June 24, 2015

Bits Bucket for June 24, 2015

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

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Comment by Hard Rain
2015-06-24 04:36:18

U.S. short sellers betting on Canadian housing crash: ‘An accident waiting to happen’

VANCOUVER — Large Wall Street investors who made billions when the U.S. housing market collapsed in 2008 are now betting real estate values in Vancouver and other Canadian cities will crash, financial insiders say.

The hedge fund investors, known as short sellers, are betting against what they believe is a housing bubble in Vancouver, Toronto, Calgary and other Canadian cities. They believe Canadians hold too much mortgage debt, and that Canadian banks, mortgage insurers and “subprime” private lenders will lose money on unpaid loans when property prices fall.


Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 05:54:40

It will be lovely once Canada is just a place for beer drinking hosers again. There will be much pain til they get there though. Drink that bathtub gin and do the Lindy now because tomorrow may be 1929.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 06:36:15

“once Canada is just a place for beer drinking hosers again”

Can you ever go back to how it was, after drinking the nectar of easy money?

Comment by redmondjp
2015-06-24 10:04:38

That’s what Greece may soon find out . . .

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:08:48

Can you ever go back to how it was, after drinking the nectar of easy money?

Greece may not even have the sugar to make Greek coffee.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 12:13:58

So, do we short the Bank of Canada or is there an ETF for this?

Ill go in with $5000

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:43:39

will be lovely once Canada is just a place for beer drinking hosers again

Sounds like a Toby Keith song, whiskey for my hedge men beer for my hosers or something like that.

Comment by GuillotineRenovator
2015-06-24 13:15:33

People the world over have lost their collective minds. They have forgotten what a house is. It’s a roof over one’s head to keep them warm and out of the elements, and allow them to feed and clothe themselves and protect them from danger.

The people who portray the absolutely mind-blowing prices in places like Vancouver as normal are, themselves, mentally ill. Or, at best, blinded by greed. I have NEVER been able to buy into the bubble mentality whether it is houses or pets.com stock. That doesn’t make me popular, it makes me a “Debbie downer.”

I don’t know how this all ends, but I am extremely disappointed in the human race. Disgusted. I’ve grown so tired of everything that I am somewhat retreating from society. I keep to myself and don’t really talk about anything important anymore. I have a hard time finding people with whom I can relate. My own family lives in a bubble where they don’t see anything wrong in the world, where things are just what they are, never to be questioned.

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-06-24 13:26:21

Those who actively bet on the demise of the US housing market (as opposed to those of us who just avoided participating) made massive amounts of money for two reasons:

1. They were right; and
2. Very few thought there was a chance of them being right.

As such, they were able to take really big contrary positions with relatively little capital at risk. Because of that, they could be patient, and they made a lot of money when gravity re-exerted itself.

This time around, I’m guessing that the bets are the right bets (again), but there are a lot more who think there is a good chance they are right…as such, I’m willing to wager that bets against the housing market are going to cost more money.

It’ll be interesting to see these investments turn out this time around.

Comment by AmazingRuss
2015-06-24 14:12:29

I want to make this bet. How would I go about it?

Comment by aNYCdj
2015-06-24 04:44:33

this isnt good news…

Updated: Tuesday, June 23 2015, 12:50 PM EDT Rochester, N.Y. -

Volunteers of America Upstate New York (VOAUPNY) announced Tuesday it will close all of its thrift stores and recycling operations. VOAUPNY currently operates 11 thrift stores in 7 counties throughout Upstate New York, as well as a distribution center for storing household and clothing donations. A press release stated the changes were being made in order to focus more fully on the delivery of its mission-related programs.

Declining sales and a lack of foot traffic in the stores also factored in the decision. “Our mission is to empower people to rise out of poverty and move toward self-reliance. We offer a continuum of very effective programs that meet critical needs for vulnerable populations, including homeless families and children from economically disadvantaged households,” said JoAnne M. Ryan, VOAUPNY’s President and CEO. “Unfortunately, most people don’t really know about our programs, because the first thing that comes to mind when they think of Volunteers of America is our stores.”

All of the stores will be closed within three months. A total of 103 employees will be laid off. VOAUPNY said it will assist them in finding new jobs. Effective immediately, no additional donations from the community will be allowed, with the exception of household pick-ups that have already been scheduled.

Read More at: http://www.13wham.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/voa-closing-all-resale-stores-24019.shtml

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 05:58:10

Self reliance? How quaint. No one needs to be self reliant. There is plenty of printed money to be doled out to those who vote the right way.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:35:06

Who needs used furniture when you can “rent to own”.

Comment by Oxide
2015-06-24 11:33:44

And who needs used clothing when you can buy new at Walmart for less than $15? The stuff in thrift stores is all 10-year Wally stuff anyway. The good stuff is long gone.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:45:11

True dat.

Comment by rj chicago
2015-06-24 07:33:53


I saw this in Dailyjobcuts.com today and I thought - man it has to be getting really bad economically up there in upstate NY.
My sister in law lives just outside of Penn Yan in the finger lakes district and excepting wine and now some beer production and the Amish dairy farms there wasn’t much to do to earn a paycheck - the whole of the area around Rochester seems to me to be one big welfare district. I hope my observations at Christmas last year are wrong but given this news on VOA - Yikes!!!

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 07:43:56

“the whole of the area around Rochester seems to me to be one big welfare district”

The Northeast = the new Deep South?

Comment by rj chicago
2015-06-24 09:28:07


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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:10:47

Except the South is still attracting businesses Alabama just landed Airbus, all you attract in the North Country is mosquitoes.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:58:33

Should say that Airbus just started production in Alabama they were attracted to it a few years ago:


Comment by aNYCdj
2015-06-24 12:21:28

might as well add this to Rochester…350 more jobs lost…


i do have to pat myself on the back for this one, a very good friend was offered a very decent paying job with kodak in Rochester, and i did all i could to convince him to stay at xerox in CT….i thought kodak would never recover, well that job lasted less than 18 month just vanished…..and he is still at xerox some 12 years later

his pull….he was born and raised in the Rochester area and goes back each year to visit.

Comment by redmondjp
2015-06-24 10:07:19

You know things are getting really desperate when people can’t even afford to shop at thrift stores . . .

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 10:30:33

I hear all those high wage thrift store jobs are moving to Albuquerque.

Comment by Anonymous
2015-06-24 13:53:10

Judging by a couple I’ve looked in recently, seems like thrift stores in Vegas are still doing good business.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 04:52:36

Dylann Root was purchased by Michael Bloomberg on behalf of King Obama

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 04:58:23

Rallying the base (top article linked from Drudge)


P.S. Adam Lanza was not at Sandy Hook

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 05:06:40

DHS needs a new hairstylist.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 05:15:59

Looks like his biggest accomplishment will be the removal of the confederate flag from state government buildings and license plates across the South.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 05:20:35

All day long just takin it easy
Layin in the hammock where it’s nice and breezy
Sleepin off the night before
Cause when the flag comes down, we’ll be back for more

When the flag comes down, we’ll be groovin
When the flag comes down, we’ll be feelin all right
When the flag sinks down over the statehouse
Everything gets hotter when the flag comes down

Kenny Chesney - When The Sun Goes Down - YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGLdbpmXrbQ - 295k -

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Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 05:30:56

And replacing it with a pen and phone.

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Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 06:41:10

Funny thing about that confederate flag.

When I moved to SE Florida in the early 80s there was still a majority of Crackers (a term that I was told meant 2nd or 3rd generation Floridian) especially in construction. Although considered an insult today it was a point of pride to them at that time.

I remember being shocked seeing the confederate flag on the hood of pickup trucks, hats, shirts etc. and being treated like an outsider and with suspicion. Not because I was black (which I’m not) but because I was from Connecticut. Before I changed my plates I would be driving south on US1 to work and rednecks would honk the horn pointing north telling me to go home.

On the jobs the black guys and the Crackers got along fine but they damn sure did not like “Yankees”.

A lot has changed since the early 80s and today you have to drive a couple of hours north of here to get to the south and I clearly understand why people would take the confederate flag as a racist statement. I am also sure there are some who embrace it for that reason. But my experience with the people who displayed it was a dislike for Northerners not black people and a sense of pride.

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 06:52:12

Replace it with the Russian flag and display busts of Putin. That’d give some “folks” real heartburn.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:53:21

Jeff, your personal anecdote, while touching, is meaningless

The “progressives” will script the narrative on this

Language is beyond media, it is about CONTROL

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 07:17:16

Confederate Flag Campaign Pins Of Both Clintons’ Pasts

Kerry Picket
2:56 PM 06/23/2015

Although Confederate flags and emblems they attached themselves to are wiped off store shelves by management and local DMV license plate offices in Virginia, then-Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton and Tennessee Sen. Al Gore flaunted the symbol during their 1992 campaign for the White House.

Looking to capture the south back from Republicans, Democrats nominated a pair of Ivy League-educated, southern men who could campaign in the deep south to a demographic that felt cast off by Democrats at the time.

Rectangular Clinton-Gore 1992 pins campaign pins of the Confederate flag were passed around, as well as a circular Confederate flag pin showing both Clinton’s and Gore’s heads atop of grey Confederate uniforms with the words “Sons of the New South” emblazoned on the pin.

The pandering did not stop with Bill. His wife and now Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton got in on the Confederate flag campaign action in 2008 during her first run for president. One campaign South Carolina primary pin is a circular Confederate Flag with the words “Arkansas Travelers In Support of Hillary Clinton For President.” It’s currently going for around $400.00 on EBay.

Alabama Democrats made a similar button for Mrs. Clinton at the time. However, at the bottom of the flag shown on the pin are the words “Heritage not Hate.” This pin is selling for around $300.00. Hillary Clinton Confederate Flag

Paul Begala, co-chair of the Hillary Clinton Super PAC said on CNN that Clinton will have to answer for standing by her husband when both defended Arkansas’s own flag that has a blue star, representing its membership in the Confederacy.

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2015/06/23/confederate-flag-campaign-pins-of-both-clintons-pasts/#ixzz3dzO78PBp

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 07:20:07

Obama And Hillary Both Had No Problem Using Confederate Flag During Presidential Campaigns

Now, suddenly the flag ‘belongs in a museum’

by Steve Watson | InfoWars | June 24, 2015

In the wake of the Charleston shooting, and subsequent pictures of the shooter posing with a Confederate flag, Barack Obama this week said that the flag belongs in a museum.

It seems he has changed his tune in the last three years somewhere, however, given that he was using the symbol during his 2012 re-election campaign.

Indeed, Obama had his own Confederate flag campaign badge, which states “Where the confederate flag still flies, we have built a powerful coalition of African Americans and white Americans.”

The quote was taken from Obama’s racially heated speech in 2008, during which he also praised his mentor former pastor the controversial Reverend Wright.

Obama was not alone in using the symbol of the Confederate flag, synonymous with the South, to solicit political support.

Hillary clinton had her own brand of Confederate merchandise in 2008.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:25:16

Replace it with the Russian flag and display busts of Putin. That’d give some “folks” real heartburn.

While we are at it put Putin on the ten dollar bill.

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 07:37:03

Seriously, if you wanted to give some true heartburn to the bluenosin’ ninnies, put up Russian flags all over the south. They’ll get real nervous, on account of Putin might decided he wants to protect his interests in the US. LMAO!

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 07:41:15

Putin-worship is a good example of those who think freedom means the freedom for them to control the actions of others who they think are hurting their feelings/morality/society.

They look at Putin’s thugs beating protesters, dissidents, and gays and think, ‘now that’s freedom!’.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:49:59

The enemy of my enemy is my friend, it is nothing more than that. However, because I believe in nations and not world government, I think the Russians are free to choose the leader they want and if they want to enforce the values of the Russian Orthodox Church, they are free to do that too. Only when a country degenerates into a genocide should a country even consider interfering in the internal politics of another country

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 07:52:25

Putin, the only world leader willing to give Edward Snowden shelter.

Keep on rockin’ in the free world, Oddie!

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 08:58:00

“Keep on rockin’ in the free world, Oddie!”

I’d like to. Has Putin released Pussy Riot from the gulag yet for playing a funny protest song in a church?

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 09:11:33

Last I knew, one of the skanks was released, two are still there, having “issues” with fellow inmates.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 09:11:35

of course you would have no problem with someone desecrating a church.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 10:16:41

“of course you would have no problem with someone desecrating a church”

Good to see you stand up for liberty and free speech.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:32:26

Putin, the only world leader willing to give Edward Snowden shelter.

Well, we took in Solzhenitsyn. So it’s hypocrisy all around.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:43:13

Good to see you stand up for liberty and free speech.

Desecrating a church is not free speech, it is a crime but you cannot see the difference. The left is amazing on this board it chides a conservative for stating a private website is not respecting the first amendment but then believes that the first amendment allows someone to go into a church and commit an act of desecration.

Comment by In Colorado
2015-06-24 11:08:40

“of course you would have no problem with someone desecrating a church”

Good to see you stand up for liberty and free speech.

Last time I checked, churches were private property.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:06:57

Exactly my point up above. To go on to private property contrary to desire of the owner is trespass. Certainly, no church wants to be desecrated. Now, we may argue about the appropriate sentence but it is a crime to do what Pussy Riot did and the Russians have special provisions to protect houses of worship and that is their right too.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 20:13:43

“Last time I checked, churches were private property”

The church was open to the public and there was no rule against playing music there. The members of the band were arrested a day after the event, after it had been posted on social media, for ‘hooliganism with religious hatred’ or some such religious/statist nonsense.

You can pretend the charges and sentences were reasonable compared to the ‘crime’, if you have a tendency to excuse dictators and their abuse of power when destroying political opposition. Perhaps like some you look at the persecution of the band members and think, ‘now that’s freedom! I wish I could live in a country where I was free to abuse weirdos and skanks like that!’

That’s freedom to them.

“The three detained members of Pussy Riot were declared political prisoners by the Union of Solidarity with Political Prisoners (SPP).[80] On March 25, Amnesty International named them prisoners of conscience due to “the severity of the response of the Russian authorities”.[15]”

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 06:02:23

Frankly more than Adam Lanza. A guy kills 20 first graders and nothing changes. That’s all you need to know about the power of Big Pharma.

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Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:07:57

Sandy Hook was an inside job by DHS under direct orders from Obama

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 06:10:25

And it failed miserably in accomplishing anything. Anyone who believes these conspiracy theories should be quite happy to see NOTHING HAPPENED. Talk about secure gun rights. 20 first graders and NOTHING CHANGED.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 07:47:46

There will be more.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-t8PngHgWY - 277k -
By Kyle Balluck - 05/25/14 02:52 PM EDT

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) on Sunday predicted that there will be more “devastating attacks” like the one near the University of California, Santa Barbara if universal background checks are not passed.

“We must ask ourselves if an individual whose family called police with concerns about mental health, who is receiving therapy and who has had several run-ins with police should be allowed to own multiple firearms and hundreds of rounds of ammunition,” the California Democrat said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, the NRA continues to have a stranglehold on Congress, preventing even commonsense measures like universal background checks that have overwhelming support,” she added. “Until that happens, we will continue to see these devastating attacks. Shame on us for allowing this to continue.”

thehill.com/…/senate/207203-feinstein-shame-on-us-for-allowing-this-to-continue - 170k -

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:34:45

So her prediction was correct, although most Americans probably could have made the same prediction.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 14:03:08

“So her prediction was correct,”

She helped put the budgets together for these devastating attacks.

Here is one where a “witness” from a fraternity shows the “crime scene” from the murders the night before. no crime tape and no blood stains mind you which is hard “impossible” to believe.

He goes on to say at 3:00 1 was dead at 3:41 another one passed away (pretty good for a frat brother). At 4:06 the 3rd victim says she was shot in the kidney (What!? how the hell does she know where she was shot?) at 4:11 he could tell she had been shot in the kidney so Dr. Fratboy tells her she is going to be OK

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1z_Z6i0cnA - 286k -

Here we have “witnesses” who at :20 say BMW my director’s talking with a shoulder nudge from the much bigger but obviously smarter actor.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OlZDvnpqvF0 - 269k -

Lastly quite possibly the worst (and that’s saying something) crisis actor to date.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAoKDjDKap0 - 312k -

Comment by aNYCdj
2015-06-24 05:12:49

easy solution anyone on public property with an illegal gun 5 years no bail, 10 for the serial numbers filed off and double for priors

put full body scanners at all public housing projects, and use infra red detectors to catch people walking on the public streets.

this way it protects gun owners who are on private property, but once the gun or bullet leaves your property it must be registered.

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 06:07:24

The vast vast vast majority of guns are “registered”.

This is about psychopaths with firearms. Why not test out a small solution first, like if you are on a prescription psychotropic med you cannot purchase or posses a gun? See how that works.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:23:30

Simple question how do you police someone starting to use the drugs after they get the guns? How about something simple like streamlining our mental health system so when people start making threats and they have been diagnosed with a serious mental health illness and the family requests that he or she is detained, they go directly into a mental health facility and they do not pass start and they are not released as soon as they are stabilized but when it is clear that they will not pose a threat in the future. Right now are laws are mostly written by mental rights advocates many of whom are as crazy as the shooters and the family’s concerns are ignored.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:36:25

our laws

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 07:30:05

I think it is fine to streamline the mental health system. We do not need the homeless drug addicted mental health patients on the streets. Whatever got changed to allow this needs to be changed back.

I suppose there are many ways to police getting the gun from the mentally ill person. Have a doctor ask if they have a gun. Have them or their family turn it in. Check what records of firearm ownership exist (cops do this all the time when responding to calls) and then have someone go get it. There are many ways, some more practical than others.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 07:38:03

How about something simple like streamlining our mental health system so when people start making threats and they have been diagnosed with a serious mental health illness and the family requests that he or she is detained, they go directly into a mental health facility and they do not pass start and they are not released as soon as they are stabilized but when it is clear that they will not pose a threat in the future.

That sounds likes a complete absence of due process, Mr. Lawyer.

Comment by Ben Jones
2015-06-24 07:42:18

Wait a second there, did you not see this?

‘when it is clear that they will not pose a threat in the future’

He used the word “threat”! That trumps everything.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 08:25:43

That sounds likes a complete absence of due process, Mr. Lawyer.

I did not address court review and there must be court review, but constitutional due process does not even require a hearing prior to actions being taken that are necessary to protect public safety. The problem today is that the laws have been written in such a manner that court’s hands are tied, it is not constitutional due process that is being implicated but statutory due process that leans too far in protecting the mentally ill person and does not respect the legitimate rights of family and society to be protected.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:26:32

My SKS rifle isn’t :)


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Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 06:31:03

It probably is now.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:37:42

Spoken like a true worshipper of the Almighty State

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:42:33

My SKS rifle isn’t :)

Has anyone noticed that the calls for gun control are loudest just after the PTB have lost a round on immigration and/or trade? I think internally they start to think that maintaining the kabuki theatre is getting too time consuming and the cost of manipulating public opinion is just too much. Better just to go for a dictatorship but those pesky guns get in the way.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 07:24:39

“Better just to go for a dictatorship”

Don’t you always say democracy doesn’t work?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:28:55

No, but I do say democracy is not working in the U.S. anymore. The founders believed in a certain level of intelligence to vote and while there are better methods now to demonstrate the proper level of intelligence, the need to avoid idiots that can easily be manipulated by the rich voting is greater than ever.

Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 07:32:52

I’ll be curious to see how the dictatorship works now that there is an Internet. Has purchasing a firearm ever been easier in the last 30 years?

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:40:35

The founders believed in a certain level of intelligence to vote I doubt that there’s any evidence of that, unless their “beliefs” included notions that land ownership was an indication of intelligence.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 10:59:02

” Has purchasing a firearm ever been easier in the last 30 years?”

Just encourage every African American southerner to purchase an automatic rifle, and watch how fast opinions of the Second Amendment will change.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:10:35

I would think that most rural blacks in the South already do own a semi-automatic weapon, very few whites or blacks own an automatic weapon and that ownership is highly regulated.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:24:20

By the way the only time that it would have been a real issue is when actually tyranny was being committed by the Democrats that were running the southern states up until the South flipped to the Republicans.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:53:48

I doubt that there’s any evidence of that, unless their “beliefs” included notions that land ownership was an indication of intelligence.

You think there is no relationship to intelligence between land ownership at the time and intelligence? That is like saying there is no relationship between income and intelligence today.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 12:58:43

“By the way the only time that it would have been a real issue is when actually tyranny was being committed by the Democrats that were running the southern states up until the South flipped to the Republicans.”

I doubt if there would have been the thousands of lynchings there were if blacks had had rifles to defend themselves. The preferred method was for a white mob or armed gang to grab some guy while he was alone or asleep in his house. And btw, if those mobs were around today, they would be 100% Fox News watching repubs.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 13:13:32

It’s funny that those areas of the country that now call themselves conservative are the same areas of the country where people’s parents and grandparents took part in racially motivated communal murders. Whole towns all over the south would gather around to watch some black guy hanged. But rich white people weren’t bothered, so that’s not tyranny.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 16:09:56

The children of people who owned land probably had better access to education. On the other hand, there were probably plenty of bright people who owned no land. Either way, the purpose of restricting voting to landowners probably had nothing to do with intelligence. The goal was mainly to keep political power in the hands of the wealthy.

Comment by mathguy
2015-06-24 17:30:58

During these periods of time when voting was restricted to land-owners, there were no income taxes. The only taxes were indirect taxes on property. Thus the people who had to pay the tax were the only ones who could vote on getting taxed. This was to avoid the general population from just voting to tax everyone who paid taxes. The current thing we call “the free shit army”.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 17:49:59

That’s incorrect. There were import duties. There was also the “whiskey tax” that went into effect in 1791.


Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 08:18:59

“This is about psychopaths with firearms.”

This is about white psychopaths with firearms.

Hell, there have been as many black people (including black children) shot to death by black people in South Florida since the manufactured South Carolina racist show. Forget about Chicago because what is 9 black lives that should matter there a Wednesday night?

Not a peep about any of them because it doesn’t fit the agenda.

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Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 08:51:14

“Not a peep about any of them because it doesn’t fit the agenda.”

Speaking of which, as our chief race crime reporter, shouldn’t yo be giving us hourly updates on the Charleston racist shootings?

Oh, that’s right. White guy, black victims. It doesn’t fit the agenda.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 08:59:14

“shouldn’t yo be giving us hourly updates on the Charleston racist shootings?”

I did last weekend.

But since you missed it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-t8PngHgWY - 277k -

“Oh, that’s right. White guy, black victims. It doesn’t fit the agenda.”

But they cost a lot more to produce.

Do you want me to read the card?

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:42:17

Not a peep about any of them because it doesn’t fit the agenda.

If the cops and the family and the neighbors all hushed up these crimes, how do you know about them?

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 13:04:00

Just not national news

By the way Mighty you’re slipping, you better watch it or they’re going to cut your pay.


Illustrating Chicago Values

Week in Progress (6/21 – 6/27)
Shot & Killed: 5
Shot & Wounded: 41
Total Shot: 46
Total Homicides: 5
2015 Stats

June to Date
Shot & Killed: 36
Shot & Wounded: 199
Total Shot: 235
Total Homicides: 39
2015 Stats

Year To Date
Shot & Killed: 182
Shot & Wounded: 1044
Total Shot: 1226
Total Homicides: 211
2015 Stats

heyjackass.com/ - 137k -

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 13:56:08

So “Not a peep about any of them because it doesn’t fit the agenda” refers to the national media. It doesn’t fit their agenda, but it does fit the agenda of the local media.

I’ll have to check out heyjackass.com some time. I’m sure that it must be fascinating. That little excerpt that you shared raises some interesting questions. If those crime statistics illustrate “Chicago values”, then those murders that you mentioned in South Florida must reflect the values of your region. And if there have been 211 homicides so far this year, but only 182 shot and killed, how did were the other 29 killed? Isn’t that an important story, the fact that murder that can be committed without a gun? Maybe it’s not part of the Chicago story.

Finally, I guess that it’s clear now that the focus has been shifted back to Chicago. We’re done talking about Baltimore now.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:47:40

What’s to talk about it the main culprits were actually black officers. The prosecutor had to engage in overreaching to touch any white officers. Why not allow outside experts to look at the knife to see if it meets the criteria under the statute to be illegal? If it does then there is no reason to charge any of the white officers, in fact if it is even close there would be no reason to charge the officers since they would lack the requisite intent to be criminally charged. A simple mistake is not criminal intent.

Comment by Max Power
2015-06-24 12:31:52

It’s already illegal to shoot people with a gun. And yet people do it anyway. Why would anyone believe that those same people would follow a law about possessing a gun? Can we make knives illegal too? How many innocent people are stabbed every year? Let’s make all blunt objects illegal too. How many people are beaten to death every year? Actually should probably make fists illegal too.

Making something illegal doesn’t stop it from happening. It stops law abiding people from doing it. Non-law abiding people don’t care what the law says.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 05:24:21

Yes because we want our crazies to use automobiles like they do in civilized countries:


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 05:37:08

Of course, we cannot forget the civilized way of flying a plane into the side of a mountain. But it is better to take second amendment rights of normal people away than to put crazies in mental health facilities. BTW, I think that the one plane incident probably killed as many people as were killed in mass shootings the last ten years in this country.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:06:49

Race hustlers gotta hustle, Dannyboy

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Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 06:08:43

It is no more possible to outlaw guns than it is to outlaw abortions in this country.

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Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 05:48:20

Stalin killed at least 20 million but “progressives” don’t like to talk about that…

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 07:05:31

heh, they’ll be talking about it pretty danged soon, seeing as how Putin is Bammy’s boogeyman.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 12:06:47

Obama and Reagan, two pees in a pod.

Except Reagan tripled the deficit and raised taxes.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:18:05

Reagan restored the economy, won the cold war and increased the standard of living for working class people, Obama will add almost as much debt as all the Presidents combined that includes Bush I, Bush II and Reagan and accomplished nothing not even the saving of social security.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 14:16:26

1. Reagan was a serial tax raiser
2. Reagan nearly tripled the federal budget deficit
3. Unemployment soared after Reagan’s 1981 tax cuts.
4. Reagan grew the size of the federal government tremendously.
5. Reagan did little to fight a woman’s right to choose.
6. Reagan gave amnesty to 3 million undocumented immigrants.
7. Reagan illegally funneled weapons to Iran.
8. Reagan helped create the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden.

But, I am sure you knew this, Google it all, we call it “history.”

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 14:41:25

That list would be just like me saying that unemployment soared after Obama took office. It is true but leaves out so much critical detail that it would be a lie by omission. Of course, what is true is the recession ended without any of Obama’s policies making a material impact since the recession ended the Summer of 2009. Now, the weakest recovery on record, Obama owns that.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 14:49:55


As you can see unemployment went up by a full two percentage points under Obama the first year. Of course, it is just as much garbage as stating that unemployment rose after the passing of the Reagan tax cuts in 1981 since the final tax cut did not even happen to a few years later and virtually nothing occurred in 1981. But one interesting tidbit can be ascertained by looking at the table, as bad as Bush II was his average unemployment rate during his presidency will be far below Obama’s record. Recessions come and go and the usual rule is the deeper the recession the stronger the recovery, but Obama has created a clear exception to the rule.

Comment by oxide
2015-06-24 16:44:38

And Califoh20, you’re forgetting the demographics, and it’s a big one. When Reagan was President, the Baby Boomers were a bunch of young healthy 40-somethings making money and paying taxes. Under Obama, those same boomers are now 68 and taking out taxes as Medicare and SS. Obama can’t do anything about that unless he singlehandedly repeals Medicare and Social Security.

I suspect that Republicans will try to repeal SS and Med, just not yet. They are waiting for the old boomers to die off first. give it 15 years. They will then pit the young hard working Millenials against elderly Gen X leeches. There aren’t enough Gen X votes to defeat a repeal.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 17:11:28

Recessions come and go and the usual rule is the deeper the recession the stronger the recovery, but Obama has created a clear exception to the rule.

That rule hasn’t worked in a long time. The previous two recessions were also followed by weak and slow recoveries.

Comment by Hard Rain
2015-06-24 05:07:31

More and longer term debt. Why didn’t we think of that?

Homebuilders Want Looser Rules, As Owning 2-Story Home Takes Nearly Half Of Income

With an average two-story house now costing half of a typical household’s income, a leading lobby group is pushing Ottawa to loosen lending rules and make it easier to build and buy homes.

That comes amid many analysts’ concerns that at least some Canadian housing markets are overheated, and what is needed is efforts to cool, rather than heat up, the housing sector.

According to government records obtained by the Globe and Mail, the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA) held a record number of meetings with federal officials and politicians last month — 61 in total. They are pushing the government to allow longer mortgage amortization periods for first-time home buyers, a tax reduction on home construction and a home reno tax break.


Comment by Puggs
2015-06-24 09:08:30

How about just lowering the price of said home to make it more affordable?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 05:17:02

It certainly is a problem when you need to tie up over a trillion dollars to raise just over ten billion dollars in new IPOs but it is a problem that does not last long:


Comment by Sean
2015-06-24 05:23:16

I received my quarterly real estate report in the mail yesterday. It is written by two local realtors who are “experts in the industry”, and you’ll never guess what they said: It’s a GOOD time to buy a house! Too bad the house I want is still being offered at 474K with no buyers and no recent price reductions. (Started at 535K)

Comment by azdude
2015-06-24 05:32:47

buy now or be priced out forever!

Comment by Combotechie
2015-06-24 05:24:50

Something that’s interesting, weather wise …

It a global animation of the world’s ocean surface temperature oscillations that span the years 1992 to 2002. Pay special attention to the strong El Nino years of 1997-98 and how La Nina settled in afterward:


Comment by taxpers
2015-06-24 05:38:26

I like when sensors are next to ac exhaust vents

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 05:46:40

Which is what is occurring all over the globe to try to “prove” global warming. Just another reason to favor the satellite data. But I think Combo’s point is that an El Nino is usually followed by a La Nina of about equal magnitude. Thus, the warming of last year and this year in the global temperatures will result in a swing cooler which the AGW is going to have a very hard time to explain since they are attributing this year’s and last year’s warming to AGW. WPA is doing it all the time by saying this month is the warmist month blah blah blah.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 08:30:22

“Which is what is occurring all over the globe to try to “prove” global warming”

It’s actually just the opposite. Temps have been adjusted or their locations moved due to encroachment of ‘ac exhaust vents’, and this change has been seized upon by the science denialists to shout ‘fraud’.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 08:38:51

No, that is not what is occurring they have deliberately eliminated rural measuring sites which have no heat island problems and have eliminated numerous sites in Siberia all with the intention of creating warming where there is no warming. And when people start checking sites they find numerous examples of things going on which clearly give a false signal that the climate is warming.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-06-24 09:42:38

Melting glaciers don’t lie, Dan.

Comment by Puggs
2015-06-24 09:45:18

…And these insane high pressures on the west coast don’t lie either.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 09:46:37

We had a period of the most sunspot activity in thousands of years which allowed us to recover from a little Ice age which is natural warming not manmade warming and now we have this:


Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 09:51:33

Excerpt from link:

October 28, 2004

The activity of the Sun over the last 11,400 years, i.e., back to the end of the last ice age on Earth, has now for the first time been reconstructed quantitatively by an international group of researchers led by Sami K. Solanki from the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany). The scientists have analyzed the radioactive isotopes in trees that lived thousands of years ago. As the scientists from Germany, Finland, and Switzerland report in the current issue of the science journal “Nature” from October 28, one needs to go back over 8,000 years in order to find a time when the Sun was, on average, as active as in the last 60 years. Based on a statistical study of earlier periods of increased solar activity, the researchers predict that the current level of high solar activity will probably continue only for a few more decades.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:12:28

…And these insane high pressures on the west coast don’t lie either.

weather, just like the Midwest is going to be downright chilly for the 4th.

Comment by Puggs
2015-06-24 15:13:09

Going out on a limb here. But I’m predicting the Sierra’s get zero, zip, nada snow this year.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:24:07

Then the NWS predictions will be seriously wrong this winter.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:28:38

Then the National Weather Service’s predictions are seriously wrong, it predicts above normal precipitation in parts of southern California and normal precipitation for all the rest of California for December, January and February and other months show a similar pattern:


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:38:28

Based on the NWS predictions for the coming year for New Mexico, I am thinking of building an ark. (jk).

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:58:43

Slight change, it predicts “equal chance” for the rest of California which usually means normal precipitation.

Comment by Combotechie
2015-06-24 06:00:10

“the world’s ocean surface temperature oscillations” should read “the world’s air temperatures taken just above the ocean’s surfaces”.

The animation shows the change in air temperatures not water temperatures, but the water temperatures are what drive the air temperatures of the air just above the water’s surface.

A minor point, but one that needs to be made.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:12:48

Of course, many have been saying that Detroit’s real estate has been undervalued for decades and it has not stopped it from dropping. Of course, some day they may be right.


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:33:21

Does it strike anyone else as odd that Hank Paulson is up to his eyeballs in this? Just like the Greece story which makes no sense if it is just about the EU which would be far better off as an organization to just kick Greece out but continues to try to keep it in the group. Like this story it just makes perfect sense if you are trying to achieve global government, thus Greece must stay within the group:. In any event from China Daily:

It will cost China over $6.6 trillion (41 trillion yuan) to meet the greenhouse gas reduction goals it will lay out later this month in its strategy for United Nations climate negotiations, the country’s lead negotiator for the talks said Tuesday.

Xie Zhenhua, special representative for climate change affairs at China’s National Development and Reform Commission, said the objectives China will outline by the end of June will be “quite ambitious”.

Xie was participating in a three-day Strategic and Economic Dialogue forum in Washington where he met with counterparts in the Obama administration, including US climate negotiator Todd Stern, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz.

To meet its objectives, China, the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitter, must reconfigure its coal-dependent energy mix and develop new energy sources, Xie said.

“We will need to carry out international cooperation and research and development to reduce the costs of relevant technologies and to innovate so that we can reach our objectives,” he told reporters at a State Department briefing.

The United States and China announced on Monday they will partner on two new carbon-capture, utilization and storage projects to help commercialize the technology.

While key details of China’s plan are not yet known, it is expected to include targets announced in November, when it reached a key climate change deal with Washington to cap its emissions by 2030 and fill 20 percent of its energy needs from zero-carbon sources.

Earlier this month, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang reaffirmed the government’s commitment to hit a carbon emissions peak by “around 2030″. The country’s coal consumption decreased for the first time in years in 2014, however, leading some to speculate that its emissions could reach their peak sooner.

Stern, the US climate change envoy, told reporters the plans China has already announced with Washington were “a quite strong contribution”.

But he said he hopes a final agreement of all countries at this December’s key UN climate change conference in Paris contains “a strong set of…contributions, which are updated periodically” to ensure more ambitious targets.

Stern said China does not expect public finance to support its climate goals and that it is likely to attract investment as it adopts new technologies.

Earlier on Tuesday, Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang told a panel moderated by former US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson that 750,000 electric vehicles were sold in China last year, three times more than the year before, “giving great opportunities and profit to companies like Tesla and BYD (Auto) “.

“To tackle climate change is both a challenge and an opportunity,” Wang said.

Ahead of the UN’s climate change conference in Paris, countries are required to submit national plans, which will serve as the building blocks of a final agreement.

So far, 11 countries, including the United States and Mexico, as well as the European Union have submitted theirs.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:47:55

PS too bad Tesla is producing very few of those 750,000 electric cars and BYD, a Chinese electric car ,continues to learn how to make affordable electric cars and is developing scale.

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-06-24 08:44:17

Even the Chinese and the Russians ‘believe’ in man-made climate change. Only a brave few (industry-funded) scientists hold out…and their web sites, of course! I bet we’re about to hear from some.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 09:06:29

The Chinese believe that they can profit from it certainly, they know they are rapidly running out of coal and they are low cost producer of solar and wind energy projects and would love for the U.S. and Europe to finance their projects in the developing world. That is being done right now and they would like to see even more money being transferred. Notice China had no problem just selling Pakistan more coal electric power plants so their real belief in AGW is very suspect.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:35:31

The top headlines on Google News are all about Iran

What I don’t understand is why the people who always post on HBB about Jesus and Christianity support a foreign policy directed by and vote for candidates in elections purchased by people who do *not* accept Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior, and whose primary allegiance is not to the United States of America

P.S. and there will be no “smaller government” or “lower taxes” as a result of this

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 07:46:11

What you are attempting to state is unclear.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 08:13:23

Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were executed for espionage

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 08:25:17

Conversely, what MacBeth doesn’t understand is how those who state they are against imperialism have no problem voting in those who choose to do the same to their own citizens.

Domestic imperialism is just as bad as imperialism overseas.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 06:47:57

Feels before reals

Article from “progressive” millennial clickbait website Buzzfeed confirms that Social Justice Warriors™ only accept the 1st Amendment as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone’s feelings


Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 07:35:14

Does anyone teach their kids that sticks and stones rhyme anymore A?

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 08:10:02

It’s only going to become worse as the masses continue to use social media.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 09:44:10

No complaints from me about how promiscuous millennial women are 8)

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:15:57

Turn about is fair play, statistically they voted for the President that is screwing us.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 14:20:39

Barack Obama claims deficit has decreased by two-thirds since taking office

By Katie Sanders on Tuesday, January 20th, 2015 at 10:57 p.m.

When President Barack Obama reflects on 2014, he brings up a litany of highlights that include drawing down the Afghanistan war and Americans signing up for health insurance thanks to his health care law.

Oh, and slicing up the deficit. Obama is super-pumped about that. He made a point to brag about the deficit’s drop in his 2015 State of the Union address.

“At every step, we were told our goals were misguided or too ambitious; that we would crush jobs and explode deficits,” Obama said. “Instead, we’ve seen the fastest economic growth in over a decade, our deficits cut by two-thirds, a stock market that has doubled, and health care inflation at its lowest rate in fifty years.”

We rate the claim Mostly True.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 14:58:35

And the size of his best deficit is worse than any of the deficits Bush II ever had if you count the TARP loans as loans and not expenditures and since they were paid back with interest that is how they should be calculated.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 07:45:06

If you think that this has something to do with the first amendment, you’re not a real libertarian.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 08:33:48

If it was just private entities doing it then it would not be a problem, but it creeps into schools and public universities where they no longer accept free speech and start labeling numerous things “hate speech” and create codes banning them.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:24:48

He’s complaining about a private website.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:51:01

And I acknowledged that so the site is only violating the spirit of our founding fathers not the actual law.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 06:48:50

Grexit on or off?

The story seems to do a 180 degree turn on a daily basis.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 06:59:27

Marketwatch dot com
Europe Markets
European stocks fall on reports Greece hits roadblock on proposals
By Carla Mozee
Published: June 24, 2015 6:51 a.m. ET
Getty Images
ECB President Mario Draghi and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will meet Wednesday.

European stocks fell Wednesday, with losses accelerating following reports Greece’s latest economic reform proposal were rejected by creditors.

The Stoxx Europe 600 SXXP, -0.20% gave up 0.3% to 397.58 after earlier struggling for direction. Only the energy sector SXEP, +0.85% has been able to hold gains.

Stocks began driving lower mid-morning following media reports that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told his government the country’s creditors rejected Athens’s latest reform proposal.

Greece’s Athex Composite GD, -2.68% slumped 3.7% to 765.57, giving back a portion of this week’s more-than-11% advance.

Greek bond prices reversed course and fell, pushing the 2-year debt yield up 10 basis points to 20.62%. The yield on 10-year bonds climbed 13 basis points to 10.52%.

Reports that the Greek proposal had been rejected came ahead of a meeting set to take place around midday in Brussels, or around 6 a.m. Eastern Time, between Tsipras, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

Comment by palmetto
2015-06-24 07:04:11

“Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends
We’re so glad you could attend
Come inside! Come inside!”

Read more: Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Karn Evil 9 Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 09:22:25

Great timeframe in music. Moody Blues, Chicago, Jethro Tull, don’t get me started.

Brian May, the lead guitarist for Queen, has a Ph.D. and is an Astrophysicist. Go figure.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:06:48

The answer will be what ever advances global government the most. The PTB do not like the precedent of a country leaving a regional grouping but if watching Greece suffer to keep the other countries in line advances the cause more, Greece will be kicked out.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 08:07:39

Greece merely is serving to distract from larger issues.

Comment by redmondjp
2015-06-24 10:16:01

Yup. Keep watching this hand over here, see . . .

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 13:59:49
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Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 06:55:32

Ron Paul’s link will post soon:

While much of the world focused last week on whether or not the Federal Reserve was going to raise interest rates, or whether the Greek debt crisis would bring Europe to a crisis, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague awarded a $50 billion judgment to shareholders of the former oil company Yukos in their case against the Russian government. The governments of Belgium and France moved immediately to freeze Russian state assets in their countries, naturally provoking the anger of the Russian government.

The timing of these actions is quite curious, coming as the Greek crisis in the EU seems to be reaching a tipping point and Greece, having perhaps abandoned the possibility of rapprochement with Europe, has been making overtures to Russia to help bail it out of its mess. And with the IMF’s recent statement pledging its full and unconditional support to Ukraine, it has become even more clear that the IMF and other major multilateral institutions are not blindly technical organizations, but rather are totally subservient lackeys to the foreign policy agenda emanating from Washington. Toe the DC party line and the internationalists will bail you out regardless of how badly you mess up, but if you even think about talking to Russia you will face serious consequences.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 07:47:02

Professor Bear has been posting stuff about Greece almost every day for a long time. It’s not clear that we’re “reaching a tipping point” this week.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 07:57:38

Typical of Europe.

Most everything there becomes a long, hard slog.

Bureaucratic wheels turn very slowly.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 08:00:58

And as someone else (Combo?) said in recent days, Iceland is a much more interesting story.

Greece? Who cares. Decades of socialism followed by years of decrepitude and stalled nothingness.


Greece = Detroit.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 08:30:14

Greece = Detroit.

It has much better weather and a lower crime rate but besides that it works.

Comment by In Colorado
2015-06-24 11:05:19

And as someone else (Combo?) said in recent days, Iceland is a much more interesting story.

Greece? Who cares. Decades of socialism followed by years of decrepitude and stalled nothingness.

FWIW, Iceland has 100% socialized, universal healthcare. It’s national and municipal income tax rate is flat and is 35.7%

Sounds pretty socialist to me.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 11:20:52

“Greece = Detroit.

It has much better weather and a lower crime rate but besides that it works.”

I think Albuquerque would be a better comparison:

NYT: The rate of violent crime in Albuquerque is nearly double the national average. The homelessness rate, though harder to quantify, is similarly …

BESTPLACES: Albuquerque, NM, violent crime, on a scale from 1 (low crime) to 100, is 72. Violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, …

TIME: Nearly 20% of the population lives below the poverty line, and the crime rate is 53% higher than the national average. It really is like ‘Breaking Bad.’

Most metro areas have their bad areas, but in New Mexico, the entire city of Albuquerque is the bad area. And the cops are just as likely to murder you as the criminals.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:13:14

That is what happens when a state and a city vote for liberals for decades. Only recently have Republicans been elected.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:28:55

BTW, you are either channeling Rio or you are Rio. Only him/her thought by attacking Albuquerque it would get back at me for pointing out that Brazil was heading down the toilet. Rio could never understand that I thought the problem with Albuquerque and Brazil were the same, a leftist ideology.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:37:43

It really is like ‘Breaking Bad.’

But thanks for referencing one of my all time favorite shows. By the way, you can’t get cell phone service in the spot Hank made his phone call in the episode To’ Hajiilee.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 13:05:04

“Only recently have Republicans been elected.”

Is that when the cops started murdering poor people?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 13:31:31

Obama stepped in “coincidentally” after the new Republican mayor started to crack down on illegals and the crime rate started to drop like a rock. The excessive force allegations started long before he became mayor. However, the vast majority of the killings seem to be very justified. Now, we have suspects trying to run down cops with their cars since the Obama justice department forced the department into an agreement making shooting at autos very difficult.

Comment by Dman
2015-06-24 15:14:34

So it’s really Obama’s fault?! You need to lay off the meth for a while.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 07:09:04

This is the top headline on the New York Times website written by real journalists and with a link titled “Homegrown Radicals More Deadly Than Jihadis in U.S.”


Your base has been rallied

And now back to your regularly scheduled Drudge Report links

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:17:45

So the pension system is sinking in California and the ground is too?


Comment by Pangolin
2015-06-24 07:37:22

Didn’t the tech stock miracle of the last 5 years make it all good once again in CA? And housing is back also. I think they should be flush. Time to build that high speed bullet train.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-06-24 08:45:17

Yup, the pension funds and the state budget are in a lot better shape now. But it’s all rather precarious — Calif. depends too much on high income earners and capital gains taxes. Recessions really hit the budget hard because the revenue dries up, just like our reservoirs do.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 09:14:20

Pension funds are better? Please show me any data supporting that contention.

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Comment by Bring Back the WPA
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:24:05

What you are showing is one pension fund for one year, what this shows is the unfunded liabilities for California have gone from 6.3 billion to 198 billion since 2003 some improvement:


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:29:26


By engaging voters in the pension decision-making process, the group hopes to contain the state’s growing pension liability. Proponents of the “Voter Empowerment Act of 2016″ point to independent numbers which show the state’s pension liabilities have increased 3,000 percent in a decade. Last November, then-State Controller John Chiang (now state treasurer) pegged the state’s total unfunded pension liability from 130 public pension systems at $198 billion, a dramatic increase from just $6.3 billion in 2003.

Comment by taxpayers
2015-06-24 13:10:07

see howmoneywalks.com for details

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 12:08:04

Gov Brown brought CA back after Arnold failed.

Lots of $$$ floating around in CA, lots of jobs, but COL is high.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 12:21:10

The bubbles were created and deflated independently of either Arnie or Jerry, if the real estate and high tech bubbles deflate while Jerry is still in office, he will be considered the biggest bum ever.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 14:18:44

duh, “if”

And “if” he rapes a nun, people will surely be disappointed.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 15:01:26

So you think the tech and housing bubbles are going to go on forever?

Comment by MacBeth
2015-06-24 07:54:10

Wait - I had just heard that increased taxes recently placed California back in the black.

Alas, it’s not to be. And it won’t be. California is populated heavily with get-rich-quick gamblers (since the Gold Rush days of the late 1840s) and increasing numbers of societal parasites.


The Land of Tar Pits.

Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 09:38:30

California was a great place to grow up.

Comment by In Colorado
2015-06-24 10:59:50

I remember our Fountain Valley neighborhood being surrounded by farms in the 60’s and 70’s. It was a different time.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 11:55:28

I grew up next door in HB, used to ride our bikes to the bunkers through the farms or to the pier and watch the punkers get in fights with the long-hairs. Ahhhh….. a time before parking meters at the beach….

Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2015-06-24 20:48:58

Just about anywhere in California including the farm belt like in Fresno, it was a golden era.

Comment by Anonymous
2015-06-24 14:19:40

Yes it was!

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Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 17:15:43

Around 1964, we drove from North Hollywood to Jungleland in Thousand Oaks and rode the elephants, watch the tigers and monkey shows. The 101 was a two lane highway back then. Citrus orchards were all over the place in So Ca. Remember those orange jaw breakers in a wood crate candies? Quintessential tourist trap stuff!

Leo, the MGM lion is buried under the T O Civic Center, and Mr Ed (the TV talking horse) retired at Jungleland. I grew up to work for the family that developed UCLA and the Conejo Valley (Thousand Oaks).

Don’t mess with me. Ca was totally a great place back then, I agree. The UC system was cheap and the middle class could access it almost free.

Comment by Media Analyst
Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 17:54:11

(So Ca) Our local water company had a meeting in our city about the drought..The lobby was the most informative part of the meeting. where a circle of women “educated” about “girly baths”. A pitcher of warm water, soap, and sitting on the toilet does the job. The lobby was the most informative part of the meeting. LOL (I’m a female)

We cut our water consumption by 65% from 2013. Our mandate was 25%.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 07:43:05

I am sure it was not the purpose of the article but it actually places him up on my list:


Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-06-24 08:25:05

Good ‘ol Scott “Koch Puppet” Walker. The election better come fast because he’s running Wisconsin into the ground, turning it into the next Kansas:


At this rate he’s gonna be running _from_ his record instead of running _on_ his record…

Comment by rj chicago
2015-06-24 08:03:33

Who coulda knowd?
More commie crap holes from the wonderful metropolis of Ch*tcago ILLANNOY!!!
To use Rally’s moniker: FORWARD!!!


Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 10:49:36

I think that this was near the top of the top of the page on Drudge early this morning. I remember that someone here declared about a year ago that Valerie Jarrett is an Iranian witch. So now we know she’s an Iranian witch who parents were communists.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 13:49:50

Not finding any real witch stories, I am finding stories about her being a communist and the media claiming that the Republicans are on a witch hunt but I did find this one story that I found very interesting in light of recent developments:


Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 14:21:33

This was an interesting quote: “Many believe she speaks Farsi, or Persian, the official language of Iran.” One would think that it shouldn’t be too hard for a reporter to find out whether she speaks Farsi. Maybe she’s keeping it a secret. We all know how UnAmerican it is to speak any language other than American English.

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Comment by rj chicago
2015-06-24 08:07:16

Another liberal mouth piece originating from the hole that is Ch*tcago ILLANNOY. How convenient given NBC’s history of late.
Lester was a local news reader here in Ch*tcago back in the day and not a very good one at that.
To use Rally’s word again: FORWARD


Comment by redmondjp
2015-06-24 10:29:47

Yes, there are useful idiots at all levels of the socioeconomic stratum.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 08:58:54

So the alleged purpose of the talks is to prevent Iran from having the bomb but Iran intends to prevent any attempt to inspect military bases conducting nuclear activities, can’t see the problem with that can you? I think we should call the Treaty the “Financing of the Iranian Nuclear War” since Iran wants to receive tens of billions of dollars to help finance the development of the bomb and its placement on missiles. Right now they are having a guns or butter problem, the financing of the bomb is cutting into the money available for subsidies, but they have high hopes that Obama will give them a deal to eliminate that problem. If the deal looks anything like what Iran wants certainly it is worse than a continuation of what we are doing now:

TEHRAN, June 24 (Xinhua) — Iran’s Guardian Council of Constitution, the high legislative body of the country, endorsed on Wednesday the recent bill of the Iranian Majlis (parliament) obliging the government to safeguard rights in a potential nuclear deal with the world powers.

In an urgent meeting on Wednesday, “the Guardian Council approved the bill as it did not contradict the constitution,” Nejatallah Ebrahimian, the spokesman for the council, told state IRIB TV.

The Iranian government’s spokesman Mohammad-Bagher Nobakht said Tuesday that the bill passed by the Majlis contradicts the constitution.

Based on article no. 176 of the constitution, nuclear talks are not within the responsibility or authority of the administration or Majlis, Nobakht said.

On Tuesday, Majlis passed a bill obliging Rouhani’s negotiating team to safeguard the country’s nuclear rights and achievements.

Any nuclear agreement should include complete and immediate removal of all sanctions against the country on the day Iran starts fulfilling its obligations, the bill read.

It also said that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will only be allowed to carry out conventional inspections into Iran’s nuclear sites, and it will be given no access to Iran’s “military, security and sensitive non-nuclear sites, documents and scientists” under the additional protocol of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Besides, any restrictions on the country’s research and development of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes should not be accepted by Iranian negotiators, the bill said.

According to Press TV, the bill requires the Iranian foreign ministry, which is tasked with the negotiations, to submit regular reports to the parliament on the process of implementing a possible nuclear agreement with the world powers every six months.

In the sympathetic remarks with the move of the lawmakers, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday that the financial and economic sanctions of the United Nations and the western countries against Iran should be lifted immediately after a nuclear agreement is possibly signed.

The Iranian leader reiterated that Iran would not allow “unconventional inspections,” “excessive pressures” or inspections into its military sites to be included in an accord.

Under a nuclear deal, Iran will not accept long-term limitations of 10 years on its nuclear program, which the other party is clear about it, he added.

Research and development program in Iran’s nuclear technology should continue during the implementation of the deal, he maintained.

On Wednesday, Iranian foreign ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said the country’s negotiators are committed to observe the red lines drawn by Iran’s supreme leader for a nuclear deal.
The guidelines of the supreme leader is the roadmap for Iran’s foreign policy, including for the nuclear talks, Afkham stressed.

Iran and the P5+1 group countries, namely the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia plus Germany, agreed on a framework of understanding in early April and set June 30 as a deadline for reaching a final deal, after missing two previous deadlines in June and last November.

The Iranian spokeswoman also said that nuclear talks between Iran and world powers to tackle the obstacles in the way of reaching a final deal is at its difficult stage. “The more the talks continue, the more brackets are added and the more differences arise,” Afkham told reporters in her weekly press briefing.

“Presently, we are at a difficult stage of the talks as it was predictable,” she said, adding the negotiators have to sit longer hours at the negotiating table as the self-imposed deadline of June 30 nears.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 09:41:06

How is Iran a threat to the US (specifically the US that exists in North America, not its overseas bases or allies)?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-06-24 10:06:48

First it should not enough of a concern to us to go to war. Period. But it does endanger not only Israel with large number of dual U.S. citizens but many of our allies in the area. But it is a false choice to accept the Obama narrative that it is either a “deal” or war. Continuing and intensifying sanctions are fine, we should not make it easy for them to create or possess an atomic weapon. As far as preventing it militarily, that is up to Israel and/or Saudi Arabia. They can buy what they need from us but our boots do not go there.

Comment by Anonymous
2015-06-24 14:23:33

It’s not. But as pointed out, a significant chunk of the Israeli population holds US citizenship, so THAT will be a problem if Iran were to attack (though I don’t think they want to).

Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 09:31:31

So Ca (Simi) The house across the street listed for $590K (2,500 sq ft -no pool, average 1965 home) went out in 5 days, and we paid $380K for 500 sq ft less in 2012. They found a young dumb couple. I might pay $420K for it tops. This micro bubble in bring out stupid, and you can’t fix stupid.

I’ve always thought “it’s a good time to sell and buy” was a hilarious comment. Ever hear of the concept, inverse. The UHS used that line on me, to get us to list with her. We’re going no where for now.

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-06-24 09:57:09

You’re not doing your patriotic duty. With your inflated equity you should be taking out a HELOC to put in quartz counters and to buy a big luxury SUV. It’s the American way. All good citizens must use debt to stimulate the economy!

Comment by inchbyinch
2015-06-24 09:33:33

in bring s/b is bringing out… oops
s l o w d o w n -rushing

Comment by Bring Back the WPA
2015-06-24 10:03:15

CNN pointed out in an article that during the “religious freedom” controversy, the Repub politicians held their ground until Big Bidness came in and told them to cave on the issue. Now we’re seeing the same thing with the Confederate flag… Big Bidness is dropping bars’n’stars products like hot rocks, and suddenly multiple Southern states are all yanking down the Dixie flag. What an incredible display of corporate power in America… they snap their fingers and government instantly obeys…

Comment by redmondjp
2015-06-24 10:39:15

But the question to ask is, what are the PTB REALLY doing right now while they distract you with this manufactured crisis story? Talk radio hosts are going bananas over this . . .

All part of the puppet show for the masses. But in the bigger picture IMO, it’s part of creating the all-powerful global government. Nationalism (or in this case, regionalism) must be eliminated. And (not to change the subject) mass-immigration speeds this process up (see Europe).

You can bet that they will be going after the US flag (”racist/imperialist”) soon as well . . . as we have already seen in the southwestern states.

Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-06-24 11:51:03

It sure puts the TPP vote/revote under the radar.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-06-24 12:03:06

You can bet that they will be going after the US flag (”racist/imperialist”) soon as well . . . as we have already seen in the southwestern states.

I saw somewhere that Rush Limbaugh was talking about this. Ann Coulter was also ranting about the flag and the Democratic Party and miscellaneous other nonsense. It occurred to me that they could spin it another way. A Democratic governor of South Carolina made the decision to fly the Confederate flag and now a Republican governor is proposing that it be taken down. So hurray for this GOP governor! But I guess that would be positive and they prefer to be negative and angry.

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 10:42:06

Are you familiar with the phrase blood in the soil?

It means descended from American slaves, who literally had blood in the soil

Obama, the son of a Kenyan born father, does not have blood in the soil

Comment by In Colorado
2015-06-24 10:55:06

What an incredible display of corporate power in America… they snap their fingers and government instantly obeys…

So much for the deep government theories.

Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-06-24 11:06:53

The Confederate Flag issue was a good one to keep Southern People distracted, and Republican.

Nobody cared how offensive that flag was to Northerners (no matter what color/race), because they didn’t want/need those votes.

Yeah, the Confederate flag supposedly stands for “States Rights”

And what rights are those, might you ask?

Owning slaves, for starters. Summary executions of hundreds of prisoners of war. Andersonville. Bloody Bill Anderson. Killings of Anti-slavery publishers and activists before the war. Killing of civilians in Lawrence, KS, and burning down the town.

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2015-06-24 10:23:32

Everybody wants to rent here:


It is getting harder to imagine some kind of FIRE for me in a few decades if the rate of change of costs greatly outpaces my income rate of change. You can find cheap digs 30 miles from here, but the bad winter weather
driving combined with commuting costs and the wildcard issue of living in the sticks and not having necessarily neighbors who will respect your property is not very enticing. I think about moving to NH eventually for a cost of living relief.

Comment by jane
2015-06-24 18:32:14

Unsolicited advice, since I’m certain you’ve already done it: before you leap, do self a favor and investigate property taxes!

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2015-06-24 20:45:45

I will. I understand NH has higher property tax rates and more ways to apply them (for example, a view tax if you can see a mountain ridge from your patio, etc.). Thing is, not many cities I would want to settle down in NH right now. The state is getting Mass-ed hole badly IMHO. But supposedly the overall cost of living beats Maine. We have the coastline tax here ( compare to the Med climate/sunshine California tax).

Comment by Puggs
2015-06-24 11:58:12

The longer and higher you pile up debt the harder and deeper the fall.

The delusional belief that you can have it all on top of an 18 trillion dollar tab is epic.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 13:37:03

Are the many warnings on market froth best heeded or ignored?

Icahn warns market is ‘extremely overheated’
Published: June 24, 2015 3:32 p.m. ET
Getty Images
Extremely overheated markets worry billionaire investors Charles Icahn. (Photo by Michael Nagle/Getty Images)
By Ellie Ismailidou
Markets reporter

Activist investor Carl Icahn took to Twitter and CNBC Wednesday to issue a stark warning to investors: “I think the public is walking into a trap again as they did in 2007,” Icahn told CNBC.

Specifically, the 79-year-old investor warned of a bubble in high-yield debt. The prominent investor joins a chorus of voices pointing at frothiness in the so-called junk-bond market, including DoubleLine Capital founder Jeff Gundlach.

In two tweets published on Wednesday, Icahn cautioned against listening to so-called permabulls, saying the 2008 crisis might have been avoided if more investors had warned about the risk of a bubble in 2007, as he is attempting to do now.

Comment by Anonymous
2015-06-24 14:30:59

If he’s worried about a crash, does that mean he won’t be doing anything with the stalled Fontainebleau here in Vegas?


Comment by Califoh20
2015-06-24 12:09:52

Who is the Tea Party voting for in order to bring us less spending and less gov for 2016? Jeb? lol!

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 16:19:45

“Who is the Tea Party voting for in order to bring us less spending and less gov for 2016? Jeb? lol!”

It’s funny they didn’t mention Republican Party or GOP in the search terms the IRS used to target groups. But then that is easy to figure out isn’t it. lol!

Timeline of IRS scandal

By RACHAEL BADE | 9/22/14 5:00 AM EDT

April 19, 2010 — A “Sensitive Case Report” on the targeted tea party groups is shared with Lerner. This is the first time a top IRS official is given details about the spike in tea party applications.

June and July 2011 — Lerner is briefed that employees are using search terms such as “tea party,” “patriots,” “9/12 Project,” “government spending,” “government debt,” “taxes” and “make America a better place to live” to flag applications. Lerner, after learning about the search terms, tells the Cincinnati office to revise its guidelines for flagging applications. The guidance is expanded to include “organizations involved with political, lobbying, or advocacy for exemption under 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4).”

Also in June, Lerner’s hard drive crashes, erasing two years worth of emails investigators deem vital to their probes.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/09/timeline-of-the-irs-scandal-111185.html#ixzz3e1X0kvEW

Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 18:06:26

How’s that ObamaLove™ working out for all of y’all tonight?

Imma bout to go listen to some the Clash London Calling LP Record

Keep it real

Not feels before reals yo

Comment by Media Analyst
Comment by Media Analyst
2015-06-24 18:45:24

“Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now” - McFadden & Whitehead

Comment by phony scandals
2015-06-24 18:50:20

“How’s that ObamaLove™ working out for all of y’all tonight?”

Senate Puts Obama on Fast-track to TPP

White House “broke arms and heads” to scrape up the required majority, says Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions

by RT.com | June 24, 2015

With a 60-38 vote, the Senate adopted the law giving President Obama the power to “fast-track” talks on free-trade pacts such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) after months of fierce debate in both houses of the Congress.

Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), as the measure is called, means that Congress will only get to vote up or down on the treaties in question once they are finalized by the White House, without the ability to offer amendments.

Obama has faced strong opposition from his own Democratic Party, with prominent lawmakers such as Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) in the Senate and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in the House breaking ranks to speak and vote against the measure.

Meanwhile, Republican lawmakers that usually oppose Obama at every turn by and large backed the president on the issue, though with some notable exceptions. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), one of the contenders for the Republican presidential nomination, voted against closing the debate on TAP on Tuesday.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:32:06

A closely-watched pot never boils over.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:33:42

ft dot com/global economy
June 23, 2015 1:32 pm
Portugal frets it could be next as Grexit fears grow
Peter Wise in Lisbon and Elaine Moore in London
Lisbon’s status as eurozone exemplar might not shield it from market rout
Centre of attraction: Lisbon’s Rossio Square

In the eyes of international lenders, Portugal is a shining example of what Greece should have been: a bailed-out country that co-operates with its creditors, stoically enduring years of austerity to bring about reforms that gradually improve an ailing economy.

But Lisbon’s status as eurozone posterchild — cited as “proof” that adjustment programmes work by Germany’s hawkish finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble — would not be enough to shield it from the full blast of market turbulence if Greece exits the currency bloc.

“Portugal, after Greece, is the weakest link in the eurozone,” said Antonio Roldán of the Eurasia Group, a risk consultancy.

After falling to record lows in recent months, Lisbon’s borrowing costs last week hit their highest point this year as tensions between Athens and its creditors increased. Swiss bank UBS forecasts that borrowing costs could double if Greece leaves the euro, putting renewed pressure on Portugal’s still fragile public finances.

Taking advantage of low borrowing costs, Lisbon has built up a war chest of cash reserves and insists that it is prepared for any escalation of the crisis.

“If something very serious happens over Greece, Portugal will not be the next to fall,” said Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho. “The Treasury has the capacity to withstand any degree of market volatility this year and is well prepared [to cover] the first half of 2016.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:35:58

Markets shudder as Grexit fears return
German share indices dropped 0.6 per cent yesterday
Philip Aldrick Economics Editor
Last updated at 11:50PM, June 24 2015

Markets in Europe and the United States slipped yesterday amid fears that efforts by Greece to strike a debt deal would fall short, potentially sending the country spinning out of the eurozone and triggering broader investor panic across the Continent.

Those concerns appeared to be realised last night when talks between Greece and its creditors broke up without any resolution in sight.

As Athens faced demands for more politically sensitive changes to its austerity proposals and with the clock ticking towards default, share prices in Europe fell and government borrowing costs for weaker eurozone members increased.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:38:47

Opinion Dan O’Brien
Thursday 25 June 2015
Neither a debt write-off nor a Grexit would spell good news for Ireland
25/06/2015 | 02:30
Uneasy relationship: Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker

Never has so much been written over such a long period of time about such a small a country. And a great deal of what has been written on Greece is based as much on the prejudices of the authors as it is on a balanced assessment of the many factors at play.

For one group of commentators, the European and IMF side is wicked and uncaring, wanting sadistically to keep Greece in a permanent austerity trap. This side of the debate argues that Greece’s debts should be written off and that lifting the burden would solve the country’s problems in one fell swoop.

For another group of commentators, taking a diametrically opposing view, the governments which ran Greece until early this year were weak and unreliable, frequently backsliding on the promises they made. The current Syriza-led administration is not only even less dependable, but it also disagrees ideologically with most of the measures the rest of the eurozone believes Greece needs. The anti-Greece brigade argue that after five-and-a-half years of crisis, it should be drummed out of the euro, and this would solve the eurozone crisis.

Here in Ireland, the first view is much more common, in part I suspect because backing David over Goliath allows one to take the high moral ground. Speaking from that position and being on the side of the angels is always a safer place for a commentator, particularly in a country in which the tradition of displaying piety publicly is so strong.

The human urge to seek simple solutions is strong. Alas, many of the world’s problems do not have simple solutions. The problems of Greece and the curozone not only do not have simple solutions; they have no good solution.

Consider first what would happen if all of Greece’s debts were written off. Advocates of this course of action assume that Greece is weak economically only because of its debts. That is simply wrong: its export sector is small, foreign investment has historically been meagre, bad government has hampered business and the education system is poor, to name but some weaknesses.

A debt write-off would not do anything to make these matters better. And it would do less than its advocates believe to lessen austerity. That is because the burden of the debts is actually much smaller than is commonly understood.

Interest payments are expected to be 4pc of GDP this year, one-third the amount paid 20 years ago and only 1 percentage point above the euro area average (thanks to very cheap bailout loans). There is no doubt that diverting the money from interest payments to hiring more public sector workers and reversing pension cuts would boost the economy, but it would not be transformative even in the short term and certainly not in the longer term.

And then there are the political costs of writing off the debt. Although there seems to be little concern in Ireland about the €350m Greece owes us, public opposition to writing off Greece’s debt in other countries is much stronger.

Anti-Euro parties in Germany and Finland would almost certainly gain in popularity at the expense of governments if their loans were written off. In countries such as Ireland and Spain, governments would also be likely to lose support. Sinn Féin would claim it was right all along to back tough-talking Syriza.

If the debt write-off option will not cause milk and honey to flow across the eurozone, nor will forcing a Grexit.

For long-suffering Greece, re-establishing a currency would cause another massive recession. Nobody, anywhere, disputes that.

The costs more widely would also be high. In the very short term - within hours or days of a Greek default and departure from the euro - another financial crisis could flare up if the shock of an event of truly historic proportions triggers a panic.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:40:58

A ‘Grexit’ from eurozone would have a major impact on Greece and the E.U.
Greece, the E.U. and the world would benefit from a durable debt deal.
By Editorial Board Star Tribune
June 24, 2015 — 6:13pm
Petros Giannakouris • Associated Press
A Greek and a European Union wave, with the Parthenon in the background on the Acropolis hill in Athens. Greece’s prime minister was heading to high-level meetings in Brussels on Wednesday to try to persuade the country’s creditors to accept a proposal that might unlock much-delayed bailout loans and save the country from financial disaster. Many observers that if Greece leaves the eurozone, it could hurt not only the European Union, but the global economy.

The latest episode of Greece’s debt drama is coming close to a tragic denouement of default and a “Grexit” — an exit from the eurozone.

At press time, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras still had not struck a deal with Greece’s creditors, despite a looming June 30 deadline. If an accord is reached, it still needs approval from a Parliament seething over imposed austerity.

Greece’s economic collapse and estimated 25 percent jobless rate (50 percent for younger workers) is a life- and nation-changing event. Repaying the debt seems Sisyphean. So some Greeks want to default. Others fear things could get worse if Greece becomes untethered from the common currency used by 19 European nations.

That caution should prevail among Greeks, Europeans and international institutions that will write the next chapter (and check) of the Greek drama. Yes, tough trade-offs are necessary. But all involved should recognize that default is too big an economic and political risk for Greece, Europe and a fragile world. And geopolitically, an E.U. rupture would test the cohesion necessary to maintain Western sanctions on Russia for its illegal annexation of Crimea and aggression in Ukraine.

It would be hubristic to predict with precision the impact that default would have on the global economy. After all, few foresaw the rapid damage created by the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers. And the diplomatic fallout from a default may be more costly than keeping Greece afloat.

“No one wants to risk a default on Greece, because it would be too difficult to manage,” Andrea Montanino, director of the Global Business and Economics Program at the Atlantic Council, told an editorial writer. Montanino, formerly an executive director at the International Monetary Fund representing Greece and five other European nations, added, “No one wants to show that Europe is not able to deal with its problems and not able to stay united.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-06-24 20:44:48

There’s good reason why a ‘Grexit’ won’t happen
By ABC’s Alan Kohler
Updated about 3 hours ago
The EU and Greek flag fly in front of the Parthenon
Photo: The Greek tragedy is, at heart, about currency wars. (Getty Images: Oli Scarff)

The truth is this is actually just a currency war, and there really is no chance the all-powerful German export machine will allow Greece to exit the Eurozone, writes Alan Kohler.

That the euro fell on Tuesday when it emerged that the Greek government of Alexis Tsipras may have capitulated to the demands of the IMF and ECB perfectly illustrated what’s at stake in the latest EU hoo-ha.

Greece staying in the eurozone equals weak euro; default and “Grexit” equals End of Days for Greece but a strong euro, because a small but heavy sandbag will have been thrown from the balloon.

As a result there really is no chance that the all-powerful German export machine will allow Greece to exit the Eurozone.

It’s true that ECB money printing has insulated the European banking system from the danger of contagion in the event of Greek default, but that’s not what this is about.

It is, at heart, about currency wars. In the last three months, as Greece looked increasingly likely to miss its June 30 repayment to the IMF and go into default, the euro has appreciated more than 6 per cent.

That simply will not do. Daimler Benz, BMW, Siemens, BASF, Bayer, and the thousands of “mittelstand” firms that employ 70 per cent of the workforce and contribute 50 per cent to Germany’s GDP will not allow the German government to kick Greece out of the euro and cause their businesses to become uncompetitive.

So Greece probably won’t have to do very much to remain afloat. The details of the latest offer from Mr Tsipras have not been made public, but apparently he’s talking about increasing taxes and pension contributions for companies and the rich.

If so, it will be an obvious sham - a fig leaf. The Greek government is as likely to collect more money from those sources as it is to sell the Parthenon piece by piece, or the Aegean Sea, island by island.

The ostensible demands from the IMF and EU upon Greece for further austerity and reform are so severe that it is a toss-up whether it would be better for it to knuckle under or default and exit.

In fact, these demands are designed for the consumption of the German public, whose opinion of their Greek cousins seems to be a mixture of Verachtung (scorn) and Schadenfreude.

Poll after poll shows that most Germans want Greece out of the eurozone and preferably out of the EU. Reporting a recent poll that 52 per cent of Germans wanted Greece out, Bloomberg quoted a Berlin taxi driver:

They’ve got a lot of hubris and arrogance, being in the situation they’re in and making all these demands. Maybe it’s better for Greece to just leave the euro.

In fact, that’s the last thing the German export establishment - large and small - will allow; the Greeks just have to be humiliated as the can is kicked down the road again.

The central bank establishment is doing its bit to pile on the pressure: A few days ago the ECB, via the Bank of Greece, issued a statement that said exit from the euro would result in “deep recession, a dramatic decline in income levels, an exponential rise in unemployment and a collapse of all that the Greek economy has achieved over the years of its EU, and especially its euro area, membership”.

That is almost as un-central banker-like language as saying that house prices are “crazy”. :-)

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2015-06-24 22:42:42

Whooooahh, check out the personal loan rates here:


Mr. Banker, you got a racket going.

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