Friday, October 22, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

It's back! It's updated!

(Via Survivalblog)

You know it, you love it, it's the Animated Unemployment Rate Map--updated through the end of August, 2010.

Something wicked this way comes...

Better and better

"Reinflation or bust" would seem to be the motto at the Federal Reserve.

Charles Evans, president of the Chicago Fed, said that “in my opinion, much more policy accommodation is appropriate today” because “the US economy is best described as being in a bona fide liquidity trap”, a point where ultra-low interest rates and high savings rates conspire to make monetary policy ineffective.

If you'd like that in simpler terms, Mr. Evans is saying that, in its efforts for force the economy to reinflate, manipulating interest rates didn't work. We foolish consumers, who refuse to consume and are instead saving and paying down debt like there is no tomorrow, are at fault. And that another round of "quantitative easing", otherwise known as "monetizing the debt", is on the way.

Gold, silver, beans, bullets and bandaids. If you owe on it, it ain't yours. Save for a rainy day. All of the old platitudes exist for a reason, and people like Mr. Evans are determined that we learn the lessons, the hard way, once again.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

An alternative to the government-approved statistics

Well, by now we've all heard that there is no inflation out there, and, as a matter of fact, some of our alleged economic gurus think that the Fed should stimulate some--just to keep the economy healthy. After all, it's done such good things for us over the years.

However, if you look at how the best known measure of inflation--the Consumer Price Index (CPI)--is calculated (not to mention how the process has been manipulated over the years), you'll note something interesting. Two items, food and energy, are deliberately removed from the "Core CPI", which is the number usually reported in the media. Because these items are subject to frequent price swings, their removal from the Core CPI has the effect of lowering the number most of the time (recent case in point).

I don't know about you, but I don't know anyone who doesn't eat and who doesn't use energy.

Apparently, the bright folks at Google also have some issues with the government numbers, and are looking into developing their own high-tech, near-real time measure of inflation.

I know there are already places like Shadow Stats where, for a fee, one can get similar data. But for those of use who can't afford it, this may be an interesting alternative to the official government lies numbers.