Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Don't know which I hate more- the stock market, those who invest in it or those who report on it. Tough call- all equally dreadful and in the case of investors and media, both worthy of a face scratching. The reasons we've stated too often to take time to repeat here. Suffice it to say, if you're not part of the 1%, you should be wanting to sharpen your claws as well...
But as much as I despise these entities, they also make me laugh at times. I tend to find it humorous when cocky cock know-it-alls think they have all the answers and can accurately predict economic events based on assumption that all will work out when push comes to shove, then are proven wrong.
Here's a headline from this morning:
Emerging Stocks Set for Biggest Monthly Gain in Three on Greece Optimism (Bloomberg) -- "Emerging-market stocks rose, with the benchmark index set for its largest monthly gain since October, after Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos said major progress has been made in debt-swap talks... he’s “strongly committed” to reaching a debt-swap accord with bondholders that is crucial to lowering Greece’s debt burden and freeing up another round of aid before the country faces a 14.5 billion-euro ($19 billion) bond payment on March 20."
And the market rejoiced and figuratively held hands as they danced around in the garden of eternal optimism and never-ending profit making... La La La...
Greek officials attack EU and IMF as debt talks stall (Guardian.UK) -- "Greek officials launched a vociferous behind the scenes attack on European Union and International Monetary Fund negotiators as talks in Athens over the country's mounting debts appeared to stall... a crisis meeting of party leaders would be called as early as Thursday to thrash out a response to an increasingly intransigent negotiating team sent by Brussels, which is demanding severe austerity measures before sanctioning a further €130bn (£109bn) of bailout funds...
"On the negotiations over the bailout funds, Greek MPs have objected to demands by the troika for further wage cuts and reductions in the minimum wage. The troika (European Union, International Monetary Fund & European Commonwealth Bank) doesn't appear to be willing to accept any concessions whatsoever on reducing the minimum wage and scrapping bonuses," said the government aide. "No political party is willing to move either, saying wage cuts are a red line they are simply not going to cross. You tell me how this is going to be resolved. We have no idea and we're very worried.""
A&G does not pretend to hide the fact we want this to fail and overall, desire Greece to do what it should have done two years ago... Default.
Investors and banks have not had to take any real financial hit or punishment since the global economic crisis began with Lehman Bros in Oct, 2008. That is now 39 months. Its about time they did.. Its about time the ultra-wealthy around the world who do nothing but create misery in populaces then financially profit from it, hemorrhage Severe losses and feel real pain.
Unfortunately the way this game has been played for over 3 years, there's always some magic trick or scheme or compromise pulled from thin air (or someone's ass) to keep all the plates spinning so no one at the top financial echelon ever feels any economic pain. So we're realistic to the probability that all will work itself out for the bankers and the Investors will continue to rejoice and 'dance'.
But Lord knows, we are not hoping for it.
And if Greece sells all of its soul to the banks, well there's always a ray of hope that the Portuguese wont.. or the Irish... or the Italians.. or the Spanish..
Monday, January 30, 2012
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Some may call it 'framing the argument' or 'controlling the debate'... really works the same. In essence, policy makers and their whore corporate media basically frame all policy discussions as 'A' or 'B'. No option 'C', much less a 'D' or 'E'... Everything is 'A' or 'B' They don't trust the populace is smart enough to understand more than two choices and its much simpler to keep people kept in their ideological Left v Right 'pens' like ostriches.
Let's take the current housing crisis. The big question on Capitol Hill is whether to allow people who are underwater on their homes (their home value on the open market is worth less than the mortgage the homeowner holds) to be allowed to refinance. This would supposedly save each mortgage holder thousands of dollars annually and hopefully be the difference in enticing someone to continue paying vs simply walking away. Refinance or Not- 'A' or 'B'.
Yet no discussion of option 'C'- force the banks who pushed those mortgages, to take a 25% loss and re-calculate the monthly payment and trigger a 25% monthly savings. A person paying $750/month for example would then pay $562.50 and not have to have the life of the mortgage extended or his/her credit rating adversely affected which is something no one tells you when you apply for a government backed re-financing program.
Every month, a nominal fee is paid to the government to hold that 1/3 value.. let's say $10/mo. Then once the home is re-sold, the government gets back its $100k from the value of the sale. The rest of the money goes to the seller to pay rest of mortgage and pocket. What this does is alleviate the financial burden of the home buyer by 33%, the government retains a 1/3 ownership of the home to get repaid upon re-sale, and it benefits the seller because homes are kept at near pre-recession levels so that home sellers can hold some of the 'cards' which buyers now exclusively possess.
There are more options to solving the problems of this financial crisis than simply 'A' or 'B' Let's quickly take a look at job creation. All worthless politicians promise to create jobs. But how? Its always through corporations. Lower corporate taxes.. lower taxes on wealthy... they'll take that money and magically create jobs. Um,, No! Not how it works in real world.
Now you may think all those other options wouldn't work or disagree in some way with the premise. The point is, you are thinking. The more options on the table, the more choices and the more stimulation of thought and discussion.
America prides itself on choice-- 30 different coffee brands to choose from.. 50 different cereals at the supermarket, etc... Yet anything and everything of importance that affects this nation, we're always left to two choices. Republican or Democrat. Tax cuts or tax hikes. Bottom line or common good...
Though politicians don't want you to think outside their constructed 'A' vs 'B' box, there is always an Option C.. and D.. Always.
Sunday, January 29, 2012
If you turn on mainstream financial news this weekend, you will probably hear or read a crisis has been averted because, "Greece and its private creditors said on Saturday they were piecing together the final elements of a debt swap and expected to have a deal ready next week, essential for sealing a new bailout and avoiding an uncontrolled default. (Reuters)
This is pretty much akin to watching a dying man on the street and police waving their arms and saying, "Move along folks.. nothing to see.. everything's under control"
But see, here's the thing.. unless something major and drastic changes, Greece will default in late March. The banks and financiers are already coming up with clever terms like "orderly default" and "strategic default"-- sounds so much more uplifting-- implies the ones who will suffer from the default are the ones controlling it.
"Move along folks.. financial crisis averted.. everything's under control"
In simple understandable terms, imagine you bring in a salary of $50k with zero in savings, your yearly expenditures no matter how much you slash, comes to $75k, putting you in the hole by an additional 50% per year and you already owe creditors $500k.
That is Greece.
budget policy to outside institutions if it cannot implement reforms attached to euro zone rescue measures, the German economy minister was quoted as saying on Sunday." (Reuters)
Can you see Greece willingly give up its economic budgetary sovereignty to another nation? To Germany-- a nation who once took over Greece during WWII and who the Grecian people still have bitterness toward?!!
Any "agreement" you hear with bondholders is pure BS, much like if a bill collector calls and you promise "check is in the mail" when you barely have enough money to pay for the stamp on the envelope. Whatever it takes to stop the pestering phone calls for a couple days.. whatever it takes~
Greece can't get its budget under control, can't pay its creditors back even 5% what is owed, really needs 145billion Euro by March, not the 130b reported by others, and oh yes... will need even More money by May of this year.
And let's not even talk about the rest of the Eurozone..
And so the financial cock (a-doodle) tease goes on and on..
Good evening dear readers...I've recently looked at haute couture collections..and like some of them..wanna to share with you dear readers.. I think, the best of them Christian Dior`s collection...big big thanks to Bill Gaytten for this amazing collection..so beautiful... I think this year we will wear only green color :) There was in all collection green tones..Inspite of, Chanel used only blue tones ) ... And Jean Paul Gaultier devoted his collection to memory of Amy Winehouse...OK...dear readers...just look and enjoy....Bye...
JEAN PAUL GAULTIER