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April 01, 2011

How about a hot DOOM! sandwich?

Public-sector union members in New Hampshire are taking some bad state budget news with the grace and understanding we've come to expect from those folks.

Kern County, California: Boned. Part 1. Part 2. (Via PensionTsunami.)

Fullterton, CA: Boned.

What do a Japanese fishing-cooperative, a Libyan bank, the Bank of Scotland, and the Bank of China all have in common? They all cadged some money off of Ben Bernanke, with a promise to pay it back real soon. But, um, don't tell the plebes about this, because it might look awkward: you know, American taxpayer money being used to bail out foreign banks. No telling! Pinkie swear!

Ireland's bailout bill: $142 Billion. Ireland's GDP? About $230 Billion. Projected GDP growth rate? About a half a percent. Unemployment rate? About 14%. Verdict: boned.

“None of it came as a big surprise,” Ralph Silva, a strategist at London-based Silva Research Network, said after the results yesterday. “They put a stress test out there that shows the banking industry in Ireland is dead.”
E's not dead! E's pinin' for the fjords! More:
“People may stop worrying about banks and senior haircuts,” Ivan Zubo, a banking analyst at BNP Paribas in London, said in an interview. “But they may start worrying about the sustainability of the sovereign.”

Aw. Teh Krugman has a headache, and the GOP is causing it. Here's the part that really fuzzles his noggin:

Now, liquidationism isn’t the only argument the G.O.P. report advances to support the claim that reducing employment actually creates jobs. It also invokes the confidence fairy; that is, it suggests that cuts in public spending will stimulate private spending by raising consumer and business confidence, leading to economic expansion.
Letting the peasants keep more of their own money actually helps the economy? Ow! My brain! It hurts!

Are Germans finally getting fed up with bankrolling the Euro project? If they step away, can the currency survive?

[W]hat is clear is that monetary union is fast approaching the outer limits of the politically possible. Germany will go no further, despite the fact that its economy is for the moment doing rather well from the single currency (it’s about the only one that is). Voters will not be persuaded to put more money into subsidising the profligate fringe. But the austerity that the absence of a transfer union imposes on the periphery is also testing democratic acceptability to destruction. The immovable object is meeting the irresistible force. On top of everything else, Europe’s beleaguered fringe economies will soon have to cope with the ECB’s determination to put up interest rates.
My take? DOOM!

A Nation of Takers, Not Makers. A little taste:

It gets worse. More Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined. We have moved decisively from a nation of makers to a nation of takers. Nearly half of the $2.2 trillion cost of state and local governments is the $1 trillion-a-year tab for pay and benefits of state and local employees. Is it any wonder that so many states and cities cannot pay their bills?
(Thanks to Andy in the sidebar.)

Aaaah. The smell of hot DOOM! There's nothing else in the world that smells like that. Breathe deep!

Behold! The iniquitous evil of...Scandi Cat!

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posted by Monty at 08:11 AM

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