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    Daily Digest – July 1

    by Davos

    Wednesday, July 1, 2009, 2:44 PM

  • 60,000 Deaths, and the Story of Dendreon (Chapter 1 of 15)
  • Euro-Zone New Orders Plunge (Chart)
  • The Cap and Tax Fiction
  • Friday Massacre: (Week 18) Bank Seizures 41-45 ($1,004,000,000.00)
  • Wave #2 (Chart of Alt A’s and Option Arms Coming Due)
  • Counterpoint to the ‘Green Shoots’ Spin
  • More Americans picking up work on farms (H/T DPS)
  • Why "Jobless Recovery" is an oxymoron (Chart Delinquency Rate)
  • States brace for shutdowns
  • Debasing the Currency is Leading to Financial Collapse . . . Just As It Has for Thousands of Years
  • What currency are they purchasing commodities with? (Video, Soros)


60,000 Deaths, and the Story of Dendreon (Chapter 1 of 15)

For some months Mark Mitchell has been working on his next piece. It has grown into something massive, about the length of The Story of Deep Capture. It concerns Dendreon. I read it for the first time a few days ago. It is semi-infuriating. Deep Capture is going to serialize it. The first piece will be going up within hours.

Normally we encourage people to quote any DeepCapture piece in full anywhere on the Internet. This time, however, I would appreciate it if people would show Mark Mitchell a little courtesy by not quoting his piece in full. Fair Use, and all that. If you like what you read, try to drive others to DeepCapture to read it. Mark has gone way down the rabbit hole, and I think it only fair to thank him by showing him this respect.

Euro-Zone New Orders Plunge (Chart)

The Cap and Tax Fiction

When the Heritage Foundation did its analysis of Waxman-Markey, it broadly compared the economy with and without the carbon tax. Under this more comprehensive scenario, it found Waxman-Markey would cost the economy $161 billion in 2020, which is $1,870 for a family of four. As the bill’s restrictions kick in, that number rises to $6,800 for a family of four by 2035.

Friday Massacre: Bank Seizures 41-45 ($1,004,000,000.00)

“Five U.S. banks with total assets of about $1.04 billion were seized by regulators, pushing this year’s tally of failures to 45 as a recession drives up unemployment and home foreclosures.

Wave #2 (Chart of Alt A’s and Option Arms Coming Due)

Alt-A and Option ARM Economic Disaster Update: California Solution? Workout 3,430 Alt-A loans in March. Good Job. All we have is an additional 643,000 Alt-A Loans in the State. At this Rate it will take us 15 years to Modify or Alter all Alt-A Loans

That is why when people ask me, “should I buy now in a semi-prime location?” I can only shake my head. Why buy now? The largest X-factor is looming less than a year away and you want to jump in to swim with the sharks? What I have realized is psychologically, many people still believe in the bubble. When I created the title of this blog, Dr. Housing Bubble – How I Learned to Love SoCal and Forget the Housing Bubble I was word playing with an old Stanley Kubrick film.

Dilbert, Buy Now or Wait? (Cartoon)

Counterpoint to the ‘Green Shoots’ Spin

The Flopeye Cafe in Great Falls, South Carolina has at least a dozen forms of fried on its menu. I order two: breaded squash with tater tots. The server chuckles as I bemoan my lack of restraint. Laughter comes easy for Rebecca Polston, as do the tears after she sits down to talk to me.

The 30-year-old South Carolina native has never had an easy life. Over the past year, the recession consumed what little material comfort and financial stability she did enjoy.

Her husband Charles lost his job as a heavy machine operator last summer after the slowing real estate market put the brakes on new construction. The couple spent a few fruitless months job hunting near their home in the Charlotte, NC metropolitan-area before accepting that they would need to make some major changes if they were to survive the recession.

Charles’s family in Great Falls–a hardscrabble town of 2,000 about an hour south of Charlotte–found a 4-bedroom house renting for $325 a month–$200 less than the Polston’s were paying in Rock Hill. So just before Thanksgiving, Rebecca packed up their life in the city and moved to the country with her husband, three young children, and the 23-year-old brother she has cared for most of his life.

"We thought coming down here close to family we could pool our resources. Live close together. Help each other out. Make it a little easier for everyone. We did what we thought was best to survive and get through this recession," she says.

Country living is less expensive, and having a local support network of family does help. A niece helps take care of the kids, and an aunt loaned her a car when hers developed a problem too expensive to repair right now. With an unemployment rate of 21.8% in their new home county of Chester, however, the move has not proven a panacea for their problems.

More Americans picking up work on farms (H/T DPS)

Farmers can use what’s called the H-2A program to recruit foreign workers to do temporary or seasonal work here in the U.S.

From July to September of 2008, there were 171 H2-A jobs posted. Thirty-nine Americans applied for those positions.

The very next quarter, in the final three months of 2008, 887 Americans applied for the 981 H-2A available. And as unemployment jumped at the beginning of 2009, so did applications from Americans; 1,799 applied for 726 jobs. That means instead of the jobs being filled by foreign or migrant workers, they are mostly going to U.S. residents.

"A lot of the American workers are now applying for farm jobs that maybe they may not have applied for in the past," said Olga Ruiz, state monitor advocate with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. "People who started out in agriculture or even field labor who got out of that field maybe went into construction or other types of work, who maybe got laid off for whatever reason, decided they wanted to go back to farm work, because it’s a paycheck and they need it."

Condon posted two farm hand positions on Craigslist in April. He said he had to turn people away. Thirty-eight people applied.

"We had people with doctorates, we had people with masters degrees we had people with all sorts of different career backgrounds," he said. "Carpenters, people who’ve worked on farms in other countries, people who have managed museums, all sorts of things you would never suspect you would find on a farm labor application."

Why "Jobless Recovery" is an oxymoron (Chart Delinquency Rate)

States brace for shutdowns

Reporting from Indianapolis and Denver — The last time Indiana missed its deadline for passing a budget and had to shut down the government was during the Civil War.

But on Monday, as lawmakers raced to hammer out an agreement over school funding, state agencies began preparing 31,000 workers to be temporarily out of a job. Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels has warned residents that most of the state’s services — including its parks, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and state-regulated casinos — would be shuttered unless a budget is passed today.

Indiana is one of five states — along with Arizona, California, Mississippi and Pennsylvania — bracing for possible shutdowns this week as time runs out for lawmakers to close billion-dollar gaps in their fiscal 2010 budgets.

Of the 46 states whose fiscal year ends today, 32 did not have budgets passed and approved by their governors as of Monday afternoon, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Debasing the Currency is Leading to Financial Collapse . . . Just As It Has for Thousands of Years

In a fascinating 22-page study [haven’t read it yet, skimmed it, looks good] of money and currency, Christopher Weber shows that every government – from Athens, to pre-collapse Rome, to the Islamic countries in the Middle Ages – which stuck to the Greek standard of coins has been stable and prosperous.

Specifically, the Athenian Drachma contained 65.6 grains of silver. Even after Greece declined as a superpower, its currency remained stable.

The Roman Denarius, Byzantine Bezant, and Islamic Dinar all copied the Drachma, using around 65.6 grains of gold or silver in their coins.

What currency are they purchasing commodities with? (Video, Soros)

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