Ron Paul calls out the Plunge Protection Team on CNBC. I don’t think I’ve ever heard it mentioned on financial television. Seriously anyway.
And boy is he right. There is an assumption that the Fed will never let stocks (and other assets) revert to real levels.
The thing is the Fed for all its power is still subject to the laws of thermodynamics, just like the rest of us. That is, even the mighty central bank will feel the sting of its hubris.
Of course so will the rest of the planet. Which let me tell you is a real bummer.
Some surprises here. Did not know that Long and Foster, a real estate broker was the largest business in Virginia.
There was a time when I had more time and I used to play poker sort of seriously. I still play occasionally. I enjoy the game. I find it endless in nuance and full of lessons about life.
As Kenny Rogers says, know when to hold ’em, when to fold ’em, when to walk away, and when to run. (Though I would say that if you ever find yourself running away from a poker game it’s probably time to consider another pastime.)
Poker, real poker, is a great analogy for life. Some of us come to the table with big stacks. Some of us come to the table with small stacks. Big (tall) stacks are a huge advantage. Small stacks are harder to work with.
Now why oh why oh why would McDonalds, which is under pressure from the marketplace (my kids refuse to eat at McDonalds – I still like an egg McMuffin on occasion) and the unions which are whining that fast food workers aren’t paid enough (really they just want the minimum wage adjusted up so union wages will be adjusted up) hire an Obama insider to build a revamped “progressive” burger joint?
Shoot, I’ll tell McDonalds how to do it right here. For free.
It is fair to say that the Republic is in serious peril and that this president has done GREAT damage to this country.
The silver lining to the Obama presidency has been that many people have finally become aware of what our system of government is supposed to look like. Many more people have read the Constitution since Obama came in than before. For too long Americans took our system for granted. It has taken an accelerated assault on the Bill of Rights and our founding document generally – from the White House – to wake at least a large minority up.
Crony capitalism is bipartisan, transpartisan even.
Though there is a general rule which holds, and that is that the degree to which a politician enables the state is the degree to which that politician will probably enable cronyism. The bigger the government the more crony the government. It’s just the way it is.
The only real way to fight crony capitalism is to lesson the catalyst which makes crony capitalism possible, government. There is no “electing good people” to government and then having a large government “work for the people.” Government corrupts. It is at best a necessary evil. For the most part, get it out of the way.
It is often said that the state is not that much different from a mafia. This is true and it’s not true. But to the extent it is true can be seen in the horrible business climate in Tegucigalpa Honduras.
Want to do business? Pay a crippling tax. Don’t pay the tax? Meet Mr. Bullet.
In the USA thankfully entrepreneurs are rarely shot by the government. But they are shaken down for taxes. And they can go to jail for not paying taxes.
Tim Carney is our colleague at AEI. He has long done excellent work on crony capitalism.
I remember sitting in my car in college listening to Howard Stern on the radio before class sometime in 2000. Howard and his crew were talking about the stock market which was roaring. The Tech Bubble was in full effect. The sky was the limit. If you weren’t in the market you were losing out. It was a similar vibe to the Housing Bubble which would emerge only a few years later.
Stern took a call from a listener.
The caller, who sounded like he might have been on the tail end of a serious bender explained in candid terms that he was affiliated with some unsavory characters and that he and his unsavory friends were manipulating the market up. He said there was little under the prices of many of the stocks which were rising at breakneck speed.
In a few months we would see how right that caller was.
This is from the Huffington Post via HigherPerspective.com.
Tech is pretty much the least regulated part of our economy. Is it any wonder why such miracles have been born? Just imagine the innovation which could be released in other parts of the economy if we allowed it.
The natural tendency is for prices to fall for consumers in a free economy. In a restricted and managed economy the goal is always to have at least a bit of inflation. That way the debt game keeps rolling.
So the Kochs are going to spend a billion (on think tanks, etc.) in the next election. You know what? I don’t care.
Why Nick? You’re against crony capitalism. Super rich guys spending money on elections doesn’t concern you?
On one level it does. One should always keep a close eye on anyone throwing money around in the political sphere. If the Kochs ever try to buy a law for their benefit, if they ever posture for a crony handout paid for by the taxpayers we will be the first to highlight them.
But it’s not like the Kochs are trying to get the state to work on their behalf. They aren’t trying to leverage the power of the government for their ends.They aren’t like Tom Styer for instance, the biggest political giver of the last cycle who wants specific legislation enacted which will benefit his bottom line in addition to his political aims. The Kochs simply want a smaller state and that in my book is a very admirable thing.
As we have noted for a while, the Ultimate Crony Capitalist state, China, is seeing very rough waters economically. A massive property bubble (and bust) fueled by Keynesian shortsightedness, not unlike the one we experienced here a few years ago, but much bigger is gripping the country. The Chinese dream is “maturing.” For the first time since emerging from the insanity of Mao the PRC is experiencing real economic pain.
Late last year we asked if the Democratic party really wanted to become THE corporatist party. Well, the Dems have a new friend in DC, the good ole’ US Chamber of Commerce.
This op-ed was written by a colleague of mine in San Francisco, Bill Shireman. His organization, Future 500 is a client.
I have written a number of times about the City by the Bay at ACC. It is a fascinating place. A refuge for the weird and for the rich and for the weird and rich. Jammed onto the tip of a peninsula, space is at a serious premium. Throw in a government which is very very “liberal” and all sorts of strange economic phenomena occur.
It’s hard to start a business. It takes skill, capital, tolerance of risk, and just good old hard work. Layer the red tape on top of all the things a business owner must contend with in the marketplace these days and it’s not surprising that we are losing more businesses than we are creating as an economy.