Wednesday, September 28, 2011
No news for some of you. Thanks to those who helped. Since we wrote this, there has been some information creeping out re "going concern opinion." Randy McC provided information to support my position. There will now be a different focus on this case, I believe.....hope. However, it won't take with many who don't want to be informed.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Immigration has become one of the major problems facing America. And, no longer can it be divorced from terrorism. Immigration is no longer a matter of the innocent Hispanic coming across the border for a job and a better life. It is much more complex than that. The political left wants amnesty and the voter bloc, the right focuses on walls and deportation. Both are wrong!
I've traveled the globe and can assure you that people in foreign lands do not understand, nor do they respect, such a spectacle as the "Leader of the Free World" conducting himself as the president did with the CBC. Believe me, they see it immediately. If you doubt me, go into Latin America or Europe and see for yourselves. I won't even say here how friends in Latin America view our president.
Can you imagine how they characterize him when they expect statesman-like performance and they see such behavior as railing to a voter bloc. How would you (we) feel if we saw a foreign head of state doing the same? Of course, we do see them. But, who are they? You can name them same as I can.
Can anyone believe that FDR, Truman, IKE, Reagan or, as I think of it, any other president speaking so? Sadly, it is likely that some voters will like it.
Monday, September 26, 2011
However, Freeman gave a quote from Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, that I have railed about since I first heard it. You'll remember his foolish (in fact, dumber than dirt!) comment that "Our goal is to make Obama a one-term president." Those who know me know that I have been on a rampage over how our people present themselves, the language they use and more. NO, I'm not justifying Freeman's idiocy, but I am also critical of the lack of wisdom of McConnell and those who spout off accordingly.
This one sounds innocuous to those who ignore the media and do not understand the arts and science (I mean the disingenuous nature) of politics these days. But, such sound bites always have a life of their own......long lives normally. The media make it so.
Megan Kelly on Fox News just asked a financial consultant, who blew the whistle on "going concern" if he was and "anti-Obama person." How incredibly stupid and leading can a question be? Misleading! And, she is normally one of the better ones. Dumb today.
It is still likely that this issue will just go away and the "green folly" will go on,
As I listen to "President" OBAMA'S speeches to the Congressional Black Caucus demanding they get behind him, or his telling young people that "if they love him, support him," or his speech in front of the bridge that will fall if not given stimulus funds now ....... and more carnival barker type speeches, I am appalled, even though I expected little positive from him when I came out of retirement to go against him in 2008. And, I realize he will spend whatever amount of taxpayer money he wants to campaign for the next 14 months appealing to his base. I can understand the dependent class that doesn't work and never will, but there are some voter blocks that should be concerned about the decline of America that Obama is now accelerating rapidly, yet they are more committed to the "D," to their prejudices, and their power than to the nation. I think of colleges that have become havens for leftist political activism rather than places for educational freedom, creative thinking and learning. I think of the NEA and state teacher's unions. Do all of these "educators" really believe that they are educating our children and young adults? They are willing to ignore all data to the contrary to hold that opinion. SEE THE LINK ABOVE FOR SOME TRUTH. It's all about money and control re Bob Chanin or NEA. Appalling!
Then, I think of Richard Trumpka and his calling Tea Party people (really anyone who opposes his thuggery) "SOBS" and getting away with little to no criticism. Or, Maxine Waters telling all Tea Partiers to "go to hell." Real class? No. Intellectual bankruptcy and vacuous character.
Then, DNC Chair Wasserman-Shultz repeats for uncountable times how Obama saved the auto industry. He didn't, as written here earlier. He saved a good portion of the UAW while abrogating established bankruptcy law......yes, a lawyer-president! Said to be a constitutional lawyer. Sure!
I can understand some people, but others confound me.
A bit off course but apropos is a discussion I had with a neighbor who is a hard-line "D" but rails about no compromise from "Rs." He approached me recently and asserted, "We're fortunate to have a "brilliant" man like Bernanke at The Fed." That word "brilliant" again! I disagreed. He was incredulous.....how could I be so blind. He was really confused when I told him I was critical of Greenspan also and it upset my bankers substantially. He said, "but he was a Republican." I said, "Jack, do you know that The Fed is supposed to be non-political?" But, he put me in perspective, my place, very quickly. He said he'd accept the opinion of his young daughter-in-law who has a recently minted PhD in public policy ------ from Ha'va'd. That explained it all. I agreed with him and he looked puzzled. Then I said, "Jack, a PhD from Harvard today surely trumps one from GA Tech, or even two, and 40 years of experience in the arena." He agreed by remaining silent....until he offered that the housing and financial meltdown of 2008 was all Bush's fault. AND THE CLINCHER...HIS DAUGHTER-IN-LAW SPEAKS FLUENT JAPANESE." Now I got it.
How does one compete with this superior logic? It's sickening, but all too real. With some apology for being so blunt, I stand by the truth.
Clearly, the Obama people did not make a decision based on sound financials. Political? Sure! Deny it if you like, but it is foolish to do so.
Also, it is ludicrous to make the argument that it all started under Bush. Is there no integrity in this administration or its acolytes? Available information says Bush administration officials recommended against granting the funds. What's new? Dishonesty abounds. It's also nothing less than repulsive to blame China, an obvious play on the weak-minded people who don't think for themselves or those who won't get real information from which to make decisions. Oh, but this is a major voter bloc for Obama.
What this crowd, and the precursor progressives from the '60s, has done for the once proud and honest Democrats of yesteryear is disgraceful. But, what is even more disgraceful is that so many people who could be expected to think and do better simply buy in because of loyalty to the "D."
Sure you can play tit-for-tat with "R,s" but it won't be productive toward solving any problem.
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Still trying to be productive, I submitted a piece to 3 friendly editors defining the real issue with Solyndra (not a "going concern" from the git-go) only to pick up a paper from The Tribune, for which they work, and read an article about Solyndra that ignores all essential analytical details -- 1/2 page of very little information. Oh, but my 3 friends do it better....they do! But, they didn't write the piece, the Washington Bureau did.
In my note to them I wrote that "where politics once dealt with resolving philosophical differences, now it's a battle to fight incompetence." And sadly, it starts with the Obama administration. And the day continued.
I saw David Plouffe being interviewed and realized "this is a major confidante and operative of Obama's. And that forces me to think more of mediocrity and Jay Carney's name is front and center of each brain lobe. Lord!!
Then Newt Gingrich is talking about the ineptitude of Chris Matthews, and he's on target, but then I think of Newt's performance on Meet the Press and I can't excuse him either. It didn't stop here!
Rick Perry is trying to defend his positions and not very articulately. Now, I'm reminded of a rant I've been on for some years about how "we express ourselves, the words and phrases we use, etc." I'm reminded of my speech last week when Perry's comment re Social Security being a Ponzi scheme was broached. I told the group that, "while there is truth to that, some truths should be expressed in more acceptable terms or left silent." I told the audience that to scare seniors who depend on SS and then ask for their votes wasn't too different from telling a woman she's ugly then asking her for a date." Got laughs, but sadly true.
Some time ago, I contemplated writing a book entitled "Breeding Mediocrity In America," TOO LATE FOR THE TITLE. IT'S BRED!
Saturday, September 24, 2011
This link is provided by Randy of CA, a friend from high school days, and a "thinking person." The "going concern" issue, to me, is the key to establishing the fraud in this scandal. There will, undoubtedly, be a big effort to minimize it, even cover it up, but we can only hope that the Solyndra affair is totally revealed for what it is and that it may lead to cleaning up more of the corruption that we know is in our government today.
The question, in my mind anyway, is "how many people really care?"
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Special note: In the 80s and 90s, even German companies, my competitors, sought to represent my products in Germany because they "could not run a 3rd shift" [with native workers]. Their vaunted work ethic was gone. In spite of that Germany is the most vital of European nations today. Why do so many in government here try to emulate Europe? Start with ignorance!
- THE GENERAL ELECTORATE: About 30-32% will vote for any candidate with a D behind his/her name. Witness Alvin Greene (D), with absolutely no qualifications, in South Carolina in the last senatorial election. Many will simply respond to talking points provided to them. I see it in spades in our area. These voters don't look for qualifications. Obama is an example. It's not too far-fetched to say this group would vote for a two-towed sloth if he were billed as T. T. Sloth (D).
- SPECIFIC VOTER BLOCS: Some of these will overlap with the 30%, others are additive.
- Jews: 80% normally vote Democrat. True, in spite of the NY 9th District vote and polls showing some will vote against Obama, as should be expected. Not additive.
Trial lawyers and their vast network: Nearly 90 % of their money goes to Democrats. So will their votes.
- Wall Street money center and investment bankers: YES. 80% of their votes and financial contributions have gone to Democrats for years. Obama got 80% from most in 2008. Partially additive to the 30%.
- Entertainment Industry: 80% (?). Anyone have a better number?
Teachers at all levels. 60-70%.
Monday, September 19, 2011
I was surprised by a statement attributed to Larry Summers saying the economic team was "home alone" with no adult supervision....[from the president.] What a dysfunctional administration, and it was all predictable in 2008.
A few know what "crony capitalism" means, but do the masses? Call it what it is. Fraud!
Then there is the ever-increasing evidence that Obama, and those surrounding him, have a socialist orientation. I suppose I was the first here locally to refer to Obama, in the press, as being largely undefined. Identifiable traits were only his speaking ability (prompted) and his socialist bent. Now, those who dare to characterize him and his people so, modify the characterization to European Socialism. Not Marxism, not fascism, not tyrannical totalitarianism.....no. Parsing? Not at all. Many people look at anything European as being good, even superior. To those of us who have been around the world a bit, we know this is a false impression. This may not mean to many readers what it means to me, but deception and dissembling have become the norm. It's wrong and a part of America's decline. Sad!
Sunday, September 18, 2011
Think about this. With some issues compromise may be appropriate. But, with most issues, absolutes of right and wrong, good and bad should prevail. Curtailing the massive spending beyond the capability of the national economy to provide jobs and commensurate tax revenue, with life-threatening indebtedness the result, is not an issue amenable to compromise. Think of it as two people in an automobile speeding toward a cliff, the driver going ever faster and the passenger urging to STOP! Driver says, "no deal, I'm going 100." Passenger has two options. Take control of the automobile or "compromise." So, they compromise to 50 mph ----- and die but more slowly. Such is the US budget and debt situation. Compromise is a false choice at best. When will Obama and his compliant congress, voters, pundits and others learn? There's no evidence they will.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
How can anyone be so stupid, if not stupid then dishonest, to say his major focus is to create jobs and concurrently have a goal to increase exports by 50% by 2015 and have his shill (Craig) in the NLRB prevent operations of an airplane plant that would employ 3,800 now and more later??? Our major exports are airplanes. It's even worse when they also rant about China when China is likely to be a big competitor in building airplanes. Yes, Mr. President, it is entirely possible that you are setting up China to help them do what they already want to do. I'm again reminded that he is "brilliant" -- by proclamation but not by demonstration.
But he's in the company of many more.
How many people even think about how many jobs, and whole industries, unions have destroyed? How many care??
Monday, September 12, 2011
ALL OF SUCH GOODS WOULD IMMEDIATELY BE PRICED UPWARD ACCORDINGLY. Suddenly Americans will pay 41% more for much of what they consume. In TRUMP's world he must not know that we no longer make these goods to substitute for imports.
Does Trump not know how painful such a move was under FDR or does he think it is, as a relative of mine does, that the thought is "conservative boiler plate." It surely isn't. It is simply a bit of truth....hard to find today.
Does Trump not know also that there are models for such tariffs and the effects on national economies.
Once again, another political statement to confuse those who apparently want to be misled. Their votes prove it.
Perhaps worse than the deliberate misleading of of people is the ABSOLUTE INCAPABILITY, OR UNWILLINGNESS, OF THOSE WITH LOUD MEGAPHONES TO ARTICULATE THE REAL REASONS FOR JOB LOSS AND LOSS OF WHOLE INDUSTRIES IN THE USA.
Friday, September 9, 2011
Oh, maybe Immelt's GE will pick up the slack). NO. GE is also paring back their GE Capital Unit (in that economy-controlling industry... and I just remembered. GE is also moving a whole division to China. But, to the unthinking, there is hope because Immelt is on Obama's job creation team!! He surely understands business and value creation! Right? But, I forget again. GE's valuation has dropped 50% in 10 years under Immelt's guidance. Obama's on-the-job CEO training just isn't working. He still doesn't know what a CEO does or how to evaluate the ones who do know. Like any CEO who selects only people like himself or people whom he can control, he will fail. So will Obama......but America will be the real loser. As a CEO and leader, Obama already is one.
Thursday, September 8, 2011
This was supposed to be a plan to "create jobs," which government cannot do. They can, however, do a lot of harm, which they have already done.
The focus is, as it has been, on small business. Normally this would be appropriate. BUT, THE OPERATIVE QUESTION FOR EVERYONE IS "HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE FOR EXISTING SMALL BUSINESS TO CREATE 14,000,000 JOBS TO GET TO NORMAL. HOW MANY NEW COMPANIES WILL BE FORMED TO HELP THE EXISTING ONES CREATE THESE JOBS? I have managed large operations in big businesses, with up to 54,000 employees, and I have both owned and managed small ones with employee levels of up to 450. Obama's assertions (not a plan yet) cannot do what he tells us in his dissembling style.
But, hold on. The details will be told next week and the way to "pay for the 'plan' will be told in 2 weeks."
I must conclude the "jobs" speech had little meaning except to transfer responsibility to Republicans and I must characterize it as PATHETIC CAMPAIGNING and in Obama style said NOTHING, BUT SAID IT WELL.
Recently, to a person who refused to accept the axiom I asked, "Have you ever seen a cardinal with a flock of starlings or sparrows?" Have you ever seen a vulture soaring with eagles?" And, more apropos, "Did you ever see an eagle cavorting with a bunch of vultures?" Birds of a feather do flock together.
Think about it.............and there isn't anything racist about any of this!
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Hoffa, is at this moment, railing about jobs, jobs........and jobs, and his and other unions have destroyed more industry and jobs than can be counted....but I will count them in other writes.
Biden's comment about opposition being "Barbarians at the Gate" is, likewise, as low as it goes. With Biden, it has always been expected. His IQ is clearly limited and his character is even more diminutive than his intellect.There was a time 3 years ago that more was expected from Obama. NO MORE! I'd surely like to see what was/is hidden in his sealed records.
Thanks Obama, Biden, Hoffa and others of your ilk for reminding me why I am doing what I am doing.
My AMERICA IS IN DECLINE, she is being attacked from outside but more ferociously from the inside, not only insidiously as expected, but blatantly open. Yes, the America we have known and cherished is dying at the hands of these people. The once proud and honorable Democratic Party, the party of a majority of my family as I grew up in hardscrabble rural West Virginia, has been highjacked by the sub-cultural and counter-cultural elements. Doubt it?? Look at what's really happening and ignore prejudicial thoughts and media-driven talking points. Not pretty!
OH BUT SECOND THOUGHT BRINGS REALITY. IT IS THE ELECTORATE THAT IS RESPONSIBLE. I said in 2008 that if Obama were to become president, it could be a permanent election. It is probable that this is coming true. In medical terms, OUR NATIONAL CONDITION IS CRITICAL and on life support and prognosis is not favorable. Tragic!!
Goldman Sachs is but one of the many (most) money center banks and investment bankers on Wall Street that have been very deep into Democratic politics, most recently in funding and supporting Obama. GS gave 80% of their political donations, nearly $5 million, to Obama in 2008. This company has long been very involved in the federal government, to the extent that in the industry there was a phrase, "government according to Sachs." Much of the commentary from the Obama administration about reigning in Wall Street is phoney and meant to confuse and mislead those who don't know the way Wall Street really operates. The administration's rhetoric is all a part of class warfare and subterfuge. Most people don't know that 80% of Wall Streeters have traditionally supported Democrats, irrespective of who the D is. Been there, seen it, felt it!! True. Unfortunately, too many people won't accept that and won't even make the effort to confirm it.
Monday, September 5, 2011
Unions are big businesses, for their managers and for Democrat politicians. More on this later, but please think about this. As you do, look at what has happened with public service unions in the US and then look at what they have done for other countries, starting with the PIIGS of the EU.
Also, as you think about this issue, there is the "thug" factor, as a Teamster member himself reminded me of just yesterday. I/we have experienced the thug factor, including an extortion attempt and death threats.....but more later. It's not as the media and politicians hype it to be. Please look at the facts.
Saturday, September 3, 2011
As for the Debt-to-GDP ratio, finally more people are reporting the true numbers. When I first drew attention the issue, even our governor, a friend, was quoting 64%. As I reported, the real debt:GDP when GDP was ~$14 trillion was 100%. Most recent estimate of GDP is closer $15 trillion, so the ratio is a bit less than 1:1. But, the new debt ceiling will rapidly take it to >100%....can't win!
The difference in what is quoted as 64-70% is essentially the "debt owed to ourselves" mostly IOUs in the SS trust fund. These are monies already owed by statute, and is money collected but diverted as loans (bonds on the balance sheet) into the general fund. The only way to discount this amount (~$5+ trillion) is to declare it won't be paid to current recipients or it will be monetized away....neither acceptable. It is what it is.
The additional amount of "debt" of ~$60 trillion is that projected to be owed under current laws to Medicare, Medicaid and SS recipients. So, this number is of different character, can change, and undoubtedly it will, with changes in the laws regulating these entitlements.... age requirements, means tests, max. amounts, colas, etc. Or, a tremendous growth in revenue!!! Not likely as I predict lack of growth in the economy. Of course, they can tax us more...and probably will.
So, as the statutes now set, the ratio of debt to GDP can be upped by that amount....legitimately.
I think you know this, but some will not. Thanks again for your interaction.
Undoubtedly, there will be change, but it will be very difficult. A big fight is coming.
Friday, September 2, 2011
Advance publicity suggests President Obama will present, on September 7, a program for infrastructure improvements. At best, this will be a temporary taxpayer-funded stimulant. It may win political points but will not be a solution to economic problems and sustained job creation. Structural problems in the economy preclude growth in jobs and GDP necessary to satisfy the voracious appetite of Obama and Democrats for taxes. Republicans' calls for targeted tax reduction aren't adequate either. No one indicates an understanding of the real nature of the economy today and the collapse of 2008. They blindly use the same metrics as in past business cycles that don't apply today. Past recessions in the “old” economy, had two factors in common. Energy prices and interest rates put pressure on consumers and/or businesses. Manufacturing was a major component of GDP. Recessions were initiated either by consumers curtailing consumption or businesses reducing capital expenditures. Inventories were reduced and jobs temporarily curtailed until equilibrium was reestablished. Today is different.
The “new” economy is controlled by the financial industry, fraught with excesses like those leading to the housing collapse in 2008. Consumption is 70% of GDP, yet manufacturing is down from 30% of GDP in the 60s to 10% today. Only 9% of jobs are now in manufacturing where the middle class prospered traditionally. We produce cars, airplanes, heavy equipment, chemicals, drugs and some IT products. We no longer produce essential consumer commodities, such as textiles, shoes, durable goods, electronics, home furnishings, etc. If Americans consume, they will buy many imported goods with no benefit to US jobs. Foreigners actually view the USA as a “retail economy.” It's not likely that large purchases, such as autos, will be a part of the average consumer's purchases under their current financial conditions. While there is a lot of hype about how the auto industry is recovering, sales are still down from 17 million units in 2007 to 12 million now, still requiring a 40+% increase to get back to “normal.” Won't happen soon! Obama acolytes are now promoting a 13 million/year sales rate as a great target. Consumers won't be buying airplanes or bulldozers either. It's sad but true that the “service industry” cannot provide jobs and sustain the economy. The Obama administration and advisers apparently don't understand this. Ignorance about the structure of the economy is inexcusable. Worse!
The false claims of the 80s and 90s were that the “service industry would save the US economy,” with constancy of growth, recession resistance, jobs and more. The 90s did boom and similar is needed now, but won't happen. Why? The period was atypical. The most ludicrous claims of those who now promote increased taxes is that “Clinton's tax increase created the boom.” Robert Rubin espoused this saying that the tax increase “took the pressure off the long bond.” Robert Reich's explanation was “investments in education and healthcare made workers more productive.” Utterly preposterous!
There's a lesson in the 90s, but the president and his advisers must not think it necessary to study it analytically and objectively. Or, they want to hide the truth. They rely on advice of academic economists and theory, albeit not only unproven but failed, surely inapplicable to current problems. In 2004, I researched, and wrote about, the 90s prosperity. A summary is pertinent, even necessary to understanding today's situation and the false information we're subjected to.
Oil price played its normal roll by increasing $20/barrel during the Gulf war and reducing by $30/barrel after the war. At 20 million barrels/day usage, this turned $400 million/day flow into oil (70% out of the US) into $600 million/day kept in the US economy. Interest rates participated also as The Fed lowered the fed funds rate from 9 3/4% to 3%. With rates near zero today, The Fed is out of interest rate ammunition. The internet boom poured billions of dollars into the economy, much of it wasted by inexperienced and inept managers, many of whom who failed, but money flowed. Telecom companies spent $60-80 Billion/year, mostly on fiber optics to support the internet. Capital flowed like rushing water. The internet is established and vital today, but will not supply the jobs once found in manufacturing. Capital “burn rate” became standard terminology. The Y2K “problem” pumped $440 billion into the US economy according to Dr. Leon Kappleman of the SIM Y2K Working Group. Then came the clincher for the 90s that led to the crisis of 2008. In 1994, Clinton's executive order to stimulate “housing for everyone”, a concession to Treasury Secretary Rubin's bankers under the auspices of the 1977 CRA, set up the sub-prime mortgage fiasco, the excesses of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the resultant fraud by Wall Street bankers. By 1995 the housing “bubble” grew to 4-fold previous sales. Then came the 2008 collapse. Much of this collapse will be long-lived, perhaps permanent. There's more, but this is enough to define the 90s and differentiate the period from today.
Obama's proposals aren't likely to solve structural problems to create growth, permanent jobs, capital formation or economic stability. If he and advisers don't understand the problems, they can't solve them. They can only do harm, and they are doing it. That's the dilemma we are in. It's a matter of inadequate leadership, lack of knowledge and just plain ineptitude. All Americans are victims.
Joe Mann, September 2,2011