Dr. Keynes Was Right

It's the Distribution, Stupid
APRIL 3, 2012 5:56PM


The ongoing assault by the Right Wingnuts, blaming the victims, has led to a further consideration of The Fed's historically low interest rate (or is it?).  From simple observation, the creation of, and demand for, all those mortgage loans (good yield, no risk) was the necessary result of an ove… Read full post »

For those Right Wingnuts, attired in tin foil hats of course, here's the Real Big Brother!!!  Stupid morons. It ain't "1984", it's "Robo Cop" (except we don't got no Robo Cop).

Here's the money quote:
"Several politicians including Michigan's own State Representatives Aric Nesbitt and Matt Lori ha… Read full post »

MARCH 29, 2012 1:10PM

Water, Water Everywhere

Nor any drop to drink.  Remember that sentence?  "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" by Coleridge, opium fiend.  Today, the overriding meme is Big Data, as if all analyses have to shift through the entire population of interest every time for every question.  Yet, there isn't always the… Read full post »

MARCH 27, 2012 9:07AM


One of the major, if not most major, themes of this endeavor is externalities.  Microeconomists, the Rand-ians to make a label, studiously ignore the issue, since it messes up their "freedom" meme.  But, the fact remains, that the more laissez faire the government, the easier it is for acto… Read full post »

MARCH 23, 2012 10:27AM

A Confidence Man

The new home sales report for March was just released.  The "takeaway" number was a bit below February, a bit below expectations, at 313,000.  You can find it here.

Now, here's the kicker. 

The headline:
"Sales of new single-family houses in February 2012 were at a seasonally adjusted an… Read full post »

MARCH 12, 2012 1:22PM


So, let's speculate.


My vote:  our 38 year old father of 2 from Washington will be revealed to be a born again Christian.



In the comments, I generalized (from memory) the nature of US Army enlistees.  Here's what the US Army has to say, as of 2009;… Read full post »

Turns out, there are professional economists (technically, I'm not one at the moment, since no one pays me to compose these missives) out there who question the impact of seasonal adjustment on the rosier than expected numbers for December to February (technically, meteorological winter).

MARCH 7, 2012 9:44AM

Left Wing Preverts!

"You prevert!"  Thus spake the redneck.  Sometimes unintended consequences are also perverse.  That's the topic.

The EU is all aflutter, and took 200 points off the Dow yesterday, although as I type pre-market open is up.  We'll see.  The Prosperity Through Austerity folks hav… Read full post »

MARCH 6, 2012 10:30AM

Death by Triage

It's been recently reported that the Obama money won't be finding its way to Congressional contests.  Given that money is the lifeblood of politics, Obama is putting a fork in Democracy.  It didn't have to be this way.  By ignoring the 2010 election, he gave the Right Wingnuts all the… Read full post »

MARCH 5, 2012 1:32PM

Quant on Quant Violence

It's not been too frequent, even in the wake of quants taking down the world's economy, to read a quant who has the temerity (and, possibly, gonads) to say that which must be silent.  But now it has.

One quote from the interview (then I'll expect you to go off and read… Read full post »

MARCH 3, 2012 3:33PM

When Ponzi is Normal

The subtitle of this endeavor tells us that the distribution of income is the prime, if not sole, determinant of economic and social stability.  The Great Recession was caused by the massive shift of income from the many to the few, guised in investment in one's housing.  A fool's enterpris… Read full post »

The problem with quants, well among many problems, is that they tend to be disassociated from the real world.  What's worse, so are their managers.  The Great Recession happened just because neither the quants nor their managers paid any attention to the basic metric:  the ratio of med… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 15, 2012 1:00PM

A Plan for All Seasons

Well, here we go again.  The NY Fed's "Empire Manufacturing" survey results were released today, and were good.  These are, of course, the seasonally adjusted numbers.  Sound familiar?  Well, I emailed the NY Fed (yes, one can do that) to ask how it was they do seasonal adjustment… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 12, 2012 12:48PM

Nuke 'em, Danno

This endeavor has been constructed upon a foundation of a few themes.  Chief among these is the stupidity and self-importance of poor white folks.  Such behavior is explained in magnificent detail by Robert Frank (whom I've recently seen on BookTV, and he's not Sy Hersh's age, after all; ki… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 3, 2012 3:23PM

Lies, Damn Lies, and the BLS [updated]

That's Bureau of Labor Statistics.  The headline over the column in my dead trees version of the NY Times reads:  "Stagnant Job Growth is Expected in Report".  Yet, the number this morning was glorious.  How does that happen?  Why did the numbers come in so much better than e… Read full post »

JANUARY 31, 2012 12:50PM

The Center of Attention

The Case-Shiller house price index is out again, and it's down.  Reports are that it is expected to decline for yet a while.  Well, D'oh!!!!  House prices can only move up with median income moving up.  How difficult is that to figure out? Read full post »

JANUARY 19, 2012 11:23PM

Snakes!! I Hate Snakes!

Many, many years ago I saw a piece on the TV, which showed the effects of population.  It was a closed cage, a few feet on a side, such that it fit in a laboratory room.  In it were rats.  The point of the experiment was to document the changes, if… Read full post »

JANUARY 19, 2012 9:41AM

Dee Feat is in Dee Flation, Part 17

Well, the Flation Numbers came out this week.  And, as usual, the Prosperity Through Austerity And Inflation's The Issue folks can't be happy.  Here they are:
Core PPI 0.3%
Core CPI 0.1%
PPI -0.1%
CPI  0.0%

I'll leave it to the reader to see the forest and the trees.  All that free mon… Read full post »

JANUARY 18, 2012 1:46PM

Here Comes the Mitten Man

By now everyone with a functioning brain has heard of the Mitten Man's taxing problem.  Today's NY Times has more stories (some Walter Mitty specific, others on the general topic) than I want to link; just go read it.  Even if you're not subscribed, you're allowed a few (don't recall the… Read full post »

JANUARY 16, 2012 11:24AM

What Language Do You Spook?

Drew Conway is my kind of guy:  a spook.  Now, before any of the uber-PC folk get their backs up, an alternate definition of the word:  colloquial for intelligence operative, origination unknown.  I don't always put it on my resume, but I spent some time in the 1980's in Jack Ande… Read full post »

JANUARY 15, 2012 5:38PM

Money, Money Everywhere

I wrote the following as a broadside reply to a post on one of the blogs, but a) it's really too long for that, and b) it deserves to stand on its own.  I'll leave the last word to the last commenter over there.

The continuing fascination among freshwater economists, and non-economist… Read full post »

JANUARY 15, 2012 5:33PM

Money, Money Everywhere

I wrote the following as a broadside reply to a post on one of the blogs, but a) it's really too long for that, and b) it deserves to stand on its own.  I'll leave the last word to the last commenter over there.

The continuing fascination among freshwater economists, and non-economist… Read full post »

JANUARY 13, 2012 4:24PM

They Eat Crow, Cold [updated]

I was right, right, right.

Not that this makes me feel so much better.  Quants began to invade economics departments in the early 1970's.  I was there and saw the jettisoning of economic understanding for algebra, preferably in support of partial differential equations and Bayesian statistic… Read full post »

JANUARY 12, 2012 8:24PM

Energizer Bunny

One of those theses I'd been considering writing about just became redundant.  And that's a good thing.  For various reasons, none of which I can pinpoint, I'd been building on the idea that our problem is just energy.  I don't know that this is novel, but it's not been the basis… Read full post »

JANUARY 8, 2012 2:45PM

Turning Japanese, Part 2

I, along with a considerable chunk of saltwater economists, have been harping on the history of Japan from 1990, as an object lesson for the USofA and The Great Recession.  So, imagine my surprise when today's NY Times runs a piece on the front page of the Review section claiming that… Read full post »