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HUMANITY DOOMSDAY CLOCK - Moves forward to 2125 due to election of US President trump.

Estimate of the time that Humanity will go extinct or civilization will collapse. The HUMANITY DOOMSDAY CLOCK moves forward to 2125 due to US President trump's abandonment of climate change goals. Apologies to Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists for using the name.

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You may also wish to read and quote from these groundbreaking essays on economic topics with the same permission outlined above

The Jobs Theory of Growth [http://www.mkeever.com/apply.html]

Moral Economics [http://www.mkeever.com/moral.html]

Balanced Trade [http://www.mkeever.com/essay.html]

There Are Alternatives to Free Market Capitalism [http://www.mkeever.com/taa.html]

Specific Country Economic Policy Analyses - More Than 50 Countries from Argentina to Yemen [http://www.mkeever.com]




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Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Public Banks Needed for Coming Recession

A PROPOSAL TO SAVE THE BANKING AND MONETARY SYSTEM OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
An elementary introduction

Read the entire paper by copy and paste this link: http://www.mkeever.com/publicbanks.doc

PRECIS

This paper presents a concept on reforming the commercial banking system in the United States of America.

The concept is to transfer all the assets and liabilities involved in commercial banking today from private ownership to public ownership. New entities will be created by establishing public ownership of those items formerly owned by a commercial bank into a new entity, perhaps utilizing current locations and offices. Consequently, there will be many new banking organizations and not a centralized organization.

The assets to be transferred include all deposit liabilities as well as loans receivable and cash reserves held against deposit liabilities currently on the books of US banks. Any assets and liabilities which are not involved in accepting deposits and making loans will remain with the now existing business. The now existing banks which remain will be free to buy and sell equities, sell investments and insurance and participate in stock markets as an investor or seller of products.

With the revision proposed, the new commercial banks will be more stable than the current banks since the new banks will be unable to participate in other activities. This will be a re-invention of the Glass-Steagal law which coincided with a 50 year period of financial system stability in the USA.

Several attempts have been made to re-introduce those provisions after they were repealed in the late 1980's, but all such attempts have failed.

Nevertheless, those provisions are needed today.

It is likely the USA and the world will experience a recession and deflationary period in the coming years similar to the 2008 to 2009 bank crisis and recession; many cities in the world are experiencing a bubble in residential property values. While the US banking industry has proposed regulations to prevent a similar collapse to 2008, the legislation was watered down and failed to address the concerns. That is the reason change is needed. (1).

read more at this link: http://www.mkeever.com/publicbanks.doc

©October 3, 2017, Mike P. McKeever
San Francisco, CA, USA

While this material is copyrighted, you are hereby granted permission and encouraged to copy and paste any excerpt and/or complete statement from any entry in this paper into any form you choose. In return, please provide explicit credit to this source and a link or URL to the publication. Email links to mckeever.mp@gmail.com

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 10. Single Payer Health Care


Insurance Profits Do Not Belong in Healthcare

Regardless of the outcome of the Supreme Court's decision about the ACA Act, there is no place for profit in the healthcare system. If we can eliminate insurance company profits, we can pay for our healthcare with current expenditures.

Our current health care system does not make sense. It will be a little better if the 'Supremes' validate the current Affordable Care Act [ACA] system.

But even if the ACA program is upheld, the system will cost too much, deliver too little care and leave too much money in private insurance companies.

Single Payer Could Eliminate Insurance Profits and Cover All Healthcare Costs with no Increase in Total Expenditure

By moving to a single payer system, we can deliver better care to all citizens at a lower cost.

In a study of the Minnesota Health Care system, the Lewin Group forecasts that a single payer system will reduce total health care spending in the State by 8.8% as compared to a fully implemented ACA:

http://www.lewin.com/~/media/Lewin/Site_Sections/Publications/MN%20PCA%20Final%20Report.pdf

Market Failures Hurt People Today

The current and proposed ACA systems create market failures which leave significant numbers of people without health care.

Those market failures reduce our Economic National Security since sick people are unable to contribute economically and since the sick and uninsured are directed to the emergency system.



Saturday, September 16, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 9. Keep Social Security and Medicare as they are



Some Politicians want to Destroy Social Security

Not only do these programs provide dignity to people who have worked all their lives, they provide significant income to help support Aggregate Demand.

There are pressures to reduce or destroy these programs. The stated reason is the budget deficit, but the real reason is simple greed from the financial system.

Countries which have chosen to reduce pensions and healthcare because of a fiscal deficit problem are now experiencing recessions and high unemployment.

No country in history has been able to cut its way to prosperity. Many countries have found prosperity by borrowing in bad times to sustain employment.

Social Security and Medicare are the most successful government programs of all time. And, we cannot cut these programs and expect economic recovery and job growth at the same time.

They have achieved the goals of making old age for United States citizens a happy time instead of a time for terror.

Not only that, but the economic impact of the programs is considerable; any reduction in these programs will have a dramatic and immediate impact on GDP and job creation.

Economics of Social Security

Some facts about Social Security from Roberto Gallardo and Al Myles were published in Daily Yonder [http://www.dailyyonder.com/economic-impact-social-security/2011/12/18/3649] :

Social Security supports 8.4 million jobs and makes annual payments to recipients of about $1.2 trillion. 51 million people receive checks from Social Security - that's about 15.7% of the total population.

Gallardo and Myles have calculated that a 5% reduction in Social Security payments will reduce GDP by $63 billion, reduce employment by 419,000 jobs and reduce federal tax collections by $7.8 billion.

While there may be an argument in favor of adjusting the formulae used in the programs, it is clear that significant reductions must be prevented in order to secure recovery and growth.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

UPDATE: Russia - WHY??



I propose a theory of why trump does what he does.

It is only a theory and it is open for challenge.

WHY DID HE WIN?

trump won the election by appealing to groups suffering economic hardship and real misery.

Most of these folks have real concerns but are not sophisticated politically.

Then, it is easy to rouse emotions from the core group and to propose actions which will appeal to them and which will also enrich the elite, like trump.

This is one of the constant themes of the administration: 'I feel your pain and I will take care of it for you. My [tax cut, education privatization, environmental regulation gutting, etc., etc.] will help you.' But, the actual policies do NOT help the people to whom he promises relief - instead they serve to further enrich him and the richest 1%.

That part is pretty well known.

RUSSIA

Here's what to say about Russia and trump.

Foreign spending on United States election campaigns is a crime. Russia is a Continuing Criminal Enterprise [see 21 U.S. Code § 848 - Continuing criminal enterprise, here https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/21/848], so Putin disregards United States law.

Facebook has announced that internet troll farms in Russia paid $100,000 for fake news ads disparagng Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election [https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/06/technology/facebook-russian-political-ads.html?mcubz=3].

Whether this criminal activity affected the elections' outcome is moot at this point.

But, if it is proven that trump's campaign colluded with the Russian campaign then some people in the administration may go to jail. trump used Russian money and support in his campaign for office regardless of its illegality.

WHERE DOES IT LEAD?

While this can explain some of the short term actions and choices, it does not necessarily provide an endgame strategy.

It may appear fantastical at first read, but the following theory does seem to fit many of the facts.

trump's endgame may be to create a fascist dictatorship while removing the current United States Government and the Constitution. This endgame may or may not be conscious and deliberate.

SUPPORTING TRENDS

Consider these:

1. He seems to be destroying the fabric of the country by doing two things. First, he proposes laws and removes regulations which act to protect working families and the environment. Second, he appoints ignoramuses to influential governmental positions with the expectation that they will support his actions in the first instance.

2. He decides that really rich people will be successful in government service. They are thus good stewards of our public assets. Further, they, and he, can and will take advantage of their governmental position for personal financial gain.

3. Every statement or tweet he makes is designed to obfuscate facts and make listeners lose trust in their senses and beliefs. The endgame here is the destruction of the population's belief in 'facts'.

4. Because of 3 above, nothing trump says is objectively 'true'; each statement is designed to appeal to an ignorant base, hide the facts and cast doubt on anyone who disagrees with him.

5. He panders to this base since nearly everyone else on the planet does not trust him. Unfortunately, some of his base supporters are racist, fascist, ignorant and desperate people who cannot trust anyone else since their lives are miserable now. Their misery is due in fact to the poor economic policies of the Bush era and the resulting poverty and unemployment. But, since misery and unemployment help him in his pursuit for power, he consciously pursues the identical economic policies of the Bush era which created the problems. Then, he blames Obama and Hillary for the resulting misery.

Some of his supporters are well-off folks who seemingly share the distrust of media and politicians endorsed by the poorer members of the base. And, some of them are simply racist.

6. trump's support of violent, fascist tendencies in his base is clear and obvious. He has encouraged an armed base of alt-right supporters ready to march at his command. This base is pandered to by the NRA as well.

THE DANGER

The real danger is that trump may create a movement which he cannot control.

As I said, this is a theory. I will be very happy to be wrong.

Install Punitive Bank Regulation - Restoring the US Middle Class - 8



Bankers’ Criminal Actions Caused the 2008 Crisis

Stability in our financial system is required for our national security.

We know absolutely that the financial system cannot regulate itself without great harm to our economy. Bankers who cause great national harm should be punished with jail terms. Merely fining bankers does not prevent future criminal behavior. A fine is considered a cost of doing business and not a deterrent.

There is a Simple Solution

Under Glass-Steagal we had stability for 50 years.

Restore it. It prevents criminal behavior.

It is the only choice.

The United States of America in which most of the population lives has learned a lesson. We have learnt this clearly and absolutely; we know it as well as we know our names.

The lesson is this: Bankers will not consider the effects of their actions on other parties. They have proven repeatedly that they act as if they are in a vacuum. They take no responsibility for any harm they cause.

Banks caused the recent economic meltdown; they will cause future recessions and depressions unless they are restrained.

Government’s Job is to Protect Citizens from Criminals

From that lesson it follows that the government of the United States has the responsibility to protect the population from bank practices.

As citizens, we have the distinct impression that the bank lobby has corrupted the political and regulatory processes thoroughly.

This is the source of our discontent.

Once in our history after great misery and social malaise, we created a bank regulation process that protected the population.

This group of laws was passed in the 1930's. These laws were based on the assumption that banks cannot be trusted to act in the public interest.

These laws were successful in providing a stable financial system for half a century. During this stable period, we enjoyed great prosperity. The laws were extensive and punitive.

The basis of the system was the Glass-Steagall act which prohibited a commercial bank from buying or selling stocks or insurance. Commercial banks are banks which take deposits and make loans.

Some of the other laws are listed below.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation [FDIC] was created to insure the safety of commercial bank depositor's accounts. When a bank failed, the FDIC paid off the depositors, but allowed bank owners to lose their investment.

Investment banks were created to make investments in stocks and other instruments. They were allowed to fail and there was no insurance to protect the owners or investors.

The Securities and Exchange Commission [SEC] was created to protect investors from criminal stock promoters.

All companies which took deposits and/or made loans were regulated; there were no unregulated financial institutions.

Savings and thrift institutions were regulated so that they could take deposits, but were allowed to make loans on residential real estate only. They were not allowed to issue checking accounts.

Insurance companies could not trade in stocks, make loans or take demand deposits.

The Federal Reserve Bank established limits on interest rates that could be charged to borrowers and paid to depositors by banks. The FED also examined banks carefully to ensure their loan portfolios were sound and the managers were capable. And, the FED established and enforced capitalization ratios to ensure that banks would stay sound during hard times.

This is only an introduction to the concept of ensuring the financial stability of the United States of America.

All the listed laws, and the array of acts, laws and statutes not covered here, have as their common foundation a simple idea.

That common foundation is this: banks cannot be trusted.

In case of any doubt, the article in the link here provides evidence of criminal bank behavior: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/the-scam-wall-street-learned-from-the-mafia-20120620

Friday, September 1, 2017

ANTIFA vs NAZI: GOOD vs EVIL


The foundations of Liberal Democracy as implemented in the United States of America and the Constitution are under deliberate assault today by armed troops.

President trump is encouraging this attack through his actions and his pronouncements.

HISTORICAL PRECEDENT

Yale Professor Timothy Snyder describes how trump compares to Hitler and Mussolini in the 1930's here: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/donald-trump-1930-thirties-fascist-dictator-adolf-hitler-reichstag-fire-trick-yale-historian-timothy-a7651766.html

"Picking out a group of your neighbors and citizens and associating them with the worldwide threat, that’s the 1930s' says Snyder.

WHO ARE THE AMERICAN NAZIs

The American Fascist troops carrying out this attack are the Alt-Right and NAZI supporters who use our liberal concept of tolerance to subvert our institutions.

They assemble under the guise of freedom of speech and incite intolerance of Jews, African Americans and Hispanic immigrants. Usually the NAZI and Alt-right troops carry weapons to their political assembly.

If they are countered by ANTIFA protesters, they claim that ANTIFA are the instigators and are the terrorists.

It is as Karl Popper said in 1945:

PARADOX OF TOLERANCE,

The paradox of tolerance, first described by Karl Popper in 1945, is a decision theory paradox. The paradox states that if a society is tolerant without limit, their ability to be tolerant will eventually be seized or destroyed by the intolerant. Popper came to the seemingly paradoxical conclusion that in order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance.

If NAZIs remain unchallenged today, they march down the street shouting 'Jews will not replace us,' and 'Blood and Soil,' both NAZI chants from the 1930's.

We must counter them at every turn. We cannot assume that the threat will dissolve:

GERMAN HISTORY

First they came ..." is a poem written by German Lutheran pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984). It is about the cowardice of German intellectuals following the Nazis' rise to power and subsequent purging of their chosen targets, group after group.

'First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.'

[wikipedia]

ANTIFA FIGHTS EVIL

At the moment there is only one group actively defending our freedoms: ANTIFA.

And yet, ANTIFA protestors are called terrorists because they stand in opposition to NAZIs. There are no good Nazis. Americans stand against NAZIs and Fascism. Those who stand against NAZIs are not terrorists, they are heroes fighting for good against evil.

ANTIFA must continue its campaign of actively countering every NAZI demonstration. One would like it that there is no violence, but the fight is between good and evil. Sometimes, there may be blood spilled,; if so, it is on the NAZI heads. For they are the ones attacking our values. Those who stand against evil will obey the law and will suffer the punishment of the law if the law is broken.

If left unchecked in the name of freedom of speech, the NAZIs will aim to overthrow our constitutional form of government and replace it with a fascist dictatorship wherein minorities and protesters are jailed and disappeared.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 7



7. Extend Utility Regulation

Utilities are Necessary Monopolies

There are some businesses which require a government protected monopoly for some reason; for example, some industries like electricity generation and distribution require such huge capital investments that investors will not make that investment unless assured of freedom from future competition.

In these cases it makes economic and national security sense to regulate the prices charged to the public so that the company earns a normal profit, which allows a return to investors sufficient to ensure survival and uninterrupted service provision, but does not allow for monopoly profits.

Utility Defined

Any industry whose products or services are regularly used by more than one third of the population and in which there are few suppliers is a candidate for public utility designation.

'A public utility, or utility, is an organization that maintains the infrastructure for a public service (often also providing a service using that infrastructure). Public utilities are subject to forms of public control and regulation ranging from local community-based groups to state-wide government monopolies.' [wikipedia]

Public services regulated as monopolies in the United States have included water, sewer, electricity, natural gas, highways and roads, telephone and telegraph, airlines and railroads.

Often the service provided by the utility is a monopoly or oligopoly for a variety of reasons. One reason can be capital requirements: Perhaps the provision of the service requires huge capital investments such that the service provider could not attract the capital required to provide the service without a guarantee of returns to the capital providers. The guarantee is usually in the form that the provider will be insulated from competition.

Monopoly Power

Regardless of the reason for achieving or granting such monopolies or oligopolies, the effect is that the providers have such enormous power over customers that there is a great temptation to achieve monopoly profits by pricing the product or service at a higher price than would obtain in a competitive marketplace.

Monopoly profits can occur whether the industry is a monopoly or not. The test is whether the firm faces a sloping demand curve and can achieve monopoly-style profits by raising the price above and reducing the quantity sold below a competitive equilibrium.

If monopolies and oligopolies are allowed to earn monopoly style profits, the result will be greater inefficiencies in the market place and a transfer of significant portions of consumer surplus to monopoly profits; the effect would be to reduce middle class incomes further.

Regulation to Prevent Monopoly Abuse is Common

A common solution to this problem is to regulate the utility carefully so that it has the ability to earn a sufficient return to attract capital but is prevented from usurping consumer surplus into monopoly profits.

For example, many communities have Public Utility Commissions which regulate the pricing and practices of utilities. These are elected bodies which have the power to approve or reject rate changes and capital investments. This concept has been recognized in the United States for more than 100 years; for example, a Public Utility Commission was established as part of the Colorado Constitution adopted in 1876 as 2.26 ARTICLE XXV. Public Utilities.

When left to function in the public interest, these commissions frequently succeed in pricing the service close to what a competitive market might establish.

When that occurs, the public interest is served since the Utility is prevented from achieving monopoly profits.

In today's economy there are numerous examples of monopolies and oligopolies which do secure monopoly profits but are not regulated to prevent that occurrence.

Expand Utility Designation and Regulation

It is time to expand the number of industries subject to Public Utility Commission style regulation. Such an extension would reduce the accumulation of monopoly profits and the consequent reduction of middle class purchasing power. By that mechanism, we would see additional economic growth springing from an increase in middle class buying power.

And, I suggest we extend the candidates for such Public Utility Commission style regulation to include industrial products as well.

Utilities should include industries in which the final product or service is used by more than one third of the households AND in which the four firm concentration ratio exceeds 60%. Such a calculation will be allowed for city, county, and state as well as national public utility designations.

When considering industrial products which are not sold directly to households but are raw materials or components of other products, then we should consider only the concentration ratio. Whenever the revenues of the top four firms in such an industry exceeds say 70% of the total industry revenues, then the industry should be deemed a utility and a Public Utility Commission should be assigned to regulate it.

By adopting such a course, the United States of America will strengthen its Economic National Security by reducing the power of some monopolies and oligopolies to accumulate capital and by transferring some of that capital to consumers in the form of lower prices and greater access to products and services.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Alt Right Violence



When ANTIFA members physically attack alt-right NAZIs, it raises a question about tolerance and violence.

The answer is simple: NAZI intolerance is fundamentally evil and it must be resisted whenever it appears.

[See below the PARADOX OF TOLERANCE, Karl Popper in 1945; he suggested that we cannot tolerate intolerance among us.]

We have history of what happens when NAZIs win. It is not acceptable.

The Bible is clear: Evil is violence and must be resisted.

Then ANTIFA - Go forth and resist evil when it appears. Do not enjoy the violence, it is just a means to the end of defeating evil. Break their spirit but not their bones or their skin. Send NAZI evil back to the darkness.

Biblical statements:

Proverbs 13:2 'From the fruit of a man's mouth he enjoys good, But the desire of the treacherous is violence.'

Ezekiel 7:23. 'Make the chain, for the land is full of bloody crimes and the city is full of violence.'

Micah 2:1-2. 'Woe to those who scheme iniquity, Who work out evil on their beds! When morning comes, they do it, For it is in the power of their hands. They covet fields and then seize them, And houses, and take them away They rob a man and his house, A man and his inheritance.'

PARADOX OF TOLERANCE,

The paradox of tolerance, first described by Karl Popper in 1945, is a decision theory paradox. The paradox states that if a society is tolerant without limit, their ability to be tolerant will eventually be seized or destroyed by the intolerant. Popper came to the seemingly paradoxical conclusion that in order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance.

wikipedia - The Paradox of Tolerance

Sunday, August 27, 2017

We Need Stronger Unions

See Restoring the US Middle Class - 1



The graph below shows which state have pre-empted federal Minimum wage, meaning that employers in these states do not have to pay workers the federal minimum.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 6



In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.

NASA Study predicts end of civilization unless we equalize incomes: http://collectivelyconscious.net/articles/nasa-study-concludes-when-civilization-will-end-and-its-not-looking-good-for-us/

Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

6. Create a National Industrial Policy

Create a Blueprint for the Future

The United States should create a blueprint for our future economic growth. We should establish industries in which we wish to participate and then establish policies which encourage and protect companies in those industries.

Industries should be chosen on the basis of the likelihood that they will create good jobs in the future.

Critics Claim the Government Cannot Predict the Future

Critics argue that the government is unable to make sound predictions in this area since even private companies have difficulty doing so.

While that may be, there are countries which use this practice with great success and many more countries which are beginning to establish this process. The government of South Korea established this practice in the 1950's and was able to convert a nation of rice farmers and fishermen into an industrial powerhouse.

An economic policy is any law, regulation or practice through which citizens and companies can find profit opportunities or can be taxed or harmed. Considered as such, policies can be national, state or local, but usually attention is paid to policies at the national level because they have the greatest impact.

The United States Already Has a Policy

When considered in this fashion, it is clear that we already have a national industrial policy.

But, our existing national policy has been developed in a haphazard manner and does not protect our Economic National Security adequately.

For example, it can be argued that our existing industrial policy calls for exporting manufacturing jobs, sustaining a large trade deficit, transferring technology to foreign companies regardless of the effect on our domestic economy and allowing a privileged class of bankers to speculate in a variety of markets while under the protection of government sponsored insurance against failure.

That does not make sense.

Other Countries Plan Better

Other countries like Japan, China, Korea and Germany have created a conscious industrial policy with some effect in creating a better economy for their citizens.

It is time that we emulated those successful countries. Our future Economic National Security requires it.

It will be a serious undertaking, however, since it will involve changing some powerful economic sectors. We can predict that any industry or influence which seems threatened by economic change will mount a strong campaign against change.

And yet, our future depends on it.

How Japan Does It

As an example of how such a policy might appear, here is a description of the Japanese policy from POLITICS AND PRODUCTIVITY : HOW JAPAN'S DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY WORKS, Chalmers Johnson, Laura D'Andrea Tyson, and John Zysman, Harpercollins (January 1991) :

‘The allocation of resources among industries and activities can be evaluated not only according to its Ricardian efficiency but also according to two other performance criteria:

1. Its growth efficiency or its effects on long-term rates of growth of economic activity

2. Its Schumpeterian efficiency or its effects on the pace and direction of technological change.

These two criteria clearly dominated Japanese economic policymaking in a self-conscious way. Japanese industrial policy targeted industries and activities that appeared to the Japanese planners to have the greatest future growth potential and the greatest technological potential over the long run.

As Freeman argues in his insightful book on Japanese technology policy, "MITI saw as one of its key functions the promotion of the most advanced technologies with the widest world market potential in the long run."

Under conditions of imperfect competition and technological change, an allocation of resources that is Ricardian efficient-in other words, efficient by current market indicators-may not be efficient in the growth or Schumpeterian sense.'

Suggestions for A United States Industrial Policy

When we think about an Industrial policy for the United States, we recognize that it will be a huge undertaking because we have such a large and diversified economy.

Here are some things to consider:

** Encouraging oil replacement technologies to reduce dependence on foreign oil supplies is a natural

** Auto manufacturing industry is a great job creator and a success for Federal intervention

** Reducing or eliminating our BOP deficit will save many jobs in the USA

** We should not do obvious acts which can harm our military strength or increase the military strength of our potential adversaries - we should not sell missiles to Iran, for example

Mostly, let us recognize that mistakes will be made as we move forward, but the biggest mistake is to do nothing.

As the sage Yogi Berra is reputed to have said: 'You've got to be careful if you don't know where you're going because you might not get there.'

Monday, August 21, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 5



In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.

NASA Study predicts end of civilization unless we equalize incomes: http://collectivelyconscious.net/articles/nasa-study-concludes-when-civilization-will-end-and-its-not-looking-good-for-us/

Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

5. Tax Away Great Fortunes, Great Incomes


Wealth Concentrations Reduce Wealth Generation

Huge concentrations of wealth and annual income harm our economy by diverting money away from risky investments in economic growth and into safety seeking investments.

It is well known that the primary criterion of investing is safety of principal. People with large amounts of money are risk averse and do NOT wish to risk that money in new ventures, preferring to find safer investments.

Our economy will grow faster and we will be more secure when we do not have extraordinarily large income and wealth concentrations. Then will capital have greater incentives to take risks and create growth.

The accumulation of great fortunes and large incomes in the United States has a deleterious effect on economic growth and job creation.

Wealth Creation Requires Risk

Economic growth and job creation comes from people who invest in businesses. It is well known that business investing is risky.

'Of all the new business startups, 1/3 eventually turn a profit, 1/3 break even, and 1/3 never leave a negative earnings scenario. According to a study by the U.S. Small Business Association, only 2/3 of all small business startups survive the first two years and less than half make it to four years', [http://www.gaebler.com]

And, since most jobs are created in small businesses, then it follows that economic growth and job creation requires risky investments.

Wealth Owners Want Safety, Not Risk

People who create large fortunes are mostly interested in preserving their capital. They become risk averse as their fortunes become larger. They do not want to invest in risky businesses.

This was first recognized by Keynes in his description of the Marginal Efficiency of Capital. In Keynes' graph, the Marginal Efficiency of Capital is a negatively sloped curve where higher returns are associated with lower capital amounts and lower returns are associated with higher capital amounts. In the graph the vertical axis represents percentage returns, the horizontal axis represents the dollar amount of capital and the MEC line represents the downward to the right sloping, negatively sloped curve of actual investments made.

We can see this demonstrated through classifying some investments as low risk and some as high risk in the United States today.

HIGH RISK INVESTMENTS ARE COMPARATIVELY SMALL - The total amount invested annually in venture capital business start ups and expansions, which are high risk, high profit investments is about $250 billion per year.

SAFE INVESTMENTS HAVE HIGHER DOLLAR TOTALS - At the other extreme, the value of United States Treasury bills is now about $15 trillion with some one or two trillion added each year. T-Bills are widely regarded as the safest investment in the world and are now paying about 2%.

All the gold mined in the world by 2009 was about 165,000 tons with a value of about 10 trillion dollars at $1,900 per ounce. Of that, some 19% is held by central banks as currency reserves.

The total valuation of homes in the United States is about $ 9 trillion after the price meltdown of the last few years. Residential real estate is usually considered a safe investment.

Commercial real estate is also considered a safe investment although somewhat more risky than houses. It is also worth about $ 9 trillion.

Although somewhat more risky than T-Bills, the NYSE is considered a safer investment than new business start ups for a number of reasons. The total valuation of all the companies on the NYSE is about $ 15 trillion.

In conclusion, it is clear both theoretically and practically that people with large incomes and fortunes do not wish to invest in business start-ups. Any activity that increases already large fortunes will take money away from people wishing to start new businesses, thus reducing economic growth and the Economic National Security of the United States.

Thomas Picketty Suggests Changes to Keynesian Model

However, the situation has changed so much that Thomas Picketty in his book CAPITAL IN THE 21ST CENTURY has documented that the return curve is now a positively sloped curve. This means that the more money you invest, the higher returns you receive. The likely cause of this revolution in the capital to return ratio is that the large fortunes are now so large that they can control the institutional environment so that the laws favor their investments over smaller ones.

While the large returns Picketty attributes to large capital accumulations suggest a possibility of wealth creation investments, the actual effect may be very different since the primary motive of wealth owners remains safety of principal. It is likely that the owners of large fortunes look for safe, low risk investments and manipulate the regulation environment so that the returns are increased.

The implications of this change have yet to be determined.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 4

Restoring the US Middle Class - 4

In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.

Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

4. End Free Trade

Free Trade Doesn’t Work

United States trade policy does not work. We adhere to a low tariff concept that undermines our National Security. It does so by transferring jobs to foreign countries and by facilitating huge trade imbalances which serve to transfer wealth created in the United States to our trade partners.

It is time to change trade policies so that we import only as much as we export.

Our trade partners do not reciprocate our trade encouraging practices and in fact use their trade laws and national customs to protect their domestic industries. It is time to recognize reality in trade.

Free Trade Doesn't Work; it's a fact and it's also the title of a book by Ian Fletcher [http://www.freetradedoesntwork.com/].

US Trade Policy Enforces Free Trade

Trade policy in the United States of America has been wedded to the idea of Free Trade since the 1950's.

One of the justifications for Free Trade and low tariffs for the USA was that we could promote industry in other countries by opening our consumer and industrial markets to the world.

Since the USA emerged from World War 2 as the world's major industrial power, we could afford to, we had an obligation to and our security was made stronger by raising living standards in other countries.

Since then many countries have developed strong economies by protecting their domestic companies and exporting products to the USA: China, Korea, Japan, etc., etc.

Due to their success, our relative economic strength has declined significantly to the point where our economy is now the first among equals instead of the acknowledged leader ; further, we are tied together with the other industrialized countries in an electronic embrace that we cannot break.

The time has come to abandon that policy and conduct our trade policy with attention to the real world and not to the theoretical world constructed in the 1700's.

Make no mistake, trade with other countries can promote our Economic National Security if it is managed carefully. Equally it can damage our security if it is left to market forces.

Harm to the US Economy

It is sufficient here to offer an estimate of the harm done to our economy by our recent and overwhelmingly negative trade balances.

By the term 'negative trade balances' I refer to the monthly and annual difference in current dollars between the exports of goods and services from the USA to other countries and the imports of goods and services to the USA from other countries as published by the US Census Bureau, Foreign Trade Division. This number is known as the Balance of Payments or BOP.

The BOP for the United States was either a small positive number - meaning the total dollar value of our exports exceeded the dollar value of our imports - or a small negative number until the mid 1980's.

In 1984, the BOP of the United States exceeded a NEGATIVE $100 BILLION for the first time. That means that in 1984 we bought $109.1 BILLION more of stuff from other countries than we sold to them.

In monetary policy analysis that means that our money supply was REDUCED by $109.1 BILLION in that year.

BUT, with the deposit money multiplier, it means that our GDP was reduced by about ONE TRILLION DOLLARS in 1984 alone. In that year, the GDP in current dollars was about Four Trillion Dollars.

SO, our GDP could have been reduced by about 20% in 1984 alone.

While there is some debate as to whether all that money was taken permanently from our domestic money supply and GDP or whether some of it was returned to the USA and used to buy T-bills, there is no doubt that the GDP reduction is significant.

That is just 1984.

We have consistently run a negative BOP ever since then.

Between 1984 and 2009, our cumulative NEGATIVE BOP was 7.3 TRILLION DOLLARS.

Using a conservative money multiplier of 10,that means our GDP was REDUCED by about SEVENTY TRILLION DOLLARS during the period.

In simple terms, we are not so rich we can afford to lose such substantial GDP every year to foreign trade. Unless this problem is corrected, it will bankrupt the United States of America.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Free Hugs in San Francisco

The NAZI, alt-right is planning a big march in San Francisco for August 26.

Many marchers will be frightened young men worried about their future.

Here's a good idea:

Let's create stations, many stations with signs, that offer FREE HUGS, with no obligations, to marchers worried about their future, especially alt-right and NAZI marchers.

The only requirement is that anyone wanting a hug must show they carry no weapons. Bouncers will stand by to ensure safety.

Hugging volunteers can, and should be all kinds, men, women, gay, straight, etc., etc.

That's it.

Love will triumph..

Restoring the US Middle Class - 3



In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.

Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

3.Destroy Monopolies


Monopolies Take From the Poor and Give to the Rich

Monopolies are bad for the country, per se. Such firms have economic incentives to charge higher prices and sell fewer products than firms in competition. Their actions create a deadweight loss from economic activity not undertaken and further transfer some consumer surplus to monopoly profit. This results in less economic welfare for the country and thereby damages our National Security.

The United States should strengthen existing anti-monopoly laws, increase enforcement activity and write additional anti-monopoly laws.

The concept that monopoly is a reward for efficient firms is a false concept which serves to undermine National Security.

Monopolies and Oligopolies Make Extra Profits

These firms face a downward sloping demand curve for their products as opposed to a horizontal demand curve faced by a firm in competition.

This gives monopolies and oligopolistic firms the ability to change the price of the products. And, because all firms normally want to maximize profits, these firms will charge higher prices and sell a lower quantity than would all the firms in a competitive market.

Economists call the economic activity lost from this decision a 'Deadweight Loss' ; in other words it is economic activity lost forever from the economy.

Even worse is the ability and the practice of these firms to increase their profits at the expense of consumers.

In the graph below which shows the cost and revenue curves and decisions faced by a monopoly, the 'Deadweight Loss' is the white area to the left of the intersection of the MC, ATC and Demand or Average Revenue curves intersect. The point where those three curves intersect represents the point where there would be a competitive equilibrium or efficient price and production quantity.

Since the actual monopoly point of price is where the line labeled 10 or monopoly selling price intersects the Demand or AR line and the monopoly quantity is at 20 where the monopoly quantity line intersects the Demand or AR line, the loss of production and higher price represents the 'deadweight Loss.'





Thus, monopolies and oligopolies which act as monopolies increase their profits at the expense of the economy as a whole; they are inefficient.

Would that it were just a graph, but these actions take large amounts of income from consumers and transfer it to these companies.

Monopolies Today

Here is a list of industries in which companies earn these abnormal profits [the numbers after the name of the industry refer to the percentage share of total revenues for the industry earned by the four {4} largest firms] in 2002 :


Cigarettes 97.8
Guided Missiles 94.8
Aircraft 81.3
Breakfast cereal 80.4
Electric Lamps, Light Bulbs 75.4
Tires 77.6
Automobiles 67.6
Cookies, Crackers 69.3
Tortillas 57.4
Men's and Boy's Shirts 56.4
Dolls, Stuffed Toys 56.9
Fluid Milk 46.0
Ships, Boat Building 44.0

As a comparison, here are the industries and concentration ratios in 1997 :

Cigarettes 99
Cane Sugar Refining 99
Primary Copper 95
Glass Containers 91
Beer 90
Small-arms Ammunition 90
Electric Light Bulbs 89
Aircraft 85
Breakfast Cereals 83
Motor Vehicles 82
Household Refrigerators 82
Photo Equipment and Supplies 81
Turbines and Generators 78
Flat Glass 77
Fiber-Optic Cable 71
Men's Slacks 69
Tires 69
Motorcycles and Bicycles 68
Gypsum Products 68
Soap and Detergents 66
Lawn, Garden Equipment 64

Any economic recovery will be made more difficult until the concentration of monopoly profits is reduced or eliminated.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 2



In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.

Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

2.Stop Union Busting

Unions Cost Money

Some business owners think they have an economic incentive to interfere with union actions; they will have to pay higher wages if unions are successful. In our history, blood has been shed in labor disputes.

Henry Ford knew that true national prosperity lies with workers receiving wages high enough to buy the cars he made, but many business owners are not so enlightened.

Labor Law Enforcement Needed

When there is little labor law enforcement or penalties for labor law violations, then labor law has little effect.

The United States should enforce labor laws vigorously.

Although tarnished as a canard, it is true nonetheless that laws which remain unenforced do not change behavior.

If unions which organize workers and then press for higher wages are critical to our Economic National Security, then it follows that the laws which permit organizing should be enforced.

Those laws are not enforced.

We will fail to create an economic recovery until we enforce those laws.

Here are some facts from a recent survey: 'In 91% of the union recognition petitions filed with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in the survey, a majority of workers indicated they wanted a union before the process began. In several cases, workers demonstrated more than 80% support. However, unions were victorious in only 31% of the campaign in which they filed a petition.'

The full report is here: http://www.jwj.org/the-facts-on-the-new-nlrb-union-election-rule

This situation is both unacceptable and easily fixable.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Restoring the US Middle Class - 1

In the interest of restoring a viable middle class to the United States of America, I will reproduce sequentially chapters of my book in this space. The title is 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America Kindle Edition'

The book is available as a Kindle book here : https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

My hope is that a more viable middle class will reduce class tensions.


Occupy Wall Street Plan 12

1.Strengthen Labor Unions

Unions are Created by Law and Organizing

Union organizing and negotiating rights are created by Federal labor laws. When unions can organize and press for higher wages, the country benefits from higher incomes going to the middle class. It is true that unions can be messy organizations, but overall they succeed in raising middle class incomes when they can function freely. This will increase middle class purchasing power and help restore Aggregate Demand.

An inevitable result of raising wages through union activity will be that businesses have to raise prices to survive - that will require some adjustments to our trade policies as discussed below.

As an economist I am aware that statements about policy don't carry weight unless they are supported by statistics.

Unions’ Effects on Wages and GDP

Below I provide some statistics courtesy of infoplease.com and data360.org about the impact of declining wages on our GDP with a consequent need for increased union activity to raise wages, but first we look briefly at two competing economic philosophies.

By themselves, numbers don't carry any weight. The interpretation of the statistics provides the weight. But, numbers can be interpreted differently by folks with different viewpoints.

Classical Economic Theory

One likely interpretation of any statistic is the Classical Economic philosophy which encompasses Free Market doctrine. An interpretation from an observer with this focus will suggest that any statistic which implies any interference in free markets is bad for the economy.

To such Classical Economists, the very idea of unions is an anathema because unions try to organize workers so they can bargain collectively.

Keynesian Economic Theory

A Keynesian focus is another possible interpretation; this focus will suggest that Free Markets are useful but occasionally create such huge social misery that the government must intervene in order to secure the best result for society.

Wages and Unions

The hypothesis is that wages and consumer incomes have declined proportionally and as a share of GDP coincidentally with a decline in union membership in the United States since the 1950's. We might expect this decline to show up as a reduction in the share of GDP accounted for by personal consumption expenditures; we assume that most of any change in personal consumption expenditures is due to changes in disposable incomes, except for occasional borrowing binges such as occurred in 2005 to 2007.

Comparing the percentage share of GDP accounted for by personal consumption expenditures and also by Gross private domestic investment does indeed show that significant changes have occurred.

For example, in 1960 and 1970, consumption accounted for 63.0% and 62.4% of GDP respectively while investment accounted for 15.0% and 14.7% respectively.

We can take those as a desirable base relationship since the United States enjoyed good economic times in those years.

Looking forward to the current situation, we find that consumption expenditures have INCREASED their share of GDP to 70% or more consistently from 2002 to today.

BUT, we see that investment has DECLINED from a range of 15.0% of GDP to a low of 11.7% in the 2009, Q3.

Although this is the opposite of what the hypothesis above suggests, the relationship of consumption and investment does in fact support the concept that wages should be increased in order to support economic growth and increasing Aggregate Demand.

Here's why: Keynesian theory predicts that businesses increase investment when they expect a rising GDP in the future and decrease investment when they expect the opposite.

Business investment of 15% to 18% of GDP - which was the case between 1960 and 1980 - coincided with good economic times in our recent past.

Business investment of less than 12% of GDP coincided with a severe recession, regardless of the share of GDP accounted for by consumption.

Good economic times are accompanied by high business investment and bad economic times are accompanied by low investment.

Keynes theory suggests that businesses increase investments when they predict good economic times ahead. With high union wages - such as we had in the 1960's and 1970's - businesses are optimistic about the future and make investments.

Classical theory, on the other hand predicts that businesses will increase investment when interest rates are low. This theory is clearly inadequate to explain why business investment was at historically low levels of GDP in 2009 even though interest rates were at zero. One of the last times that business investment was that low was in 1930 when it was at 11.8%.

The policy implication of this is also clear: good economic times require that businesses expect high consumer demand in the future before they commit to investing in new plants and equipment.

Stronger unions will raise wages, create optimism about future demand and will result in increased business investment and Aggregate Demand.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

American NAZIs: Why Now?

Why are we seeing NAZIs now?

One might ask that question.

The answer is that they have always been here but have stayed in the shadows, especially when the economy is doing well.

trump has appealed directly to them and they now feel emboldened to press their agenda.

But, and this is no surprise, some of their concerns are fueled by the economic policies in the United States.

We have a very high income and wealth gap between the few and the many. Folks at the bottom feel left out.

Ironically, their supposed champion, trump, is installing policies and people who are making the income and wealth gaps more severe. This is despite the campaign promises he made to reduce those gaps.

There are economic solutions to this question and I have outlined them in my Kindle book 'Occupy Wall Street Plan 12: A Proposal for Twelve Specific Governmental Actions to Correct Some Economic Imbalances in the United States of America'.

It is available here:

https://www.amazon.com/Occupy-Wall-Street-Plan-Governmental-ebook/dp/B00UK97C84/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Thursday, August 10, 2017

trump: Evil or Bat Shit Crazy?

Question of the day: Is trump Evil or Bat Shit Crazy?

This is not a new question. It is worth stating here to illustrate the starkness of options available to Americans and others.

Looking in from outside the United States, apparently, the United States of America has as its President a man about whom US voters and governments in our allies and enemies cannot decide if he is certifiably insane or simply evil.

Of course, as a philosophical matter, the answer is not critical in the short run, since changing the answer will not affect immediately any outcomes. But, and it is a big BUT, real people and real governments make decisions on what POTUS trump may or may not actually do. Different answers to this question can have significant long term impacts.

By using the word 'evil', I am suggesting that an 'evil' action by POTUS is an action taken with the intent of benefiting an enemy state or a criminal person who wishes to profit unfairly from or harm American citizens.

It is always possible that both of the extreme motivations attributed to POTUS can be correct simultaneously.

Armchair psychiatrists can and have diagnosed POTUS as suffering from several mental illnesses; since they have done so without benefit of an examination, their judgments must be held in abeyance.

At this writing, the Special Prosecutor is conducting an examination of POTUS actions to determine whether or not there is a cause for a criminal indictment.

Part of the reason for this examination is the significant financial revenues to POTUS assets and companies from Russian criminals including Putin.

Americans should pray for our country.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Time to Consider Treason

Here's Wikipedia on Treason:

'In law, treason is the crime that covers some of the more extreme acts against one's nation or sovereign.[1] Historically, treason also covered the murder of specific social superiors, such as the murder of a husband by his wife or that of a master by his servant. Treason against the king was known as high treason and treason against a lesser superior was petty treason. A person who commits treason is known in law as a traitor. Oran's Dictionary of the Law (1983) defines treason as a "citizen's actions to help a foreign government overthrow, make war against, or seriously injure the [parent nation]". In many nations, it is also often considered treason to attempt or conspire to overthrow the government, even if no foreign country is aiding or involved by such an endeavor.'

Where we are today:

trump and the GOP have implemented several United States policies and practices which harm the National Security of the United States and also have a direct and positive impact on Russia's interests.

These actions are listed in the video clip from Rachel Maddow: http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/what-would-russia-want-from-a-pliant-us-leader-1003069507592

Monday, July 17, 2017

Climate Change is REAL - It WILL Kill Your Family

Climate Change is REAL - It WILL Kill Your Family

Yep, it is the REAL deal.

And, it is coming, soon.

To try to understand how bad it is,

read this:

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/07/climate-change-earth-too-hot-for-humans.html?utm_source=All+Poynter+Subscribers&utm_campaign=e097f765df-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_07_14&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5372046825-e097f765df-196841529

Friday, July 7, 2017

Clearly Incompetent


trump has embarrassed the United States of America by his obvious confusion: He could not find his car upon exiting the plane; he could not find a hotel room; and, he dozed off during a G20 meeting.

This incompetence is dangerous to the National Security of the United States of America.

Additionally, he took Putin's assurances that Russia did not meddle in US elections at face value, despite the unanimous conclusion of the United States Intelligence Community that Russia was, and is continuing to, destabilizing the American electoral process.

In this, trump is worse than merely incompetent, he is Putin's shill.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Inciting to Violence

trump is clearly and obviously inciting his base toward violent acts.

One can assume that he is attempting to create a violent reaction from others.

The end is to further Putin's goals of weakening the civil society of the United States of America.

That will make Russia appear more powerful.

It will also lead to economic malaise in the United States which can then be exploited by trump and other billionaire crooks. They can buy distressed assets at rock bottom prices. BTW, distressed means that the owners are suffering and may resort to their own violence.

trump may call for martial law and further suspension of Constitutional rights in the face of any demonstration.

See Naomi Klein here: https://www.facebook.com/theinterceptflm/videos/1356564564392593/

We can resist with non-violent demonstrations.

We can and should create mass non-violent demonstrations with the goal of pressuring Congress into doing the right thing.

Make a demonstration every time there is an opportunity to show Senators and Representatives that we will resist without violence whenever we can and until the policies are corrected.

Friday, June 30, 2017

You Can Run But You Cannot Hide

Hey trump:

You are on the fast track to becoming the President with the worst record in history.

Not only are you clearly Putin's handmaiden, you are actively disliked by more than 60% of the US population and a higher percentage of the world's population.

Add to that the fact that your Congress is systematically dismantling the foundations of our society and the conclusion is clear:

You have besmirched your name for all time. You will be remembered as a total failure.

You have done EVERYTHING in your power to stop an investigation into your Russia connection.

You have systematically pursued Putin's agenda for the United States, at the expense of the National Security of the United States of America.

You have disregarded the Constitution and our institutions as well as basic human decency in your official interpersonal relations.

Your twitter tantrums have served only to distract the population from your more destructive actions, and this was most likely deliberate on your part.

You have systematically extracted personal profit from every government agency you can in clear violation of the Constitution and your Oath of Office.

You have systematically betrayed your voters by your refusal to make good on your campaign promises.

Your party is systematically destroying higher education, our environment, our justice system, our elections, our financial system, our labor laws, our health care and whatever else you can think of.

All of the world leaders from democratically elected governments have taken a stance against you and your policies.

American voters voted for your opponent by a three million vote margin; that margin has increased since the election. Now, you are distrusted by more than 60% of American voters.

Since you have nowhere to go but down, please resign the Presidency and save your self and the country from further infamy.

I wish I could say that the foregoing is all you have done, but that is just from my memory; I am sure there are other things waiting in the wings.

'The wheels of justice turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine.' [Proverb]

You can run but you cannot hide.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

trump Kills

Hey trump:

Well, I really wish that you were not in charge of anything. Sadly, for all of us, you are in 'charge' of some stuff.

The thing is this: Whenever - WHENEVER - you say or tweet ANYTHING, ANYTHING!!, someone will die.

It may be one person, or ten people, or a thousand people or a million people.

Whenever you open your mouth, people WILL DIE.

Here's what that means to you: IT IS TIME TO GROW UP!!

Sometimes people will die if you say nothing, but it is a certainty that people die every time you say anything.

Say nothing and kill a few people - speak up and kill more people.

Here's an example - you said that maybe the USA will drop the Paris climate agreement.

You did not say that you WILL drop the agreement, just that you are thinking about it.

So, who dies?

People who die are the people living near toxic polluters. They will die because the polluters will put their plans to reduce emissions or close plants on hold.

They will continue to kill people just because you said something.

Do you get it??

For God's sake, grow up.

Spring 2017 Country Studies


The Mike P. McKeever Institute of Economic Policy Analysis (MIEPA) is pleased to announce the publication of its Spring 2017 country studies.

Three countries have been analyzed by eight Specialists: Colombia, Italy and the United States of America.

Colombia is analyzed by Specialist Carlos Martinez Zabala; the analysis can be read at http://www.mkeever.com/colombia.html

Italy is analyzed by Specialist Antonio Lo Fiego; the analysis can be read at http://www.mkeever.com/italy.html

The United States of America is analyzed by Specialists Tim Schiller, Kaiden Mcallister, Jackson Morgan, Rico Jaime Jr, Eric Voorhees and Oscar Tranam; the analyses can be read at http://www.mkeever.com/usa.html

MIEPA can be accessed at www.mkeever.com

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Blithering Idiot trump Kills Friend of America

Idiot-in-Chief trump just killed a valuable source of intelligence.

Perhaps his name was Mohamed. Maybe he was 25 or 30 and he was an idealist. He wanted to make the world a better place, so he joined ISIS.

Soon he figured out that their ideology was bankrupt and dangerous, so he decided to give some information to America so we could protect people.

The, trump killed him just as surely as pulling the trigger, simply by disclosing his information to Russia.

But, Mohamed was probably tortured and beheaded instead of a quick death by gun.

Thank you Mr. President.

Now, whatever actions Mohamed reported will go forward and Americans will die.

Their blood will be on your hands, Mr. Trump.

And, nobody with sensitive information will trust America again.

This is a nightmare.

Monday, May 15, 2017

USA: Russian Satellite

It is fair to call the United States of America under President trump a modern version of a Satellite State of Russia under Putin.

There has not been any executive action in trump's Presidency which has contained Russia in any way. On the contrary, the White House has gone out of its way to make Russian interests paramount.

Concurrently, it is fair to call trump a Russian puppet governor. trump appears to be taking direction from Moscow on policies and procedures for the United States to follow.

So far, the White House has not called for the abandonment of Sanctions on Russia and specific individuals which resulted from the Russian attack on Ukraine; but it is probably only a matter of time until that happens.

Though the following is by no means inclusive, here are several specific actions from the White House which have served Russia directly, or, indirectly by making the United States weaker.

1. Tillerson was appointed Secretary of State, probably at Putin's request. trump said he did not know Tillerson before the election but that Tillerson was recommended by Putin.

2. Tillerson's first act was to fire all the mid-level State Department diplomats who were coordinating NATO's response to Russian aggression in Ukraine.

3. Several active investigations - House of Representatives, Senate, FBI - are exploring charges of Russian meddling in the United States election process.

4. Leaders of each investigation have resigned under mysterious circumstances, made inexplicable and compromising statements and actions or have been fired by trump. The cumulative effect of these actions has been to call into question the otherwise credible charges of collusion.

5. trump entertained Russia's foreign minister and ambassador - who has been accused of being an active Russian spymaster - in the White House, for the first time EVER. The likely agenda of the meeting, from which the American press was banned, is the coordination of policy moves.

6. trump will meet Putin on his first foreign trip - also to coordinate policy actions for the USA.

7. trump's extensive dismantling of Executive Actions designed to protect workers' lives and the environment from degradation has weakened the country.

8. Republican dismantlng of health care has already created fear and anger in the population; the weakening of insurance protection under Obamacare will harm millions of people.

9. Education Secretary deVos has weakened Federal funding of higher education which will harm our future scientific progress, from which comes our long term economic growth. Additionally, Federal student loan interest has been raised 20%, thus ensuring the indentured servitude of an entire generation of college students.

10. The Washington Post has just revealed that President Trump gave highly classified information to Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during last week’s meeting. May 15, 2017.

Here is a history of Russian involvement in Eastern European affairs after World War II from wikipedia.

At the end of World War II, most eastern and central European countries were occupied by the Soviet Union, and along with the USSR made up what is sometimes called the Soviet Empire. The Soviets remained in these countries after the war's end. Through a series of coalition governments including Communist parties, and then a forced liquidation of coalition members unliked by the Soviets, Stalinist systems were established in each country. Stalinists gained control of existing governments, police, press and radio outlets in these countries. Soviet satellite states in Europe included:

The People's Socialist Republic of Albania (Satellite 1944–1960; government extant until 1992)
The Polish People's Republic (1944–1989)
The People's Republic of Bulgaria (1946–1990)
The People's Republic of Romania (1947–1965)
The Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (1948–1989)
The German Democratic Republic (1949–1990)
The Hungarian People's Republic (1949–1989)

The Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia is sometimes referred to as a Soviet satellite, though it broke from the Soviet Union in the 1948 Tito-Stalin split, with the Cominform offices being moved from Belgrade to Bucharest, and subsequently initiated formation of the Non-Aligned Movement. The People's Republic of Albania, under the leadership of Stalinist Enver Hoxha, broke ties with the Soviet Union in 1960 following the Soviet de-Stalinization process. These countries were, at least between 1945 and 1948, all members of the Eastern Bloc.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Hey Putin: Watch your back, you asshole.

A sworn enemy of the United States, North Korea, tests a missile that lands in the Sea of Japan.

But, it seems that the official position of the United States of America is that the test may have displeased Putin.

Let me repeat - THE OFFICIAL POSITION OF THE UNITED STATES ABOUT A NORTH KOREAN MISSILE TEST IS THIS: '"With the missile impacting so close to Russian soil –- in fact, closer to Russia than to Japan –- the President cannot imagine that Russia is pleased."'

It appears that the most important thing about our enemy action is that it might have 'displeased' our enemy Putin.

Russia under Putin is our enemy; Putin is a murdering thug who will use any means to advance his financial status and embarrass the United States.

A better response is this: 'Watch your back asshole. We will protect our friends, not you'

Text here:

' A U.S. official said the missile landed in the Sea of Japan after being launched from western North Korea. The type of missile launched today is still being assessed.

According to U.S. Pacific Command, the missile was launched near Kusung and landed in the Sea of Japan.

The type of missile is being assessed, but the flight was not consistent with an intercontinental ballistic missile, according to a statement from U.S. PACOM spokesman Major Rob Shuford.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) determined the missile launch from North Korea did not pose a threat to North America, the statement said.

A statement released late Saturday night by the White House said President Trump was "briefed on the latest missile test by North Korea."

It continued, "North Korea has been a flagrant menace for far too long. South Korea and Japan have been watching this situation closely with us. The United States maintains our ironclad commitment to stand with our allies in the face of the serious threat posed by North Korea. Let this latest provocation serve as a call for all nations to implement far stronger sanctions against North Korea."

The statement also acknowledged the missile test's close proximity to Russia: "With the missile impacting so close to Russian soil –- in fact, closer to Russia than to Japan –- the President cannot imagine that Russia is pleased."



http://abcnews.go.com/International/north-korea-launches-missile-launch-assessed/story?id=47395655

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Russia Winning

In case you are wondering how it is possible for Russia under Putin to control the Policy of the United States of America, consider the experience of several countries in Eastern Europe in the aftermath of World War 2.

Russia's problem was that it had to control the policies of several countries whose population hated Russians and were willing to die to kill Russians.

So, the old KGB under Stalin and Kruschev figured out a way to manage those countries so that their actions supported Russian aims.

The way they chose did NOT require vast commitments of troops and armed forces; that was the obvious choice, but everyone was really tired of vast armies and global war.

The first thing the KGB did was to identify the policies they wanted each country to follow. In no particular order, those policies were to support the Russian army and to install a Socialist and/or Communist regime with a puppet dictator who could be controlled.

Once the puppet was installed, then any potential leaders who might cause trouble in the future were identified and eliminated. They might have been killed or neutralized, it did not matter which so long as they were rendered incapable of creating any future discontent. If those leaders happened to have armed supporters, the puppet government was tasked with neutralizing them.

The Russians always kept in reserve something the puppet was willing to kill for. If the puppet showed any signs of supporting the rebels, he was ordered to eliminate the threat under penalty of losing whatever the Russians held, whether that was money or the threat to kill him and his family.

This was Empire on the cheap and it worked for a long time.

[For details see EASTERN EUROPE SINCE 1945, Geoffrey Swain and Nigel Smith, St. Martins Press, New York, 1993; ISBN 0-312-09086-2]

Fast forward to 2017.

The objective is the same - Russia wants to control another country's [the United States of America] policies without outright war.

The goals of that control is to destabilize NATO, eliminate United States pressure on Russian economy due to sanctions, weaken democracy overall and to take over Ukraine.

Now, there are cyber weapons which Russia can deploy to support those objectives - no shooting!!

After trump wins the election, due in part to cyber warfare against Hillary Clinton, trump is made aware of his obligations due to his support by Putin. If he fails to follow Russian control, the money will stop and the treason will be exposed to the world.

The first step is to install Tillerson as Secretary of State. trump does not know him but Putin does. Tillerson's first act is to fire all the diplomats who have been coordinating pressure on Russia under NATO with the economic sanctions from Ukraine and missile deployments.

The next step is to purge all American officials who might reveal the extent of trump corruption; pretty much anyone who was investigating the Russia connection is fired or resigns, including sitting congress persons.

Every Russia investigation to date [May 10, 2017] is dead, stalled or the leaders have resigned.

While this may appear fanciful and hyperbolic, it does mimic a 60 year history of Russian intervention in foreign countries.

American patriots wish for an independent investigation that will show exactly the extent of Russian interference in United States policies and governance.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Will Putin Fire trump?

Will Putin fire trump?

The investigation into trump's treasonous activity on behalf of Russia still continues, even though several key players in that investigation have been fired or have recused themselves.

Comey, Yates, Sessions, etc., etc., etc.

We are witnessing a Soviet-style purge of American officials similar to the methodology used by Russia under Stalin to control its Eastern European satellites in the 1950's. The KGB playbook is limited but has been effective previously.

Now we see it again.

trump is traveling to the East and has announced a meeting with Putin.

The remaining question is this: Has Putin lost patience with trump?

Sadly, this seems to be the fate of the United States of America. Namely, we are now a Russian satellite.

trump will get his marching orders from Putin.

Will he let trump stay or will he fire him?

Stay tuned.

:-(

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Greed is trump's End Game


What is trump's end game?? Is there a set of objectives for which he is striving or which may occur even if he does not have an overarching plan??

Based on very few consistent themes in his actions, there does appear to be such a set of objectives.

His overriding objective seems to be personal financial gain, or greed, at the expense of everything else. He seems willing to sacrifice the country, his reputation and anything or anyone else who gets in his way in a pursuit of more money.

In that pursuit he has, among other things, violated the Constitution repeatedly in service of his greed.

But, an additional trump tactic is perhaps even more disturbing.

That is this: he strives to create chaos by destroying the fabric which holds the country together. This tactic serves his overarching greed. If he is successful, then he may be able to profit enormously by buying distressed assets on the cheap in any forthcoming recession.

Ancillary to this goal is his aim to destroy programs which direct financial gain toward middle class Americans. This includes public education, social security, environmental protection, financial stability, etc., etc.

Some of the programs which have helped middle class Americans by increasing their incomes were based on Presidential directives from the Obama administration. trump has overturned many of those programs, noticeably including the revision of overtime rules which gave more working people access to overtime pay.

These trump actions will have the effect of reducing the purchasing power of middle class Americans; this weakening will, in turn, lead to a recession as companies find that there are fewer consumers able to afford their products.

trump's disdain for science and evidence based facts can have severe repercussions for the United States. Our long term economic growth has been fueled by a continuing stream of new technology. Most of the new ideas and products we see have their antecedents in scientific research and higher education. Yet, trump strives to reduce Federal funding for science, research and public education. If successful, the American Economic Miracle may be finished.

Another concern is his wanton disregard of the United States Federal budget and debt. His programs will add substantially to the national debt by reducing taxes and expanding spending. In order to finance this deficit, he will have to authorize selling trillions more T-bills.

This can lead to the very real danger of destroying the financial safe harbor which Treasury notes offer investors. If this were to occur, then the interest costs to the United States might rise significantly.

In that event, the Treasury would be forced to rely on large international lenders like the International Monetary Fund. That institution has a track record of forcing severe budget and pension cuts and painful tax increases on countries which seek its financial aid. One has only to look at Greece to see our possible future.



Monday, April 17, 2017

UPDATE - LOST THE FLEET - Disgusted and Ashamed

Words fail me.

I am disgusted at the sight of him - lecherous, perverted crook.

I want to retch.

I am ashamed for my country.

Let us hope that he does not kill us all before he goes away.

Now we are the same as every corrupt, murderous regime.

Please God, take him soon. Or me.

UPDATE - We would have gone to Nuclear war with North Korea, except that TRUMP LOST THE FLEET!!

trump Ship Sinking Now

'President Donald Trump's approval rating continues to slide as his base grapples with his shifting positions on major campaign promises.

According to the latest polling data from Gallup, 53 percent of Americans now disapprove the job Trump is doing in the White House.

The president's disapproval numbers shot up 3 percentage points to 55 percent and stood at two week high over the weekend before dipping down to 53 percent on Sunday.

To put Trump's historically high disapproval number into perspective: President Obama held a 28 percent disapproval rating at the same point in his first term. In the middle of George W. Bush's first April as president he held a 30 percent disapprove, and only 19 percent of U.S. citizens disapproved of President Reagan in April 1981.

Trump's approval rating is at a mere 40 percent according to the same Gallup data. No president in the last six decades had approval ratings so low at this point in his presidency. Former President Bill Clinton had the lowest approval rating in his first April in office prior to Trump. Only 55 percent approved of his job performance at that point.

Trump's job approval numbers are still low across the majority of major polling surveys. The latest McClatchy/Marist polls shows the president at a 39 percent approval rating, while a new SurveyMonkey survey has him at 44 percent.'

https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/04/17/poll-majority-of-americans-disapprove-of-president-trump/22042115/

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

INQUISITION 17: Separation of Economic Theory and Political Consequences


Economic theories, when placed into concrete political actions, have real world consequences.

While this is akin to stating that sunshine causes shadows, it is worth addressing because some politicians and economists have forgotten the obvious.

Seemingly the study of economic theories in modern times has been devoid of any consideration of real world consequences whenever real policies are created using one or another economic theory.

In past times when the study was called Political Economy, there was an explicit acknowledgment of those consequences.

Some Marxist philosophers have suggested that both the intent and the results of that division were motivated by a desire to enhance the political domination of the working class by the monied interests. Notably, this was put forward by Ellen Meiksins Wood in her essay "The Separation of the Economic and the Political in Capitalism", originally published in NLR 1/127 (1981) [http://www.versobooks.com/blogs/2302-ellen-meiksins-wood-the-separation-of-the-economic-and-the-political-in-capitalism].

My suggestion is this: it is time to reconnect economic theory with political reality regardless of when or why the division was implemented. We can do that without any outdated political or economic philosophy like Marxism simply by stating our desired real world outcomes ahead of the policy introduction

Governmental policies based on economic theory have immediate consequences for the lives of most citizens. It is irresponsible to ignore the consequences and focus on only the 'pure' math or theory of any economic idea.

Sometimes political rhetoric suggests that Economic Theory dictates a particular regulation or lack thereof in order to conform to pure economic theory. The corollary suggestion is that any political effects will be balanced out by a movement toward a more pure and efficient economy that will benefit all in the long run.

This idea is nonsense. Keynes said it best: '..in the long run, we are all dead..'

It is irresponsible for economists to argue that the introduction of 'free markets' is consistent with economic theory and is therefore good for all when the demonstrable effect of those polices is to exacerbate income and wealth inequalities and human misery resulting from those inequalities.

That statement is the same as this statement: 'Since our goal is to increase inequality, we will introduce Free Market reforms since we know that those reformers will increase inequality.'

An approach which is both more consistent and more real is to identify the outcome goal of a policy and then to introduce the policy with its outcome goals stated clearly. It is even possible to forecast or predict what the effects will be in the real world in support of that policy. Then, the policy can be adjusted if the outcome goals are not being met.

Here are two specific examples of how that can, and does, work.

EXAMPLE 1

Suppose a country's government wants to improve the lives of all its citizens. It then identifies what it wants its citizens to have. Then, it costs out those changes to get a forecast cost of all the changes. Last, the government raises taxes on its agreed group of income tax payers by enough to implement the changes. If the tax change raises more money than the new benefits cost, then it reduces taxes.

This is called the Nordic model and functions with some variances in Sweden, Norway and Denmark.

EXAMPLE 2

Suppose a government decides that its transportation infrastructure needs repair in order to prevent a reduction in GDP from transportation failures.

The government then costs out the repairs necessary and raises taxes by enough to cover the repairs, or at least enough to cover the debt service on the bonds it sells to finance those repairs.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Tillerson - CALL HILLARY

The trump team is clearly over its collective head in the Middle East, especially Syria.

Unless they get real smart, real fast, we could be in another war, maybe one with trump's pal Putin.

So Tillerson, for our sake, CALL HILLARY!

She is clearly the best voice on this issue and will be happy to offer you wisdom.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

USA Trade Negotiation

President trump has suggested that the United States of America change or renegotiate our current trade agreements to 'make America great'.

This phrase is nonsensical and has no real meaning.

To the extent that the United States has an actual problem from foreign trade, it arises from our continuing surplus of imports over exports. This is a legitimate concern and will be recognized as such by our trading partners.

A rational administration would make it clear that we simply wish to reduce our cash outflow and have no punitive objective; we simply want to re-balance our domestic economy.

Our current administration has a habit of creating ill-will by inappropriate comments. Inflammatory rhetoric does create the possibility of a trade retaliation, but a non-confrontational approach may well avoid that outcome.

But simply replacing imports with domestic products will not increase US jobs substantially and may have further deleterious impacts on the US economy. After all, some of the dollars sent overseas for merchandise come back in the form of T-bill purchases.

If we want to reduce our trade deficit - and I think we should - we should go politely to our trade partners and point put how each of them has a trade surplus while we are the sole industrialized country with a trade deficit.

We would request some relief with the objective of a zero trade balance for the United States, while making it clear that we do NOT wish any harm to their economies; we seek only to reduce or eliminate our dollar drain.





Thursday, March 9, 2017

Cold War: Putin/Tillerson/trump

After World War II, the United States of America acted both militarily and diplomatically to prevent Russia from expanding its territory.

Hundred of thousands of United States armed personnel are stationed in Europe and are ready to act under our NATO commitment to defend any member who is attacked.

NATO has long been an irritant to Putin who appears to have expansionary ambitions. It is reasonable to say that without a robust NATO, there may very well have been war in Europe between the end of World War II and today.

It is in the interests of Putin's Russia then to weaken NATO militarily.

President trump has publicly stated that he wants other NATO members to pay more for their protection; that statement has the appearance of a division in NATO and makes it appear weaker.

A second and very active part of the check on Putin's Russia expansion has been the 'soft' power that the United States Department of State has actively projected in Europe. That power has consisted of State Department personnel maintaining contacts with Western European officials and helping to ensure a cohesive set of polices throughout the diverse continent.

Seemingly at the behest of Putin, Tillerson and trump have unilaterally ended that practice. Tillerson fired most of the career diplomats who have worked diligently to keep Putin in check.

The 'soft power' of the United States of America has ceased to exist.

The likelihood of war in Europe has increased substantially.

Putin thinks has has a green light.





Friday, February 24, 2017

California to trump: Eff You

The legislature of California is planning to pass laws protecting the state's environment from the destructive effects of Republican environment laws.

Details: http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/California-lawmakers-announce-bills-to-protect-10955270.php


ICE Lies to Cops

ICE officials told Police in Santa Cruz CA that a planned raid targeting MS-13 members was a focused raid and that no status offenses would be prosecuted.

ICE lied.

ICE officers did in fact arrest persons with status offenses only; then they denied they did so.

This action harms public safety since persons who have cooperated with police are now reluctant to do so.

article here: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Santa-Cruz-leaders-slam-feds-over-immigration-10955358.php

Thursday, February 23, 2017

ICE Violates Constitutional Rights of US Citizens on Domestic Airline

ICE has required all passengers on a domestic flight to show photo ID.

Homeland Security already does this at check in.

ICE has NO authority to violate the rights of American Citizens in this manner.

http://usuncut.com/news/have-your-papers-ready-customs-agents-checking-the-ids-of-domestic-flight-passengers/