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Old 01-10-2014, 11:51 AM   #4921
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Originally Posted by olderguy View Post
Really admire the Judge, but it is sad that he has been showing his age so quickly. Maybe he is sick.
Per the judge's rant, I had a circular "discussion" with Scrappy a year or two ago about the state of the economy. I (probably grossly) distilled his economic treatise down to "perception is reality". Sooo, if Jake Carney comes out daily and tells us our economy is improving, it's improving. If the R's are fighting the D's on TV and vice versa, then it's true.

I'm just waiting for that moment when the little kid in the crowd points to the king and says, "Look, he's go no clothes!"

I almost thought we had one of those moments with Ted Cruz and the ACA retardedness, but I was wrong.
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:56 AM   #4922
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okay, then the judge should have ordered that the statements be removed, not that yelp has to give up the identify of people that used their site to publish libel. That's a huge bag o worms.
Really no big deal. Just get yourself a new SSN and new name for your online identity. It happens daily here in California for driver's licenses, consular cards, government services, etc.
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:31 PM   #4923
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Default Education reform

Mike Lee introduces bill to direct federal funding to alternative higher education | WashingtonExaminer.com

How will giving access to more underprivileged kids, increased competition and more state control be spun as a bad thing by the central planners?
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:32 PM   #4924
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they same way they attack the voucher programs.
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Old 01-10-2014, 02:25 PM   #4925
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Originally Posted by cordycord View Post
Per the judge's rant, I had a circular "discussion" with Scrappy a year or two ago about the state of the economy. I (probably grossly) distilled his economic treatise down to "perception is reality". Sooo, if Jake Carney comes out daily and tells us our economy is improving, it's improving. If the R's are fighting the D's on TV and vice versa, then it's true.
Joe Perez should find that incredibly fascinating, because the conclusion you came to seems to be pretty much the opposite of how I might distill my economic perspective. The fact that you somehow came to that conclusion is also a great example of why I was so frustrated trying to have a dialogue with you. Somehow, you were completely not picking up what I was putting down.


I wrote out a pretty lengthy response, complete with plenty of supporting data points, but I'll condense it thusly:

Unlike the Huffington Post, CNBC, Wall Street Journal, Newsmax, ZeroHedge, political pundit, et al types - I don't get paid for page views or click throughs. I don't get paid for TV appearances or selling subscriptions. And I sure as hell am not running for or trying to get anyone elected to a political office.

My paycheck is highly correlated to my investment performance. That's my accountability. When I am wrong, I don't make as much money.

Where's the accountability for the talking heads?

At some point, being right based on accurate analysis should count for something.

Being consistently wrong based on political propoganda and misunderstandings of operational realities should count for something.

2013 was my best year ever.

If you want to distill my economic perspective down to a soundbite, here's one I've written before:

A poor understanding of the US monetary system is bad for your blood pressure and your portfolio.
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Old 01-10-2014, 02:35 PM   #4926
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Here's a good one I've been holding on to for a couple days. Seems appropriate now.

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The Biggest Myths in Economics

1) The government “prints money”.

The government really doesn’t “print money” in any meaningful sense. Most of the money in our monetary system exists because banks created it through the loan creation process. The only money the government really creates is due to the process of notes and coin creation. These forms of money, however, exist to facilitate the use of bank accounts. That is, they’re not issued directly to consumers, but rather are distributed through the banking system as bank customers need these forms of money. If the government “prints” anything you could say they print Treasury Bonds, which are securities, not money. The entire concept of the government “printing money” is generally a misportrayal by the mainstream media.

See the following pieces for more detail:

Stop With the “Money Printing” Madness | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Where Does “Cash” Come From? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

2) Banks “lend reserves”.

This myth derives from the concept of the money multiplier, which we all learn in any basic econ course. It implies that banks who have $100 in reserves will then “multiply” this money 10X or whatever. This was a big cause of the many hyperinflation predictions back in 2009 after QE started and reserve balances at banks exploded due to the Fed’s balance sheet expansion. But banks don’t make lending decisions based on the quantity of reserves they hold. Banks lend to creditworthy customers who have demand for loans. If there’s no demand for loans it really doesn’t matter whether the bank wants to make loans. Not that it could “lend out” its reserve anyhow. Reserves are held in the interbank system. The only place reserves go is to other banks. In other words, reserves don’t leave the banking system so the entire concept of the money multiplier and banks “lending reserves” is misleading.

See the following for more detail on the basics of banking:

Understanding the Basics of Banking

Also see this Fed paper on this topic:

http://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/f.../201041pap.pdf

3) The US government is running out of money and must pay back the national debt.

There seems to be this strange belief that a nation with a printing press whose debt is denominated in the currency it can print, can become insolvent. There are many people who complain about the government “printing money” while also worrying about government solvency. It’s a very strange contradiction. Of course, the US government could theoretically print up as much money as it wanted. As I described in myth number 1, that’s not technically how the system is presently designed (because banks create most of the money), but that doesn’t mean the government is at risk of “running out of money”. As I’ve described before, the US government is a contingent currency issuer and could always create the money needed to fund its own operations. Now, that doesn’t mean that this won’t contribute to high inflation or currency debasement, but solvency (not having access to money) is not the same thing as inflation (issuing too much money).

See the following piece for more detail:

Why the USA Isn’t Going Bankrupt…. | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Inflation is NOT Necessarily a “Different Form of Default” | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

4) The national debt is a burden that will ruin our children’s futures.

The national debt is often portrayed as something that must be “paid back”. As if we are all born with a bill attached to our feet that we have to pay back to the government over the course of our lives. Of course, that’s not true at all. In fact, the national debt has been expanding since the dawn of the USA and has grown as the needs of US citizens have expanded over time. There’s really no such thing as “paying back” the national debt unless you think the government should be entirely eliminated (which I think most of us would agree is a pretty unrealistic view of the world).

This doesn’t mean the national debt is all good. The US government could very well spend money inefficiently or misallocate resources in a way that could lead to high inflation and result in lower living standards. But the government doesn’t necessarily reduce our children’s living standards by issuing debt. In fact, the national debt is also a big chunk of the private sector’s savings so these assets are, in a big way, a private sector benefit. The government’s spending policies could reduce future living standards, but we have to be careful about how broadly we paint with this brush. All government spending isn’t necessarily bad just like all private sector spending isn’t necessarily good. And at a macro level debt doesn’t get “paid back”. In a credit based monetary system debt is likely to expand and contract, but generally expand as the economy expands and balance sheets grow.

See the following pieces for more:

The US Government is not “$16 trillion in the hole” | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

IS SOCIAL SECURITY A PONZI SCHEME? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

The Debt Bad Guys | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

5) QE is inflationary “money printing” and/or “debt monetization”.

Quantitative Easing (QE) is a form of monetary policy that involves the Fed expanding its balance sheet in order to alter the composition of the private sector’s balance sheet. This means the Fed is creating new money and buying private sector assets like MBS or T-bonds. When the Fed buys these assets it is technically “printing” new money, but it is also effectively “unprinting” the T-bond or MBS from the private sector. When people call QE “money printing” they imply that there is magically more money in the private sector which will chase more goods which will lead to higher inflation. But since QE doesn’t change the private sector’s net worth (because it’s a simple swap) the operation is actually a lot more like changing a savings account into a checking account. This isn’t “money printing” in the sense that some imply.

See the following pieces for more detail:

What is quantitative easing? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Why Didn’t QE Cause High Inflation? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

6) Hyperinflation is caused by “money printing”.

Hyperinflation has been a big concern in recent years following QE and the sizable budget deficits in the USA. Many have tended to compare the USA to countries like Weimar or Zimbabwe to express their concerns. But if one actually studies historical hyperinflations you find that the causes of hyperinflations tend to be very specific events. Generally:

Collapse in production.
Rampant government corruption.
Loss of a war.
Regime change or regime collapse.
Ceding of monetary sovereignty generally via a pegged currency or foreign denominated debt.

The hyperinflation in the USA never came because none of these things actually happened. Comparing the USA to Zimbabwe or Weimar was always an apples to oranges comparison.

See the following pieces for more detail:

What is hyperinflation? Can it happen to the USA? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Inflation is NOT Necessarily a “Different Form of Default” | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

7) Government spending drives up interest rates and bond vigilantes control interest rates.

Many economists believe that government spending “crowds out” private investment by forcing the private sector to compete for bonds in the mythical “loanable funds market”. The last 5 years blew huge holes in this concept. As the US government’s spending and deficits rose interest rates continue to drop like a rock. Clearly, government spending doesn’t necessarily drive up interest rates. And in fact, the Fed could theoretically control the entire yield curve of US government debt if it merely targeted a rate. All it would have to do is declare a rate and challenge any bond trader to compete at higher rates with the Fed’s bottomless barrel of reserves. Obviously, the Fed would win in setting the price because it is the reserve monopolist. So, the government could actually spend gazillions of dollars and set its rates at 0% permanently (which might cause high inflation, but you get the message).

See the following pieces for more detail:

I WANT TO COME BACK AS THE FEDERAL RESERVE. YOU CAN INTIMIDATE EVERYBODY. | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

The Mainstream Economists (Finally) Realize Bond Vigilantes are Mythical…. | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

AMERICAN BOND VIGILANTES – ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

8) The Fed was created by a secret cabal of bankers to wreck the US economy.

The Fed is a very confusing and sophisticated entity. The Fed catches a lot of flak because it doesn’t always execute monetary policy effectively. But monetary policy is not the reason why the Fed was created. The Fed was created to help stabilize the US payments system and provide a clearinghouse where banks could meet to help settle interbank payments. This is the Fed’s primary purpose and it was modeled after the NY Clearinghouse. Unfortunately, the NY Clearinghouse didn’t have the reach or stability to help support the entire US banking system and after the panic of 1907 the Fed was created to expand a system of payment clearing to the national banking system and help provide liquidity and support on a daily basis. So yes, the Fed exists to support banks. And yes, the Fed often makes mistakes executing policies. But its design and structure is actually quite logical and its creation is not nearly as conspiratorial or malicious as many make it out to be.

See the following pieces for more detail:

The Fed’s Dual Mandate is Bull Sh*t | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Who Owns the Federal Reserve? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

Who Does the Fed Serve? | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM

9) Fallacy of composition.

The biggest mistake in modern macroeconomics is probably the fallacy of composition. This is taking a concept that applies to an individual and applying it to everyone. For instance, if you save more then someone else had to dissave more. We aren’t all better off if we all save more. In order for us to save more, in the aggregate, we must spend (or invest) more. As a whole, we tend not to think in a macro sense. We tend to think in a very narrow micro sense and often make mistakes by extrapolating personal experiences out to the aggregate economy. This is often a fallacious way to view the macroeconomy and leads to many misunderstandings. We need to think in a more macro way to understand the financial system.

10) Economics is a science.

Economics is often thought of as a science when the reality is that most of economics is just politics masquerading as operational facts. Keynesians will tell you that the government needs to spend more to generate better outcomes. Monetarists will tell you the Fed needs to execute a more independent and laissez-fairre policy approach through its various policies. Austrians will tell you that the government is bad and needs to be eliminated or reduced. All of these “schools” derive many of their understandings by constructing a political perspective and then adhering a world view around these biased perspectives. This leads to a huge amount of misconception which has led to the reason why I am even writing a post like this in the first place. Economics is indeed the dismal science. Dismal mainly because it’s dominated by policy analysts who are pitching political views as operational realities.

See the following piece for more detail:

Economics is Mostly a Policy Debate Masquerading as a Scientific Debate | PRAGMATIC CAPITALISM
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:51 AM   #4927
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Harry Reid Blocks Iran Sanctions Vote | The Weekly Standard

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The Iran nuclear deal is in place. And Senate majority leader Harry Reid is preventing the Senate from voting on Iran sanctions to be implemented in case the Iran deal fails. Reid is holding up the vote at the urging of President Obama.

The Emergency Committee for Israel is calling on Reid to allow a vote on the sanctions bill that's supported by many Democrats and Republicans, and well over half of the Senate.
Inside the White House War on Dems - The Daily Beast

Quote:
The White House is now openly declaring that Senate Democrats who support new sanctions against Iran are itching for war, but their campaign to pressure their own party members has been going on for months and has done little to dissuade Democrats from supporting sanctions.

The White House brought their fight with Congressional Democrats out in the open Thursday evening when National Security Staff member Bernadette Meehan sent an incendiary statement lashing out at pro-sanctions Democrats to a select group of reporters, accusing them of being in favor of a strike on Iran.
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Old 01-13-2014, 11:58 AM   #4928
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Originally Posted by Ryan_G View Post
He was able to present the court with enough evidence to convince them that the reviewer was likely not a real customer. It would then follow that these statements are knowingly false and damaging. There is a charge for just this action. It is called libel and is in place because you are not allowed to use the protection of your own rights to violate someone else's rights.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/12/us...s.html?hp&_r=0

maybe they dont wanna end up like this guy?
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:03 PM   #4929
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Incandescent bulb ban leaves bird care centre with dim hope - Ottawa - CBC News

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Ottawa’s Wild Bird Care Centre has put the call out for incandescent light bulbs, which it uses to provide warmth for injured and recovering birds, after the federal government banned manufacturers from making the bulbs.

In Canada, the more energy-efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs are considered the norm. The incandescent light bulbs use more power, but they are also warmer and serve an important role inside incubators.

“As the light bulb is on, it will obviously warm things up and then the setting will turn it off to keep the right temperature,” explained Mireille Goguen, who works at the centre.

She said they were caught off-guard by the bulb ban and they are already running short on incandescent bulbs. Now they are asking people to donate 100-watt bulbs.
killing birds is okay, so long as you're doing it in a forced environmentally and economically "friendly" manner.
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:18 PM   #4930
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Default This is how they do it in Mother Russia

Blog: In Time for '14: IRS to Ramp Up Conservative Groups' Harassment

Clamping down on free speech and just plain lying is the goal for 2014.
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:30 PM   #4931
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Infographic: Scientists Who Doubt Human-Caused Climate Change | Popular Science

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Old 01-13-2014, 01:02 PM   #4932
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Originally Posted by Scrappy Jack View Post
Joe Perez should find that incredibly fascinating, because the conclusion you came to seems to be pretty much the opposite of how I might distill my economic perspective. The fact that you somehow came to that conclusion is also a great example of why I was so frustrated trying to have a dialogue with you. Somehow, you were completely not picking up what I was putting down.

My paycheck is highly correlated to my investment performance. That's my accountability. When I am wrong, I don't make as much money.

Where's the accountability for the talking heads?

At some point, being right based on accurate analysis should count for something.

Being consistently wrong based on political propoganda and misunderstandings of operational realities should count for something.

2013 was my best year ever.

If you want to distill my economic perspective down to a soundbite, here's one I've written before:

A poor understanding of the US monetary system is bad for your blood pressure and your portfolio.
You've made my point beautifully Jack; your portfolio is looking good, therefore the economy is doing well. We have the lowest labor participation rate since WWII, rampant unemployment for teens and blacks, and even the IMF is saying that our current debt will require a Cypress-like "haircut". I could go on for pages, but life calls me from this computer. The bottom line is that like the king with no clothes, you're doing great. Until some kid tells you otherwise. Please carry a trenchcoat with you for when reality comes calling.

Meanwhile blaen99 thinks we should be spending trillions more to combat the evils of AGW...
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Old 01-13-2014, 01:17 PM   #4933
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Originally Posted by Braineack View Post
Incandescent bulb ban leaves bird care centre with dim hope - Ottawa - CBC News



killing birds is okay, so long as you're doing it in a forced environmentally and economically "friendly" manner.
Don't forget the waivers for killing eagles and thousands of other birds at the wind farms. Jeez, why do environmentalists HATE birds so much?
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Old 01-13-2014, 01:18 PM   #4934
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i stopped contributing to a roth back in may. It's still increasing at the same rate, today, as it was when i was adding money every week to it on interest alone.
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Old 01-13-2014, 01:18 PM   #4935
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Don't forget the waivers for killing eagles and thousands of other birds at the wind farms. Jeez, why do environmentalists HATE birds so much?
they should burn coal for heat.
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:04 PM   #4936
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Originally Posted by cordycord View Post
You've made my point beautifully Jack; your portfolio is looking good, therefore the economy is doing well.
I'm not going to bother with the rest, but this one point needs clarification.

The investment portfolios are put together with current and forward-looking analysis. That is, "here is the current data and here is the analysis of where we think that data leads so here are the investments we think will do well in that environment."


The guys selling the fear trade (long precious metals, long other commodities, short the US dollar, etc) got their analysis all wrong and those investments mainly got crushed. Timing matters.


The upside to all of this is that you appear to be acting completely hypocritically to your own assessment of national doom & gloom by starting a high-risk business venture during the past few years. I'm going to assume (because it will make me feel better) that you've been investing your money in yourself, via your business(es), and not throwing it away with the financial advice of the peddlers of recession ****.
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:21 PM   #4937
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Who needs Bulimia when you have Politics?
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:47 PM   #4938
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New York Common Core Website Sent Students to Sex Quiz Page

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While lawmakers in New York State are considering delaying the Common Core standards initiative because of its disastrous rollout, new problems with the academic standards are now drawing intense criticism.

Carol Burris, New York’s 2013 High School Principal of the Year, reports at Valerie Strauss’s Washington Post blog that Anna Shah, the mother of a kindergarten student, discovered highly offensive materials on the Student Services Page of the Engage NY Common Core materials site. When Shah reported her discovery to NYSED, the page was taken down, though the link had reportedly been active since October of 2012.
The link below is to a screen shot made prior to the removal of the site.

The New York State Education Department (NYSED) site contained a section called “Make test prep fun,” which directed students to a site with quizzes that help them find out if they are a “sexy bitch,” “evil,” a “freak,” “insane,” etc.

Scrolling down and right on the page, students could also click on the links to take quizzes that would help them find out if they are “*****,” or “losers.”

Questions on the “Are you a ****?” test include:

How many sexual partners have you had?
Would you have a threesome or a gang bang?
Are you often called a ****?
Have you ever let a boy hump you or grind on you in your younger years?
Have you ever messed around with brothers, cousins, or some other people related somehow?
What type of sex do you enjoy/prefer?

Students who wish to find out if they are a “loser” must answer these questions:

Are you a virgin?
Do you pay to talk to hot girls, and or pay for any female interaction?
How many times per day do you jerk your dick to ****/female pictures?
When did you last have sex?
How much is in your savings and checking?
What’s the average size of your dick?
How much time do you spend on femdom sites per day?
Do you cross dress?

As Burris writes, the Engage NY website, created and maintained by NYSED, was supposed to be a step in a positive direction for Common Core in New York. Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch had earlier boasted that New York is the only state using its award of over $28 million in Race to the Top funds to develop curricula aligned with the new standards:

When parents and teachers complained about the content of the curriculum modules, state education Commissioner John King dismissed their concerns, saying that he has “tremendous confidence in the materials.” He often describes the interest in New York’s reforms by the number of “hits” on Engage NY pages.
Based on the “Make test prep fun” fiasco, Burris quips, “sometimes ‘hits’ on the pages prove to be embarrassing.”
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Old 01-13-2014, 02:49 PM   #4939
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Why Doesn't the Federal Reserve Lend Each of Us $10 Million?

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Wouldn’t that be a good way to jump start the economy?

Sheila Baer, chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. during the Crash of 2008, was a lonely voice of sanity at that time. In 2012, she wrote an article for the Washington Post poking fun at the Fed for what it had been doing. It was entitled “ Fix Inequality With $10 Million Loans For Everyone.”

Why not, she said, expand the Fed’s current welfare system for banks, financial firms, and wealthy investors to everyone else? Why not, in short, create sufficient new money to lend every US household $10 million at zero interest rates?

You might object: how will we pay the money back? But don’t worry. You won’t spend this money. You will just invest it.

If you invest it in ten year US bonds today, you will earn $300,000 a year, which should be enough to pay down your other debts and get you spending again. If you want to be adventurous, you can invest in foreign bonds paying much more than 3%. Some of these bonds would pay you more than $1 million in interest per year.

You won’t be the only one to benefit. All the spending will create new jobs. In a stroke, unemployment will no longer be a problem. And the government will be able to say good bye to deficits, because there will be a gusher of new tax money coming in.

Sheila Baer remained tongue-in-cheek in her article. But lest someone think it is actually a good idea, let’s briefly review what is wrong with this happy picture. If the Fed did loan each household $10 million of newly created money, everyone’s income would soar, and so would consumer demand. But the supply of goods and services would remain the same, or perhaps even collapse because many people would decide to retire and enjoy their new wealth.

With demand for goods and services soaring and supply shrinking, the prices of everything we need would soar too. Before long, we would find that our fabulous new incomes wouldn’t buy any more than our old ones did.

Unfortunately, creating new money doesn’t create new wealth. It is like pouring water into a bowl of milk and pretending that you have more milk.

OK, you might say, if this is true, why hasn’t the Fed already created runaway inflation? Hasn’t it created trillions of new dollars since the Crash?

Here is the answer. If the Fed had lent millions directly to consumers, or perhaps just dropped new dollar bills from airplanes (a variant on an idea mentioned by retiring Fed chairman Ben Bernanke), inflation would be inescapable.

But the Fed didn’t do that. Instead, it made its money available to financial institutions and indirectly to the government. The financial institutions devised numerous imaginative ways to make money on the new money, but very little of it got into the hands of middle class consumers, the people who can most directly drive up consumer prices. Reported inflation has actually fallen, to a low 1% in the US, and only .8% in Europe.

Are these inflation figures reliable? Inflation certainly does not feel this low to most people. And, in all probability, it isn’t.

Click here to read the rest of the article at AgainstCronyCapitalism.org
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Old 01-13-2014, 04:01 PM   #4940
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Originally Posted by Braineack View Post
Can you imagine the banner year Jack would have if we all got a $10 million dollar loan "from the government"?!
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