Thursday Thumbnails

Happy Thursday. With some rambling thoughts, I decided to throw down a few thumbnail comments below for your digestion.

While I am elated that a bipartisan compromise was reached in the US Senate to possibly end these budget kick-the-can exercises, I must confess concerns that it would increase the debt. Yet, it frustrates me just as much to see members of the Freedom Caucus appear high and mighty against the effort after many of them voted for a tax bill to increase the debt by $1.5 trillion. That is what we call hypocrisy. Nonetheless we are avoiding the looming problem as the debt and interest cost build.

I must confess being tickled at the US President for fussing at the stock market saying it is not reacting well to good news. It reminds of a toddler fussing at the tide for washing his sandcastle away. The stock market is reacting to concerns over inflation and rising interest rates, as well as pulling back on some of the euphoria that had been baked in. My guess is the tide will erode a little more of the sandcastle before settling at a lower level. Less funny was the President inviting a government shutdown if Congress does not fund his wall.

I am delighted Chancellor Angela Merkel has reached an agreement to form a government in Germany. A coalition between her Christian Democrstic Union and the Social Democrats would result. The negative is it would leave the Alternative for Germany as the opposition party giving more voice to their zealous nationalism. Her leadership is needed there, but even moreso around the globe with the United States retrenching from its role with its tempestuous leader at the helm. She and Emmanuel Macron will be the leaders of a more global construct.

If you have not seen “The Post,” with Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks, please do so. The story is about the consternation as to whether The Washington Post should publish articles about The Pentagon Papers after The New York Times was forbidden to do so after its first set of articles. But, the story goes deeper as it is about a female publisher, Kay Graham, who stood up to everyone (all men) telling her she would be a fool for publishing the articles as she took her company public. She supported her editor, Ben Bradlee and they won their Supreme Court case advocating the freedom of the press. The similarities between the demonizing words used by Nixon and Trump against the press are striking. An interesting sidebar is while this debate was going on, a little break-in at The Watergate Hotel occurred.

That is all for this Thursday. I hope our Congress reaches a deal and keeps the government open. Next up DACA.

5 thoughts on “Thursday Thumbnails

  1. ” It reminds of a toddler fussing at the tide for washing his sandcastle away.” – that made me laugh – Thanks!
    I’ll be ‘online’ for a few days and will catch up a little, but am wayyyy behind on WP as well as news in general… seems like you’ve had some impressive weather – most everyone has…..

  2. Note to Readers: Rather than have too many thumbnails, I held out a few. It should be noted the ACA exchange enrollment of 12 million is the same as last year in spite of efforts by the President (and Republicans) to sabotage it. It needs to be stabilized, but helping people is more often a secondary motivation to ego for this man since he has staked out a position that it is failing.

    An issue that is getting little attention in the US is the city of Cape Town in South Africa is about to run out of water. We have a global water crisis (which includes the states), but outside of speaking about lead pipes in Flint, MI and other places, I am unaware of active discussion to address this issue in our leadership. It should be noted climate change will only make this problem worse. Yet, that fact is lost on Scott Pruitt, the head of the EPA, who said global warming might be a good thing. Really? Is that the next phase of the fossil fuel denying strategy – it could be a good thing?

  3. Dear Keith,
    We are getting down to the wire again. The pundits are already starting the finger pointing game as to which party will get blamed for the shut down.

    The stock market has corrected by 10%. Bonds are selling with about 2.85 % interest and so some experts say that monies is being pulled out from the stock market and put into bond purchases.
    The Fed plans to tighten the monies supply and as wages increase, inflation’s ugly head will start to rise.

    It is within these economic headwinds of soaring stock prices, almost full employment, GDP growth of last 2 quarters in 2017 at close to 3%, that the republicans did their tax cuts which increases the decade US deficit from anywhere from $1 trillion dollars to $1.7 trillion dollars. You are right in saying that the way this tax cuts bill was crafted was malfeasance. And now this spending bill adds even more.

    There is no way that the US GDP will grow close to 3% even. Where are the brakes in the tax cuts bill if the anticipated extra revenues to help pay for their 2017 tax cuts bill doesn’t materialize.

    What’s worse is that as unemployment trends downward, there will be a need for an increase in workers with certain skills just at a time when the White House is looking to cut legal immigration by 50%.

    This White House is clueless about any of this.

    Hugs, Gronda

    • Gronda, the headwinds that have been created will take some time to fully impact, but they will dampen the economy. If the market falls more as inflation increases, that will impact our interest cost as well as the increasing debt impact. Keith

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