October 2, 2012 § 3 Comments
Cleveland’s public transportation began like nearly all of the urban areas in this country. First with horse drawn cars and then a few cable cars and then electrified with electric trolly cars. Cleveland had electric trolleys up until the 1940s when they began to replace them with electric buses – so called trackless trolleys. Cleveland had trackless trolleys up until the last line was converted to diesel buses in 1962. The Lorain Av. Line on the west side of town. Contrary to popular belief, the city’s decision to got the diesel bus route was because of the the new heavy rail system that was to be expanded to the airport. The first in the country to do so. It was feared that the city could not provide enough electric power for both the electric buses and the heavy rail. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 14, 2012 § 5 Comments
OK here we are. The FED is once again trying to get people to indulge themselves in more needless spending so as to keep the severely damaged heart of the economy from going into cardiac arrest. This time the stimulant is call QE3. And as Ives Smith says, forgetabtoutit.
But the elephant in the room is what, if anything, these measures will achieve in terms of real economy impact. “Let them eat stocks and housing” has not been terribly successful. Even with super low rates, it has also taken massive sequestering of inventories for the housing market to have the appearance of stabilizing. We have low household formation due to young adults facing high unemployment, low paying jobs with generally short job tenures, and heavy student debt burdens. On top of that, we have generational headwinds as boomers hit retirement age and want or need to downsize. Keeping money on sale is not going to induce banks to lend more if they can’t find enough qualified borrowers. And the consumer deleveraging story is not as positive as the statistics would lead you to believe. A lot of it is involuntary, meaning driven by foreclosures. In addition, retirees also curtail their spending thanks to the fall in interest income they’ve suffered under ZIRP.
. . . . .
And where does the Fed go if a financial crisis or other shock occurs?
The Fed failed to see the crisis coming, failed to push for restructuring of consumer, particularly mortgage, debt, and is now in full bore “if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail” mode. And in the crisis, the Fed was slow to act and then overdid when it finally roused itself (remember “75 is the new 25″?) it looks as if the Bernanke Fed is incapable of looking at its own history. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 10, 2012 § Leave a Comment
It’s funny ya know. How even those on the far left politically are convinced that we can save our economy/government etc. if only we could find the right policies/representatives/etc. Rather like someone with a know fatal disease is convinced they can get cured and live forever if only they could find the right treatment. Denial and delusion are very powerful mindsets.
Because of this I find Dmitri Orlov to be curiously refreshing.
August 28, 2012 § 9 Comments
It should be rather obvious that the republican part is the party of white people. More specifically white people who are very religious, fairly rich and hold racist views of non-whites. « Read the rest of this entry »
July 13, 2012 § 2 Comments
One of the comments to a post by David Seaton was this quote by Bertrand Russell.
“In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors, since all men are equal, but he does not admit that he has no social inferiors, for, from the time of Jefferson onward, the doctrine that all men are equal applies only upwards, not downwards”.
We do not see ourselves in a realistic light but in the way we wish we were or hope to become. This is true of racial relations, finances, politics…you name it. The so called American Exceptionalism. This is evident int the tax proposal of the president to except the first $250,000.00 of income from the tax hike. To same the Middle Class. But as Ted Rall points out in this column, this is hardly middle class. More like the top 2% of earners. Especially since the median income is $49,000.00. Bit of a difference, wouldn’t you say. « Read the rest of this entry »
July 11, 2012 § 2 Comments
It has been said that the two biggest motivations of humans are to obtain pleasure and to avoid pain. I believe with some variations, this is mostly true. Add into this our instinct for survival and you can probably explain most behaviors. But I am just guessing here, I suppose. « Read the rest of this entry »
June 8, 2012 § 3 Comments
We’ve all seem them. The iconic scenes of the train wreck or car wreck with the cars hanging off a cliff. Nobody dares move else they cause the whole thing to plummet into the abyss below. This is where the economy stands today according to Dr. Paul Craig Roberts in his current analysis. « Read the rest of this entry »
May 27, 2012 § Leave a Comment
The other day I though I would surf over to Dpreview and check out the latest Digital SLR cameras from Nikon. I will admit it, I’m a Nikon bigot. The site reviews digital cameras and sometimes lenses. It’s pretty good with good comparisons, sample images and quality tests.
Yes I am lusting after the the Nikon D800, their latest offering in the pro-sumer or semi professional line. Excellent imaging even at ISO6400 and above. I have a D200 which is not that old but compared to the latest, it’s a 1957 Chevy.
And the newest Hasselblad medium format digital is even better. But then it’s 13 grand. We have the ability to find planets circulating other stars. Nearly every cell phone has a built in camera and the ability to upload images to the internet. We can eavesdrop on radio waves from other galaxies.
And here is the point of this diary – you can bet your sweet bippy the government, ours and others, have capabilities a few orders of magnitude better than what us lowly peons get to play with.
It’s a pretty good bet that no one country is going to invade another without someone knowing about it. Probably ahead of time. « Read the rest of this entry »