October News Roundup Part II
Posted by iusbvision on October 21, 2009
Want Peace. Give Nukes the Nobel.
Time Magazine has an interesting article that bucks their usual shtick. The article advocates giving nuclear weapons the Nobel Peace Prize for helping to keep several wars from happening.
UN Calls for Dropping Dollar as World Reserve Currency
The UN along with a whole host of countries is witnessing what the government and the Federal Reserve is up to. Oh wait, you don’t know what they are up to? OK quick economics lesson. There are four ways to take care of a large debt.
1. Spend less and that is out as the Democrats have increased deficit spending from the 2007 eight times.
2. You can tax the people into the ground, and while they are certainly breaking promises and raising taxes and trying to raise more the bottom line is that the debt and future entitlement obligations are so large that there just aren’t enough people to tax.
3. Grow the economy and increase GDP so there is more economy to tax. Sorry in spite of overwhelming historical evidence most leftists just don’t believe in economic growth as we know it. Besides, in order to do that you have to unleash freedom and incentivise a growth environment which means abandoning central control and that is out of the question for the far left.
4. Print money up to inflate the currency to screw those we owe money to. That is exactly what is going on now and the world is very upset with us. Obama ran on raising the standing of the Unites States in the world. Well the world is not happy at all with what is going on.
Unintended consequences. The world does all they can to get out of the dollar (happening) we lose influence in the world, our currency loses value (so you saved for retirement and what are those dollars worth? The dollar has lost 29% of its value in the last seven years. Nine percent in the last six months.) and the world drops America’s credit rating form AAA to AA. That would mean that the cost of mortgages, credit cards and government debt would skyrocket. In short it would mean economic armageddon.
The United Nations called on Tuesday for a new global reserve currency to end dollar supremacy which has allowed the United States the “privilege” of building a huge trade deficit.
“Important progress in managing imbalances can be made by reducing the reserve currency country?s ‘privilege’ to run external deficits in order to provide international liquidity,” UN undersecretary-general for economic and social affairs, Sha Zukang, said.
Speaking at the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank in Istanbul, he said: “It is timely to emphasise that such a system also creates a more equitable method of sharing the seigniorage derived from providing global liquidity.”
He said: “Greater use of a truly global reserve currency, such as the IMF?s special drawing rights (SDRs), enables the seigniorage gained to be deployed for development purposes,” he said.
The SDRs are the asset used in IMF transactions and are based on a basket of four currencies — the dollar, euro, yen and pound — which is calculated daily.
China had called in March for a new dominant world reserve currency instead of the dollar, in a system within the framework of the Washington-based IMF.
Countries Moving to Ditch Using the Dollar for Oil Trading
The dollar’s position as the world’s leading reserve currency faces increased pressure as the financial crisis allows emerging economies greater influence on the world stage, analysts said.
A report last week in The Independent claiming that China, Russia and Gulf States are among nations prepared to ditch the dollar for oil trades has heightened the uncertainty surrounding the US currency’s future.
The dollar slumped against rivals last week in the wake of the British daily’s controversial report.
“The US dollar is being hurt by the continued talk of a shift away from a dollar-centric world,” said Kit Juckes, an analyst at currency traders ECU Group.
“Three conclusions stand out very clearly. Firstly, the shift in economic power away from the G7 economies is continuing. “Secondly, there is a growing acceptance amongst those winners that one consequence of this power shift will be to strengthen their currencies.
“And finally, as long as the US economy is not strong enough for any rise in interest rates to be conceivable for a long time, the dollar’s underlying downtrend will remain in place,” added Juckes.
The Independent, under the front-page headline “The Demise of the Dollar”, reported last Tuesday that Gulf states, together with China, Russia, Japan and France, were considering replacing the dollar as the currency for oil deals.
Beck: US Newspapers Print More About ‘Jon and Kate’ Than Demise of the Dollar – VIDEO.
Some pinheads at politico.com are blaming Matt Drudge for the dollar woes for reporting what the American press will not. We cant blame what the government is doing….. nope they are blameless….
Durable goods orders, housing sales plunged in August
Ed Morrissey at Hotair.com has a great post showing that the economy is still tanking while the administration and some elite media outfits claims that it is a great recovery:
While Joe Biden tells Americans that the stimulus has worked “better than we hoped,” the numbers tell a different story. Seven months after passing a whopping $787 billion stimulus package, unemployment and mass layoffs both jumped in August. What didn’t go up? Orders of durable goods, which took a significant plunge instead:
New orders for long-lasting U.S. manufactured goods fell unexpectedly in August, dropping by their biggest margin in seven months, following a plunge in commercial aircraft orders, the government reported Friday.
The Commerce Department said durable goods orders tumbled 2.4 percent, the largest decline since January, after rising by a revised 4.8 percent in July. New orders for July were previously reported to have increased 5.1 percent.
Analysts polled by Reuters forecast orders rising 0.5 percent in August. Compared with the same period last year, new orders were down 24.9 percent.
Durable goods orders are a leading indicator of manufacturing activity, which in turn provides a good measure for overall business health.
This follows on the heels of a new decline in housing sales of 2.7% in August as well:
Resales of U.S. homes dropped 2.7% in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.1 million, the first decline in five months, prompting the National Association of Realtors to again plead for more taxpayer subsidies for their business. …
“It is perfectly clear that realtors are scared to death of the tax credit’s expiration,” wrote Dan Greeenhaus, chief economic strategist for Miller Tabak & Co., noting the phrase “tax credit” appears six times in the group’s press release.
First-time buyers accounted for about 30% of sales in July and August, Yun said.
Without an extension of the taxpayer subsidy, the housing market could fall into a “double-dip” downturn, Yun said, which would stall the overall economic recovery.
The housing market is also being propped up by the Federal Reserve’s purchases of nearly $1.5 trillion in mortgage-related securities, accounting for about 80% of the market. The Fed said Wednesday it would slow its purchases and end them by next March.
Why will we hit a double dip in the recession without government subsidies? In part, it will come from the fact that the $787 billion stimulus and other government-subsidy programs don’t address the real problems of the recession.
[Morissey really hits the nail on the head and shows his understanding of economics]
The problem with the economy now is the drain of capital from the private markets, both now and especially in the future. The Obama administration has expansive dreams of big-government control of health care and energy production which will suck capital out of the private markets, where it gets used efficiently, into government bureaucracies that waste it. These massive programs are running up massive deficits, and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that taxes will get hiked in huge proportions to pay for it eventually. The result: investors put their money into savings rather than risk, jobs don’t get created, and recessions continue.
More McCain Fiengold Campaign Finance Regulations Struck Down
It seems that every time the Bi-Partisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) also known as McCain/Fiengold gets parts of it struck down every time it goes to court and it should. BCRA is so unconstitutional that makes me ill and the courts are finally catching up with what was so painfully obvious when it was passed.
The other problem with the BCRA is that it has had exactly the opposite effect of its stated intent (Quinn’s Law # 1). BCRA exponentially increased the power of 527 groups, who are often the most ideological and the elite media.
Many 527 groups are controlled by a few key players like George Soros who end up wielding way too much influence over the DNC and elected politicians. Now these 527′s can have unlimited fund raising and run unlimited ads while political parties are still castrated by the law. This puts people like Soros in a much more powerful position than even the head of the DNC. This is why the average citizen loses. The money has been taken away from the parties and given to the hard left. Hard left moneydemands hard left policy. The average Joe can effect the party at the local level and get involved in the state and national parties and its easier to get involved than one might think. Not everyone involved in the parties is as extreme as the 527′s. There are still plenty of moderate elements even in the official Democrat machine.
This also means that every special interest will have its own 527 group to wield and threaten ads to gain more influence. Parties are under pressure to at least be directionally accurate, most 527′s don’t care about such pressure and will say anything and everything. Another problem is groups such as the Tides Foundation who take funds and route then to far left organizations so tracking the money can become more difficult.
It gives me a shudder to say this, but the old way of doing campaign finance was better.
A federal appeals court overturned hard-fought campaign finance reform regulations in a ruling on Friday that will make it easier for independent political groups to raise and spend money to influence elections.
The three-judge panel struck down regulations intended to blunt the power of such organizations, including the controversial Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and MoveOn.org, which drew heavy criticism for spending tens of millions of dollars on aggressive advertisements during the 2004 presidential campaign.
The ruling, if it stands, could provide a boost to Republicans and their allies as they try to win back Congress in 2010 and the White House in 2012. Outside conservative groups could become particularly important in countering the fundraising juggernaut of President Obama, who shattered past records by raising more than $750 million during his 2008 campaign.
Experts suggested that the court’s decision could provide a boon to groups tapping into the fervor of anti-Obama activity and “tea party” events. It will certainly allow groups across the political spectrum to raise and spend money without pause, potentially leading to a more acerbic campaign environment.
[Of course the WashPost has to make the editorial comment swipe at conservatives. They know full well that leftist 527's are much more organized and wealthy than conservative ones. Of course after that they admit that it was a left wing 527 that sued to get this done - Editor]
The groups “are now free to accept unlimited contributions, to spend unlimited funds independently supporting or opposing federal candidates,” said Richard L. Hasen, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and an election law expert.
The decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit came in a lawsuit brought by Emily’s List, a nonprofit political organization that backs female Democratic candidates who support abortion rights.
This is the portion of the ruling that will be important in the near future:
The rules required the political committees to use hard money for at least 50 percent of their generic get-out-the-vote efforts and voter registration drives. It also compelled the organizations to use hard-money accounts to pay all costs of advertisements that referred to a federal candidate. If a group’s solicitations mentioned a specific candidate, the regulations required them to treat the donation as hard money.
Kavanaugh wrote that such rules were unconstitutional because they limited speech by political groups. The rules “do not pass muster,” he wrote, adding that they did not serve an anti-corruption purpose and had been enacted to “better equalize the voices of citizens and groups who participate in the political process.”
The BCRA rules were unconstitutional because they tried to “equalize” or dare I say redistribute political speech. This does not bode well for the Obama Administration and his FCC which are trying to come up with new rules to do the same thing to talk radio and the internet with policies such as “localism”, “net neutrality” or other policies designed to have a similar impact as the tossed out “fairness doctrine” which was selectively used to shut people up that organized groups didn’t like.
Overpaid Celebrities PSA Mocked
Don’t you hate it when celebrities who are as ignorant as they day is long try to lecture you about politics and policy? You will love this.
Government Shuts Down Neighborhood “Haunted House” That Operated Safely for 15 Years
Hey who needs tyranny from Washington when we can have it three miles away? Is this what you wanted your city officials to do?
Its no trick – the Town of Tonawanda is shutting down a haunted house and that’s no treat for Halloween lovers this October.
For 15 years, the Deck family has been scaring neighbors and trick-or-treaters at their annual haunted house. But this year, the boogey man turned out to be code enforcement. “When I came home from work, they posted a No Entry sign over my sign, that no one’s allowed to use it,” said homeowner Paul Deck.
The town posted a “Unsafe Structure” notice, which states that no one is allowed to go inside. “They want me change all my displays to the outside so people could just walk around it,” said Deck.
Deck designed this house of ghouls and ghosts with his three boys. They spent over 40 hours constructing it to be like a maze inside and he says its too late to rebuild the whole thing.
“Its approximately 1200 square feet. Its built with over 300 2x4s, 400 feet of plastic. Its got between 12-15 displays. Its got everything from Freddy, to Jason, to Hannibal Lector,” he said.
Deck’s neighbors are disappointed. This haunted house is something they look forward to every Halloween. “I think it’s a shame. The kids are really disappointed. Every year he does a great thing for the kids, they love to come, they love it, come in twice sometimes if they can,” said neighbor Scott Hummel.
NBC’s Andrea Mitchell: George Soros isn’t left wing …
Andrea Mitchell shows just how in the tank she is and that she is totally wrapped up in the beltway mentality. Any thinking person who takes a look at who Soros funds, his statements opposing freedom and capitalism, and the activities of his Orwellian named “Open Society Institute” could come to any other conclusion that Soros is at very best a super rich neo-marxist.
Higher jobless rates could be new normal
WASHINGTON – Even with an economic revival, many U.S. jobs lost during the recession may be gone forever and a weak employment market could linger for years.
That could add up to a “new normal” of higher joblessness and lower for many Americans, some economists are suggesting.
The words “it’s different this time” are always suspect. But economists and policy makers say the job-creating dynamics of previous recoveries can’t be counted on now.
• The auto and construction industries helped lead the nation out of past recessions. But the carnage among Detroit’s automakers and the surplus of new and foreclosed homes and empty commercial properties make it unlikely these two industries will be engines of growth anytime soon.
• The job market is caught in a vicious circle: Without more jobs, U.S. consumers will have a hard time increasing their spending; but without that spending, businesses might see little reason to start hiring.
• Many small and midsize businesses are still struggling to obtain bank loans, impeding their expansion plans and constraining overall economic growth.
• Higher-income households are spending less because of big losses on their homes, retirement plans and other investments. Lower-income households are cutting back because they can’t borrow like they once did.
That the recovery in jobs will be long and drawn out is something on which economists and policy makers can basically agree, even as their proposals for remedies vary widely.
Retrenching businesses will be slow in hiring back or replacing workers they laid off. Many of the 7.2 million jobs the economy has shed since the recession began in December 2007 may never come back.
“This Great Recession is an inflection point for the economy in many respects. I think the will be permanently higher, or at least higher for the foreseeable future,” said Mark Zandi, and co-founder of Moody’s Economy.com.
“The collective psyche has changed as a result of what we’ve been through. And we’re going to be different as a result,” said Zandi, who formerly advised Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and now is consulted by Democrats in the administration and in Congress,
Even before the recession, many jobs had vanished or been shipped overseas amid a general decline of U.S. manufacturing. The severest downturn since the Great Depression has accelerated the process.
Many economists believe the recession reversed course in the recently ended third quarter and they predict modest growth in the nation’s gross domestic product over the next few years. Yet the unemployment rate is currently at a 26-year high of 9.8 percent — and likely to top 10 percent soon and stay there a while.
Why are people not investing in the United States? Why is manufacturing going over seas? The answer is simple, this government and some state governments have policies that punish the creation of wealth and are barriers to doing business. We have the second highest corporate income tax in the industrialized world, we have high capital gains taxes we have excessive regulation that is often designed to aid some competitors and punish others so that politicians to get kick backs. China has no capital gains tax.
The simple truth is that wealth goes where it is treated well. If I were to declare a war on wealth and prosperity I would do exactly what this government has been doing.
Government Wants a VAT tax. How Does This Hurt You?
Speaking of barriers to production and sending production jobs overseas. This tax is targeted to do exactly just that. Watch this video, its 6 minutes and you will learn a ton.
Propose Cap & Trade Tax Will Help Coastal States (Democrat strongholds) & Screw the Mid West
Speaking of sending more jobs overseas. This policy will do exactly just that.
Ed Morrissey at Hotair.com reports:
While Congress debates the overhaul of one-sixth of the American economy with ObamaCare, another sixth of the economy looks as though it will get allocated on a political basis. The New York Times reports on an EPA analysis of emissions credits that favor mostly coastal states — mainly Democratic strongholds — at the expense of Midwestern and coal-belt states. Energy producers are up in arms, but everyone should be objecting to this rather corrupt allocation of emissions licenses.
Follow the link for the details, but Indiana will be hit especially hard.