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    Daily Digest 3/12 – Trump Proposes Record Budget, Lootings As Desperation Grows In Venezuela

    by DailyDigest

    Tuesday, March 12, 2019, 6:35 AM

Economy

Trump Proposes a Record $4.75 Trillion Budget (Thomas R.)

Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, called the proposal “a gut punch to the American middle class.” He said Mr. Trump’s requested cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, “as well as numerous other middle-class programs, are devastating, but not surprising.”

Trump 2020 budget projects big deficits despite spending cuts (Sparky1)

With the 2020 campaign on the horizon, the blueprint gives Trump a chance to tout his attempt to fund conservative priorities and deliver deep cuts to domestic spending programs that would be popular with his political base.

Alongside a 5% boost to defense spending, the plan calls for $2.7 trillion in cuts to federal spending by slashing the budgets for a host of federal departments and agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Education and State Department, among others.

Venezuela power cut: Lootings as desperation grows (Sparky1)

Little wonder some are ready to snap. “I have a two-year-old son. Yesterday evening there was nothing to eat,” Majorie says, visibly angry outside a supermarket in the Terrazas del Club Hípico neighbourhood in Caracas.

The U.S. Blamed Maduro for Burning Aid to Venezuela. New Video Casts Doubt. (Sparky1)

Video

What If Politics Can’t Fix What’s Broken? (thc0655)

Government can mandate this and that, but it can’t force a negative return on investment (ROI) to magically become positive. Government can prohibit and tax and force outward compliance, but it can’t force people to agree with policies that run counter to their beliefs.

“Now Is the Time of Monsters” (thc0655)

It’s also true that, when empires get into economic trouble that’s too far gone for any viable solution, a trick that’s always employed by political leaders to keep the citizens from removing them from their seats of power, is to start a war. A people will, if they believe their homeland is in peril, accept the “temporary” removal of their freedoms.

China database lists ‘breedready’ status of 1.8 million women (Sparky1)

The database, whose server is in China, included fields labeled in English for sex, age, education, marital status, as well as a column titled “BreedReady”, which could be a poor translation of Chinese terms to describe whether a woman has children or is of child-bearing age, observers noted. It was taken down late on Monday afternoon local time, according to Gevers.

The Hidden Decline Of The Gold Mining Industry That No One Is Talking About (Thomas R.)

For those new to reading my work, simply put, the Falling EROI is nothing more than the decline in vital net energy for the global economy. The United States was producing oil in the 1930s at a staggering 100/1 EROI. Thus, the oil industry delivered 100 barrels of oil to the market for the energy cost of one barrel. By 1970, this fell to 30/1 and today; the U.S. Shale Oil Ponzi Scheme is producing oil at less than 5/1 EROI.

The BIS and The GLD – Craig Hemke (11/03/2019) (Alex M.)

If you’re an avid follower of the precious metals, then you no doubt noticed the tremendous rally that prices experienced over the 100 days from November 14 through February 20. Global equity market weakness, falling interest rates and a change in Fed policy all combined to send the COMEX gold price higher by 11.6%, from $1210 to $1350 over this time period.

Political science’s “Theory of everything” (thc0655)

The people at the highest levels of these institutions see each other socially and look after one another by doing each other favours because they not only serve together on the boards of directors of corporations, charitable organisations, and other bodies, but they also share a mutuality of life experiences, educational backgrounds, and economic situations. This self-interest is of course to the detriment of the American people who they derogatively refer to as the masses.

Socialist Revolution: The Price Capitalism Pays When Greed Goes Unrestrained (thc0655)

All are rebellions forming against a greedy, unsinkable establishment that has managed to stuff 80% or more of the nation’s wealth into the pockets of 10% of the people. So, that, to me, is where we need to focus our attention. We need to correct the deep economic flaws that are energizing all of this.

U.S. Oil Production Is Headed For A Quick Decline (Michael S.)

Data on bank lending and statistics issued by futures authorities provide some advance indication of the planning decisions of farmers. The amount of bank loans issued to them gives an indication of crop size. Increases in open interest for futures such as corn during the spring also provide a signal as to future production.

Radical plan to artificially cool Earth’s climate could be safe, study finds (Sparky1)

One scientist who read the paper published on Monday said it was not comprehensive enough to conclude that solar geoengineering – most likely involving spraying sulphur dioxide into the atmosphere, thereby mimicking gas from volcanoes and reflecting the sun’s heat – would be safe.

Some climate advocacy groups argue that banking on an unproven technology could hamstring efforts to reduce carbon dioxide still spewing from power plants and cars.

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2 Comments

  • Tue, Mar 12, 2019 - 9:50am

    #1

    cmartenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4471

    I hope you like ketchup...

    This video from Venezuela is funny and tragic at the same time.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=59DcWJbsLYo
    Note the amazing product selection! (Ketchup only starts at ~ 30 seconds in)
    This is why monetary policy matters.  This could be your future if you let your central bank ruin it.

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  • Tue, Mar 12, 2019 - 10:02am

    #2

    cmartenson

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4471

    CHS - The Pie is Shrinking

    Here’s a great piece by Charles Hugh Smith that everyone should read:

    Here’s The Problem: The Pie Is Shrinking
    At that point, the only way to enable debt-serfs to service their debts is too give them free money, i.e. Universal Basic Income (UBI).
    Scrape away the churn and distraction and the problem is simple: the pie of prosperity is shrinking, and the “fixes” are failing. The status quo arrangement is based on the endless expansion of “growth” and debt, which is the monetary fuel of more, more, more of everything: money, energy, resources, goods, services, jobs, wealth and income, all of which make up the elixir of prosperity.
    Prosperity is shorthand for a positive return on investment (ROI), a.k.a. primary surplus. Prosperity is the result of there being a surplus which can be distributed after capital, resources and labor are put to work.
    The higher the return on investment, the more surplus there is to distribute. When the surplus is bountiful, there’s enough to go around for everyone to feel that life is getting better.
    But all systems eventually track an S-Curve of rapid growth, maturation and depletion/decline, and surpluses diminish: the pie stops expanding and starts shrinking. There’s less to go around, and suddenly the political squabbling intensifies as every elite and every constituency seeks to preserve their slice of the pie at the expense of others.
    This means shifting the losses of purchasing power and prosperity onto others without appearing to do so. Openly ripping a slice from the grasping hands of another elite or constituency will launch a protracted political battle, as every group will fight to the death to keep its share untouched.

    The emphasis is mine.
    Well put Charles!
    The pie is shrinking and everyone wants to get “their fair share.”  MMT is an extension of trying to rememdy the effects of a shrinking pie.  It may feel better for a while for many (but not the elites) but it cannot remedy the larger issue that prosperity does not flow from money!
    It flows from “the result of there being a surplus which can be distributed after capital, resources and labor are put to work.”
    If resources are getting scarcer, and they are, then different schemes for dividing up that pie are just that; schemes.
     

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