Daily Digest 12/7 - The Transparent Supply Chain, Germany's Growth Forecast Cut
A better way to think about chaos and disruption (northernlights)
Centralized institutions worked for us throughout the industrial age because they were an effective way to bring order and stability to economic and social systems. Yes, we had our hiccups, but for the most part they brought us remarkable prosperity.
But today, many of the institutions that we’ve counted on for stability and prosperity are failing us…
Here in the United States, our trend is headed in the same direction, where a mere 2.6 workers will be expected to support each retiree by 2050. That's a 44.68% decrease from the 4.7 workers in 2008 -- and a whopping 85.65% reduction from the 42 workers who supported each retiree at the end of WWII.
There are implications in terms of health care rationing, too. It will affect home care, assisted living, traffic, mobility, technology, and taxes. Especially taxes...
Although the Cycle is now in the timing band for a DCL and gold is oversold, we cannot rule out the possibility that Gold will drop further in a final attempt at breaking the prior Cycle Low. Any Cycle failure at this point would be deemed both a Daily and Investor Cycle failure which sets the scene for another significant 12-16 weeks of declines back down towards the $1,523 level. This type of action seems very unlikely though, considering the Dollar is already into its 12th week and rapidly declining due to its own Daily Cycle failure. Having the Gold and Dollar Cycles fail simultaneously would be extremely unusual, which is why I do not believe it will happen.
The fact that the collapse hasn't occurred so far doesn't mean it won't take place in the future. There is no doubt that the world is changing, and we will have to go along with it. There are two ways to do that: One is, you see the necessity of change ahead of time and you make the change, and the second is that you don't and are finally forced to do it anyway. Let's say that you're driving a car inside a factory building. There are two ways to stop: Either you put on the brakes or you keep going and hit the wall. But stop you will, because the building is finite. And the same holds true for Earth's resources.
Greek middle class turns to crime as depression deepens (westcoastjan)
Karagaitanaki’s family can’t afford gas to heat their home this winter and will rely on electric blankets in the chilly northern Greek city. They live on the 785 euros (US$1,027) a month their mother collects monthly from their late father’s pension. Two years ago, Karagaitanaki sold her jewelry for 3,000 euros, which she gave to her two sons. Her blood sugar is rising because she can’t afford the meat and vegetables her doctor recommends and instead eats rice and beans she gets from the Greek Orthodox Church.
“We are waiting every month for my mother’s pension,” Karagaitanaki said. “If my mother dies, what can I do? Everyone here is dependent on their parents’ pensions.”
The city could be down to a little more than 600 officers by February, which would be 200 fewer than in 2008. Even with another 40 expected to graduate from Police Academy, they will be rookies and there is already talk of trying to contract with outside agencies for support.
Ritholtz: 'Dot Com Bonus Envy' Stymies Wall St. Reform (Arthur Robey)
"The fix is very simple," says Ritholtz, "repeal the Commodities Futures Modernization Act and suddenly this becomes like every other financial instrument."
The Transparent Supply Chain (westcoastjan)
The compassionate consumer considers the full effects of buying something, including the values and practices of the company from which items are purchased, the social impact of items being bought, and who benefits when items are obtained from a particular business.
Germany's growth forecast cut by Bundesbank (westcoastjan)
Southern European countries, such as Spain and Italy, have been in recession for more than a year, but the malaise has spread to the rest of the single currency zone via weak export demand and falling consumer and business confidence.
North Korea faces various economic sanctions and widespread waste, and the country has struggled to support itself financially in recent years. Despite this, the regime has been demanding “donations” from citizens to continue funding Kim Jong-il’s cult of personality, the Chosun Ilbo reports, and is reportedly seeking emergency loans with 20-40% interest from European and Russian lenders.
Amazon’s Luxembourg arrangements have deprived European governments of hundreds of millions of dollars in tax that it might otherwise have owed, as reported in European newspapers. But a Reuters examination of accounts filed by 25 Amazon units in six countries shows how they also allowed the company to avoid paying more tax in the United States, where the company is based.
Consumer Reports questions new Ford Fusion and C-Max hybrid’s 47 mpg boasts “Your mileage may vary” has always been the caveat emptor of estimated fuel economy boasts. Especially with the current batch of new cars that get some electrical help, air temperature, driving conditions and driver style are critical to real-world fuel-economy. So it’s no surprise that U.S.-based Consumer Reports didn’t achieve the new 2013 Ford Fusion and C-Max Hybrid’s 47 miles-per-U.S.-gallon city/highway fuel economy claims (about 5.0 L/100 km). What is surprising is how much less efficient the two new Ford gas-electric hybrids were than claimed to be.
Now like me you might be wondering how oil, which is supposedly produced from organic matter buried millions of years ago, could possibly exist in space. Well it turns out that these hydrocarbons were likely created by the fragmentation of giant carbonaceous molecules called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are produced during the death of a star.
There is even a theory that molecules such as these could have served as the first organic compounds for creating life.
Smart Grids, Stupid People (James S.)
John McDonald, director of GE Digital Energy’s Technical Strategy and Policy Development, told AOL Energy that if US utilities in the east had installed this smart technology earlier, they would have known about outages more quickly and been able to respond more rapidly.
GE, of course, is another leader in smart grid technology.
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