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Daily Digest 12/29 - The Art Of Changing Minds, Has The OPEC Rally Gone Too Far?

Thursday, December 29, 2016, 9:31 AM

Economy

The Trump Penalty (jdargis)

Could Trump-touting financial experts—like, ahem, possible Trump appointee Larry Kudlow—be right that the president-elect’s proposed tax cuts will ensure that “everyone’s a winner”?

He auctioned off the pistol that killed Trayvon Martin. She watched her child die in a mass shooting. Can they change each other’s minds about guns? (jdargis)

The project of trying to force people from opposing sides to empathize with one another was quixotic, almost risible in its earnestness. Paul Bloom, a psychologist at Yale, recently published a book titled Against Empathy in which he argues that the current cultural impulse to regard empathy as a panacea for society’s problems is misguided. Bloom makes the case that empathic decisions, such as donating to the organization that makes you “feel” the most for its cause, can be both ill-conceived and inefficient. Empathy privileges the one over the many and personal experience over data. “It’s because of empathy that the whole world cares more about a baby stuck in a well than about global warming,” he told me.

A New Dow High? (GE Christenson)

Global debt growth is outrageous and clearly out of control, central banks overtly encourage consumer price inflation, bond monetization and QE have become normal, the Dow sits at all-time highs and gold has fallen 40% from its highs. The reasonable expectation is the price of gold will rally substantially, and probably the DOW will correct in 2017.

Police-led Placement Greatly Outpaces Other Methods of Addiction Treatment and Placement (Chris M.)

The authors successfully reached the majority of first year program participants and asked them a series of question and to describe their experience in the Gloucester ANGEL Initiative. The results also highlight the human compassion component that has been the hallmark of the program since its inception. The ANGEL Initiative requires that all persons coming into the police station to seek help be treated with respect and dignity.

“The astounding fact is that people came to the police station for help, and they got it,” Rosenbloom said. “In our follow-up calls, participants told us that the police station was the first place they had ever sought help without being judged and stigmatized.”

The Battle For Bonds (Tiffany D.)

In that world, Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, so-called TIPS bonds, will do well because the principal value of the bond increases with the rate of inflation, as tracked by the Consumer Price Index. (Yes, there are substantial flaws with that index, but that’s a different dispatch.) Thus, where a traditional Treasury returns the original principal you invested, a TIPS bond returns more.

TIPS also pay a fixed interest rate semiannually, but that rate is applied to the increasing principal. So, as inflation rises, so, too, do the semiannual payments.

Has The OPEC Rally Gone Too Far? (Josh O.)

The OPEC deal is set to take effect in a few days, but the promised cuts are not inevitable. First, the cuts are an average over a six-month period, and won’t be delivered immediately in January. Second, some cheating is to be expected, as OPEC has a long track record of non-compliance. Third, non-OPEC cuts, particularly from Russia, are also not a given. It will take time to see if participating countries actually deliver reductions, but the oil markets should be more skeptical than they have been to date.

Up To Here: When Tumbleweeds Attack (Merle2)

At first, I was focusing on tumbleweed attacks as a way to talk about drought and climate change. Over time, an added dimension crept into the work: I realized that this plant has won a measure of acceptance as it puts down roots in the communities it calls home. That's where all the weird cultural stuff comes in.

As for the nuisance level, it varies significantly by year and location. I end up in many communities with folklore about that one time when the tumbleweeds stormed through.

As China’s Largest Freshwater Lake Shrinks, Solution Faces Criticism (jdargis)

Water levels in the lake have always fluctuated radically between the summer rains and winter dryness, but there is now concern that the levels are off balance. Culprits include the Three Gorges Dam, which stores water upstream on the Yangtze for winter electricity generation, lowering a nearby river channel and sucking water from the lake. Dredging to collect sand for construction projects has also lowered the lake’s bed and caused more runoff. This year, drought turned much of the lake into grassy plains.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 12/28/16

Provided daily by the Peak Prosperity Gold & Silver Group

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

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saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
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Study: Illinois' Fiscal Mess Will Take a Decade to Fix

 

Study: Illinois' Fiscal Mess Will Take a Decade to Fix

Chicago Tonight | WTTW-15 hours ago
This study pegs the current budget deficit at $11 billion across all funds, and concludes that it's only going to get worse if lawmakers don't come together and ...

Bad news for homeowners: Chicago teachers' pension liability may ...

Chicago City Wire-22 hours ago
The $7,500-per-household figure considers only unfunded teachers pensions, without including the myriad other pensions supported by Chicago and Cook ...

China's central bank denies yuan broke 7.0000/dollar on Dec. 28 - microblo...

Reuters UK - ‎14 hours ago‎
Persistent downward pressure on the yuan has contributed to large capital outflows this year and the central bank has spent some of its foreign exchange reserves to support the currency's value. The yuan edged weaker against the dollar on Wednesday in ...

Hunger is driving up crime in Venezuela as violence hits new highs, report says

Miami Herald - ‎20 hours ago‎
Venezuela's violence hit new peaks in 2016 amid a breakdown in the law enforcement and judicial systems and a spike in hunger-related crimes, a leading nonprofit reported Wednesday. According to the Observatory of Venezuelan Violence, or OVV, the ...

Venezuela military trafficking food as millions in the country go hungry

Chicago Tribune - ‎Dec 28, 2016‎
With much of the oil country on the verge of starvation and malnourished children dying in pediatric wards, food trafficking has become big business in Venezuela. And the military is at the heart of the graft, according to documents and interviews with ...

CalPERS rate change ripples out to Lodi, other cities in state

Lodi News-Sentinel - ‎8 hours ago‎
... Employees' Retirement System to lower the assumed rate of return on investments has placed a larger financial burden on cities, including Lodi, and left local officials and leaders wondering how they are going to fund the rapidly rising costs of ...
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sand_puppy
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Just before Good News Friday starts in a few minutes ...

Michael Rivero, ever watching the machinations of deep state, posts this. 

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LesPhelps
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Posts: 811
Texas Fracking

I drive across the Texas, Permian Basin oil play once or twice a year.  I just crossed it yesterday.  Fracking activity was down in April of this year.  As of yesterday oil workers have become scarce.  Closed businesses are everywhere, including abandoned steel buildings along the highway and empty three story hotels built in the last few years.  Work trucks and semis carrying Fracking related loads caused traffic jams two years ago.  Today they are scarce.  All the drilling rigs are sitting idle in Midland.

The Feds QE policy has destroyed more than the markets.  It has visibly altered our country.  We will get to watch the abandoned factories, businesses and support structures in West Texas rust and decay for the next 50+ years.

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