What is truth?

Archive for December, 2012

Achtung, Austerity!

Keiser report 386

The Slog

…but then what happens to consumption?


The Slog offers further reasons why ‘middle-squeezing’ will continue, America is in a corner, gold must rise dramatically before long, and the VIX is being cynically repressed by the US Federal Reserve.

VIX is the accepted acronym among stock market traders and other commentators for the Chicago Board Options Exchange Market Volatility Index, a popular measure of implied volatility. CHEBOOMVIX would’ve been more aptly onomatopoaeic but less memorable, so Vix it is. Basically, the VIX is a warning signal people use to suggest actual or approaching volatility, because it has norms. It is often referred to as the “investor fear gauge”. If there’s one thing sovereign States and bankers can’t abide, it’s fearful investors: cautious investors are bad for business.

Top-heavy US brain and enduring Slogger Butch Cassidy (it’s a pseudonym, like Tyler Durden or Dora the Elf) writes to point out something to…

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The Tortured Artist: Pain and the Creative Spirit

The idea of creativity and suffering are deeply interwoven in our minds. Very often we picture artists of talent or at least repute as reclusive, haunted, or brooding. Somehow, the idea of the tortured artist is seen as something romantic. This idea goes hand in hand with the idea that creativity and madness are inexorably interlinked.  We suspect that at the heart of creation lies an ugly core of destruction, that the center of the gyre that fuels imagination is pain of one kind or another. Admittedly, this desire for a broken creator has a certain appeal. It’s an example of how even from the depths of sorrow and misery, something wonderful can emerge.

It paints the creator as a sort of ubermensch, overcoming the shackles of his or her plight and rising out of the wreckage of his or her own life. Then there is an undeniable mysteriousness about creativity. The idea of inspiration to the Greeks necessarily implied madness as the muses or a god or goddess sent the artist into a frenzy of creativity and production. Even today, there is an aura of the divine and otherworldly in creativity. Even science is perplexed by the seemingly endless permutations the human mind can generate about any given subject. So even historically, creativity is seen as something powerful, perhaps too powerful for the person gifted with it, thus madness and pain ensues……..

full article at source: http://speculativefictionwriting.wordpress.com/2012/12/31/the-tortured-artist-pain-and-the-creative-spirit/

The irrationality of it all


By David Mc Williams

Over the past few days, I have received all sorts of economic forecasts of 2013 penned by economists in large financial outfits who are confidently telling me what is going to happen next year. Most of these guys were the same people who didn’t foresee this crisis, yet few have lost their jobs and here they are, without the slightest hint of doubt, outlining what is likely to happen in 2013.

Of all the characters we should fear, the overconfident economic forecaster is surely one of them. When the Queen of England asked why none of these professionals warned of the credit crunch, she was only articulating what many people must have thought, which is “if you guys are so clever, why didn’t you see this crisis coming – and if you didn’t see it coming, why should I listen to you now”?

The failure of economics to predict human behaviour is a significant charge that modern economists have not properly answered and the failure to answer this accusation adequately has undermined economics as a whole.

In the final column of the year, we are going to take a quick look at the state of the economics game and ask whether the fundamental laws of traditional economics bear any relation to reality or offer any insight into how people actually behave……………………..

Full article at souyrce:http://www.davidmcwilliams.ie/2012/12/31/the-irrationality-of-it-all?utm_source=Website+Subscribers&utm_campaign=e3ac4be19f-22112012&utm_medium=email

Eva Cassidy – Somewhere Over The Rainbow


Economic growth is being held back by headwind of eurozone constraints

By Colm McCarthy

The different countries making up the eurozone have divergent interests and will not be equally well served by a common policy. This problem has been present from the beginning but has become acute over the last few years.

Countries with heavy debts and high unemployment often opt, when free to do so, for a policy mix of temporarily higher inflation and a softer currency. Inflation helps debtors at the expense of creditors since it erodes the real debt burden. A softer exchange rate gives a short-term boost to competitiveness. Stuck in a currency union committed to low inflation and a strong exchange rate is not the best place to be for struggling countries.

The expectation of both the Government and the EU Commission is that the Irish economy will grow its way out of the current difficulties through an export-led recovery but there are serious headwinds which inhibit better export performance. The main barrier is the policy stance of the eurozone.

Several international currencies have weakened since the onset of the current crisis. The most important from an Irish standpoint is sterling, the currency of our largest trading partner. The more labour-intensive Irish firms……………………………..

full article at source :http://www.independent.ie/opinion/analysis/colm-mccarthy-economic-growth-is-being-held-back-by-headwind-of-eurozone-constraints-3338697.html

Christy Moore’s Ride On

Not another cent?.. Irish banks state aid 2011


Yesterday, the EU Commission released updated analysis of state aid expenditures, covering 2012 data. The document, titled “State aid Scoreboard 2012 Update Report on State aid granted by the EU Member States – 2012 Update” is available here.

Here are some interesting bits:

“Between 1 October 2008 and 1 October 2012, the Commission approved aid to the financial sector totalling €5,058.9 billion (40.3% of EU GDP). The bulk of the aid was authorised in 2008 when €3,394 billion (27.7% of EU GDP) was approved, mainly comprising guarantees on banks’ bonds and deposits. After 2008, the aid approved focused more on recapitalisation of banks and impaired asset relief rather than on guarantees, while more recently a new wave of guarantee measures was approved mainly by those countries experiencing an increase in their sovereign spreads, such as Spain and Italy.

full article at source:http://trueeconomics.blogspot.ie/2012/12/23122012-state-aid-in-eu27-ireland.html

see also follow up at this link:http://trueeconomics.blogspot.ie/2012/12/23122012-state-aid-in-eu27-ireland.html

Keven Malone in An Abandoned work by Samuel Beckett

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