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Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:24 PM

STOCK MARKET WATCH -- Monday, 17 September 2012

STOCK MARKET WATCH, Monday, 17 September 2012


SMW for 14 September 2012

AT THE CLOSING BELL ON 14 September 2012

Dow Jones 13,593.37 +53.51 (0.40%)
S&P 500 1,465.77 +5.78 (0.40%)
Nasdaq 3,183.95 +28.12 (0.89%)



10 Year 1.87% +0.06 (3.31%)
30 Year 3.09% +0.07 (2.32%)









Market Conditions During Trading Hours






Euro, Yen, Loonie, Silver and Gold
















Handy Links - Government Issues:

LegitGov
Open Government
Earmark Database
USA spending.gov





Partial List of Financial Sector Officials Convicted since 1/20/09
2/2/12 David Higgs and Salmaan Siddiqui, Credit Suisse, plead guilty to conspiracy involving valuation of MBS
3/6/12 Allen Stanford, former Caribbean billionaire and general schmuck, convicted on 13 of 14 counts in $2.2B Ponzi scheme, faces 20+ years in prison
6/4/12 Matthew Kluger, lawyer, sentenced to 12 years in prison, along with co-conspirator stock trader Garrett Bauer (9 years) and co-conspirator Kenneth Robinson (not yet sentenced) for 17 year insider trading scheme.
6/14/12 Allen Stanford sentenced to 110 years without parole.
6/15/12 Rajat Gupta, former Goldman Sachs director, found guilty of insider trading. Could face a decade in prison when sentenced later this year.
6/22/12 Timothy S. Durham, 49, former CEO of Fair Financial Company, convicted of one count conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud, 10 counts of wire fraud, and one count of securities fraud.
6/22/12 James F. Cochran, 56, former chairman of the board of Fair, convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud, one count of securities fraud, and six counts of wire fraud.
6/22/12 Rick D. Snow, 48, former CFO of Fair, convicted of one count of conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud, one count of securities fraud, and three counts of wire fraud.
7/13/12 Russell Wassendorf Sr., CEO of collapsed brokerage firm Peregrine Financial Group Inc. arrested and charged with lying to regulators after admitting to authorities he embezzled "millions of dollars" and forged bank statements for "nearly twenty years."
8/22/12 Doug Whitman, Whitman Capital LLC hedge fund founder, convicted of insider trading following a trial in which he spent more than two days on the stand telling jurors he was innocent











This thread contains opinions and observations. Individuals may post their experiences, inferences and opinions on this thread. However, it should not be construed as advice. It is unethical (and probably illegal) for financial recommendations to be given here.



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Reply STOCK MARKET WATCH -- Monday, 17 September 2012 (Original post)
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 OP
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #1
AnneD Sep 2012 #2
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #76
GulleyJimson Sep 2012 #3
Demeter Sep 2012 #4
GulleyJimson Sep 2012 #85
Demeter Sep 2012 #5
Demeter Sep 2012 #6
Demeter Sep 2012 #8
Demeter Sep 2012 #7
Demeter Sep 2012 #9
Demeter Sep 2012 #10
Demeter Sep 2012 #11
Demeter Sep 2012 #12
Demeter Sep 2012 #13
AnneD Sep 2012 #41
Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #52
AnneD Sep 2012 #62
Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #64
AnneD Sep 2012 #84
Demeter Sep 2012 #65
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #72
Demeter Sep 2012 #14
xchrom Sep 2012 #15
Demeter Sep 2012 #22
xchrom Sep 2012 #16
orpupilofnature57 Sep 2012 #29
Demeter Sep 2012 #17
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xchrom Sep 2012 #19
Demeter Sep 2012 #20
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orpupilofnature57 Sep 2012 #28
DemReadingDU Sep 2012 #43
Hotler Sep 2012 #49
Demeter Sep 2012 #21
Demeter Sep 2012 #25
Demeter Sep 2012 #26
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #47
Demeter Sep 2012 #66
Demeter Sep 2012 #27
xchrom Sep 2012 #30
xchrom Sep 2012 #31
xchrom Sep 2012 #32
xchrom Sep 2012 #33
Demeter Sep 2012 #42
Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #59
xchrom Sep 2012 #34
xchrom Sep 2012 #35
xchrom Sep 2012 #36
xchrom Sep 2012 #37
xchrom Sep 2012 #38
AnneD Sep 2012 #56
xchrom Sep 2012 #39
xchrom Sep 2012 #40
Roland99 Sep 2012 #44
Roland99 Sep 2012 #45
Roland99 Sep 2012 #46
Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #54
Hotler Sep 2012 #50
westerebus Sep 2012 #53
AnneD Sep 2012 #63
Demeter Sep 2012 #67
hamerfan Sep 2012 #68
Hotler Sep 2012 #78
Demeter Sep 2012 #80
spotbird Sep 2012 #86
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Roland99 Sep 2012 #51
Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #55
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Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #58
DemReadingDU Sep 2012 #60
LineLineLineReply .
Ghost Dog Sep 2012 #61
Demeter Sep 2012 #69
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Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #71
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Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #75
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Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #81
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Tansy_Gold Sep 2012 #83
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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:24 PM

1. No avatar yet

I'm still lookin'. . . . .

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 12:08 AM

2. Maybe....

your stamp

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Response to AnneD (Reply #2)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:25 PM

76. Maybe

I thought about it, but I'm not sure yet.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 03:52 AM

3. Crash?

 

It ain't December 21st yet.

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Response to GulleyJimson (Reply #3)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:41 AM

4. What is the significance of 12/21?

Are you referring to the Mayan calendar? Or something more recent?

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Response to Demeter (Reply #4)

Sat Sep 22, 2012, 11:25 AM

85. Mayans

 

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:46 AM

5. A comedown may be waiting after Fed high YA THINK?

http://news.yahoo.com/comedown-may-waiting-fed-high-223805871--finance.html

Comparing the Federal Reserve to a rehab clinic offering addicted investors a synthetic high has been a favorite of Wall Street wags ever since the first round of Fed stimulus nearly four years ago. The punch line is that you always need more and more to get the same high and each bout of euphoria is followed by a crashing comedown.

After the frenetic reaction brought about by the announcement of the Fed's latest stimulus program - $40 billion pumped into the U.S. economy each month - the coming week is likely to bring a more sober period for markets as investors digest what it means in the longer run and turn their attention to the remainder of the year. That will include rancorous U.S. elections in November, wrangling over taxes and spending cuts and a slowdown in corporate earnings.

"Right now we have this short-term euphoria. But then the question is where do we go from here," said Frank Fantozzi, chief executive of Planned Financial Services, an independent wealth manager in Cleveland. "I think after a week or so, if the underlying economic data doesn't change, you're going to see the market drop a bit and we'll continue to plod along until the election."


The effect on markets of the European Central Bank's plan to buy government bonds of struggling euro zone countries, then the Fed's opened-ended commitment to spur growth have been breathtaking. The Dow and the S&P 500 reached the highest closing level in nearly five years while the Nasdaq marched to new 12-year highs...

MORE SPECULATION, THEN

Open interest, or outstanding contracts, on the October VIX calls with a strike price of 60 was 37,000 while traded volume was around 40,000. Many of those were bought in blocks of 2000 to 5000 for 5 cents each, suggesting a single buyer, according to Todd Salamone, vice president of research at Schaeffer's.

"Somebody's really playing a disaster by October," said Salamone. "If they're looking for something that big, that is not a portfolio hedge because that would be a lot of downside in the market before that hedge would actually kick in."

AND STILL MORE SPEC. AT LINK

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Response to Demeter (Reply #5)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:49 AM

6. Policy euphoria makes way for humdrum data

http://news.yahoo.com/policy-euphoria-makes-way-humdrum-data-192554311--business.html

The world's top two central banks have administered extra-strong monetary painkillers, but the global economy will still need a lot more time to recover from its thumping debt hangover...Financial markets were euphoric after the Federal Reserve surpassed expectations and promised on Thursday to keep the money taps fully open until the U.S. labor market makes a sustained recovery. The European Central Bank had already impressed investors a week earlier by pre-announcing unlimited, albeit conditional, secondary-market purchases to bring down sky-high yields on bonds issued by struggling euro zone members such as Spain.

Now it's time to come down to earth.

Surveys due this week are likely to show why, in the words of Stephen Cecchetti, the chief economist of the Bank for International Settlements, there are no grounds for complacency. Global financial reforms are not yet complete. Southern Europe has not solved its fiscal problems and lack of competitiveness. And the world economy is listless, he said.

"The pace of the recovery in the advanced economies remains disappointing. There are also signs of lower economic growth in emerging market countries," Cecchetti said on a conference call.


Exhibit No. 1 underlining that weakness will be Thursday's advance September poll of purchasing managers across the euro zone. It is likely to show the 17-country area mired in recession. Economists polled by Reuters expect the index derived from the survey to edge up to 45.5, from 45.1 in August, but that would still be well below the 50 mark delineating contraction from expansion.

"A lot of very difficult steps need to be taken sooner rather than later for the sovereign debt crisis to be resolved and, until then, the economy will likely remain sluggish at best," said Bert Colijn, an economist at The Conference Board research group.


ASIA WATCH

Exhibit No. 2, from Japan, will be the Reuters Tankan survey for September due on Wednesday, which is likely to point to challenging conditions for manufacturers, according to economists at Daiwa Capital Markets. The Japanese government last week lowered its growth outlook for the second month in a row, putting pressure on the central bank to ease monetary policy afresh, not least to weaken the yen. The Bank of Japan ends a two-day meeting on Wednesday. However, Daiwa expects the central bank to stand pat until next month.

Exhibit No. 3 a day later will be September's survey of Chinese purchasing managers. With no obvious pick-up in activity, Goldman Sachs is looking for more weakness after August's reading of 47.5. Many investors have been surprised that China has not acted more forcefully to cushion this year's slowdown in growth.

Cecchetti with the Basel-based BIS said the moderation in developing nations could have the welcome effect of putting their growth on a more sustained footing. "But, even so, it means that the emerging market economies won't support global growth as much as they have in recent years," he said.

Which means waiting for the Fed's and the ECB's monetary medicine to kick in.

MORE ENTRAILS READINGS

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Response to Demeter (Reply #6)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:03 AM

8. Dollar extends run of Fed-fueled weakness

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/dollar-extends-run-of-fed-fueled-weakness-2012-09-17?siteid=YAHOOB

The dollar traded lower across the board on Monday, extending recent weakness related to a decision by the U.S. Federal Reserve to extend support measures for the economy.

The ICE dollar index DXY +0.12% , which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, reached 78.801. That was down from 78.864 in late U.S. trading on Friday, which was its lowest level since May.

Last Thursday’s decision by the Federal Reserve to buy more bonds boosted demand for assets on the riskier end of the asset spectrum. The dollar has been traditionally viewed as a safe-haven asset....

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:58 AM

7. Hating on Ben Bernanke By PAUL KRUGMAN

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/17/opinion/krugman-hating-on-ben-bernanke.html

Last week Ben Bernanke, the Federal Reserve chairman, announced a change in his institution’s recession-fighting strategies. In so doing he seemed to be responding to the arguments of critics who have said the Fed can and should be doing more...So what did Mr. Bernanke announce, and why? The Fed normally responds to a weak economy by buying short-term U.S. government debt from banks. This adds to bank reserves; the banks go out and lend more; and the economy perks up. Unfortunately, the scale of the financial crisis, which left behind a huge overhang of consumer debt, depressed the economy so severely that the usual channels of monetary policy don’t work. The Fed can bulk up bank reserves, but the banks have little incentive to lend the money out, because short-term interest rates are near zero. So the reserves just sit there. The Fed’s response to this problem has been “quantitative easing,” a confusing term for buying assets other than Treasury bills, such as long-term U.S. debt. The hope has been that such purchases will drive down the cost of borrowing, and boost the economy even though conventional monetary policy has reached its limit. Sure enough, last week’s Fed announcement included another round of quantitative easing, this time involving mortgage-backed securities. The big news, however, was the Fed’s declaration that “a highly accommodative stance of monetary policy will remain appropriate for a considerable time after the economic recovery strengthens.” In plain English, the Fed is more or less promising that it won’t start raising interest rates as soon as the economy looks better, that it will hold off until the economy is actually booming and (perhaps) until inflation has gone significantly higher. The idea here is that by indicating its willingness to let the economy rip for a while, the Fed can encourage more private-sector spending right away. Potential home buyers will be encouraged by the prospect of moderately higher inflation that will make their debt easier to repay; corporations will be encouraged by the prospect of higher future sales; stocks will rise, increasing wealth, and the dollar will fall, making U.S. exports more competitive.

This is very much the kind of action Fed critics have advocated — and that Mr. Bernanke himself used to advocate before he became Fed chairman. True, it’s a lot less explicit than the critics would have liked. But it’s still a welcome move, although far from being a panacea for the economy’s troubles (a point Mr. Bernanke himself emphasized).

And Republicans, as I said, have gone wild, with Mr. Romney joining in the craziness. His campaign issued a news release denouncing the Fed’s move as giving the economy an “artificial” boost — he later described it as a “sugar high” — and declaring that “we should be creating wealth, not printing dollars.” Mr. Romney’s language echoed that of the “liquidationists” of the 1930s, who argued against doing anything to mitigate the Great Depression. Until recently, the verdict on liquidationism seemed clear: it has been rejected and ridiculed not just by liberals and Keynesians but by conservatives too, including none other than Milton Friedman. “Aggressive monetary policy can reduce the depth of a recession,” declared the George W. Bush administration in its 2004 Economic Report of the President. And the author of that report, Harvard’s N. Gregory Mankiw, has actually advocated a much more aggressive Fed policy than the one announced last week. Now Mr. Mankiw is allegedly a Romney adviser — but the candidate’s position on economic policy is evidently being dictated by extremists who warn that any effort to fight this slump will turn us into Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe I tell you.

Oh, and what about Mr. Romney’s ideas for “creating wealth”? The Romney economic “plan” offers no specifics about what he would actually do. The thrust of it, however, is that what America needs is less environmental protection and lower taxes on the wealthy. Surprise! Indeed, as Mike Konczal of the Roosevelt Institute points out, the Romney plan of 2012 is almost identical — and with the same turns of phrase — to John McCain’s plan in 2008, not to mention the plans laid out by George W. Bush in 2004 and 2006. The situation changes, but the song remains the same.

So last week we learned that Ben Bernanke is willing to listen to sensible critics and change course. But we also learned that on economic policy, as on foreign policy, Mitt Romney has abandoned any pose of moderation and taken up residence in the right’s intellectual fever swamps.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:06 AM

9. Probe focuses on JPMorgan's monitoring of suspect transactions

http://news.yahoo.com/probe-focuses-jpmorgans-monitoring-suspect-transactions-015125099--sector.html

A U.S. regulatory probe of JPMorgan Chase & Co's anti-money laundering systems is focusing on potential lapses in how the largest U.S. bank monitors suspect money transactions, according to people familiar with the situation. The probe appears to be focused on the systems and personnel that JPMorgan uses to safeguard against illicit money flows, the sources said, declining to be identified because they were not authorized to speak to the media. One specific angle of the probe is how the bank's systems were set up to review a high volume of suspect transactions. Banks are required to file reports of suspicious activity but that can add to costs. Regulators and banks sometimes disagree over whether those reviews produce reports that actually identify financing tied to illegal narcotics, terrorism or sanctioned countries.

JPMorgan faces being hit with a regulatory order by the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which regulates national banks. That order would identify lapses and require the bank to tighten the anti-money laundering systems it uses...
.
MORE REPORTS OF ACTUAL REGULATION AT LINK

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:11 AM

10. Gold Just Became Money Again By Doug Hornig

On June 18, the Federal Reserve and FDIC circulated a letter to banks that proposes to harmonize US regulatory capital rules with Basel III.
(BASEL III is an accord that tells a bank how much capital it must hold to safeguard its solvency and overall economic stability. It’s a global standard on bank capital adequacy, stress testing, and market liquidity risk.)

Here’s the important bit:

At the top of the proposed changes is the new list of “zero-percent risk weighted items,” which now includes “gold bullion,” right after “cash.”


...If the proposals are approved by regulators — and that seems likely since adoption of Basel III will be — then this is a momentous change for the gold market. Now banks will be allowed to hold bullion in their vaults and count it among their Tier 1 assets — in other words, the least risky assets. That by itself would be bullish for the gold price, as banks that recognize gold’s unique characteristics seek to stockpile more of it. But that’s not the whole story…

Gold Regains Money Status

For one thing, Basel III also stipulates that a bank’s Tier 1 holdings must rise from 4% of assets to 6%. That means that banks may not only replace a portion of their existing paper with bullion, but may use it to meet some of the extra 2% as well. In addition, this vote of confidence from the highest monetary authorities gives further impetus to the remonetization of gold. In essence, what’s happening is that from now on gold will be considered “money” in virtually the same way as cash or bonds. And banks will be given the choice between holding more of their core assets in history’s most reliable store of value vs. paper backed by nothing more than the promises of increasingly wasteful governments.

Finally, there is the impact on individual and institutional investors. Jeff Clark, in Casey Research’s BIG GOLD newsletter, has been guiding gold investors for years. In his view, this news looks set to really shake up the gold market, because as regulators and banks increasingly view gold as having safety on a par with the various paper alternatives, it is logical that they will also see the need to beef up their own holdings...There are a number of positives for gold going forward. Though it remains speculation on our part, we believe that the net result of Basel III and associated adjustments to US regulations will be an increased recognition of gold’s safe-haven status across all markets. And that translates into higher global demand for the metal next year, and a concomitant increase in its price. If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to get informed on gold and begin adding it to your portfolio.

Read more: Gold Just Became Money Again http://dailyreckoning.com/gold-just-became-money-again/#ixzz26iTfhaFX

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Response to Demeter (Reply #10)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:22 AM

11. And Here’s Why Gold Will Remain Money By Dan Amoss

One of the longest-running myths in financial markets is going to damage a lot of portfolios: the myth that central bank money printing — in the context of a modern banking system — hikes the value of stocks. Many academics still think printing lots of money — which is thought to permanently increase stock prices — will lead to some sort of trickle-down economy phenomenon. Ben Bernanke said as much in his famous November 2010 Op-Ed in The Washington Post: “Higher stock prices will boost consumer wealth and help increase confidence, which can also spur spending. Increased spending will lead to higher incomes and profits that, in a virtuous circle, will further support economic expansion.”

Since then, the S&P 500 has rallied from 1,200 to 1,430, mostly on the belief that stocks are a good substitute for bonds. Printing from the Fed and other central banks has front-loaded returns. Front-loading returns means the potential market gains will be depressed. In other words, the Fed’s actions have temporarily pushed stock prices above intrinsic value, and when the Fed stops money printing, stocks could quickly fall back to intrinsic value.

Yale professor Robert Shiller created the “Shiller P/E ratio,” which is the most-robust measure of the intrinsic value of the broad stock market. The Shiller P/E ratio is calculated as follows: Divide today’s S&P 500 index by the average inflation-adjusted earnings from the previous 10 years. I look at 10 years of earnings and cash flow data in researching stocks to get a feel for how earning might look in the future. Most investors remain too focused on the quarter-to-quarter minutiae, which often leads to surprises at turning points in the earnings cycle.The Shiller P/E of the S&P 500 is currently 23 — 50% higher than its long-term average. The average Shiller P/E ratio since 1880 is about 15. A move back to the average would take the S&P 500 back to 930. A move to bear market low valuations would take the S&P 500 back to roughly 400. Right now, it’s 1,432.

The Fed can’t grow the intrinsic value of stocks. Companies can do that only by earning returns above their cost of capital.

In the coming quarters, many companies that had been earning returns above their cost of capital will be earning lower returns. Free cash flow will follow returns lower. Look at Intel’s latest revenue warning; look at FedEx’s earnings warning. Profit margins have peaked in many industries. Manufacturing companies exporting to Europe and China will continue to suffer. Apple can hold neither the stock market nor the economy up. Meanwhile, household budgets out in the real world are straining to the breaking point. This morning’s data showed the US labor force participation rate at a terrible 63.5% — the lowest in 31 years. So Ben Bernanke is responding to this silent crisis the only way he knows how…by pushing repeatedly on the “print money” button at the Federal Reserve. He calls is “quantitative easing,” or QE. And it’s my bet that QE3 is coming soon to a nation near you. With each successive round of quantitative easing, demand for gold and other stores of value will rise and demand for stocks will weaken. As I observed in this column last Friday,

“Fed officials have been all over the media for weeks, laying the groundwork for a third round of quantitative easing. By preparing markets for QE3, the Fed refuses to let real-world evidence get in the way of its beloved theories…Perhaps once the global paper money system is restructured, involving some sort of gold standard, sanity will return to the Fed and other central banks. Until we see more signs of sanity, hold a core position in gold, silver, and precious metal mining stocks. These asset classes will be the prime beneficiaries of future printing.”


Read more: And Here's Why Gold Will Remain Money http://dailyreckoning.com/and-heres-why-gold-will-remain-money/#ixzz26iUqBVBI

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:27 AM

12. Greeks work the longest hours in the EU; and other facts about the Greek labor markets

http://soberlook.com/2012/09/greeks-work-longest-hours-in-eu-and.html

1. Greek official unemployment rate is just under 24%.

2. Greek youth unemployment is the highest in the Eurozone, just under 54%.


http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-a1Ma2p9Erbw/UFPkGgTXjmI/AAAAAAAAMIs/iWbk_u_66lM/s1600/Greek+youth+unemployment+rate.PNG


3. Greeks work the longest hours in the EU (also longer than in the US).

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-8zoLLoPKYFA/UFPikoSMGyI/AAAAAAAAMIk/T-Ge0jeicFg/s640/Greek+work+hours.PNG

4. Greek productivity however is $35 an hour, compared with $49 in the EU and $58 in the U.S. (McKinsey via Bloomberg).

5. Greece has the lowest labor participation rate (% of employable population that have jobs) in the EU: 66% vs. 73% average in the EU.

6. Greek official retirement age is 65 (not some of the nonsense numbers people have been sending around) and is likely going up to 67 as part of the agreement (yet to be concluded) between the government and troika.

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Response to Demeter (Reply #12)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:35 AM

13. Time is Money and other Fetishes VIS A VIS GREECE

http://soberlook.com/2012/08/time-is-money-and-other-fetishes.html

Doesn't the idea that "time is money" capture the spirit of modernity? Yet the Greek Prime Minister is suggesting that all Greece needs is some breathing room, given the depth of the economic contraction. It does not need any more money, he tries to reassure...The Troika will not find this believable. Press reports suggest the IMF projects that even without the 2-year extension that Samaras is pleading for, Greece will need another 13-14 bln euros to cover the 2015-2016 period. If a 2-year extension is granted, the IMF reportedly projects Greece needs to be twice this. Samaras may be better served by being more direct. He inherited a mess and is making every effort to fix it. The excesses took many years to build and they cannot be unwound in a day. It is unreasonable for the creditors to make a fetish of arbitrary time frames and targets. If it takes Greece another couple of years and another 30 bln euros to set its house right, isn't this preferable to the hundreds of billions of euros that are at stake in any exit scenario?

Despite the whining by some, Germany has hardly paid a penny to Greece. That it is fatigued by bailing out its weaker neighbors is more crass politics than real economics. Greece's biggest creditors do not include Germany. The ECB's Greek bonds were purchased with newly printed euros that the ECB continues to drain from the banking system. Germany does participate in the IMF's aid, but then so does the US and China, for example, as do all IMF members. The EU assisted Greece, and Germany shares some of this exposure. These costs are also mitigated by the savings Germany is making through lower interest rates...The pressure on Greece coming from the threat it is forced out of monetary union is not of Greece's doing, but of some loose-lipped politicians. For every Greek official that has endorsed continued membership there seems be at at least two officials from creditor countries, including Germany, that talk about it leaving. Membership in EMU enjoys consistently higher popular support in Greece than in Germany. Germany, moreover, never had a referendum on EMU in the first place. That Greece is not adhering to the agreement struck is conceded. Yet that does not warrant eviction. Otherwise, other countries would also likely be ousted. It was just a few months ago that coming out of a summit that underscored the importance of adhering to fiscal adjustments, Spain's Rajoy unilaterally announced his country was going to violate its agreement. Italy has also declared it will miss its targets...Look at the Netherlands. Its national election in September 12. The head of the Socialist Party, which is leading in most polls, is committed to the EU-mandated 3% budget deficit target, but in 2015 not 2013. Nor should it be forgotten that when Germany and France finagled their way out of fines, which perhaps, like the picture of US President George Washington throwing a silver dollar into Potomac River set the tone for subsequent fiscal policy, it too sent a powerful message about the gravitas of the rules in the first place.

There is no compelling economic reason why a 3% budget deficit is preferable to a 2.5% deficit or a 3.5% deficit. Nor is the 2013 time frame for the 3% deficit or 2014 some kind of panacea. They are means and metrics, not ends in themselves. By confusing means and ends, officials are at risk of attributing special powers to those rather arbitrary numbers and time frame. What does it mean when Juncker says this is Greece's last chance? Or what? Or European officials will cut their nose to spite their face. Yes, it is possible for Greece to be forced out of monetary union. Two measures are needed. First Greek banks have to be cut off from the ECB's lending facilities. This has largely been achieved by the ECB's decision to no longer accept Greek sovereign bonds or guaranteed bonds as collateral for additional lending. The ECB mitigated the impact of this decision by granting the central bank of Greece a larger limit of its Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) facility. Second, if this line is not extended, and the Troika does not finally approve the June payment, Greece would have no choice but to begin printing scrip. That said, it is not clear exactly how the exit itself would play out. Most observers do not appear to have given this much thought; suffice, they seem to think, is to say Greece must go.

Could the euro zone survive without Greece? It did for the first couple of years. The problem as the pre-Socratic philosopher Heraclitus put it, "one can't step in the same river twice." An exit now is not the same thing as never having joined. The exit itself would mean that the re-denomination risk the remaining members (face?) cannot be fully addressed. If European officials were so motivated, there are a number of measures that could be taken to put Greece on a more sustainable fiscal path. The official sector can grant lower interest rates and an extension of maturities. The ECB can sell its Greek bond holdings to the EFSF at cost and the EFSF can, in turn, give Greece a new bond with lower yields and longer maturities. The EFSF can buy the new Greek bonds (~63 bln euros) created in the private sector involvement (PSI) or it can put the cost of the recapitalization of Greek banks on its books rather than the government.

MORE

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Response to Demeter (Reply #12)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:46 AM

41. I don't know how they are

in the EU, but the Greeks I have know in my life are hard working, family centered folk that still manage to enjoy life. We have a large Greek Orthdox community here. They are a big influence in the restaurant industry and real estate. In fact, the Greek Festival is coming up soon. It is one of the oldest, biggest, and best attended festivals in town.

I guess this blow the "Greeks are bankrupt because they are lazy meme". Wonder if the same is true of Spain and Italy....hmmmmm.

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Response to AnneD (Reply #41)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:29 AM

52. Sorry, I'm too busy to comment at the moment,

polishing off this plate of penne, basil, tomato, capers by the beach.



But, hang on... Here:

Stephen Donnelly TD: We're mad as hell and need to show it

LAST Tuesday I had lunch in Boston with four Harvard professors. I hoped to discuss one question: what can Ireland do to turn around our levels of national debt, household debt and unemployment? To my surprise, the view of Ireland's prospects was decidedly positive. We had taken the hard medicine, were closing the budget deficit and our economy was growing again.

So I gave them the following two figures: 1) our gross national product (GNP) fell by 2.5 per cent last year and 2) our national debt was climbing towards 160 per cent of GNP. One of the professors paused, looked me in the eye and declared: "You're screwed."

Over the course of Wednesday and Thursday, I met a further 13 people in Washington DC -- IMF and World Bank officials and a range of experts from leading American think tanks. Amongst those I met were renowned economists and advisers to the Bush and Clinton administrations.

The view was largely the same. Ireland was doing well; it was successfully differentiating itself from Greece, Spain and Italy; it was on a path to recovery. But once the 2.5 per cent and 160 per cent figures were thrown into the mix, optimism faded.

These experts knew that no country had ever repaid that much debt without being able to print its own money. They knew that without a significant reduction in the national debt, a lot of people were not going to get paid back the money they had lent us.

They knew that economic growth and large-scale job creation would be next to impossible with the current levels of household debt. They knew that a country whose GNP was still falling by 2.5 per cent in the fourth year of a crisis was most definitely not on the road to recovery.

What, then, is causing this positive view of Ireland's prospects across the Atlantic?

/... http://www.independent.ie/opinion/analysis/stephen-donnelly-td-were-mad-as-hell-and-need-to-show-it-3230012.html

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #52)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 12:59 PM

62. The meal looks great from here.....

I just finished a wonderful bowl of chicken noodle soup-home made of course. I cooked all day Sunday, so i am ready for next week. I have today day off. I am watching V for Vendetta and knitting like a crazed person. I'm making a knitted block baby quilt for a grand nephew, a baby sweater for the newest addition to my favorite Italian American family. He should arrive in November...just in time for our Thanksgiving get together. I have been knitting other small gifts so I have been 'easy going-in a southern European way'.

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Response to AnneD (Reply #62)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:56 PM

64. You keep busy. Me I spend too much time only observing. I was just now photographing my neighbor

right next door here. One of the things he's doing to make ends meet is creating these model windmills out of scavenged stone, wood, cloth, ceramics... and selling into the local island market.

He's been out of formal employment (he has qualifications in the construction trade) over two years now.


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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #64)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 01:17 PM

84. Tell him to add....

some Don Quixote and Sanchez figures and it will sell. Maybe put the appropriate quote on the windmill. The way most folks feel, they will sell well.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #52)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:37 PM

65. The Triumph of Theory over Reality

is only ever short-term.

They (1%) are all nuts. If they had to live under the regime they impose on others, they'd be the first in the throng with pitchforks and torches.

But instead, they are putting in for first seats on the execution line.

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Response to Demeter (Reply #65)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:17 PM

72. See my post #71

And OWS doesn't even have a theory. . . . .

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:38 AM

14. THAT'S IRONY FOR YOU--

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:53 AM

15. and it's monday...

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Response to xchrom (Reply #15)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:12 AM

22. Morning, X!

At least, it will be soon. The sun doesn't get up so early anymore. But the cat still does...

This week I try to catch up on all the stuff I didn't do, or screwed up, last week...it's deja vu all over again!

And remember, if you aren't depressed, you aren't paying attention....

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:55 AM

16. A Totally Different Way to Think About Economics — with Visionary Charles Eisenstein

http://www.alternet.org/visions/totally-different-way-think-about-economics-visionary-charles-eisenstein




What would the world look like if money embodied our values, if the best business decision was the best decision for society, and if wealth was defined by how much we give, not how much we have?

This summer, I decided to escape London for a week .... for a different kind of short vacation. At Schumacher College in south Devon, the author and teacher Charles Eisenstein was travelling to the UK from the United States to run a course on ‘ecology, scarcity and the gift economy', before embarking on a tour around Europe. I'd only heard about Charles and his work when the Occupy Wall Street protests took off in late 2011, and I was captivated by his unique take on all that is wrong with our world as well as his fresh and engaging speaking style, as captured in a short film by Ian Mackenzie . After coming across his latest book, Sacred Economics , I jumped at the opportunity to spend some time in his company and learn more about his views on how "to make money and human economy as sacred as everything else in the universe".

The basic proposition of Charles' work was introduced to the course participants during a Sunday evening lecture on the first day of arrival. Charles suggested that everyone carries a secret knowledge in their hearts that tells them the society we live in is meant to be more beautiful than this, and yet we're constantly pulled back to a way of being that is somehow alien to us. Whatever world problem or crisis we look at, from fracking and atmospheric pollution to the destruction of the rainforests or the breakdown of community, someone somewhere is making money from it. It seems as if money has become opposite to our ideals, said Charles, and is often turned into a force for evil. So what would money look like if it embodied our values, if the best business decision was the best decision for society, and if wealth was defined by how much we give, not how much we have?

During the next morning of the course, we began to explore these broad ideas through a number of experiential exercises. This began with an exploration of ‘the gift' and what that means for us personally in our day-to-day lives and our work. As Charles began the session by explaining, this hearkens back to indigenous cultures in which an understanding of the gift was fundamental to how societies functioned - a concept that is widely explored in the fascinating book The Gift by Lewis Hyde (one of four books recommended for participants to read before the course began).* Today, we generally no longer see society as premised on the gift, but have rather constructed complex market economies that hinder us from expressing our gifts on a social, economic or individual basis - the implications of which is profoundly contemplated in Charles' writings. The need to re-learn the gift is central to the changes that are now needed to heal our broken world, as his latest book explains in compelling detail; from an analysis of how modern civilisation has tragically lost our understanding of the gift, to the collective actions necessary to create a gift-based economy and realise "the more beautiful world our hearts tell us is possible".

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Response to xchrom (Reply #16)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:43 AM

29. Cool article, Thanks

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:00 AM

17. This Buyout Boom Is an Inside Job:Companies Swapping One Private-Equity Owner for Another

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444433504577649740591806800.html?mod=dist_smartbrief

Private-equity firms are buying and selling companies more this year than in any of the last five thanks largely to one industry: their own.

Some $28 billion in U.S. deals between private-equity shops have been announced this year, more than double the amount for all of last year and on pace to be the most since 2007's $51.1 billion, according to Dealogic.

Many of these deals this year involve private-equity firms selling boom-era buyouts, including the biggest such deal of the year: Carlyle Group LP's $3.3 billion acquisition announced last month of a controlling stake in photo-provider Getty Images Inc...

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Response to Demeter (Reply #17)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:15 AM

48. Equity Firms Like Bain Are Depicted as Colluding

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/12/business/documents-depict-equity-firms-like-bain-as-colluding.html

In court documents that lawyers for Bain Capital sought to keep secret, the company and other leading private equity firms are depicted as unofficial partners in a bid-rigging conspiracy aimed at holding down the prices of businesses they were seeking to buy.

In Bain’s biggest acquisition, the $32.1 billion purchase of the hospital giant HCA in 2006, competitors agreed privately to “stand down” and not bid on the company as part of an understanding with Bain to divvy up companies targeted for leveraged buyouts, according to internal e-mails.

The documents have become part of a lawsuit in Federal District Court in Boston brought against Bain and other firms by shareholders who say the firms’ bid-rigging artificially deflated the sales price of more than two dozen companies and cost them billions of dollars.

Bain, founded by the Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, is a defendant in the lawsuit, which also names Goldman Sachs’s private equity arm and the Blackstone Group, the firm run by the investor Stephen A. Schwarzman...

THAR SHE BLOWS!

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:02 AM

18. Wholesale Prices in U.S. Rise Most in Three Years on Oil

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-13/wholesale-prices-in-u-s-rise-most-in-three-years-as-oil-surge.html

Wholesale prices in the U.S. increased in August by the most in more than three years, reflecting a surge in energy costs.

The producer price index climbed 1.7 percent after an increase of 0.3 percent in July, the Labor Department reported today in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 79 economists called for a 1.2 percent gain. Core wholesale inflation, which excludes volatile food and energy prices, rose 0.2 percent, in line with forecasts.

Companies may find it difficult to pass on higher energy costs as the global economic slowdown and so-called fiscal cliff of higher taxes and government spending cuts prompt their customers to limit spending. The absence of broad-based price increases gives Federal Reserve policy makers, who meet today, room to provide more monetary stimulus for the economy.

“Outside of energy, producer prices for the most part are pretty contained,” said Omair Sharif, a U.S. economist at RBS Securities Inc. in Stamford, Connecticut. “I don’t think the Fed is going to be too concerned. The Fed is going to take today’s report as consistent with their view that the run-up in energy is transitory.”


The gain in producer prices was the biggest since June 2009 and reflected the biggest jump in energy costs in three years...

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:04 AM

19. INDIA CENTRAL BANK CUTS CASH RESERVE RATIO

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_INDIA_CENTRAL_BANK?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-09-17-05-34-49

NEW DELHI (AP) -- India's central bank Monday cut the cash reserve ratio as it tries to kick-start flagging growth and welcomed government efforts to open Asia's third-largest economy to more foreign investment.

The Reserve Bank of India said the share of deposits that banks must keep with it as reserves was cut by a quarter percentage point to 4.5 percent, injecting about 170 billion rupees ($3.2 billion) into the banking system.

The central bank also announced that it would keep its short-term lending rate, or repo rate, unchanged at 8 percent. The reverse repo rate at which the bank absorbs excess money by borrowing from banks, was also unchanged - at 7 percent.

The monetary policy decisions come just days after the government announced landmark reforms aimed at giving a boost to India's economy.

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:05 AM

20. House passes stopgap funding bill to keep government open until after election

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/2chambers/post/house-passes-stopgap-funding-bill-to-keep-government-open-until-after-election/2012/09/13/8d784e82-fdde-11e1-8adc-499661afe377_blog.html?hpid=z4

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved a six-month stopgap government funding bill on a 329 to 91 vote, putting aside the partisan warfare of the past 18 months in bipartisan resolve to avoid a budget showdown ahead of the November election.

The Senate is expected to pass the same measure late next week, providing funding for agencies for the first six months of the fiscal year and avoiding any threat of a government shutdown when the year ends Sept. 30.

The drama with Thursday’s vote came less from the outcome of the vote than from the appearance of Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, who chairs the House Budget Committee and came to the Capitol to cast a vote in favor of the measure.

His vote was intended to send a message to members of the raucous GOP freshman caucus that they should also sign off on a measure that will set a $1.047 trillion funding level for the first half of the year, the same figure enshrined in the deal to raise the nation’s debt ceiling last summer...Many rank-and-file Republicans agreed to go along with the bill as a way to spare Congress a messy budget fight as the election looms, even though they would have preferred to cut spending more deeply, following Ryan’s own budget, which would set funding for the year at $1.028 trillion...

SOME DAY, SOMEHOW, I'D LIKE TO SEE DEMOCRATS FALL IN LINE LIKE DUCKLINGS AND TAKE THEIR LEADERSHIP TO AN EASY VICTORY...

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Response to Demeter (Reply #20)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:15 AM

23. Congress to Take Closer Look At Computer-Driven Trading

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444426404577647953013707344.html?mod=dist_smartbrief

Congress is stepping up its scrutiny of computer-driven trading and its effect on market stability after a string of technical glitches this year that roiled markets and hurt investor confidence.

A Senate Banking Committee panel will hold a hearing on Sept. 20 to probe how computers interact in the market and whether some firms have advantages over others, according to people familiar with the planning of the hearing. The panel, chaired by Sen. Jack Reed, a Rhode Island Democrat, will also look into the rising influence of high-frequency traders, rapid-fire trading operations responsible for some two-thirds of all stock-trading volume...

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Response to Demeter (Reply #23)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:16 AM

24. Exchanges consider "speed bumps" for trading firms

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/13/us-regulation-trading-idUSBRE88C03120120913

U.S. regulators and exchanges are looking at sweeping circuit breakers and other speed bumps for the high-speed world of electronic trading in case glitches occur, industry executives said on Wednesday, but also noted they are being overwhelmed by the pace of regulatory reforms.

High-profile electronic snafus like the August 1 glitch at Knight Capital Group (KCG.N) that unleashed errant orders and cost the executer of U.S. equity trades $440 million, are prompting a wide review of financial market structures.

Currently, exchanges have so-called "circuit breakers" that halt single stocks if their prices swing too fast in one direction or another, so market participants can pause to figure out if the moves were intentional.

Kevin Murphy, head of U.S. option electronic execution at Citigroup Global Markets, said exchanges and market makers were now looking at creating "speed bumps" that would stop all orders from one market maker at an exchange if the situation called for it, and also possibly across multiple exchanges...

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Response to Demeter (Reply #23)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:40 AM

28. 10/3/08 The beginning of an end

and this shit proves it .

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Response to orpupilofnature57 (Reply #28)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:02 AM

43. Is that when the TARP was signed? n/t

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Response to Demeter (Reply #20)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:25 AM

49. Me too. Good morning everyone. Have a good week. n/t

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:09 AM

21. Financial Transaction Taxes: Pros and Cons

http://businessfinancemag.com/article/financial-transaction-taxes-pros-and-cons-0912

With interest in a financial transactions tax (FTT) growing in many parts of the world, it seems like a reasonable time to look at some of the research that’s been done on the impact of these taxes. Is it a reasonable way for governments to raise revenue and curb some of the high-frequency trading and speculation that can destabilize the financial systems? Or would such a tax make the financial markets less efficient and liquid, ultimately boosting volatility and cutting into investment returns for even small investors? Arguments have been made on both sides...Studies on the impact of other FTTs already in place around the world, as well as the potential impact of an FTT implemented in the U.S., have shown mixed results.

On the positive side – at least, if you’re Uncle Sam and trying to reduce the deficit – the tax brings in cash. An analysis of the Harkin and DeFazio bill from the Joint Committee on Taxation calculated that it would raise $352 billion between January 2013 through 2021.

On the other hand, a 2012 study of the impact of an FTT by researchers at the Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis, “Financial transaction tax: review and assessment,” found “little evidence for the corrective properties of the FTT.” Such a tax wouldn’t reduce market volatility, and its impact on asset price bubbles is unclear, the paper stated. Another 2012 study, this one by Oliver Wyman, reached similar conclusions. An FTT would dramatically increase the cost of transactions, particularly the most liquid and most frequently traded products, while having little impact on speculative trading, which could more easily move outside the reach of the tax. In addition, “implementation of the tax costs the economy more than the tax burden,” according to the report, “Proposed EU Commission Financial Transaction Tax Impact Analysis on Foreign Exchange Markets.” However, the Chicago Political Economy Group points out that a number of countries, including Hong Kong, South Korea and the U.K., have lived with an FTT for years, with little apparent negative impact on the local financial industry. All boast large financial markets.

...Last fall, Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Congressman Peter DeFazio (D-OR) introduced legislation in the U.S. to impose a tax of three basis points on most non-consumer financial trading, including stocks and bonds, other than at their initial issuance. The measure remains with the Senate Committee on Finance. According to a number of reports, however, the White House doesn’t support the idea of a financial transaction tax....

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:21 AM

25. More Americans opting out of banking system

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/more-americans-opting-out-of-banking-system/2012/09/12/6380b986-fcf1-11e1-a31e-804fccb658f9_story.html

In the aftermath of one of the worst recessions in history, more Americans have limited or no interaction with banks, instead relying on check cashers and payday lenders to manage their finances, according to a new federal report.

Not only are these Americans more vulnerable to high fees and interest rates, but they are also cut off from credit to buy a car or a home or pay for college, the report from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said.

Released Wednesday, the study found that 821,000 households opted out of the banking system from 2009 to 2011 and that the so-called unbanked population grew to 8.2 percent of U.S. households.

That means that roughly 17 million adults are without a checking or savings account. Another 51 million adults have a bank account, but use pawnshops, payday lenders or rent-to-own services, the FDIC said. This underbanked population has grown from 18.2 percent to 20.1 percent of households nationwide. The study also found that one in four households, or 28.3 percent, either had one or no bank account. A third of these households said they do not have enough money to open and fund an account. Minorities, the unemployed, young people and lower-income households are least likely to have accounts. Stubbornly high unemployment and underemployment have placed millions of Americans in precarious financial positions, leaving them unable to absorb overdraft charges or minimum-balance fees...

SOUNDS LIKE A GOOD TIME FOR THE POSTAL SERVICE TO GO INTO LOW-COST BANKING....

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Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:24 AM

26. “Bad banks” seldom turn a profit but are still useful

http://www.economist.com/node/21562231

“IT WILL be viable and will not post losses,” promised Luis de Guindos, Spain’s finance minister, on August 31st, as he unveiled plans for a “bad bank” to take over the dud property assets of Spain’s troubled lenders. Experience suggests that such pledges are not easily kept.

  • America’s Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC), for instance, was set up in 1989 to clean up savings-and-loans institutions with $394 billion in assets. The process cost taxpayers almost $76 billion.

  • The example of Sweden’s widely admired bad bank in the 1990s is even less encouraging. Sweden’s bank regulators vigorously marked down souring assets, forced banks to recapitalise (or be nationalised) and moved dud loans into specialised asset-management companies. This was to allow cleaned-up lenders to operate as “good banks” that lent to the real economy. Judged by its overall impact the Swedish bad bank was a success: growth bounced back quite quickly. But the cost to taxpayers was high. Sweden paid about 4% of its GDP to bail out its financial system, yet got back only about half of that from selling off loans and stakes in banks.

  • More reassuring to Spanish taxpayers is Maiden Lane, a vehicle created by the New York Federal Reserve to house assets owned by Bear Stearns and AIG that have turned out to be less toxic than expected. In June this year Maiden Lane repaid in full (and with interest) the money it had borrowed to fund its purchases. It still has some assets left to sell, so the government will probably turn a profit on the deal, in contrast to earlier estimates that it might lose as much as $6 billion on its $29 billion in assets from Bear Stearns alone.

  • Another relative success may be found in Britain’s bad bank, which took over some of the loans issued by Northern Rock, and all of the ones held by Bradford & Bingley. By the end of June 2012 it had £90 billion ($141 billion) on its books, on which it seems to be turning a profit thanks to cheap funding from the government. British taxpayers have fared rather worse with nominally good banks: the government’s equity stakes in Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland have fallen in value by over £30 billion.

  • Ireland’s bad bank, the National Asset Management Agency (NAMA), also seems to be doing fairly well in managing the €74 billion ($93 billion) in loans it took over, mainly because it bought the assets from Irish banks for just €32 billion. Yet it is now in the invidious position of being a long-term manager of a large portfolio of state-owned properties with all the risks of political interference that this entails.

    These precedents suggest a few lessons for Spain’s bad bank. The first is to be conservative when valuing the assets that will go into the bad bank, even if this imposes steeper losses on the banks handing them over. Cautious valuations will help set a floor for property markets and make it easier for the bad bank to sell assets quickly.

    A second lesson is that borrowing costs matter. Bad banks in Britain and America turned good because they could borrow cheaply. Unless Spain’s borrowing costs fall sharply, the government will be hard-pressed to make a turn on even deeply discounted banking assets. Last is the lesson from Sweden and the RTC, that bad banks may be judged successful even if they incur large losses. Rather than promising profits, Mr de Guindos might do well to start reminding people of that.
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    Response to Demeter (Reply #26)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:15 AM

    47. The RTC cost taxpayers money because

    it was poorly run. Stupidly. With grotesque waste.

    I worked at the RTC-controlled Lincoln Savings in 1990-91. The waste of money was rampant. Everything from wasting literally tons of copier paper to hiring temporary managers from out of state who only worked three days a week but were put up in luxury Scottsdale resort hotels for seven days a week.

    Where's Dave?



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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #47)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:42 PM

    66. It was Dave's accountant who did the actual work

    Dave just got it through Congress and the public. What a concept! Participatory democracy based on reality.....

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:26 AM

    27. Back to the Future: What's at Stake for the Economy in the Obama-Romney Contest

    http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=3076

    INTERESTING, IRRITATING, TOTALLY MISSING THE POINT SPECULATION...

    THINGS WILL NOT CHANGE BECAUSE NEITHER CANDIDATE PROPOSES CHANGE, NOT REAL, EFFECTIVE CHANGE, THAT IS. THEY JUST REARRANGE THE SEATING FOR THE LOOTERS.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:45 AM

    30. Will Germans Pick Up the Tab for Deutsche Bank, Too?

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-16/will-germans-pick-up-the-tab-for-deutsche-bank-too-.html

    Pity the German taxpayer.

    Recent weeks have brought a slew of bad news in terms of contingent liabilities for the German state -- meaning that taxpayers are potentially on the hook for increasing amounts. Two weeks ago, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi affirmed his willingness to commit the ECB -- partly owned by Germany -- to take on added sovereign-debt risk. And last week the German constitutional court confirmed that the European Stability Mechanism is consistent with German law, allowing further fiscal transfers to the euro-area periphery.

    And most recently, Deutsche Bank AG (DBK) unveiled its revamped strategy, with a new vision for its organization and growth. The German taxpayer should be very worried.

    Deutsche Bank cannot fail -- in the sense of experiencing a Lehman Brothers-type bankruptcy. The German government wouldn’t allow it. With a balance sheet equivalent to about 80 percent of Germany’s gross domestic product, Deutsche Bank is too big to fail both in terms of its direct involvement with the national economy and the potential knock-on effect on confidence in German industry.

    But the bank can fail in the sense that it could require future taxpayer assistance. To determine how likely this is -- and the scale of potential losses at any bank -- you need to answer three questions.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:54 AM

    31. Billionaire Arnault’s LVMH Amasses EU4 Billion in Belgium

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-16/french-billionaire-arnault-s-lvmh-amasses-eu4-billion-in-belgium.html

    Companies linked to French billionaire Bernard Arnault’s LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton have amassed 4 billion euros ($5.2 billion) in assets in Belgium, where he recently applied for citizenship.

    Belgian central bank records show that 12 companies and a private foundation, all connected to LVMH and based in Brussels, have more than tripled their assets since 2008.

    Olivier Labesse, an LVMH spokesman, said the companies are investment vehicles for LVMH, which has annual revenue of $26 billion. The Paris-based company has made Belgium its “operational center of finance” in recent years to take advantage of more favorable tax treatment there, he said. The shifting of assets to Belgium “has nothing to do” with Arnault’s personal tax situation, Labesse said.

    Arnault, 63, the chief executive officer of LVMH and France’s richest man -- with a net worth of $25.7 billion, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index -- sparked an uproar in France this month when he said he was seeking Belgian citizenship, just as President Francois Hollande plans to impose a 75 percent tax on income of over 1 million euros.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:01 AM

    32. Hundreds Of Billions Of Dollars Expected To Be Withdrawn From Swiss Banks Amid Tax Evasion Crackdown

    http://www.businessinsider.com/hundreds-of-billions-of-dollars-expected-to-be-withdrawn-from-swiss-banks-amid-tax-evasion-crackdown-2012-9

    * UBS: Hundreds of billions of francs to leave Swiss banks
    * UBS: Own client withdrawals offset by inflows elsewhere
    * UBS still sees reason for clients to bank in Switzerland
    * UBS investing in Germany, Britain, Italy
    ZURICH, Sept 17 (Reuters) - UBS expects Swiss banks to see European clients withdraw "hundreds of billions of francs" as a result of steps to stop foreigners using secret accounts to evade taxes.
    Juerg Zeltner, head of UBS wealth management, reiterated an estimate he gave in May that Switzerland's biggest bank could see outflows of 12-30 billion Swiss francs ($12.8-31.9 billion) from total European assets under management of over 300 billion.
    "As a consequence of the realignment of the financial centre and the planned withholding tax, we assume that a total of hundreds of billions of francs will flow out of Switzerland," he told the Schweizer Bank magazine in an interview on Monday.


    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/hundreds-of-billions-of-dollars-expected-to-be-withdrawn-from-swiss-banks-amid-tax-evasion-crackdown-2012-9#ixzz26iw9wqKc

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:03 AM

    33. Billionaires Are Getting Richer, While Millionaires Are Getting Poorer

    http://www.businessinsider.com/growing-gap-between-rich-and-super-rich-2012-9

    ?maxX=400

    SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Many millionaires got poorer in the last year, but billionaires did just fine, using their heavyweight money management teams to ride out market and economic turmoil that hit the lesser rich, research company Wealth-X said on Monday.
    The ranks of people with at least $30 million edged up to 187,380 but their total wealth fell 1.8 percent to $25.8 trillion -- still a sum bigger than the combined size of the U.S. and Chinese economies, Wealth-X said in a report.
    Hardest hit globally were those in the $200 million to $499 million range, whose numbers dropped 9.9 percent and whose fortunes shrank 11.4 percent, the World Ultra Wealth Report said, using data for the year through July 31.
    But the really, really rich got even richer as the number of billionaires rose 9.4 percent to 2,160 people and their wealth grew 14 percent to $6.2 trillion.


    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/growing-gap-between-rich-and-super-rich-2012-9#ixzz26iwg9qEv

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    Response to xchrom (Reply #33)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:01 AM

    42. There's Our Secret Weapon for Equality and Redistribution, Right There

    The Disaffected Well-Off will drive the change we need, as opposed to the screwing over we got.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #42)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:12 AM

    59. No.

    They will never turn against those with whom they identify.

    They will blame us instead, and will become tools of their former "friends."

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:08 AM

    34. Obama to file trade complaint against China over cars

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-19621814

    US President Barack Obama is expected to file a new trade complaint against China, accusing it of illegally subsidising exports of cars and car parts.

    A White House official said China's actions were forcing US manufacturers to shift production overseas.

    "The key principal at stake is that China must play by the rules of the global trading system," said a White House official.

    Mr Obama's move is seen as political.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:09 AM

    35. Oil price near four-month high after Fed move

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-19620962

    Oil prices rose for the eighth session in a row, with Brent crude trading near a four-month high, boosted by the Federal Reserve's move last week to stimulate the US economy.

    The central bank said on Thursday that it would inject $40bn (£25bn) a month into the economy.

    Brent crude for November delivery was up 26 cents at $116.92 a barrel, while US crude was up 1 cent to $99.01.

    There are fears that high oil prices could hamper economic recovery.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:53 AM

    36. GLOBAL MARKETS SLIP AS FED-DRIVEN EUPHORIA FADES

    http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/W/WORLD_MARKETS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2012-09-17-05-33-54

    LONDON (AP) -- Global stock markets were muted Monday as the boost faded from the Federal Reserve's announcement last week of new measures to energize the U.S. economy.

    Signs that European governments will take longer than expected to agree the details and set up their banking supervisor also weighed on sentiment.

    In early European trading, Germany's DAX fell 0.2 percent to 7,397.23 while France's CAC 40 dropped 0.5 percent to 3,563.57. Britain's FTSE 100 index lost 0.2 percent to 5,901.80.

    Asian stocks slipped and Wall Street was poised to fall. Dow futures were down 0.1 percent to 13,500 and broader S&P 500 futures shed 0.2 percent to 1,456.40.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:56 AM

    37. How Germany's south became the backbone of a vibrant economy

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/sep/17/germany-south-backbone-economy


    A technician at the Pfeifer rope plant in Memmingen. Photograph: Pfeifer Group

    It is hard to imagine now that southern Germany – Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria – was very poor in the 19th century, a largely agricultural area little touched by industrialisation. After the second world war, when hard graft and financial aid via the Marshall plan resulted in Germany's "Wirtschaftswunder" (economic miracle), the region rose to become the country's economic powerhouse.

    Today the south is Germany's most prosperous part and home to tens of thousands of small and medium-sized privately-owned companies – known as the Mittelstand – hi-tech clusters and household names such as Daimler and Bosch.

    Gerhard Pfeifer, who runs the eponymous ropemaking business in the picturesque town of Memmingen, where the unemployment rate is a mere 1.9%, says the Mittelstand is the backbone of the German economy. Crucial to its success is Germany's tradition of craftsmanship – on-the-job training with some theory thrown in. For example, Pfeifer's late father, who took over the business after the second world war, was a master ropemaker, as is Gerhard Pfeifer's sister, Renate Pfeifer-Lerner. The firm has taken on 12 new trainees this year, taking the total to nearly 50.

    Pfeifer also credits the south-west's entrepreneurial spirit. About 95% of the 128,000 Mittelstand companies in Swabia (Bayerisch-Schwaben) are family businesses which despite their high export activity – 40% of their turnover goes abroad – remain rooted in the region through their close involvement with local social and cultural institutions.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:00 AM

    38. Angela Merkel's austerity postergirl, the thrifty Swabian housewife

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/sep/17/angela-merkel-austerity-swabian-housewives


    Waltraud Maier and Heide Sickinger enjoy their Swabian housewife roles in Gerlingen, near Stuttgart – and would never buy on credit. Photograph: Frederick Florin/AFP

    In the sleepy, picturesque towns and villages of south-west Germany, the paragons of thrift are doing what they do best. They shop frugally, use credit cards rarely and save up to a third of a property's value before applying for a mortgage.

    The schwäbische Hausfrau – southern Germany's thrifty Swabian housewife – is frequently invoked by Angela Merkel. The German chancellor argues that Europe has been living beyond its means and can learn from these women's frugal housekeeping and balanced budgeting.

    Heide Sickinger and Waltraud Maier, two housewives from Gerlingen, near Stuttgart, agree.

    "A housewife keeps the family together and the money," says Maier. "I don't buy on credit. People never used to live beyond their means here," she adds, before noting that the younger generation are more cavalier. She and her friend only use credit cards when they go on holiday, and make sure they have enough money in their accounts to pay off the debt immediately. Both believe that "southern Europeans are a different breed. They are more easy-going."

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    Response to xchrom (Reply #38)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:56 AM

    56. Southern Europeans more easy-going......

    That must be the 51% of the young that are unemployed in Greece. Or maybe the 24.5 % of regular Greeks the are unemployed are easygoing because I think the pensioners that have had their pensions cut and the employed Greeks that have had wage giveback are to worried bout how they will pay for electricity and food for their extended families at home.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:24 AM

    39. Thousands demand referendum be held to determine austerity drive

    http://elpais.com/elpais/2012/09/16/inenglish/1347814452_787122.html



    Hundreds of thousands of Spaniards from different parts of the country converged in Madrid on Saturday to demand a referendum to determine whether the government should continue on its severe austerity program. Brought together by a collective called Social Summit — comprised of about 200 professional organizations and the unions — demonstrators marched through the streets of the Spanish capital under thousands of flags, banners and signs of the groups that they represented.

    Many carried placards with the words “Fed up,” “Euro violence,” and “Assault” written on them.

    Saturday’s protest is just the first of many that are due to be held by the UGT and CCOO unions during what is expected a heated social conflict period this autumn. Both labor groups have threatened to call a general strike in the future.

    The demonstration came just four days after a massive turnout in Catalonia of pro-nationalist supporters who demanded independence as an alternative to the central government's cutbacks.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:28 AM

    40. Exarchia — the Hell’s Kitchen of Athens

    http://www.presseurop.eu/en/content/article/2707311-exarchia-hell-s-kitchen-athens

    ?1347877255
    Messages honouring Alexis Grigoropoulos, the young anarchist killed by the police in Athens’ Exarchia district in 2008.


    The Albanian is a legitimate businessman today, and the young girl from the wealthy neighborhood of Ekali has grown into a little troublemaker. The good old anarchist sending the pseudo-revolutionary neophytes back to their studies, the Cypriot hotelier who becomes the best friend of Japanese tourists, and the former prisoner now an organiser of cultural events can all be found around Exarchia Square, a rallying point for the capital’s youth come by to savour the myth of the square, which a PASOK chief wants to turn into a parking lot.

    In the heart of Athens, by day the square, like a snake shedding its skin, turns into something else, a mix of races, of shops opening and closing (thanks to Molotov cocktails, of course), watching over its restaurants, the Rozalia tavern and the Floral, and even the Riviera cinema. Not to mention its two kiosks, the statue of the lovers and two or three other things. A visit late in the day can confirm that the crisis has left its marks, but it can also reveal what never changes about Exarchia, the most restive neighbourhood in Greece ever since the fall of the dictatorship and even warned of as such by the U.S. State Department.

    Loud music, convertibles and criminals


    At night the square often welcomes amateur DJs or live bands. Whether they are there or not, though, there is always loud music: "We want the loud music and happenings to keep out the junkies, counterfeit goods traffickers and the Albanian mafia,” explains a concert organiser. Despite the deafening music, the square also pulls in youngsters who play football, drink beer and talk in small groups – about everything except politics. On Exarchia Square at night political debate barely exists.

    How to discuss politics if, from 11 p.m. on, the Mini Coopers, BMW convertibles and Audis descend from posh neighbourhoods to disgorge their young occupants into the cafeterias around the square? Often these are bands of girls tottering on 15-centimetre heels or wearing Tod sandals, dressed in Prada and carrying Louis Vuitton bags. They drink a few beers, enjoying just for a night the mythical atmosphere of Exarchia Square. Sometimes a whiff of weed floats over from the neighbouring tables, from a group of young men, in t-shirts sporting revolutionary slogans, with carefully groomed coiffures.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:06 AM

    44. US Futures blah (like the Lions' prospects)

    S&P 500 -0.2%
    DOW -0.1%
    NASDAQ 0.0%



    rough game last night for Detroit but the 49ers do look pretty dang awesome.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:07 AM

    45. Today's Reports

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    Response to Roland99 (Reply #45)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:08 AM

    46. Empire Manufacturing Index Prints At Lowest Since April 2009

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/empire-manufacturing-index-prints-lowest-april-2009

    Today's horrible piece of news, which at least on the surface was supposed to send the market soaring, comes courtesy of the Empire Fed Manufacturing Index, which printed at -10.41, the lowest print since April 2009, down from -5.85, and well below expectations of -2.0. The Index print confirmed the biggest 6 month drop since records began. The components painted a dire picture for jobs, with the employment index sliding from 16.47 to 4.26, New Orders tumbling from -5.50 to -14.03, while, wait for it, prices rose, from 16.47 to 19.15. Re-stagflation here we come. Market for now seems confused - since QE is priced into infinity, it is unclear if this latest datapoint confirming a recessionary economy, QE can't be more-er infiniter. Best to not respond to this, or any other macro news at all, which is precisely what the market has done. For those who missed it, not only has Bernanke doomed the global economy to stagflation and imminent food riots, while making the richest 0.001% richer than ever, he has completely broken any linkage between the economy and the market.


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    Response to Roland99 (Reply #46)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:46 AM

    54. Ok. Beat to quarters. All hands on deck.

    Last edited Mon Sep 17, 2012, 02:38 PM - Edit history (1)

    Reduce sail. Batten the hatches.

    Lee, ho.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:26 AM

    50. Can I be too harsh or are they a little thin skinned over in GD?? nt

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    Response to Hotler (Reply #50)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:35 AM

    53. That's rhetorical, right?

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    Response to Hotler (Reply #50)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:12 PM

    63. Hotler....

    Never put your hand in the crazy

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    Response to Hotler (Reply #50)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:44 PM

    67. I hope you followed the decontamination procedures

    before coming in over here.

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    Response to Hotler (Reply #50)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 04:48 PM

    68. Link? n/t

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    Response to hamerfan (Reply #68)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:16 PM

    78. My message was hidden by the jury. It was in this thread...

    http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1014&pid=231093
    I said something about Bachmans fat ass and how she should shut the fuck up and get in the kitchen and bake me a pie. It was a Cartman south Park thing. GD thought I was picking on women in general. Satire people. I love women.

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    Response to Hotler (Reply #78)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:40 PM

    80. Satire not spoken on DU3

    And that was over the top, Hotler. I don't watch South Park, so would not catch the reference.

    Even more frightening is the progressive banning of Inconvenient Truth. The Thought Police are out in full force.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #80)

    Sat Sep 22, 2012, 09:19 PM

    86. This "group" (or is it a "subgroup") is the tiny pocket

    of what DU used to be. Although banished, it still thrives, so it will be discontinued.

    What is the Plan B?

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    Response to spotbird (Reply #86)

    Sat Sep 22, 2012, 09:41 PM

    87. NEVER GIVE UP, NEVER SURRENDER!

    We have toeholds in alternate sites, but none has the presence of DU, even in its current, Borg phase.

    Watch these threads for more updates. The people here are too creative, ornery and stubborn to give up.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:34 AM

    51. Japanese Businesses Shuttering Chinese Facilities As Mainland Anger Spreads

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/japanese-businesses-shuttering-chinese-facilities-mainland-anger-spreads

    When you have central planners printing inverse-wealth (because money printing dilution by definition means less wealth for everyone), who needs that cornerstone of old school economics: trade. Certainly not Japan (which has been diluting its futures to prosperity for the past 30 years and somehow failing each and every time) and China, both of which are now starting to feel the consequences of the collapse in political relations as a result of the senseless spat of the Senkaku Islands (recorded in its full visual glory here). As the NYT reports, "major Japanese companies closed factories in China and urged expatriate workers to stay indoors Monday, after angry protests flared over a territorial dispute, which threatened to hurt trade ties between the two biggest Asian economies." What does the idiotic escalation in unprovoked Japanese tensions over a rock in the East China Sea (note: not West Japan Sea) for the bottom line of Japan? In a word: Lots.

    "Increasing tensions further Monday, the Chinese state media warned Japan that it could suffer another “lost decade” if trade ties soured. China and Japan generated two-way trade worth $345 billion last year, and China is the biggest single trading partner of Japan. Protests broke out across dozens of Chinese cities over the weekend, some violent, in response to the Japanese government’s decision last week to buy some of the disputed islands from a private Japanese owner."

    To summarize: in the past week alone, Japan has already suffered about $7 billion in lost benefit from trade as the trade relations between the two countries have frozen. But at least Japan's nationalistic pride is content: after all it managed to put up its flag on some completely meaningless island in the middle of nowhere, containing zero natural resources. Luckily for everyone, the central planners who are now in charge of everything, have a much better grasp on things.

    More from the New York Times



    This battle over the Senkaku Islands is really starting to escalate.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:50 AM

    55. German banks lose taste for food commodities trading

    AFP - German banks seem to be losing their appetite for agricultural commodities trading as public opinion turns against the investment vehicles blamed for driving up global food prices.

    ...

    But the tide of public opinion is turning. And in face of growing pressure, Germany's second-biggest bank Commerzbank, regional banks LBBW and LBB and the savings bank DekaBank have all announced in recent months that they are pulling out of agricultural commodities trading and ceasing to offer such investment vehicles to their customers.

    Deutsche Bank, Germany's biggest lender and which for most people embodies the German banking system, announced in March that it was shelving a new set of investment products based on basic agricultural goods. Nevertheless, its DWS investment arm would continue to offer existing products, at least for the time being.

    "We cannot with a clean conscience advise our clients" on investments in agricultural commodities, said Commerzbank's chief commodities analyst Eugen Weinberg.

    ...

    German banks are nevertheless still relatively minor players in the agricultural commodities markets in comparison to big investment banks such as Britain's Barclays or HSBC, insurers and even agricultural companies themselves.

    /... http://www.france24.com/en/20120917-german-banks-lose-taste-food-commodities-trading

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 10:58 AM

    57. China keeps home fires burning

    YINCHUAN, CHINA // Chinese industrial giants that once chased contracts abroad are hunkering down at home to wait out the global downturn.

    Reviving a strategy used after the 2008 financial crisis, state-owned behemoths hope growth at home, even if slower than before, will be better than what lies beyond China's borders.

    "Let's take 2010 as a specific year," said Tong Laigou, the vice president of Sinoma, the world's biggest cement equipment and engineering company. "That year our company focused more of our attention on the Chinese market and we took more efforts to develop our own business in China since the overseas demand is slowing down. In the current situation the same thing happens."

    Pushed by the debt crisis in the West, the approach to focus on local growth is made possible by a transformation wrought over the past two decades that has lifted China from the world's manufacturing base to a nation where consumer spending is increasingly important.

    China's 10 per cent trade surplus in 2007 is projected to shrink to 1 per cent by 2016, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit, and over the past five years wages have grown by an average of 12 per cent.

    /... http://www.thenational.ae/thenationalconversation/industry-insights/economics/china-keeps-home-fires-burning

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:03 AM

    58. LEAP/E2020 Global economy sucked into a black hole and world geopolitics heated to white-hot

    As LEAP/E2020 anticipated since the end of 2011, the end of summer 2012 marks the beginning of the revival for Euroland with the emergence of a positive dynamic fed by two lasting phenomena: first, the progressive operational installation of the instruments bitterly discussed and decided upon during the last 18 months and, secondly, the visionary spark brought by the political changes of the last six months which have put Euroland’s medium to long term future back in the middle of the decision-making process. The Euro’s progress these past weeks offers a perfect illustration of the phenomenon (1). That being said, Europe will be in recession for the next six to twelve months. It just goes to show that the only good news that we announced in the June 2012 GEAB issue is far from being miraculous.

    In a certain sense, it’s even the contrary, since henceforth it’s no longer possible to hide the global economy’s tragic state behind the pretext of the “Euro or Greek crisis”. The more Euroland advances constructively, the more the “Potemkinien” (2) character of the US, Chinese, Japanese and Brazilian... economies’ « health » will show itself. The tree will no longer hide the forest, namely that all the major global economies are entering recession or slowing growth simultaneously, leading the socio-economic and financial world into a black hole.

    At the same time summer 2012 will have marked a major acceleration in world geopolitical dislocation with a Syrian conflict which becomes more dangerous for the Middle East and the world day by day (3), Israeli-Iranian tension which is ready to explode at any time, and widespread testing of declining US power – from the China Sea to Latin America via the whole Muslim world. The strategic-military world is heated white-hot as the massive resumption of arms sales worldwide illustrates for that matter, with the United States supplying 85% of the total (4)...

    ... For these reasons, LEAP/E2020 maintains its June 2012 Red Alert and estimates that, by the end of October 2012, the global economy will be sucked into a black hole against a backdrop of world geopolitics heated white-hot. Suffice it to say that the coming weeks will, according to our team, carry the planet away in a hurricane of unprecedented crises and conflicts.

    So, in this GEAB issue, LEAP/E2020 sets out the list of the seven key factors of this double shock without modern historical equivalent:

    In addition, this GEAB issue contains an anticipation of the cumulative impact of the crisis and the Internet on European retail trade, predicting a loss of 2.5 million jobs by 2015.

    This issue also contains the first of a series of three anticipations on the risks of a social explosion in Europe, the United States (GEAB N°68) and China (GEAB N°69). We decided begin with Europe which, according to our researchers, should experience “times of riots in the first half of 2013”, with of course big differences between European countries...

    /... http://www.leap2020.eu/GEAB-N-67-is-available-Global-systemic-crisis-October-2012-The-global-economy-sucked-into-a-black-hole-and-world_a12189.html

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    Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #58)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:37 AM

    60. by the end of October 2012


    If today and the past week are any indication, things are definitely heating up

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    Response to DemReadingDU (Reply #60)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 12:23 PM

    61. .


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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Original post)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:03 PM

    69. The Real Meaning of the 1-Year Anniversary of Occupy Wall Street

    http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/2012-09-17/real-meaning-1-year-anniversary-occupy-wall-street

    On this one-year anniversary of the start of the Occupy protests, let’s refresh our memories about what really happened. Despite the divide-and-conquer tricks of both the mainstream Left and the mainstream Right, Occupy and the Tea Party were originally protesting the exact same thing: the malignant, symbiotic relationship between big government and big corporations. Conservative and liberal protesters both railed against the unchecked power of the Federal Reserve. Indeed, if the partisan shenanigans on both sides hadn’t derailed the protests so quickly, Occupy and the Tea Party would have joined forces in a way which affected real change.

    Highly-militarized, federally-coordinated police used such brutal violence to break up the Occupy protests that the Egyptian military used the crack down on Occupy as justification for the murder of protesters in Tahir Square, Egypt. (Despite media portrayals, the Occupy protesters were not violent.)

    While psuedo-conservatives may laugh, true conservatives do not find this amusing. Remember that according to Department of Defense training manuals, protest is now considered “low-level terrorism”. And an Army colonel has written a paper advocating military methods for “crushing” a Tea Party insurgency. Veterans get it. They know that protecting all political protesters – Occupy, Tea Party, etc. – is the core of American liberty. Even active-duty police know it. (While the slur of "dirty hippies, get a job" was applied to Occupy protesters, most of them actually had jobs, and many economists supported their demands. Again, people may agree or disagree about specific positions, but true conservatives defend everyone's right to speech and assembly.)

    Speak with most Americans today and you will be amazed that they don’t realize (1) how much police violence was inflicted or (2) that the protesters – like the original Tea Party protesters – were standing up for the American people against the incest between big banks in New York and politicos in Washington. The bottom line is that the powers-that-be used a combination of brutal violence and disinformation to take the wind out of the protests. Any protests – whether they be of a conservative bent like the Tea party, or a more liberal flavor like Occupy – are doomed to failure unless we can reach the people with the real facts.

    THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES, NEVERTHELESS. THERE IS NO OTHER OPTION.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #69)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:10 PM

    70. OCCuPY THiS!

    http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/2012-09-17/occupy



    Many people call it a "movement" and there are arguments about precisely what kind of movement it is if it is one. I personally spend zero time worrying about this. For me OWS was an event and that event was about raising the public's awareness of one thing, the intersection of rampant control fraud and political corruption between the TBTF banks and Washington DC; the many ways this phenomena has decimated the lives of so many ordinary Americans.

    In this respect they succeeded. Few would argue otherwise. Unfortunately, the efforts fell on deaf and corrupt ears in our hollow halls of democracy. Now, instead of making wisecracks about the people who are on the street today attempting, as hard as it is in Blumfukistan, to raise a civil ruckus, I would ask you all to consider the following:

    When OWS was conceived and first kicked off last year, there was no MF Global fiasco, Jon Corzine was still CEO, no one knew who the London Whale was, Jamie Dimon was still exulted by the MSM as Wall Street's Mr Clean, Bob Diamond was still CEO of Barclays, no one in Washington knew what LIBOR was. There was no sham Fraudclosure settlement, no sham Securitization task force. There were, however, a handful of ongoing criminal investigations of Wall Street Banks...all subsequently terminated.


    Last week we learned of the latest Mother of all Keynesian Bailouts. Try as they will to convince us that QE3 is designed to help the little guy, we of Zero Hedge all know otherwise don't we? What is obvious is that since last September, our corporatist kleptofraudtocracy has only gotten exponentially worse. The final insult was not the silence on these matters at the GOP convention (after all, we all know that Mitt the Twit is a Wall Street Ponzi pimp). The final insult was the expectation of the Obamocrats that we would all accept their Big Lie. The biggest lie of all, that they and their Wall Street Bitch in Chief have cracked down on Banksterism. There is not one shred of evidence that supports this Big Lie. A Big Lie that would make Herr Goebbels very very proud.

    So today, instead of making wiseass remarks about unemployed, dirty long hair hippy anarchists armed with iPhones, iCollectivists and liberal arts students stepping off the curbs or chalking up the sidewalks, I would ask all of you to do something else...Remind as many as you can of the outrageous fucking fraud that continues to be perpetrated by the thieves in pinstripes and hand made brogues and their harem of DC Bitches.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #70)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:12 PM

    71. Here's the problem though, and forgive me for playing devil's advocate

    With regard to all the catastrophes -- whether MF Global or the London Whale or anything else -- did OWS actually play a role? Did they do anything?

    Raising consciousness is one thing -- the second wave of feminism really began and became a movement as such via consciousness raising -- but it has to have a direction, a purpose. It has to make a difference.

    Maybe more people are more aware of the corruption, but have any of them changed their votes as a result? Have they altered their lifestyle? Have they DONE anything?

    The banksters walk free, and protestors are still jailed. No harm, no foul.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #71)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:37 PM

    73. It's still early days, Tansy

    Takes time to build up a head of steam. Look how long it took the Vietnam Protests to effect change...

    First recorded American deaths--1959

    Gulf of Tonkin Resolution 1964 allows Johnson to wage all out war against North Vietnam without ever securing a formal Declaration of War from Congress

    1965--Vietnam "Teach-In" Broadcast to Nation's Universities: The practice of protesting US policy in Vietnam by holding "teach-ins" at colleges and universities becomes widespread. The first "teach-in" -- featuring seminars, rallies, and speeches -- takes place at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in March. In May, a nationally broadcast "teach-in" reaches students and faculty at over 100 campuses.

    1966--Veterans Stage Anti-War Rally: Veterans from World Wars I and II, along with veterans from the Korean war stage a protest rally in New York City. Discharge and separation papers are burned in protest of US involvement in Vietnam.

    CORE Cites "Burden On Minorities and Poor" in Vietnam: The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) issues a report claiming that the US military draft places "a heavy discriminatory burden on minority groups and the poor." The group also calls for a withdrawal of all US troops from Vietnam.

    1967--Martin Luther King Speaks Out Against War: Calling the US "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world," Martin Luther King publicly speaks out against US policy in Vietnam. King later encourages draft evasion and suggests a merger between antiwar and civil rights groups.

    Dow Recruiters Driven From Wisconsin Campus: University of Wisconsin students demand that corporate recruiters for Dow Chemical -- producers of napalm -- not be allowed on campus.

    1968--Westmoreland Requests 206,000 More Troops

    April MLK assassinated

    May Paris Peace talks begin

    June Robert Kennedy assassinated

    August

    Upheaval at Democratic Convention in Chicago: As the frazzled Democratic party prepares to hold its nominating convention in Chicago, city officials gear up for a deluge of demonstrations. Mayor Richard Daley orders police to crackdown on antiwar protests. As the nation watched on television, the area around the convention erupts in violence.

    November

    Richard Nixon Elected President: Running on a platform of "law and order," Richard Nixon barely beats out Hubert Humphrey for the presidency. Nixon takes just 43.4 percent of the popular vote, compared to 42.7 percent for Humphrey. Third-party candidate George Wallace takes the remaining percentage of votes.

    1969

    Nixon Begins Secret Bombing of Cambodia: In an effort to destroy Communist supply routes and base camps in Cambodia, President Nixon gives the go-ahead to "Operation Breakfast." The covert bombing of Cambodia, conducted without the knowledge of Congress or the American public, will continue for fourteen months.

    Policy of "Vietnamization" Announced: Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird describes a policy of "Vietnamization" when discussing a diminishing role for the US military in Vietnam. The objective of the policy is to shift the burden of defeating the Communists onto the South Vietnamese Army and away from the United States.

    Ho Chi Minh Dies at Age 79

    News of My Lai Massacre Reaches US: Through the reporting of journalist Seymour Hersh, Americans read for the first time of the atrocities committed by Lt. William Calley and his troops in the village of My Lai. At the time the reports were made public, the Army had already charged Calley with the crime of murder.

    Massive Antiwar Demonstration in DC

    1970

    Sihanouk Ousted in Cambodia: Prince Sihanouk's attempt to maintain Cambodia's neutrality while war waged in neighboring Vietnam forced him to strike opportunistic alliances with China, and then the United States. Such vacillating weakened his government, leading to a coup orchestrated by his defense minister, Lon Nol.

    Kent State Incident: National Guardsmen open fire on a crowd of student antiwar protesters at Ohio's Kent State University, resulting in the death of four students and the wounding of eight others. President Nixon publicly deplores the actions of the Guardsmen, but cautions: "...when dissent turns to violence it invites tragedy." Several of the protesters had been hurling rocks and empty tear gas canisters at the Guardsmen.

    Kissinger and Le Duc Begin Secret Talks

    Number of US Troops Falls to 280K

    1971

    Lt. Calley Convicted of Murder

    Pentagon Papers Published: A legacy of deception, concerning US policy in Vietnam, on the part of the military and the executive branch is revealed as the New York Times publishes the Pentagon Papers. The Nixon administration, eager to stop leaks of what they consider sensitive information, appeals to the Supreme Court to halt the publication. The Court decides in favor the Times and allows continued publication.

    Nixon Announces Plans to Visit China: In a move that troubles the North Vietnamese, President Nixon announces his intention to visit The People's Republic of China. Nixon's gesture toward China is seen by the North Vietnamese as an effort to create discord between themselves and their Chinese allies.

    Thieu Re-elected in South Vietnam

    1972

    Nixon Cuts Troop Levels by 70K: Responding to charges by Democratic presidential candidates that he is not moving fast enough to end US involvement in Vietnam, President Nixon orders troop strength reduced by seventy thousand.

    Secret Peace Talks Revealed

    B-52s Bomb Hanoi and Haiphong: In an attempt to force North Vietnam to make concessions in the ongoing peace talks, the Nixon administration orders heavy bombing of supply dumps and petroleum storage sites in and around Hanoi and Haiphong. The administration makes it clear to the North Vietnamese that no section of Vietnam is off-limits to bombing raids.

    Break-In at Watergate Hotel

    Kissinger Says "Peace Is At Hand": Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho reach agreement in principle on several key measures leading to a cease-fire in Vietnam. Kissinger's view that "peace is at hand," is dimmed somewhat by South Vietnamese President Thieu's opposition to the agreement.

    Nixon Wins Reelection

    1973

    Cease-fire Signed in Paris: A cease-fire agreement that, in the words of Richard Nixon, "brings peace with honor in Vietnam and Southeast Asia," is signed in Paris by Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho. The agreement is to go into effect on January 28.

    End of Draft Announced

    Last American Troops Leave Vietnam

    Hearings on Secret Bombings Begin: The Senate Armed Services Committee opens hearing on the US bombing of Cambodia. Allegations are made that the Nixon administration allowed bombing raids to be carried out during what was supposed to be a time when Cambodia's neutrality was officially recognized. As a result of the hearings, Congress orders that all bombing in Cambodia cease effective at midnight, August 14.

    Kissinger and Le Duc Tho Win Peace Prize: The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded to Henry Kissinger of the United States and Le Duc Tho of North Vietnam. Kissinger accepts the award, while Tho declines, saying that a true peace does not yet exist in Vietnam.

    1974

    Thieu Announces Renewal of War

    Report Cites Damage to Vietnam Ecology: According to a report issued by The National Academy of Science, use of chemical herbicides during the war caused long-term damage to the ecology of Vietnam. Subsequent inquiries will focus on the connection between certain herbicides, particularly Agent Orange, and widespread reports of cancer, skin disease, and other disorders on the part of individuals exposed to them.

    Communists Take Mekong Delta Territory

    Nixon Resigns

    Communists Plan Major Offensive: With North Vietnamese forces in the South believed to be at their highest levels ever, South Vietnamese leaders gird themselves for an expected Communist offensive of significant proportions.

    1975

    Communist Forces Capture Phuoc Long Province: The South Vietnamese Army loses twenty planes in a failed effort to defend Phuoc Long, a key province just north of Saigon. North Vietnamese leaders interpret the US's complete lack of response to the siege as an indication that they could move more aggressively in the South.

    Hue Falls to Communists

    Communists Take Aim at Saigon: The North Vietnamese initiate the Ho Chi Minh Campaign -- a concerted effort to "liberate" Saigon. Under the command of General Dung, the NVA sets out to capture Saigon by late April, in advance of the rainy season.

    Ford Calls Vietnam War "Finished": Anticipating the fall of Saigon to Communist forces, US President Gerald Ford, speaking in New Orleans, announces that as far as the US is concerned, the Vietnam War is "finished."

    Last Americans Evacuate as Saigon Falls to Communists: South Vietnamese President Duong Van Minh delivers an unconditional surrender to the Communists in the early hours of April 30. North Vietnamese Colonel Bui Tin accepts the surrender and assures Minh that, "...Only the Americans have been beaten. If you are patriots, consider this a moment of joy." As the few remaining Americans evacuate Saigon, the last two US servicemen to die in Vietnam are killed when their helicopter crashes.

    http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/vietnam/timeline.htm



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    Response to Demeter (Reply #73)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 06:39 PM

    74. No Wonder We Are Scarred

    10 YEARS! TEN FUCKING YEARS!

    And now, in retribution for our temerity, we have to do it all again, at home.36 years later.

    And even with all we know, and the Internet, we are facing higher barriers: corruption on every level of government and corporation and media and education. Destruction of basic liberties and rights and protections. Our children, our futures, starved to glut the 1%. Consigned to ignorance, indoctrination, poverty and disease.

    We are Vietnam. Monsanto even gets to profit from this again.

    The US was in a state of insurrection: open revolt against civil authority or a constituted government.

    AND THEY KNOW THAT'S WHERE WE ARE HEADING AGAIN...HENCE ALL THE PREPARATIONS

    VIETNAM IS THE REASON--for the destruction of the unions and the middle class and the education system and civil liberties and the Bill of Rights and Habeas Corpus and the tax base and the welfare safety net and Medicare and Medicaid and all the rest that is slated for destruction.

    There are new tools for the 1%ers to enforce their slavery, too: the concentration camps and the predatory loansharking by banksters and the destruction of the cities by abuse and neglect and the drugs and the drug war (gets them coming and going) and the total destruction of rule of law regarding corporations and their Elite and the total abuse of the rule of law for the rest of us.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #74)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:14 PM

    75. They're not equivalent

    Vietnam was much more a "single issue," and the anti-war protests addressed that single issue with a specific solution -- get the fuck out. When the news covered the protests, everyone knew what was being protested, and everyone knew what the protesters wanted.

    What does OWS want? What does it want the people to want? What does it want the government to do?

    Does it want a moratorium on foreclosures? Does it want a transaction tax on NYSE? Does it want higher taxes on the 1%?

    The anti-war protests of the 60s and 70s were. . . anti war. The objective was to stop the war. You could agree with them or disagree with them, but the issue was. . . . the issue. It was the issue from the very beginning. Words have meaning and all that: anti-war means anti-war. It doesn't mean pro-abortion or equal housing or collective bargaining. It means anti-war.



    I don't want OWS rhetoric; I want substance. OWS hasn't shown any substance. "Preparation," you say. Preparation for what?

    The anti-war movement of the 60s and 70s was not a labor movement. it was aware of the class issues operating in the military, but it was not in and of itself a labor movement. Nor was the country in a state of imminent insurrection. Life went on pretty much as it always did. Even during the '68 Dem convention in Chicago, the CTA buses rolled through the Lincoln Park encampment pretty much on time every day. I lived at 435 W. Surf St -- the building is still there -- and worked at one of the Riverside Plaza buildings during the convention. I rode the bus every damn day. Nothing happened.

    There were riots, but they were isolated. They did not rend the national fabric.



    The assault on the unions would come with Reagan in '81 against PATCO. Reagan, the former union boss, edging into senility, became the tool for the 1%. He could fill the airwaves with his grandfatherly wisdom and make all of America believe the evil of the unions.

    So let's go back to the original simple questions: What does OWS want and what are they doing to achieve that goal? If they don't have any focus at all other than "preparation," they're hardly any better than the counter-culture -- tune in, turn on, drop out 1970s, ushered in more by 1969's Woodstock and not an active part of the anti-war movement. They didn't accomplish much either.

    If I were enough of a cynic -- and on some days I am -- I'd say OWS is a creation of the 1%, a farce meant to keep the 99% believing therein lies the hope for the future.

    It looks more like a dead end to me.

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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #75)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:12 PM

    77. As one affected (however peripherally--it changed my life) by those riots

    and seeing the aftermath still, 40+ years later, yes, the national fabric was rent...along the same lines that it has always been rent (racism, inequality).

    The Women's Movement and the Civil Rights Movement were reignited by the War Protest, and the unions finally joining in pushed it over the top. The Women's and Civil Rights Movements continue, even if the Peace Movement has floundered and the Unions are at Death's door. They flounder, but they continue. They birthed this Occupation, as much as anyone.

    OF COURSE Reagan went after the Unions. He was a bigot, and a tool, and the 1 % were royally pissed off that the Unions got involved in anything beyond contracts and paychecks. This has been a long retribution for daring to be a democracy.

    OWS is not a dead end. It is Evolution of a new America. If the Occupation said in one-topic terms what it wanted, there would be worse backlash than there has been already. You don't telegraph your revolution to the authorities. Besides, they know what we want. It's implicit in the slogan: We are the 99%.

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    Response to Demeter (Reply #77)

    Tue Sep 18, 2012, 12:34 AM

    81. Respectfully disagreeing

    Racism and inequality were not addressed by the anti-war movement. They were identified within the context of the war and the military, but as issues they were not addressed by the movement.

    The Civil Rights Movement pre-dated Vietnam -- Brown v. was 1954, Montgomery bus boycott was 1955. Michael Schwerner, Andrew Goodman, and James Chaney's bodies were discovered in Mississippi on 4 August 1964. the day of the Tonkin Gulf incident. I would contend that those murders -- and the assassination of Medgar Evers a year earlier in 1963 -- did much more to sustain the Civil Rights Movement (and to generate sympathy for it from northern whites, who had both money and political power) than did the anti-war protests which came later.

    The women's movement loooooong pre-dated Vietnam. Again, the anti-war movement was focused on ending the war, and virtually nothing else. Very few gender issues were addressed at all; one of the complaints of women involved in various student organizations -- especially SDS -- was that regardless their individual qualifications, they were relegated to secretarial duties and making coffee -- and providing sex. While there were women who were prominent in the anti-war effort, the movement did not address women's issues.

    The riots, as destructive as they were locally, did not materially affect the national consciousness in the long term. No major legislation was proposed and passed and enforced as a result, nor was there a shift (forward or backward) in public perceptions.

    The movements of the 50s, 60s, and 70s did not birth OWS. OWS probably owes more to the Flint sit down strike than anything else, but even that had a specific objective.

    Again, what is Occupy's objective? We already know we're the 99%; saying the movement's slogan is its objective is silly. Are you saying there's a secret OWS organization that's actually plotting something but no one knows what it is? Then what's with all the camping out in the parks? Is that a diversion? A smoke screen? A joke?

    "Evolution of a New America" --- puh-lease. Are they running a single candidate for a single office. . . . anywhere? Are they training troops for a military take-over? What are they doing? ANYTHING???

    A (r)evolution in a country of 300 million plus is not going to be effected by a bunch of folks camped out in tents in scattered parks around the country. The challenging of public sentiment is not going to be achieved without a countering media. The general public is not sufficiently enraged to take to the streets -- obviously. So who is going to wage this (r)evolution? And what is it going to evolve into? Something closer to what the OWS thinks the founders envisioned? Well, duh, the founders envisioned a country with a formal government with elected officials; they did not envision anarchy.


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    Response to Tansy_Gold (Reply #81)

    Tue Sep 18, 2012, 06:53 AM

    82. People are too content with their junk food and cell phone texting

    When people get hungry and there is no food, no money, no credit cards, no internet, no cellphones, then they will get desperate and will revolt. Not going happen for awhile.

    But how would a large revolution organize? The government has all kinds of surveillance on all of us and would immediately be squashed.


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    Response to DemReadingDU (Reply #82)

    Tue Sep 18, 2012, 08:16 AM

    83. That's exactly my point, DRDU

    The riots, regardless where and regardless the spark that set them off, were expressions of anger and frustration but they were not acts of revolution.

    Seriously, OWS should take a page from the GOP playbook. There's a group that has been demonstrably successful in getting their message out, taking political and economic power, etc.

    Again, it comes back to something I've been saying from the beginning: any "movement" has to get into the popular culture.

    If you look at the foundations of the right wing belief system -- and that goes right into what Altemeyer and so many others have written -- inequality is at the heart. You cannot have a social structure that favors the top 1% if you don't have a belief structure that accepts inequality is natural, normal, and right. The cult of celebrity goes right along with that, so even TV shows like Dancing with the Stars, America's Got Talent, American Idol, all this stuff that piles humiliation on THE LOSERS (aka the 99%) and glorifies DA WINNAH! is as much a Sunday sermon of essential doctrine as a reading from the bible. The Kardashians as "reality" is another. Excuse me? Reality? Are you fucking shitting me?

    That inequality involves double standards of morality, too. Three of us were having a conversation about this right here in Apache Junction a few days ago -- How could the local pukes have nominated Paul Babeu for sheriff again, after all the revelations about his lying (the Louis Purols shooting incident), his being gay, his having an undocumented Mexican lover, etc., etc., etc. And I explained that we on the left believe in equality and we also believe in a single standard of morality for all, because that is consistent with equality. But the right does NOT believe in equality, and they DO believe the rich and/or powerful are different and are not to be held to the same moral code. That's how you have a McCain or a Gingrich or Ensign or Craig whose "family values" are at complete odds with the moralizing of a Dobson or a Perkins or Roberts.

    Successful revolutions recognize all this, or at least they utilize it. OWS is doing none of the things successful revolutions do.

    IMHO, of course.


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    Response to Demeter (Reply #70)

    Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:25 PM

    79. That's fucking awesome!!!! n/t

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