February 26, 2015

Bits Bucket for February 26, 2015

Post off-topic ideas, links, and Craigslist finds here.

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Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 04:21:46

Is there a doctor in the house?

Moonie rag the Washington Times chimes in with this

EXCLUSIVE: Ben Carson calls for boots on the ground to fight Islamic State

“In an exclusive interview with The Washington Times, Ben S. Carson said radical Islamic terrorists threaten the United States, and he called for boots on the ground to defeat the organization.

“We have to — first of all be able to identify them, who they are — but we have to recognize that right now, they’re sort of in an adolescent stage. If we continue to let them grow, they will be in a full-grown adult stage and able to inflict more damage.”

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 04:26:16

It is probably COMMUNIST to ask this, but are those hypothetical boots attached to real people, with real families and real lives?

Or do you neocon propagandists prefer your boots to remain depersonalized so that when the legs wearing those boots are blown off by an IED and the rest of the body comes home in a wheelchair or in a box, you don’t have to think about that?

Communism, BOO!

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 04:33:48

And one more question, if the United States (which is already dead broke and deep in the hole) has to borrow the money from communist China to pay for this, doesn’t that make the new war a communist war?

And now back to your regularly scheduled Drudge Report links

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 04:41:19

I just did a search on “Grover Norquist net worth” and this was the seventh result:

Grover Norquist: The Billionaires’ Best Friend

How the anti-tax activist hijacked the GOP on behalf of the rich


That’s probably COMMUNIST too, but none of his friends’ children will be putting their boots on the ground, only poor blacks and poor browns and poor whites from red states put their boots on the ground

Ben Jones, thank you for everything you do

Neocon, warmonger, hypocrite, fake “conservative” trolls will be taken to the woodshed and spanked

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Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 08:34:44

You can never run out of currency when you have a printing press.

The war on isis can be financed by selling some bonds. If the foreign investors don’t want them the fed will buy them. Problem solved my friend.

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 04:44:35

And just for Clubber Lang, the HBB’s resident lobbyist for Big Tobacco

Fox News - If you don’t quit smoking, there’s a 67 percent chance it’ll kill you, study says (it’s from Fox News so it can’t be communist)


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Comment by oxide
2015-02-26 05:59:48

The MUH-nay that pays for Lockheed Martin bonus (to ensure mission success) is borrowed from the our hard-working allies Bank of Britain or Belgium or your yogamomma’s babies’ babies working hard at Foot Locker in 2056. The MUH-nay borrowed from commie China pays for commie babymomma food stamps and commie Obamaphones.

Getcher creditors straight man. :roll:

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Comment by spook
2015-02-26 08:56:51

Ben Carson can sew your legs back on.

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 12:34:04

He doesn’t even need to sew them back on, the way he has been anointed as the Black Messiah of the Republican Party, you’d think he’d only have to touch the stumps and new legs will grow back

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Comment by Shillow
2015-02-26 07:23:55

Even though both parties are controlled by the rich, I think it would be harder for a Republican president to take us to war than a Democrat at this point.

What will be the Pearl Harbor type event that is necessary ? It has to be on America soil.

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 07:30:44

It will happen, and when it does it will be a “bipartisan” production

Think “ISIS burns down the Reichstag” or something similarly dramatic

Comment by Shillow
2015-02-26 07:51:54

But any such dramatic event will also spur the closing of the open borders. It will be very tricky to find just the right trigger.

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Comment by In Colorado
2015-02-26 13:58:51

But any such dramatic event will also spur the closing of the open borders.

It didn’t last time.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 14:34:43

Yeah, I think it was actually the opposite. There was big need for workers during WW2, so a lot of Mexicans were allowed in to work on farms.

Comment by Shillow
2015-02-26 17:43:40

On 9/11 they did close the borders for a bit. And we are miles down the road now from where we were in 2001. Now that we’ve effectively legalized 20 million we can close the borders for a while.

Comment by scdave
2015-02-26 09:14:38

It has to be on America soil ??

The pearl harbor event had a obvious foe…If we get hit, who and how will we hit back ??

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 12:24:06

somebody brown, and preferably muslim

sikhs aren’t muslims, but they are brown and they wear turbans so if you can’t kill some muslims go kill some sikhs

it will be just as effective at ‘rallying the base’

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Comment by SUGuy
2015-02-26 09:33:07

Call it what you want, neocon’s, conservatives, but the real word is cold blooded killers.

Killing Killing Killing is what US is good at and most of the voters will just shrug.

God bless America

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 12:26:09

American Exceptionalism

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-02-26 18:00:05

Odd…there was no Islamic State in Iraq before we put boots on the ground there back in 2003.

Comment by Neuromance
2015-02-26 04:51:51

But I thought high and increasing house prices were an unmitigated good, not just a sop to self-deluded flippers and Wall Street.

Israeli auditor criticizes home prices, issue dogs election campaign
By Allyn Fisher-Ilan
JERUSALEM Wed Feb 25, 2015 3:25pm EST

(Reuters) - A report by Israel’s state auditor found on Wednesday “significant deficiencies” in housing policy blamed for a sharp rise in home prices, flagging an issue dogging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s bid for re-election on March 17.

The report said house prices had risen by 55 percent from 2008 through December 2013, and rents by 30 percent, covering five years in which Netanyahu has been in charge, in addition to a year when his centrist predecessor, Ehud Olmert, was premier.

Israeli pollsters see public anger at high living costs as a major factor for voters in the parliamentary election, as opposed to security and foreign policy issues that often took precedence in the past.


Comment by SUGuy
2015-02-26 11:31:06

Prices will drop back down again when the Arabs will rule in Israel again.

History will repeat only a matter of time.

Comment by rms
2015-02-26 20:59:13

“History will repeat only a matter of time.”

+1 Yep.

Comment by In Colorado
2015-02-26 14:03:16

The report said house prices had risen by 55 percent from 2008 through December 2013, and rents by 30 percent

This just goes to show how insane the bubble has become. I wouldn’t want to visit Israel, much less live there. It’s surround by enemies who want to annihilate it and yet, they housing prices in this most undesirable place go up.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 14:39:10

Yeah, but it’s got that great Mediterranean climate along the coast. It rarely gets very hot or very cold. It’s like California.

Comment by Neuromance
2015-02-26 04:55:47

This article dovetails with previous studies showing increased homeownership correlated with - and the authors believe caused - increased unemployment.

As safe as houses
Banks have been boosting mortgage lending for decades, at the expense of corporate loans
Jan 31st 2015
The Economist

According to a new paper by Oscar Jorda, Moritz Schularick and Alan Taylor, the traditional view that banks primarily lend to businesses is out of date. In 1900 only 30% of bank lending was to buy residential property; now that figure is around 60% (see chart).

Far from channelling money to companies, modern banks resemble “real-estate funds”, the authors claim, in which long-term mortgage lending is funded by short-term borrowing from the public.

The same authors also find that the growth of mortgage lending has led to property bubbles and financial instability. Their data suggest that rising levels of mortgage debt are a better predictor of financial crises than surges in other forms of lending. Worse, they find that financial crunches caused by mortgage binges result in deeper recessions and slower recoveries than episodes caused by other forms of debt. [ed. note: Bu.. bu.. but Keynes! (section VI, paragraph 3, burying banknotes in bottles is good but house construction is better)

More important, changes to international regulations on bank capital since the 1970s have also increased the supply of mortgages.

This explains why mortgage lending as a proportion of output has risen even in countries such as Germany and Switzerland, where home-ownership rates have not risen by much since the 1950s. It also explains why central banks the world over have found it easy to stimulate mortgage lending since the crisis, but not corporate borrowing. [ed. note: I wonder how that works - more mortgages but minimal change to homeownership]

Subsidies and regulations that encourage mortgage lending, in short, have the unintended consequence of stemming the flow of capital to small firms, thereby holding back the economy as a whole. And yet last year America’s federal government announced that it would, in effect, expand its subsidies by insuring mortgages with downpayments as low as 3%. The British government, meanwhile, expanded a subsidy for those buying their first home. Such policies may yield political benefits, but their economic consequences are pernicious.


Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 06:52:58

Debt makes people poor.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2015-02-26 06:55:09

And others rich.

Comment by SUGuy
2015-02-26 11:08:57

It’s about the votes and a cut for the bankers. By handing out unpayable mortgages the idjit voters feel like winners while paying for unaffordable mortgages.

Killing two birds with 1 stone for the ruling class.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-02-26 07:38:40

“modern banks resemble “real-estate funds””

Those real estate funds used to be called savings and loans.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:45:16

“This article dovetails with previous studies showing increased homeownership correlated with - and the authors believe caused - increased unemployment.”

Unless they did an instrumental variables approach, there is a high risk of spurious correlation in the findings, due to the confounding effects of government programs to give every low-income household entry to the Ownership Society. Employment and income are positively correlated, so you can see the possible problem here.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 08:13:08

“Inflated prices causes unemployment”

Which explains this;

Labor Force Participation Rate Sinks To New 37 Year Low


Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 06:57:09

This is for Bootsie:

“As Millennials—Millennial women in particular—grow in power, they seek to transform society into their personal hugbox. Their preferred method for doing so is the social media witch-hunt: targeting “racist,” “sexist” or otherwise un-PC individuals for Two Minutes Hates; getting them fired from their jobs, and worse. Pax Dickinson, Justine Sacco, Gavin McInnes: the list of social justice warriors’ victims could fill a phone book.

The flames of left-wing outrage are fanned by a battalion of websites for whom indignation is lifeblood. Gawker, Buzzfeed, xoJane, and other clickbait sewers make their ducats from catering to the worst instincts of Millennials: hypersensitivity and impotent anger. Thanks to the efforts of media moguls such as Nick Denton—the William Randolph Hearst of the Internet age—even legacy outlets such as the Washington Post have sensationalized their content in pursuit of views.”

Please share this article by using the link below. When you cut and paste an article, Taki’s Magazine misses out on traffic, and our writers don’t get paid for their work. Email editors@takimag.com to buy additional rights. http://takimag.com/article/im_ing_mccarthy_matt_forney/print#ixzz3SrKvnNLH

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 07:26:46

Wow, Takimag is all over this pussification thing. Here’s another one. And if you have the stomach for it, click the video link in the article, and you’ll see why England is toast. Toastie woastie. It’s not necessary to watch the whole thing, the first minute or so says it all.


Oh, yeah, John Derbyshire wrote this. He’s the guy who got two-minuted hated because of his infamous piece “The Talk, Non-Black Version”.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 07:42:14

Derbyshire was then fired by those left wingers at National Review.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 07:46:46

They did him a favor. NR is a neocon do-rag.

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Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 08:08:18

My dad subscribes to National Review, I was reading some issues of it over Christmas and every product or service advertised in that magazine is targeted at a demographic that is really, really, really old

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:10:26

As is virtually every other magazine, young people don’t buy magazines or have cable.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 09:15:40

Interesting potential geopolitical situation here. Putin is Europe’s only hope. Because he and his people just might be the only ones willing to throw down when it comes to the spread of the caliphate. Would not surprise me to see this develop in the coming years.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 09:30:26

Learn Russian, Europeans!

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:37:33

He is restoring the Russia Empire including its grounding in the Russian Orthodox church. It took the Malta Knights to stop Islam about 400 years ago, and it will probably take equally religious people to stop it the second time around. I think you are right, Russia is Europe’s only hope.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 10:01:03

Buh-bye, NATO!

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:12:01

I hope that you’re wrong about that. That empire included Ukraine, the Baltic states and large portion of Poland.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 10:13:02

Ha-ha, what do you want to bet that, at some point in the future, he solicits Anglo-American immigration to Russia? Something tells me he’s considered it, but is biding his time for the right moment.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:21:54

There were a pretty large number of well-educated Russians who left Russia and moved to various countries around the world during the 1990s. If Putin was seeking immigration, getting those people back would probably be a priority. But even getting them to return to Russia would be very difficult.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 10:28:14

“I hope that you’re wrong about that”

I’ll bet millions of Europeans are hoping I’m right, at this point in time. And what’s wrong with Poland and the Baltic States? I like most of the Poles and Czechs I’ve met. Can’t beat the Czechs when it comes to technology, either. Edison and Westinghouse would have been quaint little footnotes in history if not for their Eastern European employees.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 10:30:35

“But even getting them to return to Russia would be very difficult.”

My guess is the Russian diaspora would return in a heartbeat under the right circumstances. Especially rather than live under the caliphate. I know I would.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:58:46

And what’s wrong with Poland and the Baltic States? I like most of the Poles and Czechs I’ve met.

If Putin restored his empire, the Baltic states and much of Poland would be absorbed into it. You might like that. Millions of Polish people could end up looking for a place to live in western Europe, the US, Canada, etc. You’d have an opportunity to meet some more nice Polish people.

Of course, those four countries are NATO members, so we have a treaty obligation to help them defend their territory. A hot war between Russia and the West would not be pleasant.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 11:39:02

We had an obligation to defend Ukraine too, for our promise to protect them they agreed to give up their nuclear weapons. Whoops. I don’t think NATO will even exist in twenty years and even if it does on paper Palmetto is right they will not stand up to an expanding Caliphate or a resurgent Russia.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 12:08:13

“Millions of Polish people could end up looking for a place to live in western Europe, the US, Canada, etc. You’d have an opportunity to meet some more nice Polish people.”

Wouldn’t bother me. I have more in common with Stanislaus than I do with Ahmed, Ramesh, Diego or Pu.

However, that would never happen because the occupation government is too busy admitting folks from Syria, Middle East Africa and south of the border at this time. The poles and the eastern europeans don’t have the right amount of melanin in their skin.

Although, your idea would be the answer to the woman woes of bootsie and some other guys on the blog. Those Eastern European women would wipe the floor with the whining fem social justice two minute hate warriors.

Comment by palmetto
2015-02-26 12:15:28

Yep. Things are not looking good in Ukraine right now. Up next: howdy Uncle Vlad!


You see, this is the crap that the DC occupation gov’t does to countries. I forget who said this, but “It’s dangerous to be an enemy of the US. To be a friend is fatal”

Comment by SUGuy
2015-02-26 12:45:45

“Ha-ha, what do you want to bet that, at some point in the future, he solicits Anglo-American immigration to Russia?”

US offer a lottery in Russia for Russians to immigrate to the US.


Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 13:07:12

I’ve never heard of any US immigration laws that discriminate against people with fair skin. Nevertheless, you have a point. EU membership allows Poles and Balts to move and settle in nearly any EU country. The UK is the most popular destination, so it would receive a flood of migrants. A lot people in those four countries wouldn’t be able to get out in time and would die in this theoretical war. And I suppose that Putin could do what his predecessor Stalin did and set up governments in the Baltics and Central Europe that wouldn’t allow their people to leave.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 13:47:19

I don’t think NATO will even exist in twenty years and even if it does on paper Palmetto is right they will not stand up to an expanding Caliphate or a resurgent Russia.

Well at least there’s a date on this doom and gloom prediction. I find it hard to believe that NATO would fold and allow Putin to take over the continent.

Comment by Uncle House
2015-02-26 15:54:03

Putin is driving Russia into a ditch, and it won’t take 20 years for him to get it there. They’ve already built their own ghost financial district, full of empty skyscrapers. What’s left of their intelligentsia is pouring out of the country as we speak.

It’s pretty much game over for Putin if oil stays cheap, his closing society has nothing else to offer the world. Let’s hope the little megalomaniac doesn’t take the world down with him.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 16:55:03

“Putin is driving Russia into a ditch, and it won’t take 20 years for him to get it there.”

You really should stop listening to Obama, he wouldn’t know the truth if it bit him in the azz:


Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 07:33:31

Optimist: the glass is half full

Pessimist: the glass is half empty

Feminist: the glass is being raped


Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 07:50:10

Realist: The glass is half full, because half the water’s not there.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:45:00

In many parts of Brazil it is not there at all, since the socialist government said to not worry and did nothing to plan for drought and population growth. Just like Obama on social security, six plus years of watching it go broke with no action.

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Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:00:14

since the socialist government said to not worry and did nothing to plan for drought and population growth

Neither did the fascists before. Btw, Brazil has some socialistic aspects like most countries in the world but Brazil is not Socialist but China is Communist. Why do you pimp for the Commies?

Just like Obama on social security, six plus years of watching it go broke with no action.

Soc Sec going broke is a myth spawned to get the rich’s hands on it.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:07:08

Social Security is going broke and our country will be suffering from all the debt Obama has run up for decades. How can you say a program that is only taking in about 73 cents for every dollar it is expending is not going broke? An interesting article on what our massive debt is doing to this country:


Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:15:57

You don’t understand Soc Sec.

Social Security Cannot Go Bankrupt


“I’m not telling you whether you should be for or against Social Security, but the argument that it is going bankrupt is a non-starter.”

It is a logical impossibility for Social Security to go bankrupt. We can voluntarily choose to suspend or eliminate the program, but it could never fail because it “ran out of money.” This belief is the result of a common error: conceptualizing Social Security from the micro (individual) rather than the macro (economy-wide) perspective. It’s not a pension fund into which you put your money when you are young and from which you draw when you are old. It’s an immediate transfer from workers today to retirees today. That’s what it has always been and that’s what it has to be–there is no other possible way for it to work.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:26:51

As Greece shows eventually you run out of OPM. The left never wants to believe it, but the left in Greece is getting educated as we speak.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 10:17:49

…eventually you run out of OPM. The left never wants to believe it

Maybe because the economy does better under Democrats, hence more “Other People’s Money”?

Study: Economy grows faster under Democratic presidents …
Jul 30, 2014 - … more rapidly under Democratic presidents than under Republican presidents … lowers the unemployment rate, generates higher corporate profits and ….. country b/c… that’s the basic foundation and principle of capitalism.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 10:18:49

But when the OPM runs out this happens despite the promises of liberal politicians, excerpt from the NYT (real journalists):

First in Detroit, then in Stockton, Calif., and now in New Jersey, judges and other top officials are challenging the widespread belief that public pensions are untouchable.

Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey delivered the latest blow on Tuesday, when he proposed to freeze that state’s public pension plans and move workers into new ones intended not to overwhelm future budgets or impose open-ended demands on taxpayers.

The first crack came in Detroit, where a judge ruled that public pensions could, in fact, be reduced, at least in bankruptcy. Then, just a few weeks ago, an opinion by the bankruptcy judge for Stockton, which emerged from Chapter 9 on Wednesday, called California’s mighty public pension system, Calpers, a bully for insisting in court that pension cuts were wholly out of the question.

Such dogma “encourages dysfunctional strategies,” wrote the judge, Christopher Klein, chief judge of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of California. He said Calpers’s legal arguments were invalid, and he concluded that it lacked standing to dominate the courtroom discussion the way it had. Stockton did not even seek permission to freeze its pension plans, but the judge nevertheless wrote that it was entitled to do so and went on to cite steps that struggling cities in general should take to trim their pension costs legally.

For starters, he recommended negotiating with their unions.

It may be sheer coincidence, but New Jersey seems have taken Judge Klein’s instructions to heart, even though states cannot file for bankruptcy and thus lack that particular leverage. For months, a pension commission formed by Governor Christie has been working quietly with the New Jersey Education Association, normally one of the state’s most litigious pension adversaries. By talking to each other instead of battling in court again, the two groups managed to find enough common ground to issue what they called a “road map” toward solving New Jersey’s daunting pension problems.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 10:33:42

the widespread belief that public pensions are untouchable.

Public pensions should not be “untouchable” if all of the money is not there. We’re all in today’s reality together.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 12:53:04

Maybe because the economy does better under Democrats, hence more “Other People’s Money”?

They are better at creating bubbles and bubbles do create growth in the short term.

Comment by Bluto
2015-02-26 22:10:28

r.e. public worker pensions being untouchable the NY Times ran an interesting article on this today…


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Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 09:09:13

Boater: Honey, go and get another bottle from the fridge.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 09:20:00

Housing Analyst: Donk, fetch me another bag of Cheetos. And be quick about it!

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Comment by boots on the ground
Comment by Larry Littlefield
2015-02-26 07:10:34

Question: everyone is focused on when the Fed will raise short term interest rates.

This assumes they will do so while leaving the massive balance sheet of longer term bond accumulated by QE in place.

Since QE was the “extra” step, however, wouldn’t they reverse that first by selling those bonds, before raising short term rates?

Comment by Shillow
2015-02-26 07:26:21

How much does a quarter point raise in rates increase the national deficit by raising the cost of interest on the national debt?

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 07:46:23

The answer to this question is related to Larry’s question above. How much federal borrowing is short term, as opposed to 10-year bonds or bonds with even longer terms? If the answer is that very little borrowing is short term, then will a rise in short term rates push up other interest rates?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:16:43

Despite every major corporation issuing thirty year bonds to take advantage of low interest rates, this idiot Obama administration has moved to issuing more and more short term treasuries since it is a way to make the deficit look smaller by paying less interest in the very short term, however it assures that in the future the American public will have to pay much more to finance the debt, it is totally fiscally irresponsible and any private corporation that did it would soon be bankrupt.

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Comment by Dman
2015-02-26 08:30:56

That’s right, it’s Obama who’s the idiot.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:47:11

Finally, we agree but how could you disagree with such a foolish policy.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:02:18

any private corporation that did it would soon be bankrupt.

Countries do not run on the same economics as private companies. Never have.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:10:47

Countries do not run on the same economics as private companies. Never have.

Because the socialist Ponzi schemes are illegal in the private sector.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:11:48

how could you disagree with such a foolish policy.

Like this?

“Had the U.S. government issued only 3-month Treasury bills since 1952, public debt would be 54.8% of gross domestic product, compared with 71.3% of GDP under existing policy–roughly $3 trillion less–they estimate.”

Summers: U.S. Should Gradually Shift to More Short-Term Debt


The U.S. government over time should alter its debt policies and issue more short-term Treasury securities and fewer long-term securities, former U.S. Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers argues in a new paper.

Such a shift could dramatically reduce the cost of funding government debt because interest on short-term debt is cheaper, he and a group of co-authors from Harvard University argue in the paper, released Tuesday by the Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy. The risks of adopting such a policy aren’t as great as is widely believed, they add.

The proposal, coming from a former economic adviser to President Barack Obama who also served as Treasury secretary from 1999 to 2001, is sure to get noticed in Washington and on Wall Street. Investors are sensitive to the volume of long-term securities issued by the government.

A shift toward more short-term debt issuance by the Treasury could push long-term rates lower,

……..Interest rates on long-term Treasury debt tend to be higher than rates on short-term debt for several reasons. Investors demand higher returns for holding debt for longer periods because more can go wrong the longer a bond is held, such as an outbreak of inflation.

The authors argue that very short-term Treasury debt also has special qualities that make its interest cost especially low to the government. Because it is so secure and liquid, many investors hold it as a substitute for cash and are willing to accept low rates as a result. The government can save money by issuing more of it, the authors argue.

Had the U.S. government issued only 3-month Treasury bills since 1952, public debt would be 54.8% of gross domestic product, compared with 71.3% of GDP under existing policy–roughly $3 trillion less–they estimate.

The worry is that relying in short-term debt leads to volatility of interest payments, but the authors say that volatility is less than commonly supposed.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:30:25

Works well during a period of declining interest rates and is a disaster during rising rates, the smart money knows which way they are going.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:40:12

Works well during a period of declining interest rates and is a disaster during rising rates,

The Harvard study studying it 50 years after-the-fact indicates it works OK with rising and falling interest rates - in the long term. Rates went up from 1950 to the 80s and down from the 80s to now and yet according to the above study:

“Had the U.S. government issued only 3-month Treasury bills since 1952, public debt would be 54.8% of gross domestic product, compared with 71.3% of GDP under existing policy–roughly $3 trillion less–they estimate.”


Comment by Larry Littlefield
2015-02-26 09:40:13

It seems that Summers wants the U.S. to cash out everything while he’s alive, and to leave it a smoking wasteland while he is gone.

Interest rates are rock bottom. The U.S. should be issuing as much long term debt as the Chinese are willing to buy.

I wonder if Summers believes the federal government could resort to forced rollovers of short term debt if interest rates rise?

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:16:53

Are you assuming that short term rates will higher in the future than long term rates are now?

Comment by Larry Littlefield
2015-02-26 10:54:47

Yes. Unless we are somehow at the end of history.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 11:18:18

The dollar is up today largely because Bullard was saying (I believe I saw him on CNBC) that interest rates need to rise 375 to 400 basis points, with that coming losing the opportunity to lock in low rates is clearly putting political considerations before the nation’s best interest. (pun intended)

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-02-26 16:37:21

I loathe to agree with Rio, but what she says is generally correct thinking. Anyone borrowing for a longer term on a fixed rate generally pays some kind of premium for the benefit of not taking the interest rate risk over the term of the borrowing.

This is why SOME uber-wealthy I know only borrow floating over Libor. While they know they’ll take their lumps from time to time as rates rise, over the LONG term, they’ll come out ahead (as the Harvard study suggests).

HOWEVER, at least one uber-wealthy person that I know took out a 30-year loan on their paid-for house, because he saw today’s 30-year rate as unsustainably low, and they perceived being able to lock in that rate as a gift.

Today’s 30-year treasury rate is 2.6% nominally. On a real basis, this is only 0.6% (assuming 2% inflation). Yes, it is higher than the negative real rate on short term borrowing. However, I think if Harvard were to study it, they would say that a 0.6% real rate on 30-year borrowing is among the lowest it has ever been, and negative short-term real rates are NOT common (ie. they won’t last either).

For perspective, in 2010, it was more than 4.5% (making the real rate of interest then almost 4x today’s real rate).

So IMHO, a better policy would be to lock in the 30-year rate today (where the anomaly of the 0.6% real rate will last for 30 years), and at other times, borrow short term.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 19:58:40

Agreed that was my point these are once in a century rates.

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-02-26 14:09:05

I think they’ll just let the debt they bought mature rather than sell it on the open market.

The bigger question is this:

When they start raising rates, how much money will the Fed need to print in order to cover the deficits generated by the increasing cost of the $17+ Trillion of US debt?

Comment by Shillow
2015-02-26 07:34:03

Mainstream Republicans like Scott Walker a lot because:

1. He’s not a Bush
2. Liberals hate him for crushing them repeatedly.
3. He doesn’t have any instantly recognizable baggage.

The powers that be and the paid liberal shills are trying desperately to find or manufacture a scandal to tank him. But if the NSA can’t find it, who can?

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 07:51:04

Scott Walker cut taxes and reduced the size of government in Wisconsin


But I’m still waiting for him to explain how America will pay for this

Borrowing from COMMUNIST China?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:21:08

But I’m still waiting for him to explain how America will pay for this

A federal tax on pot and Lola boots. They are going to hit you where you live.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 08:46:39

4. Walker is an obvious and proven tool of the Koch brothers, which suits the mainstream Repubs just fine, because the mainstream GOP is a wing of the Chamber of Commerce/Wall Street/Congress-Lobbyist-money-peddling-for-influence syndicate.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:13:19

Walker’s also very anti-union, which is great for the one-percenters.

Comment by 2banana
2015-02-26 11:15:40

Walker’s also very PUBLIC anti-union, which is great for homeowners everywhere…

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 11:31:42

Anti PUBLIC union

Damn goons!!!

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 11:32:02


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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 11:32:28

Taxpayers both renters and homeowners.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 11:43:51

homedebtors for certain. Not renters.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 12:04:05

Renters do not pay sales and income taxes to support public workers and have their rents raised when their landlords get their property taxes raised?

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 12:53:44

You don’t remember?

Landlord expenses are never automatic passthrough costs to tenants.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 16:48:54

Landlord expenses are never automatic passthrough costs to tenants.

It is not automatic but in a low vacancy market it will be passed through to the renter. High taxes tend to create low vacancy markets by taking the profit incentive out of owning rentals.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 17:16:51

There are no “low vacancy” markets.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:35:15

Oil is headed further down the tube today (yawn…)

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:37:24

Oil falls towards $61 as ample supplies weigh
By Alex Lawler
LONDON Thu Feb 26, 2015 8:31am EST
A pumpjack brings oil to the surface in the Monterey Shale, California, April 29, 2013. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

(Reuters) - Oil fell towards $61 a barrel on Thursday as a further jump in U.S. crude stockpiles underlined currently ample supplies, countering indications of a coming recovery in global demand.

The U.S. government’s latest supply report released on Wednesday said domestic crude inventories rose last week to 434.1 million barrels, hitting a seasonal record high for the seventh week.

Brent crude LCOc1 fell 40 cents to $61.24 by 8.17 a.m. ET, after jumping more than 5 percent on Wednesday. U.S. crude CLc1 fell 96 cents to $50.03, following a more than 3 percent gain in the previous session.

“At present, it would appear that Brent is bottoming out at $60 per barrel,” said Carsten Fritsch, analyst at Commerzbank. “The renewed sharp rise in U.S. crude oil stocks … points to a market that is still oversupplied.”

Brimming U.S. crude supplies are increasing the discount at which U.S. crude is trading to Brent. The spread reached $11.81 on Thursday, the widest since January 2014.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:40:13

Cotango traders are running out of closet space…

Are oil producers running out of closet space?
Leslie Shaffer
15 Hours Ago

Oil supply running ahead of demand hasn’t just pressured prices, it’s also filling up storage space, potentially pushing crude toward another leg down.

“We’re going to see pretty fast inventory builds over the next few weeks,” Francisco Blanch, head of commodity research at Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, told CNBC Wednesday, noting that global supply is running around 1.4 million barrels a day above demand.

If you run out of space, prices tend to react a lot more violently to adjust that supply and demand imbalance and that’s what we expect over the next few weeks,” he said, forecasting both WTI and Brent will fall toward $30 a barrel. Prices settled at $50.99 and $61.97, respectively, on Wednesday.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:42:24

Oil Prices Slide on Bearish Supply Outlook
U.S. Energy Information Administration reported large stock build
By Georgi Kantchev
Updated Feb. 26, 2015 9:03 a.m. ET

Oil prices fell Thursday as bearish supply data turned the market’s focus back on global oversupply.

Data Wednesday showed U.S. oil inventories rose to their highest level since 1982 and production continued to increase.

U.S. crude fell 2.6% to be at $49.65 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent futures fell 0.7% to $61.16 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange.

“The renewed sharp rise in U.S. crude oil stocks points to a market that is still oversupplied,” Commerzbank analysts said in a note.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Wednesday that oil inventories rose 8.4 million barrels to 434.1 million barrels last week, the highest-ever level in EIA weekly data that goes back to August 1982.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 07:49:59

Yes, keep talking about how crude oil is building but ignoring how products are dropping. We have a refinery strike going on not an oil glut. You only have to fill up your car to tell the difference.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:18:27

It is Brent that matters these days and while it may correct due to the spiked dollar today it is well over $60 a barrel:


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Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 08:29:31

Does vlad want a pipeline through syria?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:48:40

No. But are Islamic wing nuts do.

Comment by Dman
2015-02-26 08:39:42

They keep shutting down wells, but the wells that stay open are more productive than ever, so production keeps increasing, and demand keeps falling, and they’re running out of places to put the stuff. We have yet to reach the point where oil prices fall over the cliff, but when we do, I may just go for a long drive in the country to celebrate.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:50:27

Keep ignoring what is happening at the pump, denial is not just a river in Egypt.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 08:54:54

Retail gasoline is down 40%.

Retail fuel oil is down 45%.

All positive news.

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 09:24:19

The worst part about Bubble jobs being lost is that they were ever created in the first place.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 07:53:39

Just don’t refer to the negative inflation trend with the dreaded D word!

U.S. stocks open lower as economic data dampen mood

Consumer-inflation trend turns negative for first time since 2009
Published: Feb 26, 2015 9:41 a.m. ET
Cheaper gas has been a godsend for consumers. Winter weather, not so much.
By Jeffry Bartash

WASHINGTON — Consumer prices fell in January for the third straight month, and inflation over the past 12 months turned negative for the first time since 2009, largely because of cheaper gasoline.

The result: paychecks, adjusted for inflation, are stretching a little further.

Despite the low rate of inflation, the Federal Reserve is laying the groundwork for an increase in interest rates as early as June. The central bank views the steep drop in inflation as a temporary phenomenon that will soon be reversed.

In January, the consumer price index sank by a seasonally adjusted 0.7%, the biggest one-month drop since the end of 2008, the Labor Department reported Thursday. That matched the MarketWatch forecast.

The pace of inflation over the past 12 months, meanwhile, fell to negative 0.1%, and it’s down sharply from 2.1% last summer shortly before crude prices collapsed.

The combination of higher pay per hour and lower inflation boosted real wages by 1.2% in January, the biggest gain in more than six years. Real or inflation-adjusted wages have risen 2.4% over the past 12 months, the fastest pace since 2009.

The turn toward negative inflation has been driven almost entirely by the biggest drop in gasoline prices since the Great Recession. Energy costs slumped 9.7% in January to put the plunge over the past 12 months at a stunning 19.6%.

Food prices have also moderated, showing no increase in the first month of 2015.

Excluding food and energy costs, so-called core consumer prices rose 0.2% in January. They have also risen 1.6% in the past 12 months, closer to the Fed’s preferred 2% inflation level.

In some areas, consumers prices are actually rising quite rapidly. The cost of shelter, for example, jumped 0.3% in January, and it has climbed 2.9% over the past year.

The price of clothing also rebounded after three straight declines, up 0.3% in January.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 08:10:25

Falling Prices is your wallets best friend.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 08:23:50

Looking the rear view mirror, do you think that gasoline prices are down over the last month? BTW, did you see what happened to shelter prices, I thought this was a housing blog, why no mention?

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 08:35:28

Remember…. Falling prices of all items is positively bullish and good for the economy.”

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 09:00:37

HA, remember about a month ago when I said that a cold snap in NE that heading your way would cause you to get the Bathhouse Barry Treatment (’BBT”), well it is happening. To remind you I said due to Obama’s EPA and local wing nuts in your area, the coal electric plants had closed and converted over to NG but insufficient pipeline capacity existed so you would be subject to massive price spikes when the weather turned cold, well it is happening: You are paying almost ten times the price for NG than the national average. This is being paid by your local electric utilities and NG companies that will be soon passing on the BBT to you, the first column is NG and you are getting the same treatment in imported electricity which is the second column:

New England 25.25 -13.7 196.80 +16.2 20.05
Mid-Atlantic 20.97 +60.3 102.01 +17.6 0.00
Midwest 4.62 -0.5 33.06 +14.2 0.73
Southwest 2.97 +5.0 27.33 -2.7 6.52
Northwest 2.59 +3.7 24.00 -1.0 5.87

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 09:05:07

In the meantime, retail NG is 40% lower.

Gotta love falling prices. It’s nothing but cash in the wallet.

Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 09:12:12

I have hardly had to turn the heater on in february. my jan bill was 68.00.
I have been using about 8 kw of power / day.

gas went up about 50 cents/ gallon. my little 4 banger gets about 25 mpg.

Using as little as I can.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:19:24

I have hardly had to turn the heater on in february.

Me neither.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 09:21:09

With heat so cheap, who cares how high I run it?

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 09:28:46

There is plenty of gas in the NE, despite whatever the drumheads are squawking.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 09:36:38

Matters none. Shut off the gas and feed the boilers fuel oil. That’s the beauty of steam plants.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 12:10:16

Last month is so “yesterday.”

Check out oil today!

Crude Oil - Electronic (NYMEX) Apr 2015
Market open $48.68
Change -$2.31 -4.53%
Volume 325,368
Feb 26, 2015 1:57 p.m.
Previous close $50.99

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 12:52:44

…… and down through the ground goes a craterin’ crude.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 08:29:59

Update: Oil Bounces Off $50 Ceiling And Sinks Lower


Comment by Carl Morris
2015-02-26 09:29:39

I keep forgetting to get on here in the late night or early morning. But I said I’d report on China again. From what I saw in the week or so that I was there is that things seem to just be hanging in there…not much has changed since last July as far as I could tell.

I finally got to do some driving there. Probably drove a couple hundred miles in and around Shanghai. I wanted to try it all last year and it was nice to finally be able to. Found a couple of nice restaurants I didn’t know about before that will be nice for taking customers to.

Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 15:57:45


Comment by cactus
2015-02-26 09:33:13

LONDON (Reuters) - Global equities set a new record high and bond yields sank to fresh lows on Thursday as investors positioned for an extended era of cheap money ahead of the European Central Bank’s looming bond-buying scheme.

There were also signs the euro zone economy may be turning a corner as consumer morale picked up in the bloc’s largest economies and bank lending fell at a slower place.

Central banks’ battle to keep cash flowing into the financial system to avert a deflationary spiral has driven core European government bond yields into or close to negative territory, with German seven-year bond yields the latest to go below zero for the first time on Thursday.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 09:35:14

I want a negative interest rate mortgage. I’ll refinance if it happens.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 09:38:35

You’re better off dumping it to get out from under than debt laden, interesting bearing depreciating shack.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 09:53:05

My FICO is over 800. In a deflationary environment, would a bank give me a slightly negative mortgage as an incentive to keep me from walking and keep paying down that principal?

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Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-02-26 09:57:22

My FICO is over 800.

Me too. Not bad for a “Socialist“. ;)

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 10:05:18

“would a bank give me a slightly negative mortgage as an incentive to keep me from walking and keep paying down that principal?”

You already doubled down on your losses and financed a depreciating asset.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 13:59:10

Rio says re FICO 800 Not bad for a “Socialist“.

LOL, thanks. To be expected — we moderate Dems believe in pay-as-you-go financing. My friends on the right are the big deficit spenders :-)

Comment by Muggy
2015-02-26 15:06:37

“My FICO is over 800.”

I have a card that shows me my credit score on statements, which is now 791 (down). A note says it would be higher if I had installment loans like an auto of home loan to show I am credit worthy. LOL.

Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 18:06:39

your debt slave score?

Comment by rms
2015-02-26 22:54:17

“My FICO is over 800.”

Mine was, but I haven’t borrowed one red cent the past couple of years now.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 20:31:37

Suppose they did a QE and there weren’t enough high quality bonds to meet the purchase quotas. Would interest rates go negative as a result?

Oh wait…

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-02-26 20:34:47

ECB’s Test Is to Find Enough Bonds

Economic plan calls for billions in purchases, but supply is an issue; ‘It will be challenging’
By Christopher Whittall
Feb. 25, 2015 8:00 p.m. ET

The European Central Bank has pledged to buy hundreds of billions of euros of government bonds to help revive the eurozone economy. Now it will have to find them.

Analysts and investors are skeptical about its chances, though, since many investors will be unwilling or unable to sell top-rated government bonds, particularly those belonging to Germany.

“It will be challenging for the ECB to source enough government bonds to meet its QE targets,” said Anthony O’Brien, co-head of European rates strategy at Morgan Stanley.

Starting next month, the ECB’s program of quantitative easing, or QE, involves buying €60 billion ($68 billion) of debt securities each month until September 2016.

Since late last year, the central bank has been buying about €13 billion of other assets a month, and analysts expect the difference—about €47 billion—to consist of government bonds.

Which government bonds the ECB buys depends on each country’s share of the European Union’s population and gross domestic product.

The problem is top-rated bonds are already in short supply—especially Germany’s, which make up the largest individual chunk of the program. German government debt, or bunds, will account for just over a quarter of the purchases, or around €12 billion each month.

But the German treasury says it expects to issue this year €147 billion of eligible bonds—those with maturities of two to 30 years—while €132 billion of bonds will mature, meaning net new bund issuance of just €15 billion for the whole year. Overall, the ECB’s plans mean it has to buy €215 billion of German government bonds between this March and September 2016—26 times more than the amount the German government bond market is predicted to grow over the same period, Morgan Stanley says.

This contrasts with the Federal Reserve’s multitrillion-dollar QE program, which was done against a backdrop of plentiful bond supply from the U.S. Treasury.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 09:33:27

Forget oil, this is a housing blog dang it. Look at the year-over-year deflation in the cost of lumber and OSB panels used to build houses:


Maybe I’ll buy me an empty lot and build a custom home — wood and stuff is on sale!

Comment by 2banana
2015-02-26 11:18:56

Copper and Lumber - both have Ph.Ds…

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 11:49:06

Copper has been taking off this month, what does that mean?

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 12:00:06


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Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 14:05:11

If you looked at the longer copper trend, you wouldn’t be impressed at all by the last few days’ fluctuations.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by boots on the ground
2015-02-26 11:04:04

B-b-b-but that’s not the multicultural utopia we were promised in the 2014 Souper Bowl Coke commercial, Dannyboy


Comment by 2banana
2015-02-26 11:17:09

The father of a black teenager murdered by an illegal immigrant asked “do black lives really matter?” in a House hearing to review the Department of Homeland Security’s policies towards “non-citizens unlawfully present in the United States.”

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 10:44:39

The Congressional Reserve Board: A Really Bad Idea

February 16, 2015

“We are – I’ll be blunt – audited out the wazoo. Every Federal Reserve Bank has a private auditor. We have our auditor of the system. We have our own inspector general. We are audited. What he’s talking about is politicizing monetary policy.” Richard Fisher, President, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Dallas Morning News, February 9, 2015.

What would you think if you were to open your morning newspaper to find the following headline?

“Congress Closes Down Fed, Takes Over Monetary Policy”

If you’re like us, you’d panic. In short order, you’d think that long-term inflation expectations would rise, pushing bond yields higher. You’d anticipate an increase in the volatility of growth, employment and inflation. That more volatile environment would drive up the risk premium required on new investments, hindering long-term economic growth. Finally, you’d be very worried about how these Congressional policymakers would manage the next financial crisis.

This is not a pretty picture. Why would anyone want it to become a reality? Well, these are surely not the intended goals, but they are the likely outcomes should lawmakers ever replace the Federal Reserve Board with what we would call a Congressional Reserve Board.

While the Federal Reserve Transparency Act of 2015 – aka, the “Audit the Fed” Act – doesn’t shut down the Federal Reserve, it would go a long way to putting Congress directly in charge of monetary policy and to weakening the Fed’s effectiveness as a lender of last resort.

To explain our concerns, we will start by describing why it has become almost universally accepted practice to make the institution setting monetary (and regulatory) policy independent of political interference. That is, why most advanced and emerging market economies have opted to make their central banks “independent.” We will also explain why the “Transparency Act” is really about controlling monetary policy, not about making the Fed accountable (the short answer: it already is). And, finally, we will explain the bill’s impact on the Fed’s lender of last resort powers.

So, what are the benefits of independence that made Congress (and the legislatures of many other nations) opt to delegate tool independence to a group of unelected officials? The answer – from a large body of research – is that an independent central bank delivers low inflation with a smaller sacrifice of output and employment (see chart below). We see this as the closest thing we know to a free lunch (and, while this view is not free of dissent, it is widely shared among economists).

Our bottom line is simple: a Congressional Reserve Board is a really bad idea, but that’s what an audit of monetary policy would create. Instead, Congress should maintain and advance the current framework of delegating circumscribed authority to a transparent, accountable and independent Federal Reserve that can contribute to prosperity by keeping inflation low, employment high, and the financial system robust.


Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 11:30:34

The fed is corrupt and incompetent.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 13:09:46

It would be worse if they were corrupt and competent.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 11:42:14

Our country did quite well without a Federal Reserve which was not created to 1913. The left is in panic trying to protect easy money and the globalism that the Federal Reserve promotes.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 12:49:22

Look at the record since the creation of the Federal Reserve:

1. Great Depression and Great Recession

2. U.S. currency has lost more than 99% of it value.

3. A nation virtually without debt to a nation with 18 trillion visible debt and probably more than ten times that in unfunded liabilities.

4. From an exporting powerhouse to a nation that runs a large trade deficit year after year.

Certainly, we do not want to audit such an organization. No one said Congress should take over its functions, abolish it and allow gold to set the money supply perhaps, but not have Congress create money.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 13:33:46

I’ve mentioned this before, but my grandparents told me a little about what life was like when they were kids in the 1920s. It was pretty miserable. I doubt that things were any better in 1912.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 15:34:19

The Fed has failed in its job. That does not mean the free enterprise system has failed to advanced living standards, it is why China in 1979 before it adopted free market reforms, workers were making less than ten cents an hour while Taiwan had a standard of living of many European nations.

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-02-26 14:16:26

A secret audit is no audit at all.

A bank that gives (massive) foreign aid is hardly apolitical.

A bank that intentionally and perpetually debases our currency is an enemy of the state.

The national debt is our own damn fault (in a represented sort of way).

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 16:46:01

The national debt is our own damn fault (in a represented sort of way).

It never could have reach these levels without the Fed monetizing it, thus making it less of a concern to the voters. If their interest rates were going up as the deficit went up, they would have demanded cuts in government.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-02-26 12:36:09

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvcLWQrcgtM - 281k -

Rocket man he called me up on his Obama phone

Comment by Guillotine Renovator
2015-02-26 12:52:01

Question for the savvy traders here:

I have a chunk of money I’d like to put in a trading account. I don’t want to be a “day trader” but I’d like to be able to pick a handful of investments, and tweak them as I see fit. I’d like to get in on some commodities plays as prices get hammered (natural gas), and maybe a few stocks or funds. Which is the most user friendly site out there, with the lowest fees for the little guy? We’re talking maybe $10k.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-02-26 14:09:33

If Jeb or Hillary wins, buy the defense sector. Stock symbol ISIS.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 16:26:20

Actually, that is the symbol for a pharma company in which I have a position.

Comment by Bill, Just South of Irvine
2015-02-26 21:47:20

“If Jeb or Hillary wins, buy the defense sector. Stock symbol ISIS.”


I stole that and posted on FB.

Comment by "Auntie Fed, why won't you love ME?"
2015-02-26 13:12:45


Comment by Muggy
Comment by "Auntie Fed, why won't you love ME?"
2015-02-26 17:57:16

See? I told you there were aliens.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 13:25:05

“Oil Tumbles To Lowest Level In A Month


Can we get these inflated prices down to lower levels a little quicker so we have an economy to work with?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 15:29:18

Gasoline was up ten cents a gallon yesterday and down one cent today. You will be seeing it when you fill up this weekend. We have a major refinery strike going on, you do not need as much crude if you are not processing it, however, we burn gasoline not crude so if it lasts much longer we will have to ship the crude elsewhere to process it and we all will pay the higher price.

Comment by mathguy
2015-02-26 15:59:42

You got banned a week for overplaying the oil lines.. Maybe you should just let it go and not respond.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-02-26 16:41:07

So is this a blog to discuss and debate issues or a blog designed to be an echo chamber in your opinion? Unfortunately, I am not paid to post so whether I get banned or not is my primary concern. A good debate does motivate me, I like to be challenged, it makes me dig deeper and learn more information. Just recently, I found a way to learn information about completions of wells not just how many wells are being drilled or not drilled. It made me better able to time oil’s recovery and find out why production was stable given the massive fall off in drilling which was even more than I anticipated but was not resulting in the fall off in production per drilling rig, I was anticipating. The answer was in the backlog of uncompleted wells which was not being discussed at the time.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2015-02-26 17:15:16

If you looked at the longer fuel trend, you wouldn’t be impressed at all by the last few days’ fluctuations.

Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 18:24:28

falling asset prices are not acceptable but falling gasoline prices are ok?

Is inflation just a code word for printing currency to pay off debt?

I’m working on a patent for my sh@tter decor. I’m looking for angel investors. Don’t steal my ideas!

Comment by phony scandals
2015-02-26 13:45:36

Obama to ban ammo through executive action by labeling bullets “cop killers”

Executive tyranny in high gear

by Paul Bedard | Washington Examiner | February 26, 2015

It’s starting.

As promised, President Obama is using executive actions to impose gun control on the nation, targeting the top-selling rifle in the country, the AR-15 style semi-automatic, with a ban on one of the most-used AR bullets by sportsmen and target shooters.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives this month revealed that it is proposing to put the ban on 5.56mm ammo on a fast track, immediately driving up the price of the bullets and prompting retailers, including the huge outdoors company Cabela’s, to urge sportsmen to urge Congress to stop the president.

Wednesday night, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the Republican chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, stepped in with a critical letter to the bureau demanding it explain the surprise and abrupt bullet ban. The letter is shown below.

The National Rifle Association, which is working with Goodlatte to gather co-signers, told Secrets that 30 House members have already co-signed the letter and Goodlatte and the NRA are hoping to get a total of 100 fast.

Comment by Guillotine Renovator
2015-02-26 14:10:25

They know (gun control advocates), that they will never be able to ban guns. But with no ammo, the guns become useless. That’s a lot of what’s behind the ammo shortage- people have been loading up for years in anticipation of such legislation.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-02-26 14:36:30

Exactly - guns don’t kill people, bullets kill people.

Comment by Muggy
Comment by phony scandals
2015-02-26 14:05:34

“What we’ve done is we’ve expanded my authorities under executive action, and prosecutorial discretion as far as we can legally,”

Not according to U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen.

By Jeff Mason and Richard Cowan

WASHINGTON Tue Feb 17, 2015 6:29pm EST

“In a setback to the president, U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen in Brownsville, a city along the Texas border with Mexico, issued a temporary court order on Monday stopping Obama’s executive actions that bypassed a gridlocked Congress.”

Hanen’s action left in disarray U.S. policy toward the roughly 11 million people in the country illegally.

Obama: ‘We’ve Expanded My Authority’ Under Prosecutorial Discretion

by Ian Hanchett 25 Feb 2015

President Obama said “we’ve expanded my authorities under executive action, and prosecutorial discretion” during a townhall meeting on Wednesday.

“What we’ve done is we’ve expanded my authorities under executive action, and prosecutorial discretion as far as we can legally, under the existing statute, the existing law” he stated.

Earlier, the president argued “what I’ve done is no different than what previous presidents have done.”

He continued by comparing the immigration reform push to the civil and women’s rights movements, saying “the one thing that I have to just say to everybody here, every major social movement, every bit of progress in this country, whether it’s been the workers’ rights movement, or the civil rights movement, or the women’s rights movement, every single bit of that progress has required us to fight, and to push, and you make progress, and then, you know, you don’t get everything right away, and then you push some more.”

http://www.breitbart.com/…/ - 47k -

Comment by aNYCdj
2015-02-26 14:55:09

99 cent special today!!!!!!

DryShips, Inc. (DRYS)

0.99 Down 0.03(2.94%)


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-02-26 17:44:13

I don’t get it. Why, after the enormity of the evidence of crony capitalism and corruption swirling around the Clintons, are the pundits suggesting the latest “scandal” of Algerian money going to the Clinton Presidential Library, could derail her 2016 Presidential bid? Haven’t 95% of the electorate already signaled that they’re just fine with crony capitalism by voting for Obama, McCain, and Romney?


Comment by azdude
2015-02-26 18:20:02

when is the FED going to quit hosing savers?

Is your cuurency safer in a bank or a hole in the ground?

Comment by Bill, Just South of Irvine
2015-02-26 21:18:04

Your currency is safer under my mattress.

Comment by Bill, Just South of Irvine
2015-02-26 21:17:01

15 year peak? I have been told on this blog that Japan has been depressed since 1990. WTF?


(glad I put 27% of my stock fund allocation into international)

Comment by phony scandals
2015-02-27 07:25:30

phony scandals

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