July 15, 2015

Bits Bucket for July 15, 2015

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

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Comment by NJDude
2015-07-15 00:59:24

Interesting…China GDP at 7% and the Shanghai Stock exchange sells off 3%


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:18:42

It is exactly what would happen in this country if we had economic numbers much stronger than expected. The Chinese stock market likes easy money, if the GDP had come in at 6.8%, the market participants would know that more interest rate cuts and other easing was on the way, now that China’s housing market and trade surplus is helping the economy, the interest rate cuts are placed on hold:


Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-15 08:33:11

“trade surplus is helping”

Helping? It is because the boom is ending. Raw materials are falling in price because demand is falling. China exports are flat. This is a consolidation inside China. It may help them get ready for the consolidation of external orders, if they don’t piss it away.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 12:25:11

This is like his “Reagan had a great presidency” argument. Until you point out the tripling of the deficit and the size of the gov grew and tax increases…. then it is all the Dem congress at fault. lol!

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:33:03

Strong increase both in the GDP, real incomes and won the cold war. Yet Reagan added a small fraction of the debt that Obama added, Obama will have added as much debt as Reagan, and both Bushes combined for nothing in return not even a decent recovery. Triple debt means nothing if the debt was $1 dollar adding two dollars more would triple it. Up until Obama the deeper the recession the stronger the recovery, Obama’s recovery is the worse post recession recovery, he owns it, the economy was out of recession in the Summer of 2009 but the recovery has been so weak that very few people feel it.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 16:41:42

But was it Reagan or the DEM congress with the good ideas or the bad ideas or is any of it real?

We all know what Bush did and the debts he left us. Not O.

Corp profits have tripled since Bush left, we dont want the GOV to force them to hire you.

Got trickle down?

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:44:03

I believe the GDP growth figure was 7.000000% or something like that…

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-15 08:34:43

The problem with China GDP figures is that they are fabricated. Growth seems to be around 1% which isn’t enough to keep a credit pyramid aloft.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 09:51:06

Someones gettin’ ShangHai’ed. Alot of someones.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:20:36

Really 1% with these revenue figures? How is it 1% when oil use is up 1.6% and they like the rest of the world is getting more efficient.


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Comment by NJDude
2015-07-15 01:02:10

China’s NBS…liar liar pants on fire…
“China’s statistics bureau defended its economic data Wednesday, saying the numbers were accurate, Reuters reported. Following the release of data showing better-than-expected 7% growth in the second quarter, National Bureau of Statistics spokesman Sheng Laiyun the “hard won” growth rate correctly reflected the economy and that the figures hadn’t been inflated, the report said. CNBC reported separately that the comments had been made in response to a reporter’s question. Critics of Chinese economic statistics have described them as subject to poor data-gathering or outright manipulation by officials. Economists holding this view instead judge the Chinese economy through the use of proxy measures, such as electricity consumption, which they see as more reliable.”

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:31:08

Really, the world is said to be growing by about 3.5% per year and oil consumption is rising by about 1%. Similarly how do you compare electricity growth in China to GDP growth when they are closing their most energy inefficient plants and moving GDP growth from manufacturing to services?

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:49:49

Do you know about what kind of rounding is used to get to that 7% GDP growth figure?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:53:59

It is more reliable than Obama’s job statistics.

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Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 07:02:05

How is whatever Obama did or didn’t do whatsoever relevant to a discussion about China?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 07:04:12

Just knew you would jump to his defense.

Comment by joe smith
2015-07-15 07:57:11

Knowing that China’s “numbers” are full of sh*t hardly requires defending Comrade Obama.

China has some absolutely massive issues barreling towards it, for which the country is ill-prepared to address. Among them: no one actually wants to live in China if they have the option not to; no one wants to keep their money in China if they can choose not to; they will be an old society before they have anything near a US/Euro standard of living; they have fouled their environment in a way that will take 2 generations to clean up; they are not well-suited to move towards a transparent and truly free market; they have poor (nonexistant) protections for IP/trade secrets and we’re increasingly moving towards an economy where these rights drive economies.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 08:04:51


Comment by oxide
2015-07-15 08:12:11

“IP/trade secrets”

China invents stuff?

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:03:48

Pointing out that you bring Obama into every argument you are losing is not tantamount to “jumping to his defense.”

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 09:56:30

“Just knew you would jump to his defense.”

LOLZ :mrgreen:

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:48:49

There are three kinds of falsehoods: lies, damned lies and statistics.

– Arthur James Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 04:04:38


Just when the Chinese plunge protection team (and “arrest shortie” task force) seemed to be finally getting “malicious selling” under control, first we saw a crack yesterday when the composite broke the surge of the past three days as a result of yet another spike in margin debt funded purchases, but it was last night’s reminder that “good news is bad news” that really confused the stock trading farmers and grandmas, which goalseeked Chinese economic “data” beat across the board, with Q2 GDP coming solidly above expectations at 7.0%, and retail sales and industrial production both beating, but in the process raising doubts that the PBOC will continue supporting stocks.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:38:46

Exactly what I said above. However, I would add this, the PTB in this country do not want Americans to see China as a success because that would point up just how much we are failing. The PTB in this country are globalists and while I respect TJ, he is buying their line that it is all good and we should not worry about trade deficits. If we are world citizens that might be true. But we are not and our trade deficits, just like our budget deficits means we are living beyond our means and in the future we or our children will have to live below their means. The Greeks are learning this lesson do we have to experience it before we make changes? The Chinese government is not trying to promote globalism it is trying to promote the development of China. Our leaders are trying to promote globalism and not necessarily the development of the U.S. The results can be seen every day.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 07:07:47

I didn’t notice the double quotes around “data” in your post.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 07:16:57

Still can’t admit you were wrong can you PB? It was a bet for two years, I was right about last year and there are no signs that China will not reach around 7% this year. Any time it starts to slow China reacts with monetary and fiscal stimulus just do not see how it fall significantly below 7% for the year. BTW, I do not know how to relate the credibility of this article, it is in the China Daily so it has some credibility but they are quoting Goldman Sachs so it is suspect:

BEIJING - Several new measures from Chinese regulators over the past week have greatly reduced the risky leverage widely blamed for the meltdown in China’s stock market, a report from Goldman Sachs said on Monday.

While China’s stock regulator has recruited the help of domestic brokers and listed companies to shore up stock prices, it has also began to look into reckless margin lending activities through unofficial channels, which contributed to the instability that rocked China’s stock market.

The recent correction saw the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index tumble by more than 30 percent since its peak in mid-June. ChiNext, which tracks small-cap Chinese firms listed in Shenzhen, saw an even sharper correction during the same period.

“We think China is undergoing a correction, but not heading into a systemic bear phase… forced unwinding of high risk leverage may be close to an end.” said Goldman Sachs strategist Kinger Lau in a note to clients on Monday.

Margin financing balance in China’s stock market has shed 37 percent to 1.4 trillion yuan ($229 billion), or 7.1 percent of total stock market capitalization, according to the report, as panicked investors with high leverage unwound their positions to meet their margin call.

The share of margin financing will continue to fall to 2 percent of total market capitalization, Lau said.

Much of the leverage came from banks, online lenders and underground loan firms that extend loans to investors eager to maximize gains in the stock market, which gained more than 150 percent at its peak last month from a year ago before undergoing the sharp correction.

Some of the investments were channeled into the stock market using HOMS, an IT service developed by Hangzhou-based Hundsun Technologies Inc, that connects accounts to access points offered by securities brokerage firms. HOMS was initially designed for small asset management firms in China but became a popular tool for margin lenders to fuel speculative trades last year.

CRSC announced they conducted inspection at Hundsun Technologies on Monday. Chinese internet Tycoon Jack Ma owned a 20 percent stake in Hundsun Technologies through one of his domestic firms.

Hudson’s HOMS service was criticized on China’s social media for contributing to the sharp fall in stock prices in the past couple of weeks. However, the companies issued a statement on Monday morning refuting claims that its HOMS service is responsible for the recent stock market meltdown.

It added that stock sell-offs through HOMS over the past four weeks stand at 30.1 billion yuan, accounting for just 0.104 percent of the 28.86 trillion total transactions during the same period at the Shanghai and Shenzhen bourses.

Despite the criticism directed at the company, its shares rose by the daily limit of 10 percent on Monday and Tuesday in Shanghai.

The Shanghai benchmark closed down 1.16 percent on Tuesday, while the benchmark in Shenzhen edged up 0.91 percent.

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Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 13:30:11

Rant on, dude!

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 15:04:06

Rent on, Dude because you were wrong about San Diego housing prices and are wrong about China.

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-15 16:23:03

It is curious that underground lending is part of the official statistics.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 16:36:36

Remember Dan….. You can ask $50k for your run down 10 year old pickup but where is the buyer at that prices?

So it is with any other depreciating asset like houses.

Comment by tj
2015-07-15 07:34:38

The PTB in this country are globalists and while I respect TJ, he is buying their line that it is all good and we should not worry about trade deficits.

show me where i’ve EVER said “all is good”. far from it. the only thing i was talking about is trade deficits. not the myriad of other things that are wrong.

if you think trade deficits hurt show the mechanics of how they hurt. don’t just draw some correlations that could be from anything.

if you trade with someone, it is the same whether they are across the street or across the world. you make an exchange. no harm is done. only in the minds of people who don’t see the whole picture.

But we are not and our trade deficits, just like our budget deficits means we are living beyond our means and in the future we or our children will have to live below their means.

trade has NOTHING to do with budgets. and trade has nothing to do with deficits unless you are buying on credit, and then it’s only related to budget deficits.

The Greeks are learning this lesson do we have to experience it before we make changes?

the greeks are learning a lesson about socialism and budget deficits. on the other hand, trade as in shipping, is serving them rather well.

The Chinese government is not trying to promote globalism it is trying to promote the development of China.


Our leaders are trying to promote globalism and not necessarily the development of the U.S. The results can be seen every day.

agree here too.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:28:01

Good to see you posting again, tj. I appreciate your efforts to be honest and forthright.

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Comment by tj
2015-07-15 08:33:51

thanks MacBeth, i suspect that for most of us honesty isn’t a problem. the difficult part is being totally objective.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:53:41

I agree. Objectivity can be difficult.

Comment by joe smith
2015-07-15 08:01:36

Aspiring to be more like China is kind of like aspiring to be like Walmart.

Competing on quantity rather than quality is a fool’s game.

US has had a higher GDP than, say, Germany for a long time now. But the avg Kraut lives better than the avg American. So GDP by itself is meaningless.

If you don’t think China sucks, just ask any wealthy Chinese person whether they’d want to live in NYC or Shanghai. Hint: no one will say Shanghai.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:14:15

Downlow Joe

Are you coming out (no pun intended) here to climb some 14ers this summer?

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Comment by LiberaceLOL
2015-07-15 10:36:19

Probably. If he can work it around his summertime Barry Manilow groupie gigs.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 10:55:03

Brokeback Mountain reenactment?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 11:40:12

Where did they become wealthy? Look the fact that China can maintain growth in some ways shows the flaws in a controlled economy, clearly interest were kept too high and growth could have been higher had they been cut. But China is willing to tolerate lower than free market economy growth because they do not want the boom/bust cycles that ironically make capitalism work the best. Political stability is more important than optimum growth. Thus, China will keep plenty of ammunition to speed up the economy to meet its goals. It is really stupid to assume they will not get near its goals when it can manage its growth the same way that a fortune 500 company manages its growth. It sets the bar at the low end of an expected range and then assures that it at least meets that target. There are many ways for a corporation to legally meet these targets so a corporation that falls even a few cents short on its estimates is hammered. China has even more options since it can order SOEs to increase inventories which for GDP purposes is increased growth. Thus, China is not lying because it still has plenty of ammunition to legitimately reach its targets.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:05:48

interest rates were kept too high

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 04:07:25

Another canary in the coal mine keels over….


Home Capital Group, Canada’s largest non-bank mortgage lender, focuses on “alternative” mortgages, as they’re called euphemistically, that is high-profit mortgages to risky borrowers with dented credit or unreliable incomes, such as self-employed folks or new immigrants, who don’t qualify for mortgage insurance and were turned down by the banks. They include subprime.

Its stock plunged almost 20% on Monday in Toronto. On Tuesday, it dropped another 4% to close at C$32.74, the lowest since September 2013, and down 41% from the halcyon days last November.

Analysts went into a wild and belated scramble to lower their ratings on the stock. It has been the fourth most shorted stock in Canada, with 20% of its free float shorted, according to Bloomberg. Those folks made a bundle over the last two days.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
Comment by Neuromance
Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-15 06:01:38

Roll the tanks south.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 06:17:38

Mexican Drug Lord ‘El Chapo’ Ordered Wife to Give Birth to Anchor Babies in California
The Associated Press - 13 Jul 2015

Escaped Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman ordered his young wife, Emma Coronel, herself a U.S. citizen and daughter of another Mexican drug lord, to give birth in California to secure U.S. citizenship for his children.

The Daily Mail reports that the feds didn’t thwart the Mexican drug cartel anchor baby scheme: “Federal agents wanted to stop her, but had no formal charges to file so had to let her go free.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:53:56

Is Guzman of Russian origin?

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:38:43

No, he’s Mexican of humble origins. Why?

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:11:18

1. His name sounds Russian.
2. Apparently he has a penchant for Russian guns (AK-47s).

Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:31:39

Perhaps we should.

We keep handing them jobs, providing welfare benefits to illegals. We also provide them with defacto defense.

What do we get out of the deal?

Comment by Oddfellow
2015-07-15 09:21:13

“Roll the tanks south.”

Will it work as well as it did in Iraq?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 04:16:43


Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 04:41:28

Buy the f*cking dip

Especially in China

Comment by Jingle Male
2015-07-15 05:22:19

Please. I appreciate the cash flow…..

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 06:13:06

Given how far submerged you are on those depreciating empty shacks, you need all the help you can get.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 06:32:58

With what I’m not spending on mortgage debt slavery for some overpriced rotting shack, money is flowing in my bank accounts like Niagara Falls

Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 08:49:06


I like the Broadway play. Interestingly, the play took place in a run-down low-rent district in New York that has since gentrified and is now unaffordable… La Vie Boheme no more

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 04:17:08

Another corrupt, decaying PIIGS member that is financial contagion waiting to happen.


Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 06:13:19

All they need to do to fox this is grow government bigger and bigger, have more and more regulations and increase taxes higher and higher.

That and import more and more muslims…

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 06:42:18

import more and more muslims

France is f*cked

I was watching the FoxNewsHate at the gym yesterday and the neocons were tripping over each other in a race to launch a preemptive war against Iran

Here’s a suggestion: stop immigration from muslim countries, stop launching wars and giving foreign aid to the Middle East, and shut down every American military base over there

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 08:27:08

That will stop muslim attacks if that is your objective.

Reference America’s first war - against the muslim Barbary pirates.

“From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli…’

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Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:01:38

Somehow we managed to avoid war with those awful Muslims for something like 150 years. It shouldn’t be too difficult to look up how that was accomplished and implement similar policies.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 10:52:37

No we didn’t.

America first war was to stop muslims from attacking American ships and taking American slaves.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:57:05

Yes, you mentioned that. That was a long time ago. There must have a long period between that war and the next was with Muslims.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 11:49:26

The Ottoman Empire was constantly at war with the West until its collapse after WWI. The was the last caliphate and marked a brief period of secular governments that we could deal with. But when the Shah was overthrown during the Carter administration, mainly due to Carter’s policy, political Islam was reborn and we have suffered every since.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 14:50:16

1) The Ottoman Empire was at war with part of Europe, not the entire West. Various European empires were at war on nearly every continent for centuries. Religion may have played a part in both cases, but it wasn’t the only cause of conflict.

2) We should also mention the fact that Europe was at war with itself nearly continually up until 1945.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 14:56:46

The Ottoman empire tried to conquer Europe and did indeed conquer a vast part of it. They marched under the banner of Islam and only Christian warriors were able to stop them. Your minimizing of its war like nature either shows ignorance or a deliberate attempt to deceive.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 16:02:35

I don’t know the degree to which they marched under any religious banner. I do know that there were quite a few European empires that engaged in quite nasty business all over the world while proclaiming that they were spreading Christianity.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 04:27:08

Another faux “populist” on the model of Fauxahontus. Remember when Candidate Obama talked about reining in Wall Street, while collecting his fat contributions from Goldman Sachs and George Soros?


Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-15 06:05:31

These days they don’t even have a naive hope that their candidate isn’t controlled by Wall Street and the oligarch puppet masters. At least with Obama people could suspend their brains and pretend something new was going to happen.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 08:29:11

But yet Republican George H Bush put 1500 bankers in jail during the S&L crisis…

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:48:56

Jail for bankers…that’s so 1980s.

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Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 08:57:10

Bernie Sanders doesn’t just talk about breaking up the big banks, he does something about it:

WASHINGTON, May 6 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today introduced legislation to break up the nation’s biggest banks in order to safeguard the economy and prevent another costly taxpayer bailout. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) proposed a companion bill in the House.

“No single financial institution should have holdings so extensive that its failure could send the world economy into crisis,” Sanders said. “If an institution is too big to fail, it is too big to exist.”

Comment by redmondjp
2015-07-15 09:29:20

Which is why he will never be president.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:44:04

It’s not like he actually means it.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 14:53:58

Ho do you know that?

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 15:00:33

Sanders has had plenty of opportunities in “public service” (cough) to take on the banks and the most vile and larcenous institution of all, the Federal Reserve. Has he?


Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 16:25:43

I don’t know and you probably don’t either. A quick Google search shows that he’s made statements such about the Fed and the big banks. I haven’t yet found whether he’s introduced legislation before this May.

Comment by Rental Watch
2016-06-12 19:06:05

Nothing like a nice political stunt during an election year.

He might as well have proposed a bill to give free puppies to every 6 year old.

Where was he when the political wind would have favored breaking up the banks? Oh yeah, he was too busy voting in favor of Dodd Frank, which made it just fine to be a big bank and TBTF.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:42:50

These days they don’t even have a naive hope that their candidate isn’t controlled by Wall Street and the oligarch puppet masters.

Yet in 2016, 95% of the electorate will once again bend over and spread their cheeks for the Oligopoly by voting for its annointed water carriers, HillaryJeb. The same slack-jawed wonders who voted for hope ‘n change or the even worse GOP alternatives are still around, they’re still stupid, and they’re still casting votes. Same as it ever was.

We are so screwed.

Comment by Neuromance
2015-07-15 16:08:34

The first time I ever heard O’Malley talk about Wall Street was just a few weeks ago. Doubtless after he sniffed the political winds.

He was a champion of the poor who introduced casino gambling to Maryland. Also a champion of the poor who increased the sales tax, a regressive tax.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 06:10:55

Dem Candidates Silent On Alleged Planned Parenthood Felonies

None of the declared Democratic presidential candidates responded

by Rachel Stoltzfoos | Daily Caller | July 15, 2015

Democratic presidential candidates were silent in the wake footage released Tuesday showing Planned Parenthood’s top doctor allegedly describing how the clinics sell the body parts of aborted babies.

None of the declared Democratic presidential candidates — former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Gov. Martin O’Malley, former Sen. Jim Webb, and former Gov. Lincoln Chafee — responded to multiple requests for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation regarding the video.

Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz also did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Dr. Deborah Nucatola, who oversees the abortion practices of all Planned Parenthood clinics and trains their abortion doctors, describes in the video how the clinics take orders for body parts and then perform abortions strategically to fill those orders, sometimes using a procedure that could be considered a partial-birth abortion, which is illegal.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 06:34:35

The easiest way to stop abortions is to use birth control

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-15 07:24:48

We can send a space probe by Pluto to take pictures yet somehow there is no easy pill for male birth control? Yeah right.

And don’t give me this nonsense that men wouldn’t take it.

Comment by oxide
2015-07-15 08:19:07

Good intentions, yes. Reliable execution, no. Anything else is nonsense.

Research money would be better spent on developing a deliberate, dependable, and safe temporary vasectomy.

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Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:35:08

“Research money would be better spent on developing a deliberate, dependable, and safe temporary vasectomy.”

Perhaps you should write to Planned Parenthood and tell them exactly that.

I don’t see how selling organs of aborted babies solves any problems. Do you?

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 08:32:52

The easiest way to ignore murder is to rationalize it.

You would make a good German.

Your democrat organization see nothing wrong with selling body parts of babies for profit.

You and your party are ghouls.

But wait - there is a confederate flag over there.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 08:55:05

your party

That has donated money three times to Rand Paul this election cycle, that’s me right here

If you were paying attention, you’d know that I worked for the Democrat Party in the state legislature in 1999 to 2000 and voted for Ralph Nader in the first presidential election in 2000, which means I effectively voted for your party

People sometimes change when they get older

And I know where the bodies are buried in Cuyahoga County…

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Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 09:08:04

And consistently votes straight democrat party ticket when Nadar or the greens are not running.

Voted for Obama twice.


Why are you so ashamed of something you have supported all your life? This is what they are.

This is WHO you are as you obviously see nothing wrong for selling parts of babies for profit

You are a good German. Be proud of it.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:22:40

I never fathered an aborted fetus

You and your party with the exception of Rand Paul and Ron Paul (want to see my donation receipt from the December 16, 2007 Tea Party money bomb?) are drenched in the blood of 4,000 dead American soldiers and 100,000 dead Iraqi civilians

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 10:54:21

And most Nazis didn’t work at a concentration camp…

Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:58:54

There’s no political advantage to either promoting it or stopping it….which is why liberals have done nothing about it.

With liberals, it’s not only follow the money. It’s also follow the politics.

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Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:04:22

Your democrat organization see nothing wrong with selling body parts of babies for profit.

When did the party make that declaration? Was it in the 2012 platform?

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Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 06:13:08

Washington Post Changed Planned Parenthood ‘Organ Harvesting’ Headline To ‘Research’

Newsweek covers for abortionists, saying “there’s more to it than meets the eye”

by Steve Watson | InfoWars | July 15, 2015

When the shocking video of a Planned Parenthood senior official bragging about organ harvesting from aborted babies went viral yesterday, The Washington Post originally ran the story with the headline containing the words ‘organ harvesting’. However, the headline was altered a short time later, to intimate the official was merely discussing “research”.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:26:57

Adding insult to injury, not a U.S. tanker not even a Greek tanker but a Chinese tanker. Obama could have turned the U.S. to natural gas vehicles and created a real industry in this country and at the same time just about eliminated oil imports. Instead we have a mole hill of an industry creating toys for the rich. So instead of using are finite natural gas to create good paying jobs, we are exporting our natural resources like a third world country. The salt in the wound is that it is being done with Chinese tankers:

(China Daily)
Updated: 2015-07-15 09:07

Two gas tankers built by the Sinopacific Offshore and Engineering were named on Tuesday, and will soon be shipping shale gas to Europe from the United States, officials said.

The ships will join an eventual eight-strong fleet of tankers operated by Swiss-headquartered petrochemical manufacturer Ineos Group Ltd, which will carry 800,000 tons of shale gas annually from the U.S. to its European manufacturing plants.

Jim Ratcliffe, Ineos’ founder and chairman, said the $1 billion project will help revolutionize the European chemicals industry by reducing both feedstock and energy costs.

“Bringing U.S. shale gas to Europe is a huge undertaking, involving Ineos experts from across the globe. To see these two ships finally completed here in China means that this vast project will soon be fully operational.”

Simon Liang, Sinopacific Offshore and Engineering’s chairman and CEO, said more than 2,000 people had been involved in the building of the two “Dragon Class” ships, each of which required about one-million man hours of work.

The JS Ineos Insight and JS Ineos Ingenuity will join six other vessels in creating what the company described as a “virtue pipeline”, to transport over 800,000 tons of gas a year at minus 90 degrees centigrade across the Atlantic to plants in Norway and Scotland.

Each ship will be the length of two soccer pitches and be able to carry over 27,500 cubic meters of liquefied gas. The first two ships will begin their maiden voyage this month.

“We have seen U.S. shale gas revolutionize U.S. manufacturing and we believe the completion of this project will help do the same for Europe,” said Ratcliffe.

Sinopacific Offshore and Engineering is responsible for building the ships at its Qidong plant on the Yangtze River.

“The scale of the project is extraordinary,” said Ratcliffe. “We are going to move more than 40,000 barrels of gas a day, every day of the year, for 15 years, from the U.S. to Europe.”

Steffen Jacobsen, CEO of gas tanker operator Evergas, amongst the world’s leading seaborne transporters of petrochemical gases and natural gas liquids through which Ineos ordered the eight ships, described the Sinopacific-built vessels as a world first on many levels.

He said China has become a shipbuilding leader over the past 20 years and that the building of the “Dragon Class” ships is the third cooperation between Evergas and Sinopacific.

“I’ve worked in the shipping business for 35 years. No one has ever tried to ship ethane in these quantities and over this distance before,” he said.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:57:00


Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 09:04:49

Look, we have a guy in office who refuses to build an oil pipeline.

This same guy has no problem having tankers sit in the Persian Gulf - a massive waste of energy and at massive expense.

Those two acts tell one all he or she needs to know.

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-15 06:30:43

How can anyone who owns an iPhone call themselves a Christian?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 06:44:58

Jesus was African

Comment by rms
2015-07-15 06:53:52

So Jesus would settle on the Samsung Galaxy Edge?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 06:55:48

How did God call Moses?

Samsung Galaxy Edge? No, I think I will stay with the burning bush.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 07:06:51

Speaking of phones why is it that in many parts of rural America people are on 2G but China is rolling at 6.5G. So which country is developed and which country needs “developing”:


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Comment by Ben Jones
2015-07-15 07:35:56

‘Revive the A shares, benefit the people; revive the A shares, benefit the people!’

Comment by oxide
2015-07-15 08:32:11

I don’t know Dan. Why don’t you ask your Republicans friends in Congress why they don’t want to spend money on infrastructure?

Because rural 6.5g sure as heck isn’t profitable enough for a private company to develop, even if they got a tax writeoff for it.

Comment by MacBeth
2015-07-15 08:46:02

Truth be told, I wouldn’t use penetration of cell phones (or cell phone power) to be indicative of economic or societal success.

From where I sit, cell phones oftentimes promote idiocy.

Comment by Ben Jones
2015-07-15 08:53:20

Watch Slumdog Millionaire.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:05:39

“Truth be told, I wouldn’t use penetration of cell phones (or cell phone power) to be indicative of economic or societal success.”

It’s a desperation economic indicator.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:24:07

7% growth and institutions like the World Bank think it will end up 7.1% for the year.

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-15 16:35:19

While the parts are contracting, the whole is growing!

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-15 06:31:32

The google map of presidential candidates and their influence by regions of the country is interesting. Because it looks as if Hillary more or less owns the US????!!! Even more interesting, though, is that solid red for Trump in South Florida, specifically Dade County, which is heavily Latino OTM (other than Mexican). Meaning, Cuban and various South American countries. Many of these are people with a visceral fear and hatred of Latin style communism, fascism and gangs, to which some have lost family members. They don’t see themselves as part of some monolithic “Hispanic” group.

The other part of Florida in the solid red for Trump is heavily Puerto Rican.

So when he says he’d get the “Latino” vote, he’s not necessarily off the mark, but it would be Latino OTM vote.


Comment by palmetto
2015-07-15 07:10:50

Another interesting point about that Trump red in South Florida is that both Rubio and JEB! are from that area, and it looks as if their neighbors don’t much care for them.

However, JEB! has some wide swaths of Texas. He should just move there, his son already has. Not that I would wish that on Texas, but it’s sad how that great state has become a vassal territory for Bush carpetbaggers.

Wonder how Jade Helm is going there?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 07:36:02

My SJW betters assure that all of the Dreamers™ and Salvadoran and Honduran and Guatemalan Acts Of Love™ will grow up to be doctors and astronauts

I was in downtown Lake Worth, Florida several years ago and it literally looked like it was not part of the United States anymore

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 09:20:03

“I was in downtown Lake Worth, Florida several years ago and it literally looked like it was not part of the United States anymore”

Lake Worth, that is where the first of my two vehicles was hit and run by an act of love.

Luckily that one was not occupied at the time the act of love hit it.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:27:04

The fact that a lot of people in Florida are Googling doesn’t necessarily mean that they support him. There’s a lot a stuff on the internet that ridicules Trump. People may be searching for that.

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-15 11:41:52

He just called out Karl Rove for the creep that he is, lol. A “Bush Plant”. Awesome.

Comment by oxide
2015-07-15 12:27:05

More likely Bush was a Rove plant.

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Comment by taxpayers
2015-07-15 06:35:18

any tip on silver/copper stock
the least crappy w the most cash / least debt ?


Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:55:46

Don’t buy yet if the Fed is serious this time about near-term liftoff.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:21:02


Caveat = if

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:30:08

They are currently setting up Mr. Market for another rally on the next liftoff postponement.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:47:40

Don’t buy yet if the Fed is serious this time about near-term liftoff.

All the talk of a rate rise is for the benefit of yahoos. Yellen has no intention of raising rates, as that would implode our Ponzi markets.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 07:45:25

Not advocating anything illegal, but I would smile if William Kristol died in a fire

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:56:46

Is the Fed serious at this point about near-term liftoff?

Gold and oil traders seem convinced.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 06:57:59

Markets Commodities Precious Metals
Gold Prices Fall After Yellen Reiterates Plan to Raise Rates
Gold prices have moved lower for months in anticipation of tighter U.S. monetary policy

By Tatyana Shumsky
Updated July 15, 2015 9:24 a.m. ET

Gold prices pulled lower on Wednesday after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s prepared remarks to Congress reiterated the U.S. central bank’s plans to raise interest rates later this year.

The Fed hasn’t wavered from its path toward tighter monetary policy as the domestic economy continues to improve despite threats from turmoil overseas, Ms. Yellen said. The testimony, which will be presented at 10 a.m. EDT Wednesday to the House Financial Services Committee, kicks off two days of hearings before lawmakers.

Gold prices were trading near unchanged ahead of Ms. Yellen’s remarks but fell 0.4% to $1,148.70 a troy ounce as investors reacted to the news. The most actively traded gold futures contract, for August delivery, was recently down $2.80, or 0.2%, at $1,150.70 a troy ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

“The interest rate hike is coming,” said John Payne, senior market analyst with Daniels Trading in Chicago.

“Gold is a gauge for the behavior of the U.S. Federal Reserve going forward,” he said, adding that prices are trading near the year’s lows, which is a reflection of investors bracing for a monetary policy move from the central bank.

Comment by taxpayers
2015-07-15 07:16:47

ok, then buy ?
which silver/copper stock/company has decent cash horde etc

Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2015-07-15 20:48:02

I mostly buy physical. My buying month is coming up in four months. Gold and platinum bullion are what I have been buying so far this year. Not sure if I will get into palladium.

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Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2015-07-15 20:56:11


The bottom chart says a lot


When the interest rates go up, by definition, QE is done with. I have been saying all along, institutions will dump bonds and stocks. Houses will be like hot potatos as the young people are priced out of borrowing for a house. House prices will come down.

Alternatives are crypto currency, cash, and precious metals when interest rates go up. Institutions will flood into the precious. Incomes are going up (for those under age 40 - not my income though).

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 21:37:52

“Alternatives are crypto currency, cash, and precious metals when interest rates go up.”

Higher interest rates will lead to lower prices of assets that pay a return of zero percent, including these.

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Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2015-07-16 07:13:12

Higher interest rates will chase institutional investors out of stocks, bonds and real estate. yes metals do not have a yield but sometimes yields are not a good idea. Not in an inflation environment.

Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2015-07-16 07:14:38

Again PB. Look at the graph in the bottom link and try to say “market cycle.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 07:05:02

Crude Oil - Electronic (NYMEX) Dec 2015
Change -$1.15 -2.09%
Volume 17,044
Jul 15, 2015 9:53 a.m.
Quotes are delayed by 10 min

Previous close $54.98
Day low $53.79
Day high $55.30
Open: $55.14

52 week low $51.80
52 week high $94.42

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:15:52

Shale oil production is falling off a cliff, enjoy your gasoline prices now. I forgot California has soaring prices due to stupid liberal policies. I will enjoy my $2.48 a gallon prices while Californians “enjoy” their $5 prices in some places.


Comment by cactus
2015-07-15 14:04:18

I say 4.5 in the valley last weekend. ~3.8 at costco in simi

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Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:16:35

Click on the 5-year view. After staying near level around $90/bbl for five years, the December 2015 futures contract fell off a cliff beginning near mid-2014. It’s currently retesting its 52-week low with no sign of coming back over the next six months, especially with Yellen about to raise interest rates any day now.

Good luck with that $80/bbl December 2015 prediction!

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 07:39:08

DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson Has No Idea Who Kate Steinle Is

Katie Pavlich | Jul 14, 2015

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson testified on Capitol Hill today about a series of ongoing immigration, illegal immigration and security issues. When asked about whether the Obama administration had reached out to the family of Kate Steinle, the 32-year-old woman who was killed in San Francisco two weeks ago by an illegal alien who had been deported five times, Johnson had no idea who she was.

“Has the administration reached out to the Steinle family, to your knowledge?” Rep. Steve Chabot asked Johnson.

“To who?” Johnson replied.

“To the family of the woman who brutally murdered by this individual who had committed seven different felonies in four different states and to my understanding had been deported, kept coming back, has the administration reached out to that family?” Chabot asked again.

“I’m sorry, I don’t know the answer to that question sir,” Johnson said.

townhall.com/…e-dhs-secretary-jeh-johnson-has-no-idea-who-kate-steinle-is-n2025386 - 224k -

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 08:12:36

Phony, please keep posting articles like this, it is directly related to housing (changing demographics, hello?), and the Social Justice Warriors™ who post here need to get slapped in the face with this on a daily basis

Thank you

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 08:38:01

The drill continues in Region I

Comment by Hi-Z
2015-07-15 14:45:20

Demonizing William Kristol in obsessive fashion is OK though, right?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 15:33:06

When you’re ready to enlist to go fight in his next neocon war, please let me know and I’ll give you a ride to the airport

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Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:07:22

So the big news here is that the DHS secretary doesn’t read Drudge.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:51:39

“So the big news here is that the DHS secretary doesn’t read Drudge.”

Kate Steinle, killed by felon in San Francisco, laid to rest - NY Daily …
http://www.nydailynews.com/…teinle-killed-felon-san-francisco-laid-rest-article-1.2287802 - Similar pages
5 days ago

San Francisco shooting victim Kate Steinle put others first - CNN.com
http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/07/us/who-was-kate-steinle/ - 174k - Cached - Similar pages
Jul 7, 2015 …

S.F. immigrant advocates call for ’sober’ dialogue in wake of killing …
http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-sf-immigrant-advocates-20150714-story.html - 193k - Cached - Similar pages
19 hours ago … .

Francisco Sanchez who shot Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco was …
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/…/Woman-randomly-shot-death-popular-San-Francisco-pier.html - Similar pages
Jul 2, 2015 …

Gun Used in Fatal San Francisco Pier Shooting Was Stolen From …
abcnews.go.com/…/story?id=32309689 - Similar pages
6 days ago … The gun allegedly used by Francisco Sanchez to kill Kate Steinle had … where 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle was killed on July 6, 2015 in San Francisco. … in the fatal shooting of a young woman on a San Francisco pier had …

Murder of Kathryn Steinle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Kathryn_Steinle - 93k -

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 11:29:15

It’s possible that he was aware of a murder in San Francisco but not the name of the victim.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 14:44:51

Even worse if he heard about the murder he should have studied the facts and he would have learned her name.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 07:46:11

China is using televised confessions to shame detained lawyers, journalists, and activists

Over the past weekend, China’s police force began an unprecedented crackdown on human rights lawyers and others. The state media swung into action, too. On Sunday morning (July 12), national broadcaster CCTV aired a 10-minute video showing the confessions of a recently detained lawyer and two employees at his firm, Beijing Fengrui.

As with many such broadcasts in China, the TV confessions were aired before judicial proceedings. Any suspect in China can be detained by the police for nearly 40 days before a release or formal arrest—and during that time they can be coerced into a nationally broadcast confession. These confessions are at odds with the government’s announcement last year that it would emphasize the rule of law in its fourth plenum, legal experts say.

“By broadcasting these so-called ‘confessions,’ state media and Chinese authorities are rejecting the basic norms of a rule-of-law system, including the presumption of innocence and due process rights,” said Frances Eve, a researcher at Chinese Human Rights Defenders, to Quartz. “Trial by state media is not the kind of trial held in a country ruled by law.”

Labeled “criminal suspects” on the screen, the three described how they organized paid protests, hyped public sentiment, and disseminated online rumors to pressure court decisions in sensitive cases where they represented regular people against the authorities. Staring into the camera, lawyer Huang Liqun said that the director of his firm, Zhou Shifeng, was behind the cases and motivated by “unspeakable political purposes… He has the final say to all the money [of the firm]. And he is very lecherous.”

The individuals in the confession broadcasts usually appear in orange prison jumpsuits and seem either full of spirit or choked with overwrought remorse. As one user of the Twitter-like Sina Weibo described it (link in Chinese), “We used to have shame parades on streets. Now we have them on CCTV.”


Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:07:39

It’s lucky for AlbuquerqueDan that he is a lawyer here in the U.S. instead of in his beloved China.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:26:33

I agree but it does not change the fact that it is growing around 7% and the U.S. at around 2%.

Comment by rms
2015-07-15 07:51:38

Millennials and their challenges. :)

“Beginner courses aim to help adults learn to ride a bike”

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 08:22:21

I love how promiscuous millennial women are

Get your Tinder game dialed in and it’s like ordering a pizza 8)

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:08:38

“I love how promiscuous millennial women are…”

I’d advise caution on exploiting that situation.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:31:42

Where in America Do Most the Most Cheaters Live?
Women’s Health
July 13, 2015

Scientists have looked into what makes people stray for years, and now new research is claiming there’s another factor: geography.

A new survey of more than 2,000 people conducted by the online legal services marketplace Avvo suggests that people who live on the west coast are more likely to be cheaters.

According to survey results, 20 percent of west coasters say they’ve cheated on a partner, compared to 17 percent of southerners, 16 percent of people in the northeast, and 10 percent of Midwesterners.

Men were also more likely to cop to getting some on the side, with 20 percent of those surveyed saying they’ve had sex with someone who wasn’t their partner. (On the flipside, 13 percent of women said they’ve cheated.)

But let’s go back to the west coast…what’s that about? Licensed clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula, Ph.D., says it may be more about where on the west coast most of the survey respondents lived. If people in larger cities participated, then she’s not shocked by the findings.

“These cities are filled with transplants,” she says. “The very personality traits that lead to someone relocating are likely to result in greater openness, and that can also translate into more ‘a-moral’ behaviors, such as cheating.”

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:49:25

Reading the deadbedrooms subreddit on reddit is the best argument against marriage I’ve ever seen

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Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-15 13:13:25

Men were also more likely to cop to getting some on the side, with 20 percent of those surveyed saying they’ve had sex with someone who wasn’t their partner. (On the flipside, 13 percent of women said they’ve cheated.)

I wonder what those numbers are once you include the liars who say they’ve never cheated.

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Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-15 09:10:50

I woke up this morning after a very heated yelling match with my son last night and realized I really don’t like Millenials very much.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:13:25

Raising sons is tough business. My 18-year-old has a hot temper, and I have to keep my cool when he blows his top in order to avoid yelling matches.

Comment by redmondjp
2015-07-15 09:37:09

My 20-something millenial nephew just got a McJob at a big-box office supply store after graduating from community college (he is continuing classes now towards a 4-year degree, in TBD).

Reported from his mom last night: “Mom, I’m soooooo tired, all I do is go to work, take classes at night, and sleep!”

Welcome to being a grown-up, dude!

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 09:40:07

Having a McJob is a far better situation for a 20-something than not having a job. When I look back at the menial jobs I had during that time of my life, I realize that they taught me how to work, and also provided the incentive to strive for something better.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 16:45:06

tell him to work smart and someday there will be lots of free time for fun. Not everyone is a drone.

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Comment by Puggs
2015-07-15 17:23:30

Lovin’ the west side lifestyle. Just did 40 laps in our sun soaked infinity pool!

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 12:35:02

I have a 14 yr old son too, he is fan of Rand Paul and phony Libertarians.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:40:50

The adolescent period is the worse period for parents. Unfortunately the millenials tend to stay in that period until they are around 35.

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-15 14:09:14

oooooof!!!! ouch - more pain ahead for another 15 f….ing years - oooooof!!!!

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Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 08:35:22

The drill is ongoing.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 09:06:23

“I’m sorry, I don’t know the answer to that question sir,” Johnson said.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:12:33

Yes or No. Do you support generating enough government surplus to stabilize (or optionally even pay down) the national debt, the state and local debt and all the pensions and health care due to government employees and veterans and Medicare / Medicaid and social security liabilities in the United States? This is a serious question. I am curious what stand the sophisticated minds on this board have. Please vote yes or no.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-15 09:24:24

If we cut one inefficient government program by even 1% - we will turn into Somalia.

That is what all the democrats on this board opine.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:32:52

When I used to work as a government contractor, I was surrounded by double dippers, and even some triple dippers, people on disability who ran half-marathons and climbed mountains

Because of the half a trillion dollars spent annually on government contractors, not a penny is inefficiently spent

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 16:48:09

People are the worst!

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Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:44:05

Disambiguation - are you pro or against turning into Somalia?

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 16:46:59

I love efficiency!!

But we all know the GOP wont bring us any.


“The US flew nearly $12bn in shrink-wrapped $100 bills into Iraq, then distributed the cash with no proper control over who was receiving it and how it was being spent.
The staggering scale of the biggest transfer of cash in the history of the Federal Reserve has been graphically laid bare by a US congressional committee”

Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 09:27:54

Of those items, the government absolutely should be collecting enough revenue to keep pensions, Soc Sec, Medicare and VA programs solvent. Those are solemn promises made to ordinary citizens, and in most cases ordinary citizens have paid into those programs over decades.

The feds do not have an obligation to collect revenue to solve the budget problems in state and local budgets. If a state were to default, the Feds would have to bail them out, but that’s another topic.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:42:46

Puerto Rico is the dress rehearsal then?

Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 10:20:55

I suppose. The ticking time bomb of a state that may default on its debt is Illinois.

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Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:34:59

One man’s ticking time bomb is another man’s cash cow.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:28:05


Sheldon Adelson needs us to pay for his next war

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:46:21

Is it true that Sheldon is getting Napoleon IV to run for president?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 09:57:56

Lindsey Graham, America’s first female president

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Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:01:15

He does come complete with shiny metals. Voters do like shiny things…

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:24:26

“Lindsey Graham, America’s first female president”

And it’s bad, bad Lindsey Graham
The baddest man in the whole damned town
Badder than old King Kong
And meaner than a junkyard dog

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-15 11:43:58

Yeah, a real screaming freak.

Fellini was a visionary.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:40:10
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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 15:10:08
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 09:29:59

Falling prices is the cure.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:41:22

+1 for abstract thought.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:34:53

Caveat - by in my post above define government to include state and local government i.e. local government and state governments should they also do the same.

+1 Aside from comprising sophisticated minds this board also sports some very talented comedians. Always welcome :)

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 09:48:36

Talked to a lady in the grocery store yesterday after mentioning how expensive laundry detergent was. Among other things she said her son was 6 months away from retirement from the New York City Fire Department.

She said he is 41 years old.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 09:59:06

So you are against Fire Fighters?

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 10:06:46

I like the scene in the Mickey Rourke movie “The Wrestler” where he goes home with some horny woman who has him wear a fire fighter uniform to f* her

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Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:11:43

Check 58 mins since the thread was posted. Topic going off the rails in less than an hour! +1

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:14:19

“So you are against Fire Fighters?”

I am against any healthy human retiring with full taxpayer funded benes at the ripe old age of 41.

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Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:30:44

Firefighters save kittens from trees. So by extension you are against kittens.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:37:15

“So by extension you are against kittens.”

Only kittens that are owned by 42 year old retired firemen because those kittens will live their entire lives and die before their owner reaches retirement age.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:58:25

You’re against kittens and firefighters? Do you think we’re going to sit here and let you bad-mouth…the United States of America?!!


Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 15:40:40

The issue here is not whether we broke a few rules, or took a few liberties with our female party guests - we did. [winks at Dean Wormer].


Comment by taxpayers
2015-07-15 12:33:54

they should work till 66 like the prisec workers that pays for it

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Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-15 10:21:14


Politicians’ jobs are to get re-elected (or elected). Any surplus raised by one politician (or group of politicians) will breed more spending from new politicians promising more free cheese to get elected.

We need to starve the beast, not feed it.

We need rational reform of entitlements (too much waste and fraud currently)–a surplus will take reform off the table.

Read the Simpson Bowles plan from 2010 if you want to see what rational reform looks like.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 10:24:57

We need to starve the beast, not feed it.

That doesn’t work. The tax cuts of Reagan and Bush 2 may have been enacted with that intent, but the beast was not starved. People all over the world are willing to lend trillions to the beast at low interest rates.

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-15 12:28:35

You’re right. Starving the beast is virtually impossible since the US Government has an almost unlimited ability to borrow.

HOWEVER, things like sequestration would have never occurred if the starting point was a $0 deficit.

You may not be able to starve the beast, but you can make it hungry, and avoid giving it an all-you-can eat buffet.

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Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 16:28:29

HOWEVER, things like sequestration would have never occurred if the starting point was a $0 deficit.

Starving the beast involves cutting taxes, which increased the deficit.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 16:34:39

Another point to think about is how starving the beast could ever possibly work. It never works directly. Cutting taxes never results in spending being cut immediately. So how could starving the beast ever work?

One possibility could be if cutting taxes caused the debt to rise to a level that caused a crisis similar to what is currently going on in Greece. Then it might be possible to convince the American people that the only solution is drastic cuts to popular programs like Social Security and Medicare.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 19:38:34

“Starving the beast involves cutting taxes, which increased the deficit.”

Only in the twisted minds of degenerate gamblers and MT Pockets.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:42:03

Disambiguation - I meant to phrase the question to imply revenue would equal (or exceed) spending and actuarial funding of future liabilities. I did not mean to ask if this should be achieved by higher collection or by cutting spending or actuarial funding. Let’s put the how aside for now. So should we take an unspecified action to at least stop the increase in debt and unfunded liabilities in principle? That’s my question.

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-15 12:14:48

What you are talking about is running lower levels of deficits and/or having lower levels of debt.

There is a fundamental belief that a certain amount of debt is “safe” and that you can grow the amount of that debt as long as the growth rate is lower than that of the economy.

So, politicians are OK with increasing levels of debt.

Putting that aside.

If you could guarantee that the despite the belief I note above regarding debt, you could keep politicians from raiding the piggie bank, then yes, I think it is a good thing to have your liabilities paid for without growing amounts of debt.

HOWEVER, my view would change if I thought the Federal government was an efficient user of capital. It is probably a less efficient use of capital to have less debt. The problem is the central government is inherently more inefficient in spending money than at local levels.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 15:08:58

Read the Simpson Bowles plan from 2010 if you want to see what rational reform looks like.


Comment by Neuromance
2015-07-15 16:18:43

There’s no starving the beast at all. Because instead of tax and spend, it turns into borrow and spend.

“Japanese government debt is now above 240% of GDP and the government continues to run deficits of around 8% of GDP per year.”

Krugman says “Japan is the model.”

Telling policy makers what’s easy and fun - borrow and spend - is also the right thing to do, at a minimum gives them cover to do what they really want to do.

And the economic pundit’s response as to why Japan’s and the West’s borrow and spend policies didn’t work is, “We didn’t borrow enough and we didn’t spend enough.” That’s the state of the art of the economic thought today.

So, there is no starving the beast.

Comment by cactus
2015-07-15 14:10:19

Yes or No. Do you support generating enough government surplus”

by raising taxes no

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:18:14

Everyone Must Check In

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-15 10:32:43


Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 10:51:23

I saw Earth Wind & Fire perform at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 10:55:00

What happened to Adult Diapers? You tossed it like a dirty diaper.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 11:29:31

Our dispensary sells some strains that will make you need adult diapers

It’s 12:30pm local time, the customers are awake now and they are buying

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Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 10:56:10

“I saw Earth Wind & Fire perform at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach”

That was not a DHS sponsored drill.

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-15 10:54:11

Man o man - listening to the pin head talk about this Iran deal it is so….very apparent he has utterly no clue as to what is in that ‘agreement’ and no clue as to what the hell he is talking about - he is not even able to convince himself when you listen to the tone of his voice and the language he uses. What a POS!!!

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-15 11:05:22

Is that Limbaugh you’re listening to or Hannity?

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 12:31:27

Sounds like Hannity is washing his brain with Dawn, it cuts through the grease.

I am happy with O’s plan, so are the experts. I dont like spending $60 trillion blowing up rocks and replacing them for 50 yrs. (Bush)

HOw many people know that in 1959, that the 22-year-old Saddam was hired by the CIA to assassinate Qasim

see here: http://www.upi.com/Business_News/Security-Industry/2003/04/10/Exclusive-Saddam-key-in-early-CIA-plot/65571050017416/

“While many have thought that Saddam first became involved with U.S. intelligence agencies at the start of the September 1980 Iran-Iraq war, his first contacts with U.S. officials date back to 1959, when he was part of a CIA-authorized six-man squad tasked with assassinating then Iraqi Prime Minister Gen. Abd al-Karim Qasim.”

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-15 14:11:48

I reiterate - I awoke this morning and realized I don’t like Millenials all that much.

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Comment by Puggs
2015-07-15 17:20:29

Just hopped off the cruiser bike in mid 70’s blue bird conditions to pick up a Caffe Misto at the corner bean.

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Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 11:26:14

Iran poses zero threat to the sovereign territory of the United States

Read the last part again: the sovereign territory of the United States

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 11:54:38

Goon just answer this question what good is an agreement that cannot be verified? The inspections require 24 day prior announcements, that is not a typo, not the usual 24 hours that these nuclear inspections usually require, 24 hours. That is plenty of time to destroy all evidence of cheating. That alone, without plenty of other problems, makes this a bad deal. Obama has lied again he failed to walk away from a bad deal.

Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 12:24:12

Dan, you’re just mad because the Iran deal undercuts the price of oil — which is the real reason the Repubs hate the Iran deal, it hurts the oil lobby.

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Comment by Ben Jones
2015-07-15 12:34:49

Somebody on the radio told him to be against it.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 12:37:30

The 24 day inspection notice is a lie. Monitoring is 24/7

Sheeple will believe anything!

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:45:51

I explained my opposition. I see no one can answer the legitimate question on how an inspection provision that requires a 24 day notice can possibly prevent cheating.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 12:48:09

Prove it.

Comment by Trickle Up Not Down
2015-07-15 12:58:50

how an inspection provision that requires a 24 day notice can possibly prevent cheating

“Push harder, Abdul! We only have 10 hours left to move this 30,000 pound reactor into the janitor’s closet!”

Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 14:40:54

Push harder, Abdul! We only have 10 hours left to move this 30,000 pound reactor into the janitor’s closet!”

It would weigh more than 30,000 pounds, however you can change the fuel rods out quicker than 24 days. Obama lied about 24/7 access it is very clear no matter how you try to spin it and by changing that one provision he gave up any chance we could keep Iran from cheating. Thus, the rest of Iran’s promises are meaningless that is why they made them. It is easy to promise when you have no intention to keep your promises and no way for the person you promised to enforce the promises.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-15 15:02:24

Additionally, the IEA has the 24 hour protocol for a reason, it needs to have access within 24 hours for verification. If it was meaningless Iran would not have refused to sign unless that one provision was removed. Obama caved and the deal became useless. Reject it and try again to reach a verifiable agreement. Iran wants and needs the $150 billion stop acting like we have no leverage.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-15 12:54:07

Subject Iran to the same inspection requirements that Israel is subject to

Oh, wait…

F*ing hypocrites

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Comment by redmondjp
2015-07-15 15:23:02

Have no fear; Israel will bomb the she-eyet out of any nuclear plant in Iran that’s on the surface.

Which is why Iran will build it at least 200 feet underground.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 12:20:33

El Nino:


Los Angeles had 31″ in 1997, from the last good El Nino. I hope it doesnt just all drain out to sea this time.

From Forbes APR 14, 2015:

Why make freshwater when we could collect the water that falls from the sky? Even on the driest year in recorded history in 2013, it still rained 3.6 inches in Los Angeles. An inch of rainfall in L.A. generates 3.8 billion gallons of runoff, so you’re talking about more than 12 billion gallons of water that could be captured, but that flows within hours down our concrete streets and into the ocean. There’s enough rainwater to be harvested to produce 30-50% of the entire city’s water needs.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-15 13:45:11

California. Let it dry up and fall off.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-15 16:53:29

In your next life, work smarter and live in a nice place with great weather. Dont be a sour grape.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-16 08:32:24


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Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-16 15:58:00

Pick yourselves up off the floor and cheer up you two.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 14:36:02

Hillary Clinton blasts high frequency trading ahead of a fundraiser with…HFT firms. And the 95% of our electorate who are stupid will swallow her “champion of the middle class” line hook, line & sinker.


Comment by AmazingRuss
2015-07-15 15:23:09

She could eat puppies at this point… if Bernie doesn’t take her down, she will run against the winner of the GOP clown car, and win.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 17:22:08

“She could eat puppies at this point…”

I had to read that twice.

At first glance I thought it said something else.

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-16 08:28:29

Hillary Clinton: a fully owned subsidiary of Goldman Sachs.

Otherwise known as “an intellectual annex.” The phrase is trade marked by the Bank of England to refer to the United Sates Central Bank between the two great wars.

Raw Squid anyone?

Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-16 08:30:21

What happens when you pour soy sauce on a dead cuttlefish?


TM Goldman Sachs

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 15:29:52

We have always been at war with Oceana. And Eurasia has always been our ally…I think. It gets confusing.


Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 16:00:53

I thik ESPN would have been better served letting Chris Berman present the courage award to Caitlyn Jenner with his famous rendition of “He-could-go…all…the…way!

Abby Wambach to present courage award to Caitlyn Jenner at ESPYs

CNNMoney (New York) July 15, 2015: 10:09 AM ET

The event is another step in Jenner’s transgender transformation: she will be speaking in front of her sports world peers, at ESPN’s annual ESPYs ceremony, and in front of a national audience on ABC.

The award will be presented to Jenner by the famed soccer player Abby Wambach, an ESPN spokesman told CNNMoney.

Wambach is, like Jenner, an Olympic gold medalist. She was a key member of the U.S. women’s soccer team that won the World Cup earlier this month. She celebrated the victory by running over and kissing her wife — a moment that immediately went viral on social media.

money.cnn.com/2015/07/15/media/caitlyn-jenner-espys-espn-award/ - 100k -

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 17:17:22

It would have been awesome.

He Could…Go…All…The…Way! - YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8d3dr7-fdU - 155k -

But Bruce or uh, Caitlyn probably saw this and wouldn’t have it.

Chris Berman Crazy Rant - YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TLG_LtWhj4 - 248k -

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 17:02:38

Greece just capitulated for the banksters.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 17:18:31

So the whole vote thing was a…

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 17:43:12

Sham. Banksters win again.

Comment by Puggs
2015-07-15 17:24:58

Poetry reading at the local Bean below our loft tonight!!

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-15 18:24:55

Quint (Character)
from Jaws (1975)

Here lies the body of Mary Lee; died at the age of a hundred and three. For fifteen years she kept her virginity; not a bad record for this vicinity.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 18:28:38

After being Obama’s #2 campaign contributor, Goldman Sachs has a new bitch-boy.


Comment by SFBayArea
2015-07-16 08:23:39

Goldman Sachs rules the world.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-15 18:31:04

“Oligarchs for Unfettered Looting” might be a little to obvious as a PAC, but that’s who’s backing Jeb Bush. Only 3% of his take came from small donors, who should be spayed and neutered so the cretinism will end with them.


Comment by tresho
2015-07-15 18:41:27

Kind of relevant for the HBB: Basic orientation to Chinese insults
坏蛋 = bad egg or rascal. Sometimes used affectionately. Pinyin transcription: “huài dàn” sounds like a cross between “Why, Dan!” and “Why, Don!”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:20:04


Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:21:08

They had to report 7% GDP growth. Imagine how much worse the stock market crash would otherwise have been!

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:24:50

For now, it appears the Chinese government’s efforts to kill the market have failed.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:25:50

Markets Asia Stocks
China Stocks Tumble as Investors Doubt Beijing’s Help
Better-than-expected second-quarter GDP could mean Chinese officials will hold back on stimulus
By Chao Deng
Updated July 15, 2015 2:03 p.m. ET

Stocks in China fell a second consecutive day as a government-engineered recovery proved fleeting and surprisingly strong growth data dimmed hopes for more economic stimulus.

The Shanghai Composite ended down 3% at 3805.70, continuing to shed gains from a three-day rally that had lifted the benchmark roughly 13%. The index’s losses Tuesday and Wednesday total 4%, putting it 26% below a seven-plus-year high it reached on June 12.

The smaller Shenzhen Composite fell 4.2% to 2058.84, and the small-cap ChiNext board shed 5% to 2590.03. Both are down about a third since their respective peaks in June. A gauge of Chinese firms listed in Hong Kong fell 1.3%, dragging the Hang Seng Index down 0.3% to 25055.76.

Trading has begun again this week in hundreds of mainland firms whose shares were suspended during the downturn. The return of those shares “pulled money away from other stocks…causing the overall market to go down,” said Gerry Alfonso, director of trading at Shenwan Hongyuan Securities.

About a quarter of the firms listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen remained halted as of Wednesday, down from more than half at the height of the freeze earlier this month. About 696 mainland firms remain suspended, according to FactSet. The majority of firms returning to trade Monday and Tuesday hit regulators’ upward daily limit of 10%, whereas only a fraction of those did on Wednesday.

Another reason for Wednesday’s losses is that ”some investors decided to take profits…as there is no clear indication of how long the rally was going to last,” according to Shenwan Hongyuan’s Mr. Alfonso.

The fleeting recovery of the China market, which had trillions wiped out of it in recent weeks, suggests investor confidence is far from returning in full. The continued slide reflects deepening doubts that Beijing can turn things around, despite heavy intervention in recent days.

China’s annualized economic growth held steady at 7% in the second quarter, according to official data released Wednesday, a level few economists expected given signs that Beijing’s policies to get the world’s second-largest economy back in gear had fallen short.

The relatively strong reading suggests that the government may have less incentive to boost investment, which could cool interest in blue-chips stocks that would benefit, such as state-owned banks and oil firms, said Zeng Xianzhao, manager at Chongqing-based Nuoding Asset Management.

Besides support from state-backed funds, the market needs more capital from institutional and retail investors for sustained recovery,” he said.

The stock market disaster may prompt some investors to reflect on whether it was rational to blindly believe in ‘growth stocks.’ It will take a relatively long time for investor confidence to restore.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:33:07

Billionaire Paul Singer: China Crash Is ‘Way Bigger Than Subprime’
by Beth Jinks and Simone Foxman
July 15, 2015 — 6:37 AM PDT
Updated on July 15, 2015 — 12:20 PM PDT

Hedge fund manager Paul Singer said that China’s debt-fueled stock market crash may have larger implications than the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis, echoing warnings from fellow billionaire money managers Bill Ackman and Jeffrey Gundlach.

“This is way bigger than subprime,” Singer, founder of hedge fund Elliott Management, said at the CNBC Institutional Investor Delivering Alpha Conference in New York in response to a question about China’s crash potentially affecting other markets. Singer said it may not be big enough to cause a global financial market conflagration.

China’s stock market has dropped from a June 12 peak wiping out almost $4 trillion in value in less than a month after investors who borrowed to buy shares had to unwind trades. Markets tumbled even as President Xi Jinping’s government ramped up efforts to stem the rout, including preventing share sales of companies.

The threat to markets from the country is a bigger concern to Ackman, who runs Pershing Square Capital Management, than Greece.

“China is a bigger global threat by far,” Ackman said Wednesday at the conference. “The Chinese stock market is a fairly remarkable phenomenon and I think kind of a frightening one.”

Ackman said he’s worried about China’s lack of transparency and questioned the reliability of its economic statistics, the same day that China said gross domestic product rose 7 percent in the last quarter.

If you look at the Chinese financial system, you look at shadow banking, you look at the amount of leverage, you look at how desperately they worked to keep the stock market up. It looks worse to me than 2007 in the U.S,” Ackman said.

Gundlach Comparison

DoubleLine Capital co-founder Gundlach compared the stock market there with the Nasdaq in 1999, 2000, when technology stocks collapsed.

“China is really kind of concerning,” Gundlach said in an interview with CNBC at the conference. “China is far too volatile and murky to invest in.”

Mary Erdoes, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Asset Management, said at the event that China’s equities markets don’t reflect the economy.

It’s been 25 years of 7 percent growth,” said Erdoes. “No other country has displayed that. Not even the U.S. There’s a lot going on in the economy and it’s completely disassociated with the stock market.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:35:25

These recipes might come in handy for a certain China booster who frequents the HBB:

Skin the crows. Cut away … broth, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 20 minutes. Thicken with flour. Serve over rice or toast. Serves 4.
Ingredients: 14 (broth .. crows .. flour .. leaf .. lemon .. mushrooms …)

In skillet brown the crow breasts, then place … another layer of sauerkraut and pour sauerkraut juice over it. Bake two hours in oven heated to 350 degrees.
Ingredients: 4 (bacon .. breasts .. onion …)

Mix one cup Old Crow Kentucky Bourbon with … manure crust and remove crow. Throw crow away. Serve manure with LARGE shot of Old Crow Kentucky Bourbon.
Ingredients: 3 (bourbon .. crow .. manure)

Slice apples into pie plate, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon, spread dough over apples. Bake in hot oven 25 minutes. Turn upside down on plate with …
Ingredients: 7 (apples .. dough .. flour .. salt .. sugar …)

Sportmen learn that the crow as well as … and occasionally add a bit of water. Cook until tender. Season with H.P. Sauce or Worcestershire sauce. Serve.
Ingredients: n/a

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:40:26

China’s Stock Market Will Unwind Like Long-Term Capital Management
Jul. 14, 2015 7:54 AM ET

Disclosure: I/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. (More…)

- A massive sell-off in China’s stock market destroyed $4T in value in one month.
- Panic selling came to a halt after the government suspended trading, causing illiquidity in the market.
- $355B in margin debt has propelled the market, and will accelerate the downturn after trading restrictions are lifted.
- I expect China’s market to unwind like Long-Term Capital Management did in 1998.

The massive sell-off in China’s stock market over the past month seemingly came out of nowhere. About $4 trillion in value has been wiped out since mid-June when the Shanghai Composite peaked. Incessant reports of the government banning investors from selling stock and threatening to arrest short-sellers has made for great theater. It’s rare that a potential wind-down of this portion happens, but the very first thing that came to my mind was Long-Term Capital Management (”LTCM”).

LTCM was a hedge funded founded by former Salomon Brothers trader, John Meriwether, in the early 90s. It was staffed with some of the most brilliant minds in finance. The fund raised a staggering $1.25 billion - the largest startup ever. LTCM’s strategy was to use computer-driven trading to exploit price disparities in global securities, and hold them until they returned to their long-term averages.

At the beginning of 1998 LTCM had quadrupled its capital to nearly $5 billion. However, in the summer of 1998 a Russia defaulted on its $14 billion in sovereign debt and devalued its currency. Within five weeks all of LTCM’s capital was wiped out.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:44:57

A blog about business and economics.
July 15 2015 2:20 PM
China’s Stock Market Is Falling Again. This Was Entirely Predictable.
By Jordan Weissmann
Sorry, buddy.

For a little while, China’s stock market seemed to be rallying from the nausea-inducing crash that wiped out a third of its value in a month. Now, it’s back to falling, albeit a little more slowly. Over the past two days, the Shanghai Composite Index is down 4 percent. Tally the ups and downs, and it’s off about 26 percent from its June heights.

There are a few reasons why shares are dipping again. But one of the biggest, as the Wall Street Journal notes, is simply that investors are finally free to buy and sell stocks like normal again. Most of them, anyway. At one point last week, trading had been suspended for more than half of all listed corporations on China’s markets. Currently, only about a quarter are still sidelined. As more companies have resumed trading, “they’ve pulled money away from other stocks … causing the overall market to go down,” as one source told the Journal.

This speaks to the bigger flaw inherent in China’s attempts to keep its stock market afloat. In the last couple of weeks the government tried just about every intervention imaginable to support prices. It more or less ordered brokerages to buy. It loosened rules about borrowing in order to purchase shares. And, yes, it let half the market go idle. (Chinese stocks automatically stop trading once they fall 10 percent, but investors seemed to think the number of companies asking for pauses was “unusually large.”) The problem is that all of these approaches were more or less temporary fixes and did nothing about the fact that Chinese investors are deeply overleveraged, which has been one of the main forces driving stocks down. It was predictable that as the government loosened its grip, the fall would start again.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:49:32

Bill Ackman says China’s stock market is more ‘frightening’ than Greece and even the U.S. in 2007
Beth Jinks and Simone Foxman, Bloomberg News | July 15, 2015 2:38 PM ET

Bill Ackman, the billionaire hedge fund manager who runs Pershing Square Capital Management, said China is a far bigger concern to markets than Greece and that the country’s stock market scares him.

“China is a bigger global threat by far,” Ackman said Wednesday at the CNBC Institutional Investor Delivering Alpha Conference in New York. “The Chinese stock market is a fairly remarkable phenomenon and I think kind of a frightening one.”

China’s gross domestic product rose 7 per cent in the last quarter as policy makers stepped up support, boosting the country’s stock market. Equities have since plunged from a June 12 peak wiping almost US$4 trillion in value as investors that borrowed to buy shares unwound their trades.

Ackman said he’s worried about China’s lack of transparency and questioned the reliability of its economic statistics. While the country has good long-term prospects, shorter term you have to be concerned, he said.

If you look at the Chinese financial system, you look at shadow banking, you look at the amount of leverage, you look at how desperately they worked to keep the stock market up. It looks worse to me than 2007 in the U.S.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-15 20:51:58

Finance China
China’s stock market swings, as measured in Greek economies
by Stephen Gandel , Stacy Jones
July 10, 2015, 1:41 PM EDT

China’s total stock market loss since mid-June is roughly the equivalent of 9 Greece economies. But such comparisons miss a larger point about the risks associated with Greece’s economic woes.

In the span of a week, investors have been flung from worrying about Greece to China and now back to Greece, with a brief stop at the New York Stock Exchange in between.

Earlier this week, in a mashup of economic woes, a number of commentators pointed out that the $3.3 trillion that had been lost in China’s market swoon made up the equivalent of 14 Greeces, as measured by that country’s GDP. Nice stat! China’s market has since recovered a bit. So we are now down to $2.1 trillion in lost wealth, or roughly nine Greeces, since mid-June. So that’s good news. But also still a lot Greeces.

The comparison highlights two points. First of all, China is much, much bigger than Greece. China’s GDP of about $10.5 trillion is 43 times bigger than Greece’s, which is $238 billion. So we should care much more about the economic woes of China than those of Greece. The second point of the comparison was to say, hey, look at just how much wealth has been lost in China. That’s got to have an impact on the economy, not just the market.

But that’s not really the case. Yes, China’s stock market drop has destroyed a lot of Greeces, if you want to measure it that way. That seems bad. But take a step back. China’s market run up before the crash also created a lot of Greeces; 18 of them, to be precise. That should have been great for China’s economy, but it wasn’t. Even as the Chinese market soared earlier this year, retail sales continued to fall.

There are 90 million stock market accounts in China. But only 50 million of them are active. That’s less than 4% of China’s population. And two-thirds of those have less than the equivalent of $15,000 in them. Less than 1% of the accounts have the equivalent of more than $1 million.

“There was no sign of a wealth effect when the market was up 100%,” says Andrew Rothman, investment chief strategist for the Matthews Asia fund, one of the largest U.S. mutual funds focused on China. “We won’t see much of one on the way down either.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-16 00:00:51

Is Canada in a recession?

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-16 00:03:25

Canadian recession fears grow as interest rate drops to another record low
Economy meets standard definition of recession after shrinking in two straight quarters, with Canadian dollar hitting lowest point since 2009
Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz takes part in a news conference upon the release of the Monetary Policy Report in Ottawa.
Photograph: Chris Wattie/Reuters
John Barber in Toronto
Wednesday 15 July 2015 15.14 EDT
Last modified on Wednesday 15 July 2015 16.47 EDT

The Canadian dollar has plunged to its lowest point since 2009, and the country’s clouded political future became even murkier as the Bank of Canada dropped its key interest rate to a record low for the second time this year, confirming that the national economy is shrinking as the country heads into an election.

Bank governor Stephen Poloz carefully avoided using the word “recession” as he announced the rate cut on Wednesday, bringing the central bank’s overnight lending rate down 25 basis points to 0.5%. But the indicators that inspired the move showed that the economy had shrunk for the second quarter in a row, meeting the standard definition of recession.

“Global economic developments have been quite disappointing,” said Poloz. “Canada’s economy is undergoing a significant and complex adjustment.”

But the government’s critics laid the blame for the decline with Stephen Harper’s governing Conservative party. “We’re the only G7 country to be in recession in 2015,” shadow finance minister for the Liberal party Scott Brison told the Guardian. “What’s clear is that Harper’s only plan – tax cuts for the rich and cuts in social services – is not working.

“Harper’s economic record is in tatters,” he added.

Adding to the discomfort, Poloz’s announcement came just days after US Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen suggested interest rates south of the Canadian border could be raised before the end of the year.

Anticipating the news last week, Harper blamed falling oil prices and other outside factors for the persistent weakness of the Canadian economy, an excuse at least partially endorsed by the central banker today. The prime minister vowed to respond with “strong fiscal discipline” that would not “spiral ourselves into deficit”.

But the reality of economic shrinkage and falling revenue will almost certainly destroy his party’s key election promise to balance the federal budget for the first time since it came to power nine years ago.

“Most of the damage here was self-inflicted and it is absolutely illegitimate to say we’re at the mercy of global pressures,” economist Jim Stanford, of the labour union Unifor, told the Guardian. “Canada’s economy is uniquely weak compared to our trading partners, and its weakness has been compounded by a number of policy errors.”

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