Week in review

Quote of the week

“[T]oday’s heroic welfare promises are just too expensive. Whether sooner or later…and with or without a hyperinflation to try and pay off the victorious pensioners and civil servants…these costs from the past cannot be paid from tomorrow’s money. They’re simply too big.” – Adrian Ash

‘Fearmongers’ Were Right about Obamacare

by Michael D. Tanner

“Now, as the administration presses forward with its other initiatives, including financial regulation and, possibly, ‘cap-and-trade’ energy taxes, the same modus operandi is in action. Those who raise questions are derided as opposing ‘reform’ and siding with the banks, energy companies or whoever the enemy of the day is. The bills need to be rushed through. There is no time for real debate.” more…

Iraq: Controlled Devolution or Uncontrolled Disintegration

by Ivan Eland

“Iraq always has been an artificial country ever since its creation in the early part of the 20th century by the British, who pushed together three unrelated provinces of the old Ottoman Empire so they could get control of Iraq’s oil. Only the iron fist of Sunni Arab dictators, the last of which was Saddam Hussein, held the country together—that is, until the U.S. invasion in 2003 ended the Sunni reign. The Kurds have never really wanted to be part of Iraq, and most of the Shi’a want, at minimum, some autonomy from the central government. Even the Sunnis are fearful of paybacks from any majority-led Shi’ite central government, some of which have already been delivered.” more…

The Euro Crisis: The Insolvent Are Expected to Bail Out the Bankrupt

by Paul Belien

“The euro crisis is far from over. Markets are reacting with skepticism to the largest bailout ever – an attempt to prevent the bankruptcy of Greece. Former Eastern Bloc countries, such as Slovakia, are now expected to bailout Greece. On Sunday the IMF and the 15 other Eurozone countries – the member states of the European Union (EU) which, together with Greece, use the euro as their common currency – agreed to bail out Athens with bilateral loans totaling €120bn ($160bn) over the next three years. Many of these 15 countries, however, have huge debts themselves. They have agreed to help Greece, hoping that someone (read: Germany) will come to their rescue, too. Will Berlin and the IMF be able to save them all?” more…

The $10 Trillion Climate Fraud

by Investor’s Business Daily

“While senators froth over Goldman Sachs and derivatives, a climate trading scheme being run out of the Chicago Climate Exchange would make Bernie Madoff blush. Its trail leads to the White House.” more… [And in other places the climate scam cover-up continues.]

Regulars

Politics and Such

  • Pending home sales surge in March. The tax credit expired at the end of April.
  • Text of Emperor Obama’s speech at the University of Michigan.
  • Greece is set to enact austerity measures.
  • California is sinking into the red again.
  • Freddie Mac needs another FRN$10 billion.
  • GAO says that the business model of the USPS is bust.
  • Law would revoke citizenship of US nationals who fight for foreign armies. It would be okay to join Israel’s army though. Joe Lieberman (Z-CT) is behind this.
  • The FCC moves to destroy broadband internet access by regulating it as a public utility.
  • Unemployment is up to 9.9%, but the jobs report shows new jobs being added.
  • Californian high school students punished for wearing United States Flag on Cinco De Mayo.
  • Wow, a black kid only field trip in Ann Arbor.

Miscellany

Education

And now the numbers…

DOW Jones Industrials – 10,380.43 (-628.18/-5.71%)
S&P 500 – 1,110.88 (-75.81/-6.39%)
VIX – 40.95 (+18.90/85.71%)
CSI 300 (China) – 2,836.789 (-230.576/-7.52%)
BSE 500 (India) – 6,715.88 (-326.80/-4.64%)
MICEX (Russia) – 1,288.61 (-147.43/-10.27%)
BOVESPA (Brazil) – 62,870.879 (-4,658.848/-6.90%)
RICI – 3,076.78 (-212.02/-6.45%)
Gold/oz – 1,210.40 (+29.70/2.52%)
Silver/oz – 18.451 (-0.188/-1.01%)
Copper/lb – 314.45 (-20.90/-6.23%)
Oil/bbl (Brent) – 78.27 (-9.17/-10.49%)
Wheat/bu (CBT) – 510.50 (+7.50/1.49%)
Corn/bu – 372.00 (-3.25/-0.87%)
EUR-USD – 1.2755 (-0.0539/-4.05%)
USD-JPY – 91.59 (-2.26/-2.41%)
USD-BRL – 1.838 (+0.0986/5.67%)
3 Month Treasury – 0.12 (-0.03/-20.00%)
2 Year Treasury – 0.81 (-0.15/-15.62%)
10 Year Treasury – 3.43 (-0.22/-6.03%)
30 Year Treasury – 4.27 (-0.25/-5.53%)
3 Month LIBOR – 0.43 (+0.08/22.86%)
U.S. Public Debt (official) – 12,932,913,325,200.70 (+79,813,198,312.30/0.62%)
Baltic Dry Index (BDIY:IND) – 3,608.00 (+254.00/7.57%)

So it was back to work full time this week. It’s kinda nice getting back into that swing of things.

Meanwhile, Baby Girl is trying to stand up every chance she gets. And she’s clapping her hands. That’s pretty cool.

Went to Tulip Time in Holland, Michigan. Visited the New Holland brewing company. Good hamburger. Nice appetizer plate with olives, cheese, apples, some meats, crackers. Tasty. The beer was good too. They’ve got a Kolsh that’s pretty good that I had never tried before. In any case New Holland’s beer is bottled and available quite widely, at least in Michigan. One disappointment, I collect custom coasters from breweries I have visited. They didn’t have coasters… So it goes.

We saw a parade. Baby Girl just loved the marching bands and all of the dancing and floats. If you’re friends with Little Wife on Facebook there will no doubt be pictures!

The drive, which was scheduled for about 2.5 hours each way, took more like 3.25 hours each way. Traveling with baby definitely slows things down a bit. She was pretty irritated being in the car seat for so long, especially on the trip back. At least until she went to sleep.

Well, lots of stuff happening this week. Oil is still spilling. Greece is still on fire. Foiled terrorist attacks in NYC – they wanted that guy to be white so bad. Here’s a quick video of Michael Bloomberg talking about that. Of course Greece is well covered above.

I have not linked to anything about the oil spill because I just can’t find anything that summarizes what’s going on very well. There’s lots of play by play each day, but there’s no good synopsis (that I could find) of the entire string of events. Usually the BBC produces things like this. In any case, it looks to be a major disaster. Of course anyone who’s even partially paying attention knows that.

This type of event seems in line with the Peak Oil thesis though. The Peak Oil thesis basically states that cheap oil is over and that new supplies will require more capital to develop and will be more difficult to tap. A corollary to this is that the technology required to reach these new reserves will have to be more sophisticated than ever. My thinking is that the risks involved in exploiting the new reserves will also be high and that the chances of a major disaster will be at least somewhat proportional to the aforementioned factors – capital, difficulty to access, and technological maturity. The idea is that risk should be correlated with complexity. Time will tell, and I would be happy to be wrong.

The Corruptocrats and Corrupticans are also attempting to pass “financial reform”. Please call your Senatorial Snake and demand that it support the amendment to Audit the Federal Reserve.

Given all of that it’s like the Arizona immigration law just fell off the radar. Anyway, if you click through here and have a look at the picture you should notice something. Yup, all of the signs are the SAME. What does that mean? Centralized organization. Now have a look at some TEA Party signs. Yup, mostly different, indicating decentralized activity. Basically did someone give you a fabricated sign when you arrived or did you bring your own homemade one? The answer to that question says something.

And what about the flood in Tennessee. Here’s some pictures of that. Yikes! The world is coming apart.

And hurricane season is just on the horizon. Will 2010 be the year of man-bear-pig’s revenge?

Have a great weekend!

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