Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Slightly better than guessing

In a recent poll, only 27% of Americans could correctly identify the Federal Reserve program known as Quantitative Easing or QE3, even given five answers to choose from. If you stop and consider the math, 20% should have gotten the right answer just by guessing. It's hard to believe an $85b a month program that's run up over a $3t balance is that unknown, but I'll bet far more people have watched the latest Miley Cyrus video than actually even care what QE3 is. 

So in that context, it was big news today that the Fed money printing program will continue full speed, and not be 'tapered'. The pundits sing the song of 'taper' between the regular Federal Reserve Board meetings, you can bet it will be the focus of 'very serious' news articles again tomorrow. So this non-news was credited with the stock market setting a new record even though QE3 has nothing to do stocks. Okay, in theory people buy more stocks with bond interest being so low, but the stock market is really a Ponzi scheme intended to suck money from your 401(k), and doesn't attract the kind of people who buy bonds. 

Apparently the 'smart people' caucus in the Senate is starting to hold sway on economic issues with the scuttling of Clinton Treasury Secretary Larry Summers' yet to be announced nomination to be the next Fed Chairman. This puts the focus on the current vice-chairman Janet Yellon who everyone that doesn't want to revisit past economic disasters favors for the post. 

The House GOP is sending a laundry list of wack-a-doodle Tea Bag ideas over to the Senate tied to a bill increasing the debt ceiling. That would be the 'debt ceiling' that is flat unconstitutional, but that's something from the 14th amendment, and not found in the 2nd amendment, so it doesn't count.  Even without the 14th amendment, the House already appropriated the money and this was made into law, so Constitutionally the President is required to write the checks. 

Obama isn't even pretending that he will negotiate with the Tea Baggers this time, he'll be around another three years, their terms end in 13 & a half months. He can simply ignore the debt ceiling and let them take him to court. Most likely they'll make a lot of noise and then simply give him what he wants. The Right has become enamored with the manliness of Vladimir Putin lately, and that's what he did when negotiating with Obama, made some noise and completely gave in. I hope the Baggers don't start imitating Putin too much and start taking their shirts off. Twitter @BruceEnberg and there are no pictures of prairie2 anywhere, never ever


Anonymous said...

The Forbe's 400 list was just published and several hundreds of billionaires did not make the list. Amoung the notable figures were the Koch Bro's and the four members of the Walton family who are heirs of the Walmart fortune. Charles and David Koch added 5 billion a piece to thier inherited fortune from last year and the Waltons as a family hold 135 billions as a group leading Bill gates of Mircrosoft fame.
That's where this Fed money is going and none of it is geting to us peons at the bottom. It's Reagan's trickle down on steroids. The only thing that is happening is they are getting the trickle and we are geting the down. You see the wages we earned have been flat for years.

Ronmac said...

Here's a nice telling tidbit. Incomes in the Washington DC region rose over 23% in the past decade while income dropped nearly 7% in the rest of the country. The beltway, home of America's political and lobbying elites, has enjoyed it's 5th straight year of economic booming while the rest of the country stagnates.

In related news, politicians across the country reported calls in their home districts were running 90% against Syrian intervention while 90% of beltway-based media punditry was running 90% in favor of bombing Syria (on humanitarian grounds of course).