Posts Tagged ‘Barron’

The Greenspan Put Survives

by Thomas E. Brewton on Friday, November 8th, 2013

This is article 54 of 61 in the topic Finance

Obama’s nomination of Janet Yellen to succeed Ben Bernanke as chairman of the Federal Reserve was joyously received in Wall Street.  Reassured that the “Greenspan put” (the readiness of the Federal Reserve to pump fiat dollars into the financial system to shore up stock and bond prices) remains in force, stock and bond market speculators turned on a dime and pumped the markets back up after word of Yellen’s nomination.  Financial market speculation will remain a no-risk game as long as the Greenspan put survives; speculators can be confident that they can borrow whatever amounts they need, at far-below-real-market interest rates.

Even more than current Fed chairman Ben Bernanke, Yellen has been an aggressive supporter of flooding the financial markets with trillions of phony, fiat dollars.  Bernanke and Yellen both believe that the continuing inflation of stock market and bond prices will create a “wealth effect” that will fully revive the economy.  So far, their expectations, to put it kindly, have not been met by economic performance.  We continue to endure the slowest economic recovery since that of the the 1930s socialistic New Deal.

Main Street America will just have to keep scavenging for crumbs, while Wall Street speculators rake in huge trading profits, courtesy of the Fed.

In a free-market economy, little of which remains today, investors would focus on real, underlying economic factors such as the growth outlook for corporate sales and profits, along with increases in the numbers of well-paying, full-time jobs.  Stock market prices would reflect that sort of fundamental analysis.  More importantly, the stock and bond markets would be funded by individuals’ savings, not by the expectation that banks and hedge funds could continue indefinitely to borrow unlimited amounts of short term money at near zero rates of interest.

In a free-market economy, with a stable currency, bank lending would be for the purpose of financing production of real goods and services, not to fund leveraged buyouts or stock repurchases by corporations to pump up earnings per share artificially.  Long-term investors such as insurance companies and pension funds would use the savings of individuals to fund expansion of corporations’ plant and equipment, based on rational expectations of long-term profit generation.

Of critical importance, in a free-market economy individual and corporate debt would be limited by the borrower’s actual, not imagined, ability to repay the debt.

Increasingly since the October 19, 1987, Black Monday stock market crash, the stock market has become a forum for rampant speculation and imprudence on a massive scale.  That turn away from fundamentals is the direct product of the Federal Reserve’s flooding the financial markets with liquidity to buoy the stock market averages.  Since then, in the 1990s dot.com speculative boom-and-bust and the Long Term Capital Management collapse in 1998, through the implosion of the housing bubble and the bankruptcies of Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers in 2007-2008, the pattern has been the same: whenever the stock market dives or financial institutions waver, the Fed immediately endeavors to rescue them with massive infusions of monetary liquidity through book entries on the Fed’s books of account, i.e., via creation of money out of thin air.  Needless to say, the Fed’s money creation vastly outstrips the growth of America’s real production of goods and services.

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Ohio woman: Yeah, I voted for Obama twice… what’s the big deal?

by Doug Powers on Saturday, February 9th, 2013

This is article 335 of 372 in the topic Elections

Nineteen cases of possible voter fraud are being investigated in Hamilton County, Ohio. One of the people being investigated is proud to admit she voted for President Obama –twice. She also helped others vote for Obama — twice. The woman insinuates that it was all just a mistake because she was unsure of the process.

Bonus points: She’s a poll worker:

According to county documents, Richardson’s absentee ballot was accepted on Nov. 1, 2012 along with her signature. On Nov. 11, she told an official she also voted at a precinct because she was afraid her absentee ballot would not be counted in time.

“There’s absolutely no intent on my part to commit voter fraud,” said Richardson.

According to BOE records, her name appeared on an absentee ballot list prior to Election Day. The board’s report states poll workers should have updated the signature poll book by flagging “absentee voter” next to the names of those who appeared on the list. Upon investigation it was found that none of the voters who appeared on the list were flagged, which included Richardson. The staff could not locate that supplemental list when asked.

Richardson voted at the Madisonville Recreation Center where she worked as a paid worker on Election Day.
[...]
During the investigation it was also discovered that her granddaughter, India Richardson, who was a first time voter in the 2012 election, cast two ballots in November.

Documents show when India was contacted on Jan. 17 concerning the two ballots, she denied voting absentee.

She stated, “No, my grandmother filled that out and voted my ballot because she didn’t think I would go do it, but I did. I voted provisionally at my polling place on Election Day,” according to the report.
[...]
Another claim is absentee ballots for Montez Richardson, Joseph Jones and Markus Barron all came from Richardson’s Whetsel Avenue address were received by the board the same time as Richardson’s and the handwriting on all four of them was similar.

Richardson said she’s going to fight against any possible charges of vote fraud “for Mr. Obama and for Mr. Obama’s right to sit as president of the United States.”

The story from WCPO:

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Concealed handgun permit holder stops stabbing outside school

by John Lott on Friday, August 31st, 2012

This is article 173 of 336 in the topic Criminal Activity
From San Antonio, Texas:

A woman is in critical condition after she was stabbed outside her child’s school Tuesday morning. 

The attack happened around 10:00 a.m. Tuesday outside the Bonham Academy on St. Mary’s Street. Teresa Barron, 38, had just dropped off her child at the school when the child’s father showed up, and the two got into an argument. The child’s father, 38-year-old Roberto Barron allegedly then stabbed the woman several times in the upper body and neck area.

Police say a bystander who happened to be a concealed handgun license holder pulled his weapon and ordered Barron to drop the knife. Barron surrendered and was taken into custody by the bystander and a school district officer. . . .

Thanks to Tony Troglio for the link.

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Friday Afternoon Roundup – Lead or Bleat

by Daniel Greenfield on Saturday, June 23rd, 2012

THE OBAMA WAY OF GOVERNMENT

There are four stages to the Obama way of government.

Stage 1: Ignore the problem – “We’re in a recovery.”

Stage 2: Deny the problem – “The public sector is just fine”

Stage 3: Blame Bush – “I inherited a bad economy.”

Stage 4: Cry Racism – “It’s because he’s black.”

We are now finally reaching the third and fourth stages with Fast and Furious. There is the Blame Bush claim and the racism claims are creeping forth.

But what exactly is more racist, killing hundreds of Mexicans or criticizing a black Attorney General?

DEATH OF A MUSLIM HONOR KILLER

In 1992, Abdul Awkal, a Lebanese Muslim, met up with his wife and her brother at the Family Conciliation Office in the sprawling Lakeside Courthouse. Awkal’s wife had filed for divorce after years of physical abuse and a sexually transmitted disease that she contracted from him. In response, Awkal had bought a gun and threatened to shoot her if she didn’t come back to him.

On the day of the shooting, Awkal, who would base his entire twenty year defense on an insanity claim, wrote a check for most of his assets to his brother, and arrived at the courthouse with the stroller, child seat and baby food that he would need once he abducted his daughter. He met up with his wife and her brother inside the courthouse and killed them. Then he tried to use his 15 month old daughter as a human shield before being shot in the back by law enforcement.

Awkal told police that he had ordered his brother-in-law to “profess that Allah was the only God.” And he had only killed him after he refused to do so.

That’s from my article on the latest death penalty case getting an all-out defense from the left.

LEAD OR BLEAT

Obama passed his version of the DREAM Act by well… just doing it, and the Republican Party has courageously come out and said, that he didn’t follow proper procedure.

Romney hasn’t said that he would repeal it. Rubio, who is suddenly being touted for the VP spot, released a memoir where he said that he would have come here illegally, and complained that Obama’s move prevents a more permanent solution.

Apparently the new approach is to attack Obama from the left on immigration. Or just to fumble around and hope somebody else gets asked the question.

“What I can tell you is that those people who come here by virtue of their parents bringing them here, who came in illegally, that’s something I don’t want to football with as a political matter.”

That one comes from Romney. “Politicization” seems to be the talking point here. The other talking point is “Permanent Solution”. But what exactly does any of this mean?

Do Republicans genuinely want any variation of this that would be a “Permanent Solution”?

Romney said that he would veto the DREAM Act. But he’s being deliberately vague on this variation of this, which technically isn’t a flip-flop because this doesn’t lead to permanent residency. So it’s also not Amnesty. But really it’s just a two-step process. Instead of going directly to home base, this way there’s an intermittent legalization, leading to permanent legalization.

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Israeli police crackdown on illegal aliens

by Jim Kouri on Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

This is article 259 of 462 in the topic Immigration

While the problem of illegal aliens and border security in the United States continues to be a divisive issue, Israel’s immigration authorities have taken the proverbial “bull by the horns” and continued an arrest campaign for a second day against the illegal aliens living in the Jewish state, according to the Law Enforcement Examiner’s police source in Israel.

Following the weekend detention of 22 illegal aliens — eight of them from South Sudan – the immigration authorities rounded up about 100 infiltrators on Monday and Tuesday, including 70 South Sudanese, the Israeli police source noted.

The illegal aliens who were apprehended and placed in detention will be deported sometime this week, according to Israeli immigration officials.

Prior to this illegal alien dragnet, Israel’s “collective protection” policy prohibited the removal of illegal aliens based on humanitarian grounds.

But on Thursday, a district court in Jerusalem decided to end the policy for the thousands of Sudanese saying the lives of the illegals will no longer be in danger now that South Sudan has broken off from Sudan and is now a separate nation recognized by the United Nations.

As a result of Israel’s intent on remaining a Jewish nation, many world leaders have condemned the Jews including some in the United States such as New York City Democratic candidate for the U.S. Congress Charles Barron.

Barron, a self-described black activist, currently serves as a city councilman from Brooklyn. He’s been condemned by many from his own party as a “racist” and “bigot” and an “anti-semite.”

Israel’s Interior Minister Eli Yishai, an advocate for immigrant deportation, welcomed Monday’s new wave of arrests. He explained that the move “is not aimed against infiltrators, but instead is meant to preserve Israel’s character as a Zionist-Jewish country,” according to Ynet News web site.

Many South Sudanese people protested to the local media about the circumstances under which they were arrested. They said despite that they had promised to leave of their own accord in a week, the arrests took place anyway, only three days after the court’s decision was issued.

A spokesman for the African community in south Tel Aviv said on Thursday that the authorities “don’t understand that this is a country that just became independent and it’s still very unsafe,” referring to the difficulties that the deported Sudanese may face in South Sudan.

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The So-called Stimulus Is Over, But The Crushing Debt Burden Remains

by Thomas E. Brewton on Thursday, January 19th, 2012

This is article 337 of 523 in the topic Government Spending

The fabled Keynesian “multiplier” boost to the economy from government deficit spending once again, as it always has since the 1930s, failed to produce promised results.  Now even more wealth, via taxes and currency inflation, will have to be sucked from working citizens to pay off the trillions of dollars of debt Obama fecklessly dumped on workers.

 

An article on the Barron’s website tells the story.

On Borrowed Time
Heavy debt loads slow the U.S. economy now and pose threat to the future.

By RANDALL W. FORSYTH

Can a stimulant become a depressant? As with alcohol, government borrowing and spending initially can give a boost, but later becomes a drag. America has hit the downside of that progression.

So says Lacy H. Hunt, chief economist of Hoisington Investment Management (whose eponymous head, Van R. Hoisington, recently was interviewed in the print edition of Barron’s.) The deficits that had aimed to stave off a rerun of the Great Depression after the 2008 financial crisis now are having a depressing effect on the U.S. economy, Hunt contends.

Catching up with Hunt on the road after meetings with Hoisington clients, he expounded on his latest quarterly review, “High Debt Leads to Recession,” a conclusion that runs counter to economics as it is taught in most institutions of higher learning. For most of us who studied the conventional Keynesian economics as taught in the textbooks of Paul Samuelson and his successors, government spending “primes the pump,” to get money back into the economy after the flow of spending had been turned off by a private sector, which was intent on saving “too much.” As a result, resources sat idle, especially the unemployed. Borrowing and spending by government would expand national income by a multiple of its expenditures.

Actually, the opposite is happening. The multiplier from government spending is no better than zero, Hunt says on the basis of econometric evidence. If the economy is “shocked” with a deficit, gross domestic product will get a lift for three-to-five quarters. After 12 quarters, however, the original stimulus is spent, literally and figuratively. But the debt that was incurred to finance the spending remains, and has to be repaid, with interest. That requires a shift of assets from the private sector to the public sector.

Japan provides an example of this process. That nation’s government debt has expanded during its “lost decades” to 200% of GDP from 50%. Meanwhile, nominal GDP in yen terms is basically unchanged. In other words, Japan’s debt has quadrupled but has nothing to show for it—except higher interest costs, which has to come out of the private sector.

Hunt cites the now-familiar conclusion that debt-to-GDP ratios over 90% retard growth from economists Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, authors of the popular This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly, who also presented that conclusion in a 2010 National Bureau of Economic Research working paper, Growth in the Time of Debt.

Hunt also points to an even more exhaustive study on the effects of debt from Stephen G. Cecchetti, M. S Mohanty and Fabrizio Zampolli from the Bank for International Settlements, presented at the Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole confab last year, The Real Effects of Debt , which takes into account the retarding effect of not only government but also corporate and household debt.

Click to continue reading “The So-called Stimulus Is Over, But The Crushing Debt Burden Remains”
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Slowest recovery since WWII

by John Lott on Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

This is article 244 of 390 in the topic economy

From Gene Epstein at Barron’s:

. . . The recovery from the 2008-09 recession has been the slowest since any recession in the post-World War II era. It has taken nine calendar quarters since the recession ended in the second quarter of 2009 for real gross domestic product to climb back to its fourth-quarter ’07 peak. Assume the same rates of growth during the recoveries from the two previous recessions that rank second and third in severity since World War II — ’81-’82 and ’74-’75 — and the recovery from the recent recession should have taken half as long.

Try other comparisons. In the more than 41 years since 1970, the average quarterly rate of growth, calculated on an annual basis, has been 2.8% — and that includes all negative quarters in recessions. By contrast, over the recent nine quarters of recovery, the annual rate of growth has averaged just 2.4% — and as mentioned in last week’s column, the Blue Chip consensus forecast calls for more of the same through 2012. Following the recessions of ’74-’75 and ’81-’82, the first nine quarters of growth averaged, respectively, 5.1% and 6.3%.

Try special excuses. Yes, it’s true that the government portion of GDP usually increases year-to-year, and over the past nine quarters there was a small decrease. It’s also true that rebounds in housing usually make significant contributions to GDP growth after recessions, and over the past nine quarters residential investment has also been running slightly negative. . . .

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