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    Daily Digest – August 18

    by Davos

    Tuesday, August 18, 2009, 2:40 PM

  • Two Beers With Steve – Unsustainable Trends Eventually End with Nathan Martin
  • True Green Shoots: New battery could change world, one house at a time (H/T JoeManC)
  • Zimbabwe Bus Fare is 3 Trillion Dollars
  • Bond Guru Bill Gross Living Large in California (Video on page)
  • Anemic Foreign Bond Sales: Foreigners’ Cumulative 12-Month Net Purchases-Sales of U.S. Assets (Chart)
  • Americans Had to Work from January 1 to August 12 This Year Just to Cover Cost of Government (Repost, H/T DrKurbyLuv)
  • China to Buy $2 Billion Worth of US Mortgages (H/T PineCarr)
  • Why “Normal” WILL NOT Return (Video, Repost)
  • “Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt” – Mark Twain
  • Barney Frank Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee (Video)
  • Faber Video: Big Crisis Ahead
  • WSJ: Loss Rates for FDIC higher than during S&L Crisis
  • Labor Day to Halloween Fright Show
  • “Self-Preservation” Bodes Ill for U.S. Economy

Economy

Two Beers With Steve – Unsustainable Trends Eventually End with Nathan Martin

We talk with Nathan Martin of the website ‘Nathans Economic Edge’, one of the many excellent blogs on the internet trumpeting the problems in our financial system and how the problems still persist despite all the government intervention.

During our one hour talk we try to look back on the events that led us down the road to our national insolvency. We also explored many of the problems that still exist and will exist unless something… ‘happens’. It was an excellent conversation with Nathan and we look forward to talking with again in the future.

True Green Shoots: New battery could change world, one house at a time (H/T JoeManC)

In a modest building on the west side of Salt Lake City, a team of specialists in advanced materials and electrochemistry has produced what could be the single most important breakthrough for clean, alternative energy since Socrates first noted solar heating 2,400 years ago.

The prize is the culmination of 10 years of research and testing — a new generation of deep-storage battery that’s small enough, and safe enough, to sit in your basement and power your home.

It promises to nudge the world to a paradigm shift as big as the switch from centralized mainframe computers in the 1980s to personal laptops. But this time the mainframe is America’s antiquated electrical grid; and the switch is to personal power stations in millions of individual homes.

Former energy secretary Bill Richardson once disparaged the U.S. electrical grid as “third world,” and he was painfully close to the mark. It’s an inefficient, aging relic of a century-old approach to energy and a weak link in national security in an age of terrorism.

Taking a load off the grid through electricity production and storage at home would extend the life of the system and avoid the expenditure of tens, or even hundreds, of billions to make it “smart.”

The battery breakthrough comes from a Salt Lake company called Ceramatec, the R&D arm of CoorsTek, a world leader in advanced materials and electrochemical devices. It promises to reduce dependence on the dinosaur by hooking up with the latest generation of personalized power plants that draw from the sun.

Zimbabwe Bus fare is 3 Trillion Dollars (From The Coming Depression Blog)

HARARE, Zimbabwe – A woman pays her bus fare with 3 trillion in old Zimbabwe dollars — the equivalent of 50 U.S. cents.

Bond Guru Bill Gross Living Large in California (Video on page)

Its amazing what you can buy when you offer to work for the government for free!

Anemic Foreign Bond Sales: Foreigners’ Cumulative 12-Month Net Purchases-Sales of U.S. Assets (Chart)

Americans Had to Work from January 1 to August 12 This Year Just to Cover Cost of Government (Repost, H/T DrKurbyLuv)

Washington (CNSNews.com) – Americans had to work from January 1 until August 12 this year just to cover the cost of government. That is 26 days more than they had to work last year to cover the cost of government.

“Cost of Government Day” this year fell on Wednesday, August 12, according to Americans for Tax Reform, the conservative group that calculates when the day occurs. Cost of Government Day is the day in the year when the American people have earned enough income to pay the total cost of the spending and regulatory burden imposed by government at the federal, state, and local level.

The August 12 date is 26 days later than Cost of Government Day came last year, when it fell on July 16.

In fact, this is the first time the day has fallen in August. Until this year, July 20 was the latest date marking Cost of Government Day. That happened in 1982.

China to Buy $2 Billion Worth of US Mortgages (H/T PineCarr)

China Investment Corp, the country’s $200 billion sovereign wealth fund, is set to pour up to $2 billion soon into the U.S. mortgage system by hiring mandates under the U.S. Treasury-backed Public-Private Investment Plan (PPIP), sources told Reuters.

Why “Normal” WILL NOT Return (Video)

“Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt” -Mark Twain

House Financial Services Committee hearing, Sept. 10, 2003:

Rep. Barney Frank (D., Mass.): I worry, frankly, that there’s a tension here. The more people, in my judgment, exaggerate a threat of safety and soundness, the more people conjure up the possibility of serious financial losses to the Treasury, which I do not see. I think we see entities that are fundamentally sound financially and withstand some of the disaster scenarios. . . .

Rep. Maxine Waters (D., Calif.), speaking to Housing and Urban Development Secretary Mel Martinez:

Secretary Martinez, if it ain’t broke, why do you want to fix it? Have the GSEs [government-sponsored enterprises] ever missed their housing goals?

Barney Frank Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee (Video)

[video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iW5qKYfqALE&feature=player_embedded]

Faber Video: Big Crisis Ahead

WSJ: Loss Rates for FDIC higher than during S&L Crisis

For the 102 banks that have collapsed in the past two years, the FDIC’s estimated cost averaged 34%. That is sharply higher than the 24% rate between 1989 and 1995, when 747 financial institutions were closed by regulators … At three of the five banks that failed Friday, increasing the total to 77 so far this year, the financial hit to the agency’s deposit-insurance fund is expected by the FDIC to be about 50% of their assets.

The numbers for the Community Bank of Nevada, Las Vegas, Nevada are amazing. From the FDIC on Friday:

As of June 30, 2009, Community Bank of Nevada had total assets of $1.52 billion … The cost to the FDIC’s Deposit Insurance Fund is estimated to be $781.5 million.

The question is: Why is the FDIC waiting so long on banks like Community Bank of Nevada?

Labor Day to Halloween Fright Show

And no one knows why.

“Self-Preservation” Bodes Ill for U.S. Economy

Thanks to Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, U.S. governments, businesses and citizens were totally unprepared for the current economic collapse. It was Bernanke who first told Americans that he and the other banksters had created a “Goldilocks economy” where stock and home prices would always go up and never go down, and jobs would be plentiful.

Then, when the magnitude of the U.S. housing “bubble” grew large enough for all to see, Bernanke promised America a “soft landing” – vowing that when the largest asset-bubble in history burst that it would have virtually no impact on the U.S. economy.

 

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