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Weigel, Rest of the Left Change the Facts on the New Black Panther Case | Main | Top Headline Comments 7-13-10
July 13, 2010

Tuesday Financial Briefing

Equities markets were a big nothingburger yesterday. The S&P and Dow both squeaked out small gains, but investors seem to be keeping their powder dry in anticipation of quarterly earnings reports.

Via Insty, a reminder that three programs that didn't even exist prior to 1930 eat up 100% of the nation's revenues. That means that everything else: every program, every department, every bone-headed "initiative" must be funded by selling debt. (Mainly to the Chinese.) If we are going to solve this problem, we are going to have to solve it over the agonized howls of every Democrat in the land.

You know, I just realized that I'm a millionaire! By using the exact same rationale as the various bailed-out banks, I calculate that my investments in the Val-U-Rite Corporation and the Hobo-B-Q chain of family restaurants were not "failures" as such -- in fact, they can be written off as if they had never happened, and all the money I squandered on them is actually still in my pocket! It's like magic!

Like Fat Clemenza told Sonny Corleone, it's time to go to the mattresses.

Via ZH, Merkel's rules for sovereign bankruptcy. This might be a way to "package" a default without calling it a default. German taxpayers simply aren't willing to backstop everyone else in the EU, so something has got to give. (The debtor nations might not be all that keen on giving up their sovereignty, however. The might prefer being poor to being EU vassal-states.)

In-depth discussion of US unemployment, and what it means. The consensus seems to be that high unemployment may be a structural problem from now on, much as it has been in Europe ever since the 1970's. Reason? Welfare-statism leads to economic stagnation. Demographics also has a lot to do with it: the vast bulk of immigrants to America since the mid-1970's has been from south of the border (mainly Mexico). But these immigrants don't bring many skills with them -- they are dramatically less educated than their historical peers, and rather than growing the economy they mainly displace workers at the low end (teens and retirees working part-time).

The market is crashing in slow-motion. The market sinks, the government injects more money to prop it up, it sinks again, etc.... Continue cycle until the Humongous attains power.

The stranglehold of the Great Recession.

Abolish the corporate income tax? It's a reasonably good idea, which is exactly why the most anti-business Administration in recent memory will never go for it.

Britain retains AAA rating from S&P, but for how long?

Argentina's debt-rating goes from "ludicrous" to merely "laughable".

Scott Brown, R-MA, breaks our hearts with his roguish smile and his vote for FinReg, but mostly with his vote for FinReg. Repeat after me, kids: this was bound to happen. Scott Brown is like the Two Ladies from Maine in that he is only "conservative" in the sense of not being a gibbering Leftist howler-monkey. In any other area of the country, he'd be a mainline Democrat; in Massachusetts, he's what passes for a Republican. I knew this was the price we'd pay for getting a GOP candidate elected in Mass. (to Saint Teddy's seat, no less!), and I still think it was a good trade. He'll vote with us more than he'll vote against us, and that's good enough for me. (You can almost convince yourself that the dirk between your ribs doesn't hurt a bit....)

Stephen Spruiell notes that the new "stimulus" plans no longer take the form of actual stimulus, but rather are a pretty straightforward series of redistributions from the employed to the unemployed, and from the Feds to the respective States. The next step is just to have federal agents come around your house and bust up the place, take your valuables, and drink up all your good scotch.

Looks like the British Pound Sterling is going to join the Euro in Thunderdome.

Sour sentiment and stocks. I linked this because this is the coolest picture of a bear that I've ever seen. An ursine wise-ass. When you read my Daily Briefings from now on, think of this photo as a portrait of me.

Novels like Neuromancer and movies like Blade Runner envisioned the future as looking like Japan back in the 1980's when it was the Japanese instead of the Chinese who were going to take over the world. It turns out that the future really will look like Japan: elderly, broke, and culturally moribund.

Thank you for your purcase of the Wal Mart Growth Fund with your 3lb bag of Cheetos and your 5 1-liter bottles of Diet Pepsi! Do you have a member's card so you can save ten percent on additional purchases of any ETF or commodity share through the Wal Mart exchange? They can be found in Aisle 7, next to the books and magazines.

Today's briefing brought to you by KC and the Sunshine Band on the one and only Soul Train. Because we're feeling that 1970's Carter-era vibe, my babies! Fluff that 'fro and boogie down!

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posted by Monty at 07:04 AM

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