Merk 2018 Outlook (Axel M.)
Without a doubt, equities have had an extra-ordinary run. There is the view that, without a recession, you cannot have a bear market. In our analysis, that’s true for the most part – but is “for the most part” good enough? The notable exception is the Crash of 1987 where a bear market was not accompanied by a recession. In today’s context, the buy-the-dip crowd will remind you that the ’87 crash was, well, a buying opportunity. As such, if you are an asset manager interested in keeping your job, you buy. It reminds of the 1980s where buying IBM office equipment was the sure way to keep your job, as no one would question your choice. Here’s a chart that shows the S&P 500 with the percent drawdown from any peak, with recessions shaded:
But while reports so far have focused on bad actors flooding the FCC with phony content, some of those same techniques also allowed legitimate groups, like the Electronic Frontier Foundation, to tell their members to click a button and send an auto-generated—albeit earnest—comment to the FCC, creating a groundswell of activism among actual humans. The result: A net neutrality comment period that garnered more input from the public than all previous comment periods across all government agencies—combined.
Lake Chad is the principal life source of the Sahel, a semiarid band that spans the width of Africa and separates the Sahara, in the north, from the savanna, in the south. Around a hundred million people live there. For the next two decades, the entire region was stricken with drought and famine. The rivers feeding into Lake Chad dried up, and the islanders noticed a permanent decline in the size and the number of fish.
Americans have had it up to here with free trade. It’s all a public relations hoax aimed at enriching a few fatcat corporate honchoes at the expense of people who actually work for a living. Everyone knows that, just like they know that Hillary was a free trade proponent before she pulled the old switcheroo. Her vacillating position on trade just underscored her abject phoniness on any issue of substance. The woman would say anything if she thought it would win her a couple of votes.
Middle East Tensions Near Boiling Point (Michael K.)
Analysts are watching this GCC meeting with anticipation. Hope for a détente between the fighting parties, however, is over. Instead of a political thaw, the armies are currently being called to the barracks for preparation of further action. The old adagio of “war is politics by other means” could now become a fact of life in the region. Without a real declaration, most GCC members have called it a day, and ended their participation of the Kuwait meeting two days earlier than planned. A crisis of unknown order could happen in front of our eyes.
This Is Tesla’s Real Business (It Isn’t Sports Cars) (Tiffany D.)
And — thanks to utility regulators’ overly aggressive mothballing of coal-fired power plants — it also left power companies with no way to fill the gap on days of peak demand when everyone has their air-conditioners cranked to the max.
Enter Musk and Tesla. In roughly 100 days’ time, the company deployed 129 megawatts’ worth of its utility-scale Powerpack battery storage units.
Rosmann, an Iowa farmer, is a psychologist and one of the nation’s leading farmer behavioral health experts. He often answers phone calls from those in crisis. And for 40 years, he has worked to understand why farmers take their lives at such alarming rates – currently, higher rates than any other occupation in the United States.
Imagining the Jellyfish Apocalypse (blackeagle)
How appealing it is to fashion metaphors out of a jellyfish. The animal is all stimulus, sensuousness without consciousness. Such evanescent creatures pose none of the anthropomorphizing complications of, say, octopuses. An octopus will regard you with features that resemble a face, and an intelligence that we’ve been advised is akin to that of dogs and dolphins. Most jellyfish are see-through, so we can tell they don’t have minds of their own to speak of. Eyeless, bloodless, brainless—jellyfish are more than alien enough to comfortably objectify.
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