expert panel to curb Medicare spending, emphasis on “comparative effectiveness research”) to control health spending. These rejoinders are self-serving and unconvincing.

Suppose the CBO estimate is correct. So? The $143 billion saving is about 1 percent of the projected $12.7 trillion deficit from 2009 to 2020. If the administration has $1 trillion or so of spending cuts and tax increases over a decade, all these monies should first cover existing deficits – not finance new spending. Obama’s behavior resembles a highly indebted family’s taking an expensive round-the-world trip because it claims to have found ways to pay for it. It’s self-indulgent and reckless.

But the CBO estimate is misleading, because it must embody the law’s many unrealistic assumptions and gimmicks. Benefits are phased in “so that the first 10 years of [higher] revenue would be used to pay for only six years of spending” increases, a former CBO director, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, wrote in the New York Times on March 20. Holtz-Eakin also noted the $70 billion of premiums for a new program of long-term care that reduce present deficits but will be paid out in benefits later. Then there’s the “doc fix” – higher Medicare reimbursements under separate legislation that would cost about $200 billion over a decade.

Proposals to control health spending face restrictions that virtually ensure failure. Consider the “Independent Payment Advisory Board” aimed at Medicare. “The Board is prohibited from submitting proposals that would ration care, increase revenues or change benefits, eligibility or Medicare beneficiary cost sharing,” says a summary by the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. What’s left? Similarly, findings from “comparative effectiveness research” – intended to identify ineffective care – “may not be construed as mandates, guidelines or recommendations for payment, coverage or treatment.” What’s the point then?

So Obama is flirting with a future budget crisis. Moody’s emphasizes two warning signs: rising debt and loss of confidence that government will deal with it. Obama fulfills both. The parallels with the recent financial crisis are striking. Bankers and rating agencies engaged in wishful thinking to rationalize self-interest. Obama does the same. No one can tell when or whether a crisis will come. There is no magic tipping point. But Obama is raising the chances.

Ralph Nader Was Right About Barack Obama

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by Chris Hedges
Originally published on Monday, March 1, 2010 by TruthDig.com

WE OWE RALPH NADER AND CYNTHIA MCKINNEY an apology. They were right about Barack Obama. They were right about the corporate state. They had the courage of their convictions and they stood fast despite wholesale defections and ridicule by liberals and progressives.

Obama lies as cravenly, if not as crudely, as George W. Bush. He promised us that the transfer of $12.8 trillion in taxpayer money to Wall Street would open up credit and lending to the average consumer. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), however, admitted last week that banks have reduced lending at the sharpest pace since 1942. As a senator, Obama promised he would filibuster amendments to the FISA Reform Act that retroactively made legal the wiretapping and monitoring of millions of American citizens without warrant; instead he supported passage of the loathsome legislation. He told us he would withdraw American troops from Iraq, close the detention facility at Guantánamo, end torture, restore civil liberties such as habeas corpus and create new jobs. None of this has happened.

He is shoving a health care bill down our throats that would give hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars to the private health insurance industry in the form of subsidies, and force millions of uninsured Americans to buy insurers’ defective products. These policies would come with ever-rising co-pays, deductibles and premiums and see most of the seriously ill left bankrupt and unable to afford medical care. Obama did nothing to halt the collapse of the Copenhagen climate conference, after promising meaningful environmental reform, and has left us at the mercy of corporations such as ExxonMobil. He empowers Israel’s brutal apartheid state. He has expanded the war in Afghanistan and Pakistan, where hundreds of civilians, including entire families, have been slaughtered by sophisticated weapons systems such as the Hellfire missile, which sucks the air out of victims’ lungs. And he is delivering war and death to Yemen, Somalia and perhaps Iran.

The illegal wars and occupations, the largest transference of wealth upward in American history and the egregious assault on civil liberties, all begun under George W. Bush, raise only a flicker of tepid protest from liberals when propagated by the Democrats. Liberals, unlike the right wing, are emotionally disabled. They appear not to feel. The tea party protesters, the myopic supporters of Sarah Palin, the veterans signing up for Oath Keepers and the myriad of armed patriot groups have swept into their ranks legions of disenfranchised workers, angry libertarians, John Birchers and many who, until now, were never politically active. They articulate a legitimate rage.

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Written by aurick

15/03/2010 at 11:54 am

Two possibilities Bulls have yet to discount

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Two Possibilities Bulls Have Yet to Discount
BY RICK ACKERMAN ON SEPTEMBER 14, 2009 3:35 AM GMT · 0 COMMENTS
We’ve always believed that the stock market’s ups and downs are driven not by anything so mundane as news events or the economy, but by the same mysterious cyclical forces that govern the physical universe. Nevertheless, two rapidly evolving news stories threaten to abruptly reverse Wall Street’s heedless bear rally, which recently entered its seventh month.
The first story concerns the impending collapse of the Obama presidency. Although he ran a very impressive campaign, Mr. Obama appears hell-bent on committing political suicide.  The President is clearly obsessed with radically revamping the country’s health care system. But his relentless efforts to do so have turned many voters against him,
including some who supported his election bid. Most recently, a Republican congressman drew heat by calling Mr. Obama a liar during a health care address to the nation. However, it bears mentioning that there are some in his own party, most notably U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who have said the same thing, more or less, but more tactfully – i.e., that Mr. Obama’s numbers are not to be believed or trusted.
Russia No Ally
The other developing story is the looming showdown with Iran, which last week said it will not be persuaded to give up a uranium enrichment program that’s making the rest of the world extremely nervous.  Mr. Obama had stated during the campaign that the U.S. and its allies would not stand by idly as Iran developed nuclear weapons. However, it is now clear that Russia, an absolutely crucial ally in any sanctions that might have been used against Iran, will not lift a finger if the mullahs continue to churn out weapons-grade uranium. Last week, Russia’s foreign minister asserted that Iran’s nuclear program posed no threat to the rest of the world, echoing thoughts believed only by America’s enemies or those so completely blinded by their hatred of Israel that they perceive Ahmadinejad and the mullahs as the good guys.
Concerning Mr. Obama political future, if failure seemed merely imaginable a few months ago, it looks likely now.  He has staked his political credibility on a health care plan that looks nearly certain to go down in flames. Even worse, he keeps trying to ram this legislative sausage down the throats of tens of millions of Americans who have grown increasingly skeptical with each new public relations push. If successful politics means knowing when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em, Mr. Obama has pushed all his chips into the pot with nothing but a low pair. When his health care sausage turns putrid, he’ll have no political capital left to push through the most ambitious and costly political agenda in the nation’s history.
A Rudderless U.S.
At best, the U.S. would then be without a rudder; at worst, in a rapidly deteriorating economy, there could be political and social chaos. Even then we could probably find a way to limp to the next election. But the situation involving Iran will not long abide Mr. Obama’s stall tactics.  The only credible threat the President can use against Iran in the meantime is the assumed willingness of Israel to launch a pre-emptive strike. There was a time not long ago when no one would have thought Israel capable of attacking Iran without direct help from the U.S.  Now the U.S. is saying it may not be able to hold Israel back.
This seems like more than a mere shift in rhetoric. In any event, if there is a blow-up with Iran, or if Obama is about to become a lame-duck president in the midst of severe economic decline, it bodes ill for Wall Street. We doubt that many investors are ready for the change, which could come without warning.

by Rick Ackerman
Posted originally Sept 14, 2009

WE’VE ALWAYS BELIEVED THAT THE stock market’s ups and downs are driven not by anything so mundane as news events or the economy, but by the same mysterious cyclical forces that govern the physical universe. Nevertheless, two rapidly evolving news stories threaten to abruptly reverse Wall Street’s heedless bear rally, which recently entered its seventh month.

The first story concerns the impending collapse of the Obama presidency. Although he ran a very impressive campaign, Mr. Obama appears hell-bent on committing political suicide. The President is clearly obsessed with radically revamping the country’s health care system. But his relentless efforts to do so have turned many voters against him, including some who supported his election bid.

Most recently, a Republican congressman drew heat by calling Mr. Obama a liar during a health care address to the nation. However, it bears mentioning that there are some in his own party, most notably U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who have said the same thing, more or less, but more tactfully – i.e., that Mr. Obama’s numbers are not to be believed or trusted.

Russia No Ally
The other developing story is the looming showdown with Iran, which last week said it will not be persuaded to give up a uranium enrichment program that’s making the rest of the world extremely nervous.

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Written by aurick

18/09/2009 at 2:00 pm

Is Wall Street Ready for Obama’s Fall?

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Is Wall Street Ready for Obama’s Fall?
by Rick Ackerman – August 10, 2009
The stock market’s powerful bear rally, now five month’s old, has fed on false hopes and delusional thinking, but it is unlikely to survive the coming collapse of the Obama presidency. Mr. Obama’s once-overwhelming popularity, though ebbing, has so far survived the voters’ growing discontent with his policies. However, disapproval is mounting, even on the political left, and it’s going to reach critical mass once the president’s ill-conceived plan for a government takeover of the healthcare system has gone down in flames. He will become a lame-duck president after less than a year in office, leaving the country rudderless at a time when the economy and financial system are desperately in need of a firm hand or at least the appearance that someone is in command. Investors had better prepare for the inevitable darkening of America’s mood, since its effect on the stock market will not be pretty. It is often said that Wall Street abhors nothing so much as uncertainty, but this will be far worse – a plunge into despair or even chaos that will make the nation’s depressing wallow during the Carter years seem sunny in comparison.
His Brazen Lie
Concerning Obamacare, its failure to gain traction goes much deeper than Hillarycare’s abortive flop in 1993, early in Clinton’s term. In the interim, healthcare costs have inflated so horrifically that Americans have become desperate for relief. For businesses and individuals alike, health care has become increasingly unaffordable, and all of us are paying much more each year for less coverage. That should have made socialized health care an easy sell. Instead, Obama chose to remake the system so radically and so ambitiously that almost no one believes him when he says that it won’t cost us – except for “the rich” — any more than we are paying now. Americans see Obama’s spin on this issue for what it is: a brazen lie. They also understand that he cannot possibly extract from “the rich” alone the trillions of dollars the government is spending in an already-failed attempt to avoid a ruinous debt deflation.
Fat Cats
As a result, it is predictable that many of Obama’s supporters on the left will abandon him. This seems likely to occur sooner rather than later now that stories have begun to emerge that make clear how it is mainly fat-cat bankers who have benefited from all of the supposed rescue packages.  Last week’s news that nine big banks paid out $33 billion in bonuses in 2008 when the banks were collapsing is going to galvanize Obama’s opposition in Congress, making his “cap-and-trade” energy tax dead-on-arrival, and rendering all of his other grandiose, statist schemes politically dead. This is going to throw the presidency – and the nation – into a state of uncertainty that Wall Street will not be able to abide. If the stock market is indeed looking ahead six months, the bear rally begun in March should approaching its last hurrah.

by Rick Ackerman
Posted originally August 10, 2009

THE STOCK MARKET’S POWERFUL BEAR rally, now five month’s old, has fed on false hopes and delusional thinking, but it is unlikely to survive the coming collapse of the Obama presidency. Mr. Obama’s once-overwhelming popularity, though ebbing, has so far survived the voters’ growing discontent with his policies. However, disapproval is mounting, even on the political left, and it’s going to reach critical mass once the president’s ill-conceived plan for a government takeover of the healthcare system has gone down in flames.

He will become a lame-duck president after less than a year in office, leaving the country rudderless at a time when the economy and financial system are desperately in need of a firm hand or at least the appearance that someone is in command. Investors had better prepare for the inevitable darkening of America’s mood, since its effect on the stock market will not be pretty. It is often said that Wall Street abhors nothing so much as uncertainty, but this will be far worse – a plunge into despair or even chaos that will make the nation’s depressing wallow during the Carter years seem sunny in comparison.

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Illumination of The Idiots (Part II)

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Illumination of The Idiots (Part II)
By Roger Wiegand        
Aug 17 2009 3:24PM
A list of ultra-stupid moves and counter moves destroying the economies and consumers world-wide collected and remarked upon by Traderrog
Health Care: Ignoring and insulting elderly voter’s at the most recent town hall meetings on health care discussions created anger and confusion. Sharp observers who have taken the time to read proposals see nothing but disaster. The worst features are: (1) Robbing 500mm from Medicare in a triage move to lessen care for the oldest based upon cost and, (2) Moving to a single payer system destroying 85% of the coverage for recipients now being covered by private insurance (3) Adding 50mm new participants from the lowest income sector (non-payers) overwhelming the system with demand as there are not enough medical staff to cope. Our forecast says the graybeards will vote out many of those up for re-election in fall 2010 in a massive backlash. Further, this fall, when the bill comes up for a vote, the markets will have crashed and this bill could be buried for good. This is the reason those in charge are pushing so hard to pass it quickly. After September 15th it’s too late. Rationing health care using bureaurats to decide who lives and who dies will not fly with voters-consumers.
Consumers Are Broke: Since consumers earn the money and pay the taxes to support all governments, when they are broken, their ability to support the bureaurats is broken, too. They can be overly taxed and abused to most any extent but when they are jobless and their employers are shut-down so are revenue streams to all governments. Central governments can last longer as they manufacture currencies and bonds out of thin air not having to balance budgets. On the more local level of states, counties, cities, towns and villages, by their law’s they have to balance budgets and they simply cannot.  Obviously some are in much worst shape than others like California, Nevada, and certain cities, but a tidal wave of failures is sweeping America drowning employment with remarkable and horrible speed. Those with cash and credit are saving for rainy days ahead. Credit is going nowhere as banks are afraid to lend and consumers-businesses (qualified) are afraid to borrow. Hunkering down and saving is the plan for most in an effort to survive. This is killing any growth and promoting further deterioration.
Cap ‘N’ Trade: Is another flagrantly stupid idea that increases the cost of energy, particularly electricity. It off-loads alleged carbon footprints via trading from one user to another creating a nightmare of abuses in the middle. The ignorant congress instead of dreaming-up new economy wrecking ideas to milk the system and steal more from the Sheeple should bend to the wishes of voting constituents and use some common sense. They will not and voters will respond at the polls. We expect Cap ‘N’ Trade to fail.
Global Warming: Our experienced Northern weather Advisor told me there are signs we enter the next ice age in 2040. The Midwestern US this summer has been extraordinarily cool. Other normally cooler places are warmer. Studies allegedly proving the onset of global warming are fraught with mistakes. Recently, we saw a report showing the Warming Idiots who wrote about this stuff have “missed” seeing an iceberg the size of Greenland (Brilliant!) in their computations. This is another scam to make money and buy votes while getting full control of the Sheeple. Expect much more ridiculous non-sense. Millionaire politicians like Al Gore shall remain busy seeking more scams to promote their phony agendas.
Corn Ethanol: Well, this one sure worked out well didn’t it? The corn-to-ethanol plants are going bankrupt, and that fuel has created untold amounts of damage in filling station pumps and certain cars as it wasted precious corn reserves and billions of gallons of precious clean water. Corn ethanol is just another government boondoggle gone wrong. Further, the economics do not work and it must be taxpayer subsidized to balance production budgets. Other water problems in California are destroying farms equal in size to the state of Rhode Island. This in an effort to save a non-descript 2 inch minnow fish. Millions of dollars of lost wages and grower damage ensue.
US Energy Drilling Denied: Shortages of energy; specifically oil and gas would be alleviated but not eliminated if offshore drilling and some banned onshore efforts were permitted. California could probably solve its budget crisis (at least temporarily until it wasted more new income) by allowing nearby ocean drilling for oil and gas. The greens are in charge so the state goes down the economic tubes with a huge smash. Similar opportunities exist for New Jersey, Florida and some other coastal states. We say no offshore drilling will be allowed until oil and gas goes critical. Then it takes ten more years to explore, drill and produce new reserves.
TARP Funding: Has been spent to repair bank balance sheets not lend for growth.  Global investment banks lost trillions with reckless lending (illegal?) practices and then got billions more in free TARP cash to replenish balance sheets. The taxpayers were hit twice. (1) First they are stuck with the aftermath of the messes from the reckless lending and, (2) They got robbed again with the TARP takings. This is why former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson insisted on bullet-proof legal documents in advance of handing out the money. Mr. Paulson is a crook acting as a shill for big bankers and most know it for sure. Some are now investigating.
Buying Way Out Of Deflation-Depression: Historically, no nation has been able to buy its way out of a depression. A critical assessment of FDR’s performance in the 1930’s proves this beyond a doubt. Further, others have written in depth about this problem-alleged solution and agree. The current administration continues down the same tried and true policy path to failure, replicating the 1930’s all over again.
Government Motors: With years to go in a depression and little or no consumer buying power do you really think GM also known as Government Motors can survive and sell cars? Will this work under the leadership thumb of government bureaurats? We say they sink into oblivion with Chrysler. We are hoping Ford can make it but they must sell cars to enable a viable company to continue. Who will buy the cars? Competition is fierce and competitors have the best products and no major overhang of debt as Ford does.
Tax Increases: We see new tax increases flying in from all sides. The over-spending government entities thinking good times roll forever spent the higher tax revenues from the inflated good times (cheap interest rates and bad lending) and now cannot cope with drastically lower tax payments from broken consumers and corporations.
Falling Tax Receipts: We’ve seen revenue reports saying tax payments fell 22% to 34% depending upon whether the discussion is federal taxes or others. California is a leading example with Jefferson County (City of Birmingham) Alabama being another. This cascades through America being more visible-critical in July, 2010.
California & States’ Bailouts: Are going critical. As states’ cascade into failures, they are reaching the tipping point. The president has said he will not help them. State employee lay-offs have begun in earnest as funds dry-up and the first waves of non-essential and some essential services are denied. Jefferson County Alabama including the large southern city of Birmingham are now at great risk. Authorities are expecting to call in the National Guard as fire and police are laid-off with no pay. Now, California is saying they will pay back their IOU’s due this fall. Where did the money come from all of a sudden?
Off-Shoring Manufacturing: Manufacturing, mostly shifted to Asia has contributed to 33% of USA manufacturing sitting idle. We see more dead and dying companies with jobless employees in the millions.
Social Help Too Slow: Food stamps are now provided for over 34mm Americans. As fast as the government is trying to provide help, the needy are demanding ever more. Food stamps are only one part of the equation. The next one is soaring utilities with consumers freezing to death this winter. There is also a chance of them suffering a killer heat wave yet this summer as when Chicago had over 700 heat-related deaths some years ago. It can happen again when the elderly cannot afford to run air conditioners.
Stock Market Is Not The Economy: The stock market has turned into giant crap game, for the most part manipulated by a few major hedge funds and global banks for their own ill-gotten gains and amusement. This fall, the Sheeple will once again be left holding an empty bag after the crash. Prior to, the pros will be out with their profits. Meanwhile, the economy must run on genuine credit and production. Both are sorely lacking.
Bonds & US Dollar: Are critical to America’s credit and potential economic resurrection. If the dollar crashes (and it will by at least 50%) most of the world is pegged to that currency and will collapse. Monetization of bonds and dollars (creation of credit out of thin air) is catching up to the administration. Somewhere ahead the buyers will stop buying valueless paper and then we sink into a larger collapse. The first stages could come this fall and one top analyst forecasts a bank run later this August when a new larger list of US bank failures is posted.
Other Currencies:  Have been proposed by Russia, and Middle Eastern oil producers. So far this has not worked as the US Dollar pool and bond markets are so incredibly large relative to other currencies. Escape from the clutches of American credit instruments and currency has failed. Hints of moving to the gold standard by several of these nations are interesting. But, we cannot understand how it can help despite, perhaps, having some very long term merit with no immediate healing results. Debts must be marked down to reality first and consumers need jobs and realistically priced house sales prices. This cannot happen for years.
Asian Stock Markets: And their economies are running on fumes. Shorting the Shanghai Index SSEC might be a good trade with stocks up nearly 80% this year and the PE’s reportedly running at 35, which is outrageous.
Unemployment in Europe: Is officially matching the USA with various jobless numbers between 9-10%. As we’ve reported before, if you double the official jobless stats you are closer to the real truth. Spain is very bad and the UK and Ireland are next in line with more of Eastern Europe going idle at a rapid clip.
Higher US Debt Limits: Are being considered, increasing them to new highs as requested by Geitner. These efforts are futile and merely add to the immensity of both current and forthcoming destruction.
Financials crashed in fall 2008 with Lehman. Recovery began with TARP May, 2009: During this month of August we have more of a dead cat bounce ahead with a big smash in Mid-September. While precious metals and their shares are off this August 17, 2009, for the intermediate term (next 90 days) the trend reverses and moves to rallies.
Keep in mind, if you own paid for stuff it will most likely remain in your hands; not in somebody else’s. That includes gold and silver.
Do not get tangled-up in daily noise. Keep studying the larger view and buy precious metals after each profit-taking correction. Headwinds are building into an economic hurricane. Take care of business right now. My dire fall prediction might surprise us and arrive earlier. Time is short.
Personally, I can see unbelievable opportunities to trade that we would never see again for many years. Turn these problems into opportunities. Those on the right side of the trade might get rich. Those on the other side are just victims. Stay Alert. – Traderrog

by Roger Wiegand
Posted originally Aug 17 2009
www.webeatthestreet.com

A LIST OF ULTRA-STUPID MOVES and counter moves destroying the economies and consumers world-wide collected and remarked upon by Traderrog.

Health Care: Ignoring and insulting elderly voter’s at the most recent town hall meetings on health care discussions created anger and confusion. Sharp observers who have taken the time to read proposals see nothing but disaster.

The worst features are: (1) Robbing 50m from Medicare in a triage move to lessen care for the oldest based upon cost and, (2) Moving to a single payer system destroying 85% of the coverage for recipients now being covered by private insurance. (3) Adding 50m new participants from the lowest income sector (non-payers) overwhelming the system with demand as there are not enough medical staff to cope. Our forecast says the graybeards will vote out many of those up for re-election in fall 2010 in a massive backlash.

Further, this fall, when the bill comes up for a vote, the markets will have crashed and this bill could be buried for good. This is the reason those in charge are pushing so hard to pass it quickly. After September 15th it’s too late. Rationing health care using bureaurats to decide who lives and who dies will not fly with voters-consumers.

Consumers Are Broke: Since consumers earn the money and pay the taxes to support all governments, when they are broken, their ability to support the bureaurats is broken, too. They can be overly taxed and abused to most any extent but when they are jobless and their employers are shut-down so are revenue streams to all governments. Central governments can last longer as they manufacture currencies and bonds out of thin air not having to balance budgets. On the more local level of states, counties, cities, towns and villages have to balance budgets and they simply cannot.

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