Daily Digest

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Daily Digest 10/12 - Inflation Ignorance, The Coming Software Apocalypse

Thursday, October 12, 2017, 10:29 AM

Economy

Inflation Ignorance - Missing The Systemic Decline In Quality, Utility, Durability, And Service (Don R.)

While the BLS website makes mention of the possibility that hedonic quality adjustments occasionally go the other way, i.e. quality has declined, it's clear this almost never happens. "Innovations" are always improvements.

I propose we start tracking anhedonic quality adjustments, i.e. significant declines in quality, durability, utility and the pleasure derived from the product or service. (Anhedonia: inability to experience pleasure from activities usually found enjoyable.)

American Kakistocracy (blackeagle)

Awful as the grifterish mentality and behavior may be, worse is the other part of kakistocracy—inept, corrupt, and disruptive governance. Impulsive, stream-of-consciousness communications from the president by tweet are one thing. Examples like a budget that aims to knock out our weather satellites and cut our ability to respond to a pandemic, along with the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) removing from its website information about the disastrous conditions in Puerto Rico while pumping up the good news, are another.

Austria’s Burka Ban Causes An Arrest Of Man Dressed As Shark (DennisC)

The advertising agency Warda Network, who was at the McShark opening, wrote on its Facebook page. “Today we were at the McShark store opening and our shark mascot received a fine from the Vienna police because of the new ban on face-coverings. Life is not easy.” Elsewhere in the Austrian capital, a cyclist was said to have been arrested and fined for wearing a scarf over her face, according to local media.

Wall Street Journal reporter convicted in Turkey over 'terrorist propaganda' (jdargis)

“The decision shows the extent to which the authorities did not want the operations that were going on in Turkey’s southeast to be reported on,” Albayrak said in a statement. Dow Jones, which publishes the Wall Street Journal, said an appeal was already in the works.

Turkey jails more journalists than any country in the world, according to the CPJ and Amnesty International.

The Coming Software Apocalypse (blackeagle)

It’s been said that software is “eating the world.” More and more, critical systems that were once controlled mechanically, or by people, are coming to depend on code. This was perhaps never clearer than in the summer of 2015, when on a single day, United Airlines grounded its fleet because of a problem with its departure-management system; trading was suspended on the New York Stock Exchange after an upgrade; the front page of The Wall Street Journal’s website crashed; and Seattle’s 911 system went down again, this time because a different router failed. The simultaneous failure of so many software systems smelled at first of a coordinated cyberattack. Almost more frightening was the realization, late in the day, that it was just a coincidence.

Hotel California and the Federal Reserve (GE Christenson)

In the financial world, where actions eventually have consequences, debt is growing explosively, fiat currencies are continually devalued and currencies are issued by insolvent central banks and insolvent governments.

10 toughest places for girls to go to school (jdargis)

Many young girls are expected to work rather than go to school. And many marry young, ending any chance of an education.

UN figures indicate girls are more than twice as likely to lose out on education in conflict zones.

The U.S. Postal Service Is Working On Self-Driving Mail Trucks (tmn)

The postal service reasons the experimentation is less risky on rural routes, which have less traffic and fewer pedestrians and cyclists, “and are therefore more forgiving of an imperfect AV model.” It’s exactly the reason vehicle tech developers like Tesla and Cadillac have released semiautonomous features for highway-only driving. With wide, open, well-marked roads, it’s a much less complicated environment for a robot to navigate.

'Our minds can be hijacked': the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia (jdargis)

There is growing concern that as well as addicting users, technology is contributing toward so-called “continuous partial attention”, severely limiting people’s ability to focus, and possibly lowering IQ. One recent study showed that the mere presence of smartphones damages cognitive capacity – even when the device is turned off. “Everyone is distracted,” Rosenstein says. “All of the time.”

New Iran Sanctions Could Send Oil Prices Higher (Michael K.)

FGE’s president is also part of the group of industry experts who think that oil prices may never return to $100, and expects prices in the long term to remain not much higher than $70 per barrel.

“You can’t have a balanced market at $100, when every single project will happen. We therefore have to get used to long-term prices not much above $60 or $70,” said Brown, who sees peak demand around 2030 due to the rise of EVs and improved fuel efficiency.

Outdated and Unreliable: FEMA’s Faulty Flood Maps Put Homeowners at Risk (Kirk P.)

Even FEMA’s newer maps are likely to fall short as an accurate indicator of flood risk because they don’t account for rapid rain accumulation, how buildings are constructed, climate change or expected population growth, among other things.

“Until they do that, these maps will always be obsolete the day they come out,” said Larry Larson, senior policy adviser and director emeritus for the Association of State Floodplain Managers, a professional organization focused on reducing losses from flood damage.

Gold & Silver

Click to read the PM Daily Market Commentary: 10/11/17

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."

7 Comments

sand_puppy's picture
sand_puppy
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 13 2011
Posts: 1688
CHS & Friends on Power Inequality and Hollywood Casting Couch

CHS conveys his outrage today on the predatory oligarchy of the Hollywood Casting Couch.  When a power imbalance is very profound, this type of abuse can happen.

The revelations coming to light about Hollywood Oligarch Harvey Weinstein perfectly capture the true nature of our status quo: a rotten-to-the-core, predatory, exploitive oligarchy of dirty secrets and dirty lies protected by an army of self-serving sycophants, servile toadies on the make and well-paid legal mercenaries. Predators aren't an aberration of the Establishment; they are the perfection of the Establishment, which protects abusive, exploitive predator-oligarchs lest the feudal injustices of life in America be revealed for all to see.

The predators reckon their aristocratic status in Hollywood/D.C. grants them a feudal-era droit du seigneur (rights of the lord) to take whatever gratifications they desire from any female who has the grave misfortune to enter their malefic orbit.

Anyone who protests or makes efforts to go public is threatened by the oligarch's thugs and discredited/smeared by the oligarch's take-no-prisoners legal mercenaries. (Recall the Clintons' Crisis Management Team tasked with crushing any Bimbo Eruptions, i.e. any eruptions of the truth about Bill's well-known-to-insiders predation of the peasantry.)

The dirty secret is that the oh-so-hypocritical power elites of Hollywood and Washington D.C. circle the wagons to protect One of Their Own from being unmasked.

And a friend adds:

 

No matter what the name of the "studio" is, there are still 1000 hopefuls for every part being cast. That supply/demand imbalance is what drives everything. You said it yourself: do something that's scarce and in demand. As a software engineer, I was in short supply, so I was treated well. Actors (or actresses): dime a dozen. As a result, they get treated like disposable hankies. Unless you happen to already have a "name" and are a proven box office draw. (And that's maybe 1:100,000)

 

 

lambertad's picture
lambertad
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 31 2013
Posts: 161
Healthcare executive action

Trump took executive action on healthcare today, opening the buying of insurance aross state lines without the legal requirements of Obamacare. To do this it seems one must become part of a healthcare association, but not sure how that will be defined. The example used is the restaurant workers association, but why couldn't there also be an independent financial bloggers association? Anyway, it may help cut some of the exorbitant increase in healthcare premiums or at least slow down the cataclysmic trajectory. 

 

One of the main ideas from the administration involves easing the way for groups and associations of employers to sponsor coverage that can be marketed across the land. That reflects Trump's longstanding belief that interstate competition will lead to lower premiums for consumers who buy their own health insurance policies, as well as for small businesses.

And then this from Pelosi: 

On Capitol Hill, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi said Trump "knows very little" about health care policy or legislation. She said she was unfamiliar with the details of the executive order, "but I do know it's a sabotage of the Affordable Care Act."

God forbid anyone do anything that may reduce the behemoth handout to health insurance companies that is the ACA. 

 

 

KugsCheese's picture
KugsCheese
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jan 2 2010
Posts: 1415
Re: Inflation Ignorance

I cannot find the alternative inflation measurement created by a person I thought was interviewed by Chris years ago.  Not the Billion Prices or Shadow Stats...

Adam Taggart's picture
Adam Taggart
Status: Peak Prosperity Co-founder (Offline)
Joined: May 26 2009
Posts: 2828
Ed Butowsky

Kugs -

I think you're thinking of our podcast with Ed Butowsky regarding his Chapwood Index:

saxplayer00o1's picture
saxplayer00o1
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 30 2009
Posts: 4023
California cities get next year's pension bill. 'It's not sustai

 

California cities get next year's pension bill. 'It's not sustainable ...

Sacramento Bee-3 hours ago
The Sacramento region's largest local governments will see pension costs go up by an estimated 14 percent next fiscal year, starting a series of annual ...

$1 trillion bad loan mountain casts shadow over Europe

Kitco News-3 hours ago
The tally puts the combined total of problem loans in the euro zone's largest economies, France and Germany, close to that of Italy's 260 billion euro bad debt ...

Draghi: ECB's negative rates have been a success

MarketWatch-8 hours ago
WASHINGTON -- European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said Thursday the central bank's negative interest-rate policies haven't hurt bank profitability ...

Australia's central bank warns highly indebted vulnerable to rate rises

Nasdaq-12 hours ago
SYDNEY, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Australia's central bank on Friday warned that higher interest rates could hit heavily-indebted households, even as steps taken to ...

Treasury to Sell $83 Billion in Debt

Wall Street Journal-16 hours ago
The U.S. Treasury Department will auction $83 billion in securities next week, comprising $36 billion in new debt and $47 billion in previously sold debt. Details ...

Obamacare insurance rates to rise 36 percent in Wisconsin next year

Madison.com-18 hours ago

People walk past Sunshine Life and Health Advisors in Hialeah, Florida. Rates for health insurance on the Affordable Care Act exchange, part of Obamacare, ..

Montana health insurance rates climb upward

Daily Inter Lake-14 hours ago
Health insurance rates will continue their upward trend for yet another year in Montana. State officials released 2018 health insurance rates Tuesday, which ...

Covered California adds a 12.4% surcharge to silver plans

ModernHealthcare.com-17 hours ago
California's health insurance marketplace announced on Wednesday that it will ... The second highest premium increase came from Molina Healthcare at 28.6%.

 

cmartenson's picture
cmartenson
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 7 2007
Posts: 5468
That's why....

That's why they pay these guys the big bucks.

Australia's central bank warns highly indebted vulnerable to rate rises

Nasdaq-12 hours ago
SYDNEY, Oct 13 (Reuters) - Australia's central bank on Friday warned that higher interest rates could hit heavily-indebted households, even as steps taken to ...
 
Insights like these are hard to come by unless you pay for top talent.
/s
lambertad's picture
lambertad
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 31 2013
Posts: 161
Obesity, healthcare, and shrieking

Many Americans seem oblivious to the fact that obesity, metabolic syndrome, lack of exercise, poor sleep and diet, and increased stress are the driver of likely 80% of medical costs. Diabetes (including peripheral neuropathy, insulin requirements, chronic kidney disease, dialysis, etc.), back pain, joint problems, gastroesophageal reflux disease, obstructive sleep apnea, coronary artery disease, vascular disease, heart failure, heart problems, over 13 types of cancer, etc., the list goes on. I just came across this on CNN this morning. Why is US healthcare so expensive --> explanation is right there.

Here's a great article from Dr. Jason Fung on healthcare, but he also touches on something important in the last couple of paragraphs. A lot of drug companies are now getting their products approved by running something called non-inferiority trials - basically "our drug isn't inferior to a generic that's been on the market for decades, so you should approve it and then we'll lobby the doctors to prescribe it and we'll make a ton of money". It's a crazy system and we know it's not working!

Also note the Vegas shooting isn't adding up, but it's already pushed down the page. It seems to be a good time for the MSM to suddenly start shrieking about Obamacare and Trump executive orders, right when the Vegas shooting narrative starts to fall apart in public. 

As a side note, I'm purposefully not touching on the third party payer system that drives up healthcare costs. If it wasn't for health problems to begin with, people wouldn't be seeking medical care nearly as often and we wouldn't be subject to this racket. As Chris has noted in previous podcasts, humans are inherently healthy if we eat right, exercise, socialize, and sleep right. Lastly, I'll admit that the last time I was at the Dr. was for a corneal abrasion from mulch that got in my eye while tending the garden! So eating right does have it's downsides sometimes. 

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