Weekly Open Thread (2014-06-30)

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Here is your open thread for the week of June 30th, 2014. You may post random links and off-topic discussions here. Also, if you have an idea or a topic you’d like to see covered in an article, please make it known.

Note: The comment limit in open threads is 25 comments per person.

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NOTICE: If you have comments to make about politics or economics that do not somehow directly relate to Seattle-area real estate, they may be posted in the current Politics & Economics Open Thread.  If you post such comments here, they will be moved there.

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About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.

42 comments:

  1. 1

    I didn’t consider the Obamacare decision a major decision, so I didn’t post on it here, but rather than continue the discussion in the Zillow thread . . ..

    By Blake @ 6:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 3
    From Justice Ginsburg’s dissent:
    “Would the exemption…extend to employers with religiously grounded objections to blood transfusions (Jehovah’s Witnesses); antidepressants (Scientologists); medications derived from pigs, including anesthesia, intravenous fluids, and pills coated with gelatin (certain Muslims, Jews, and Hindus); and vaccinations[?]…Not much help there for the lower courts bound by today’s decision…Approving some religious claims while deeming others unworthy of accommodation could be ‘perceived as favoring one religion over another,’ the very ‘risk the [Constitution’s] Establishment Clause was designed to preclude.”
    … “The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield.”

    Activist court indeed!

    Are there religions that object to non-members of their religion getting a blood transfusion? Personally I find it rather offensive that some religions try to control non-members through legislation, but that’s not quite the situation in Hobby Lobby.

    What I find interesting about the decision is the existence of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act makes it more likely that the court will find legislation violated the Act, because otherwise the court will need to make a decision on the Bill of Rights, and courts should avoid making Constitutional decisions if that if possible. So by creating a statute Congress effectively broadened the First Amendment and made it less likely there will be future decisions limiting Freedom of Religion on the basis of the First Amendment.

  2. 2
    Blake says:

    https://seattlebubble.com/blog/2014/06/23/weekly-open-thread-2014-06-23/comment-page-1/#comment-230541

    One Eyed man… Thanks for the rant, but a true rant would have more invective and heat, and not be as well thought out! ;-) I basically agree with many of your points, but take issue with a few below.

    Earlier on this blog I noted that I post Stockman because he has a lot of insight into the economy, fraudulent numbers and is a smart guy who makes one think. But I cannot think of any ideas or suggestions he has posted about “fixing” things that I can agree with! Mnay of the people he psost on his blog are cranks, many who are “gold bugs”… any talk or returning to the gold standard is really insane! Such a policy would ensure a Depression and long term pain and economic inequality!!

    But the main point of Stockman’s piece I posted is spot on and simply this:
    -snip- “The truth of the matter is that we are now living on borrowed time. Shortly, we will enter month 61 of the current so-called recovery, meaning that the present cycle is already long-in-the-tooth compared to the 55 months average of 10 cycles since 1949.”
    And it was subtitled: “No Escape Velocity This Year, Either”
    … no sustaining recovery… 5 years on!

    So it is a BIG problem that we are 61 months into a “recovery” and most Americans have not experienced much of an improvement in thier standard of living… real median income has fallen!

    I can’t point you to any of the best proposed solutions or prescriptions of what needs to be done right now (I just got back from a trip and need to catch up… I will post some later this week or next), but the short of it is there are NO easy solutions because of the entrenched powers that be. Those in power do not want things to change and the calculus of capitalism is that they can take the profits and the workers are left with crumbs… “trickle down economics” does not work (how ironic is that for Stockman et al.?) It would be in the Capitalists’ interest to share the wealth so the workers and the middle class can buy more stuff and juice the economy, but they do not think about the big picture, they are very selfish and only try to maximize their profits. The pie is growing very slowly and they continue to cut bigger and bigger pieces form the pie!!

    As for wagering on how long this can continue… I admit that I wagered too much in 2007 and the house of cards did not collapse til late 2008. (Only my bets on WaMu paid off handsomely…) But in many ways things are worse than ’08:
    – The Federal govt has much higher debt levels today and is not in a position to increase deficit spending if we start sliding into a recession.
    – The FEd has trillions on the books already and has already lowered interest rates to rock bottom!
    – Consumers have deleveraged (slightly) compared to ’08, but corporations and stock traders have borrowed like crazy and margin debt is at an all time high.
    – And, as we all know, real wages haved dropped significantly for most Americans the last 5 years, while from 2000-2007 they went up.
    *Go here:
    http://www.epi.org/blog/real-hourly-wage-growth-last-generation/
    click on the graph for “Change in Real Wages” for 2000-2007 and then for 2007-2012… Stunning isn’t it? Sea of red!
    THIS, more than anything else, is the problem.

    In sum, we are in a very tenuous position with an aging, rotten “recovery” (I insist upon putting it into quotes) in which we have high debt levels, low workforce participation rates, the Fed out of bullets, and government dominated by corporate/billionaire interests. I think the only thing that may change things is if we have another terrible downturn and the American people demand REAL change. But our political system is BROKEN and any big downturn in the next 2 years would probably result in rightwing gains, more austerity for the poor and middle classes, and more impunity for the corporate monopolies and oligopolies that dominate our economy and government.

    I… am not optimistic. I read a lot of history – especially the history of Empires… British, Spanish, Dutch, Roman, Greek – and they decline. In fits and starts, but they do decline.

    btw: You are absolutely correct that deflation (or disinflation) is the major threat to our economy and the EU and Japan… There is no easy solution to deflation and I think Bernanke did a heroic job fighting deflation in the face of government austerity!

  3. 3

    RE: Blake @ 2 – That was a pretty good post. I would only add that deficit spending has masked how bad things really are, so most people don’t realize. It’s sort of like taking your temperature while you’re taking aspirin–the situation can be worse than it appears.

    And I say that having been mainly in agreement with most of the actions taken by government in 2009 and early 2010. The problem I think is government (particularly Obama) didn’t understand the difference between creating jobs through stimulus and creating conditions that would allow job growth to take off on its own. There was no transition. Only the looming anchor of Obamacare effective dates.

    I’ll offer a solution though. Eliminate the corporate income tax and balance that by eliminating capital gain tax rates, (and maybe adjust personal income taxes to make up any difference not made up by eliminating capital gains rates). That should create corporate hiring and maybe even get some jobs moved back here. Jobs are the key, but they can’t be continually created by the government borrowing money.

  4. 4
    Blake says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 3
    Kary: “eliminating capital gain tax rates, (and maybe adjust personal income taxes to make up any difference not made up by eliminating capital gains rates).”

    Then the rich will just classify all their income as capital gains (i.e. carried interest etc.) and pay no taxes!!

  5. 5

    RE: Blake @ 4 – Well first, people cannot just classify their income as being capital gains.

    Second though, what I suggested was ELIMINATING the REDUCED tax rate for capital gains, so that capital gains would be taxed at the same (HIGHER) rate as ordinary income. I said eliminate the rates, not eliminate the taxes. ;-)

    What I was proposing was getting rid of the double taxation of corporate income. Politicians recently have proposed eliminating taxation of dividends, but that makes zero sense because it doesn’t accomplish anything other than ending double taxation. My proposal would increase employment and help turn the tide on jobs being exported.

  6. 6

    By Blake @ 6:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 3
    From Justice Ginsburg’s dissent:
    “Would the exemption…extend to employers with religiously grounded objections to blood transfusions (Jehovah’s Witnesses); antidepressants (Scientologists); medications derived from pigs, including anesthesia, intravenous fluids, and pills coated with gelatin (certain Muslims, Jews, and Hindus); and vaccinations[?]…Not much help there for the lower courts bound by today’s decision…Approving some religious claims while deeming others unworthy of accommodation could be ‘perceived as favoring one religion over another,’ the very ‘risk the [Constitution’s] Establishment Clause was designed to preclude.”
    … “The court, I fear, has ventured into a minefield.”

    Activist court indeed!

    BTW, how would Ginsberg suggest the court deal with that issue. When they decide First Amendment issues and decide some practices are protected and some aren’t, aren’t they favoring one religion over another?

    I haven’t read that many Supreme Court decisions recently, but hers on this topic was extremely unimpressive.

  7. 7
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 3:

    RE: Blake @ 2 – That was a pretty good post. I would only add that deficit spending has masked how bad things really are, so most people don’t realize. It’s sort of like taking your temperature while you’re taking aspirin–the situation can be worse than it appears.

    And I say that having been mainly in agreement with most of the actions taken by government in 2009 and early 2010. The problem I think is government (particularly Obama) didn’t understand the difference between creating jobs through stimulus and creating conditions that would allow job growth to take off on its own.

    umm…they are one and the same.

    “That was a pretty good post. I would only add that deficit spending has masked how bad things really are”

    no not really. the problem isn’t the deficit. it’s the plunge in tax revenue do to the bad economy. the Obama admin did very little extra deficit spending during the crash. the huge stimulus was spread over 2-3 years and was only about $200-300 billion per year. other than that new spending and government jobs have been pretty low.

    the government has a pretty set amount that is spends money on. the deficits skyrocketed because the economy collapsed and tax revenue plunged. Bush went from deficits in the hundreds of millions to over a trillion when he left office.

  8. 8
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 5:

    RE: Blake @ 4 – Well first, people cannot just classify their income as being capital gains.

    sure they will. remember mitt romney’s hundred million dollar 401k? some lawyer will figure out how to do it.

  9. 9

    By pfft @ 7:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 3:

    RE: Blake @ 2 – That was a pretty good post. I would only add that deficit spending has masked how bad things really are, so most people don’t realize. It’s sort of like taking your temperature while you’re taking aspirin–the situation can be worse than it appears.

    And I say that having been mainly in agreement with most of the actions taken by government in 2009 and early 2010. The problem I think is government (particularly Obama) didn’t understand the difference between creating jobs through stimulus and creating conditions that would allow job growth to take off on its own.

    umm…they are one and the same.

    Okay, I no longer think you are an Obamabot. I think you are Obama himself! No one else would think that those two things are the same. President Obama is the only person on the face of the earth who thinks that way, so you must be President Obama.

  10. 10
    wreckingbull says:

    By pfft @ 7:

    the government has a pretty set amount that is spends money on..

    Well, I give you credit for being consistent. Consistenly wrong. I also give you credit for apt coice of weasel words like ‘pretty set amount’, in order to keep things nice and ambiguous.

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/cb/U.S._Federal_spending_per_capita%2C_nominal_and_inflation_adjusted.png

  11. 11
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 9:

    By pfft @ 7:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 3:

    RE: Blake @ 2 – That was a pretty good post. I would only add that deficit spending has masked how bad things really are, so most people don’t realize. It’s sort of like taking your temperature while you’re taking aspirin–the situation can be worse than it appears.

    And I say that having been mainly in agreement with most of the actions taken by government in 2009 and early 2010. The problem I think is government (particularly Obama) didn’t understand the difference between creating jobs through stimulus and creating conditions that would allow job growth to take off on its own.

    umm…they are one and the same.

    Okay, I no longer think you are an Obamabot. I think you are Obama himself! No one else would think that those two things are the same. President Obama is the only person on the face of the earth who thinks that way, so you must be President Obama.

    it was just mentioned in the post above! stimulus should be enough that the economy is jump started enough that the recovery is self-sustaining. every Keynesian knows that.

    the economy is/was trillions in the hole. no amount of tax reform or whatever you want is going to solve that problem. you need the brute force of stimulus. it’s basic math.

    just how many jobs do you think “creating conditions that would allow job growth to take off on its own” would have created in 2009 and 2010? hopefully your idea is more brilliant than you the economy is bad because Obama said that banks that receieved hundreds of billions of dollars in rescue money should go to vegas comment.

  12. 12
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 10:

    By pfft @ 7:

    the government has a pretty set amount that is spends money on..

    Well, I give you credit for being consistent. Consistenly wrong. I also give you credit for apt coice of weasel words like ‘pretty set amount’, in order to keep things nice and ambiguous.

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/cb/U.S._Federal_spending_per_capita%2C_nominal_and_inflation_adjusted.png

    ok. the government spends money on things. it doesn’t just do things like stop arresting criminals because we have a recession.

    “Well, I give you credit for being consistent. Consistenly wrong.”

    actually no but SB is reality-challenged at times.

    FYI, a better measure would probably be government spending as a percentage of GDP.

  13. 13
    Saulac says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 1:

    Are there religions that object to non-members of their religion getting a blood transfusion? Personally I find it rather offensive that some religions try to control non-members through legislation,

    Word!

  14. 14
    pfft says:

    By Saulac @ 12:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 1:

    Are there religions that object to non-members of their religion getting a blood transfusion?

    Word!good one.

    what a lot of people don’t realize is that something like 30% of people use birth control don’t use it for birth control but for other things. also Hobby Lobby claimed that birth control is abortion which it is not(in most cases?). the court however could not validate that. imagine that! you can say that your religion is against abortion and that birth control is abortion and the court can’t even evaluate that claim to rule that birth causes abortion and is therefore against someone’s religion…

  15. 15

    RE: pfft @ 13 – If you read the opinion, it was only about 4 types of contraception–ones that work after the egg is fertilized. Presumably the opinion (and exclusion on coverage) also wouldn’t apply when something is prescribed for a different purpose–at least pills. IUDs, if they are included, might be a different matter.

  16. 16

    By pfft @ 7:

    the [sic] huge stimulus was spread over 2-3 years and was only about $200-300 billion per year.

    100 billion here, 100 billion there, pretty soon you’re talking real money.

  17. 17
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 15:

    By pfft @ 7:

    the [sic] huge stimulus was spread over 2-3 years and was only about $200-300 billion per year.

    100 billion here, 100 billion there, pretty soon you’re talking real money.

    real money is what we could have used!

    I know I am risking my obamabot credentials when I say this but the stimulus was too small. btw calling me an obamabot is probably the most hilarious thing you could say.

  18. 18
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: pfft @ 11 – No. If government is ‘for the people’, inflation adjusted per-capita spending is a far better metric.

    Regardless, it does not change the story, nor make your comment correct.

    http://blogs-images.forbes.com/joshbarro/files/2012/04/spending-GDP-chart1.png

  19. 19
    Blurtman says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 14 – Right. And a few religions hold that life begins at conception. And so the birth control methods you describe are in fact abortion. A condom would not be abortion. (Although every sperm is sacred!)

    I know this is not PC to say, but logic is clearly not on the side of the pro-abortion folks, as technology continues to push back the clock on fetal survival ex-womb. I have never heard a pro-abortion person give a clear and defensible argument of when human life starts. Quite a few said they don’t care. That life begins at conception has a certain absolute truthiness to it that is difficult to debunk.

  20. 20
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 16:

    RE: pfft @ 11
    Regardless, it does not change the story, nor make your comment correct.

    no. the government spends money on stuff. you just don’t stop that because the economy crashed. you don’t arrest less people because we had a recession.

  21. 21
    One Eyed Man says:

    RE: pfft @ 11RE: wreckingbull @ 10

    IMO, both positions fail to go far enough in depth to provide a true perspective as to what is happening with spending under Obama and both are to some degree overstated. Even without looking at the numbers, everybody knows that entitlement spending goes up as baby boomers retire and entitlement spending is over half of federal spending. Its intuitively obvious from that generalization that over all federal spending has been and probably will be increasing substantially.

    In order for there to be a decrease in entitlement spending there would have to be a substantial decrease in SSI, Medicare and/or Medicaid and we all know they haven’t been drastically cut to this point. As of now, any change by Obama to that sector is dependent upon whether the ACA can actually “bend the cost curve” and given that it just went into effect the actually results aren’t in yet even if the consensus of opinion might be that there is a high degree of doubt.

    The other portions of the federal budget, military spending and discretionary spending, are decreasing under Obama (after the end of the increased discretionary spending to provide stimulus). As a percentage of GDP and probably at least as to rate of growth on an inflation adjusted basis as well, military spending is tracking down and discretionary spending is back to levels from a decade ago and predicted by CBO to continue to decrease for another decade.

    http://money.cnn.com/2014/01/27/news/economy/spending-obama/index.html

  22. 22
    One Eyed Man says:

    RE: Blake @ 2

    As always Blake, thanks for your generosity with your time and insights. Your comments almost always increase the breadth, depth and context of my understanding of the issues. My only criticism, if not a true rant, was largely that I’ve grown painfully weary of people like Stockman playing Paul Revere and tell us that the Red Coats are coming. I long for someone to step forward as a viable Washington with a reasonable plan to cross the Delaware. As much as I despise political compromise, I yearn for a return of bi-partisan deal makers like the cliché gang of seven. I find myself hoping for success for pragmatic politicians like Bob Corker and Chris Murphy. I must be getting old because in my youth I probably would have considered that the seventh sign of the apocalypse.

  23. 23

    Finally a good jobs report. I’m surprised that the press isn’t a bit more giddy about it since they were so giddy about mediocre reports in 2012.

  24. 24
    One Eyed Man says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 21

    Maybe winter numbers really were down because of weather and spring numbers are a little higher due to postponed winter hiring so that the good June number isn’t really that great. But from a longer term perspective and therefore more interesting to me, job growth during 2011 through 2013 was just as good as job growth from 2004 through 2006 (which were some of W’s better years). And 2011 through 2013 were without the benefit of the finance and housing bubble boom times, although obviously with the benefit of QE, ZIRP and huge federal deficits. But 2011 through 2013 also had the head wind of large state and local government layoffs.

    This all once again begs the question of what the long term cost of QE, ZIRP and high federal deficits will be. We now know pretty much what the finance and housing bubbles cost when they unwound into recession and job losses, but we don’t know yet what QE, ZIRP and the huge federal deficits might cost in the long run. It took a decade to work down the WWII deficit to more normal levels when it hit 100% of GDP. And it might have hurt employment under Truman and Eisenhower. It will likely take longer to work off the QE, ZIRP, and high federal debt combination and may well have a muting effect on employment and economic growth for some time.

    Despite what I believe to be assumed about Republicans being better than Democrats at economic growth and job creation, its somewhat interesting to note that job growth under Carter, Roosevelt and Clinton was better than job growth under Reagan, W. Bush, H.W.Bush, Ford. Eisenhower and Nixon. Maybe Henry Ford wasn’t being altruistic and understood something the economists and politicians don’t when he said he needed to pay workers enough to buy the cars they build.

    http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jobs_created_during_U.S._presidential_terms

  25. 25
    pfft says:

    LOL.

    Here’s How Fox News Covered Today’s Awesome Jobs Report
    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-how-fox-news-covered-todays-awesome-jobs-report-2014-7#ixzz36QYAewEk

    Don’t worry though really smart people tell me the parties are just the same which is why we have a new immigration bill and agree on birth control.

  26. 26
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 22:

    Finally a good jobs report. I’m surprised that the press isn’t a bit more giddy about it since they were so giddy about mediocre reports in 2012.

    Obamacare isn’t destroying jobs kary? what a shocker.

  27. 27

    By pfft @ 24:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 22:

    Finally a good jobs report. I’m surprised that the press isn’t a bit more giddy about it since they were so giddy about mediocre reports in 2012.

    Obamacare isn’t destroying jobs kary? what a shocker.

    That’s true, if you ignore the probably over 1,000,000 jobs that would exist today if Obamacare had never been enacted. You can’t ignore all those prior months of lousy job growth just because of one good month.

  28. 28
    pfft says:

    By One Eyed Man @ 23:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 21
    This all once again begs the question of what the long term cost of QE, ZIRP and high federal deficits will be. We now know pretty much what the finance and housing bubbles cost when they unwound into recession and job losses, but we don’t know yet what QE, ZIRP and the huge federal deficits might cost in the long run. It took a decade to work down the WWII deficit to more normal levels when it hit 100% of GDP. And it might have hurt employment under Truman and Eisenhower. It will likely take longer to work off the QE, ZIRP, and high federal debt combination and may well have a muting effect on employment and economic growth for some time.

    how do you know that we have to workoff the effects of QE, ZIRP and high federal debt? we know that on balance deficit spending was a good thing for the economy. one just has to look at Europe where the nations that cut spending the most suffered the most. studies have shown that the stimulus because it saved jobs and kept GDP high it saved us money in both the short run and long run.

    how do you know that QE and ZIRP haven’t been priced into the market(and I am not just talking about the stock market).

    Greece chart is here:

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/07/01/learned-macroeconomic-helplessness/?_php=true&_type=blogs&module=BlogPost-Title&version=Blog%20Main&contentCollection=Opinion&action=Click&pgtype=Blogs&region=Body&_r=0

  29. 29
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 26:

    By pfft @ 24:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 22:

    Finally a good jobs report. I’m surprised that the press isn’t a bit more giddy about it since they were so giddy about mediocre reports in 2012.

    Obamacare isn’t destroying jobs kary? what a shocker.

    That’s true, if you ignore the probably over 1,000,000 jobs that would exist today if Obamacare had never been enacted.

    ha ha.

  30. 30

    RE: pfft @ 27 – The chronically unemployed are not laughing.

  31. 31

    Yep, Obamacare really controls costs.

    http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/New-York-Healthcare-Premiums-Are-About-To-Explode-5597969.php

    I would have marked that with a “/sarc” tag, but only an idiot would believe that.

  32. 32
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 28:

    RE: pfft @ 27 – The chronically unemployed are not laughing.

    the ha ha is that you just throw things out and probably has zero backing it up. the CBO estimates that Obamacare will have little effect on jobs.

    what about all the lives saved Kary?

    “The chronically unemployed are not laughing.”

    they’ll never go w/o health insurance now.

  33. 33
    pfft says:

    By Kary L. Krismer @ 30:

    Yep, Obamacare really controls costs.

    http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/New-York-Healthcare-Premiums-Are-About-To-Explode-5597969.php

    I would have marked that with a “/sarc” tag, but only an idiot would believe that.

    it has helped. keep in mind that NY costs have came in well below expected last year.

    Health Plan Cost for New Yorkers Set to Fall 50%
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/17/health/health-plan-cost-for-new-yorkers-set-to-fall-50.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  34. 34
    Blake says:

    By One Eyed Man @ 22:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 21

    Maybe winter numbers really were down because of weather and spring numbers are a little higher due to postponed winter hiring so that the good June number isn’t really that great. But from a longer term perspective and therefore more interesting to me, job growth during 2011 through 2013 was just as good as job growth from 2004 through 2006 (which were some of W’s better years). And 2011 through 2013 were without the benefit of the finance and housing bubble boom times, although obviously with the benefit of QE, ZIRP and huge federal deficits. But 2011 through 2013 also had the head wind of large state and local government layoffs.

    This all once again begs the question of what the long term cost of QE, ZIRP and high federal deficits will be. We now know pretty much what the finance and housing bubbles cost when they unwound into recession and job losses, but we don’t know yet what QE, ZIRP and the huge federal deficits might cost in the long run. It took a decade to work down the WWII deficit to more normal levels when it hit 100% of GDP. And it might have hurt employment under Truman and Eisenhower. It will likely take longer to work off the QE, ZIRP, and high federal debt combination and may well have a muting effect on employment and economic growth for some time.

    Despite what I believe to be assumed about Republicans being better than Democrats at economic growth and job creation, its somewhat interesting to note that job growth under Carter, Roosevelt and Clinton was better than job growth under Reagan, W. Bush, H.W.Bush, Ford. Eisenhower and Nixon. Maybe Henry Ford wasn’t being altruistic and understood something the economists and politicians don’t when he said he needed to pay workers enough to buy the cars they build.

    http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jobs_created_during_U.S._presidential_terms

    The big question is how, if, when or if ever the Fed can exit QE! Imagine the effects on home buying, refi’s, and consumer borrowing if interest rates went up 50% to more normal historical levels? Looks like Bill Gross just made a long term bet using $200 million of his own money that rates will stay low.

    And the European Central Bank is being pushed toward QE (which is against their charter!) – – to counter growing deflationary fears!!
    http://online.wsj.com/articles/ecb-leaves-rates-unchanged-as-expected-1404388120
    -sn- “The ECB has resisted calls to engage in large-scale purchases of assets in capital markets, known as quantitative easing, as central banks in the U.S., U.K. and Japan have done. The International Monetary Fundhas urged the ECB to consider following suit to keep inflation from staying too low for too long.
    … The 24-member rate-setting council kept its main lending rate at 0.15% and a separate rate for emergency, overnight loans at 0.4%. It maintained a minus 0.1% rate on bank funds deposited with the central bank.
    … Lending to the private sector continues to shrink in the euro zone. Many analysts question whether the ECB can design a bank-lending program that will effectively steer money to households and small businesses, rather than be used by banks to borrow cheap funds from the central bank and use them to buy higher yielding government bonds. This practice, known as the carry trade, boosts bank profits but does little for the economy as a whole.”
    … simply amazing! Deflation is the big threat… 5 years into the “recovery”… unprecedented.

    One Eyed Man… an interesting insight into the rise in per capita govt spending is to look at it by Presidents!
    http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2012/03/per-capita-government-spending-by-president.html
    … Heh heh… the Nixon/Ford, Reagan and Bush II administrations had the greatest increases in govt spending while Obama and Clinton did the most to “end big government as we know it!!” (Clinton 1996)

  35. 35

    RE: pfft @ 31 – Find a report that says the premiums actually did fall in NY, not a report of some lying NY politician claiming that they would. And yes I know that using the term “lying” together with “politician” is redundant, particularly when you add in “New York.”

  36. 36
  37. 37
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 35 – Pfft posts a year old, incorrect prediction from Cuomo to counter what is actually hapenning today. The cognitive dissononance is really starting to settle in, it seems. Rather sad.

  38. 38

    RE: wreckingbull @ 37 – Back then there were national statements that the bids for Obamacare insurance were coming in “below expectations.” Either those statements were outright lies by politicians and government entities, or they were expecting some crazy expensive insurance.

  39. 39
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 37:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 35 – Pfft posts a year old, incorrect prediction from Cuomo to counter what is actually hapenning today.

    incorrect prediction? link please.

    the rates aren’t actually “sky-rocketing” but are actually in line with previous requests.

    “The requests appear to be in line with prior years, which were subsequently reduced.”

    The rates do not account for any government subsidies, which Mr. Anderson said would also go up for some customers who qualify for them.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/03/nyregion/health-plans-in-exchange-face-rises-in-2015-rates.html?module=Search&mabReward=relbias%3Ar%2C%5B%22RI%3A7%22%2C%22RI%3A12%22%5D&_r=0

  40. 40
    pfft says:

    RE: Blake @ 34 – the crisis in europe hasn’t been going on for 5 years at least not as we know it now. austerity wasn’t enacted until about 2010 and we are still working through it. unemployment rates are really high and it looks like the slowdown is finally worked it’s way from southern europe to Germany.

  41. 41
    wreckingbull says:

    RE: pfft @ 39 – Link please? You are the one that provided the link! You seem a bit confused.

  42. 42
    pfft says:

    By wreckingbull @ 41:

    RE: pfft @ 39 – Link please? You are the one that provided the link! You seem a bit confused.

    you said there was an incorrect prediction. how do you know the prediction was incorrect?

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