WC Varones

Don't lend your hand to raise no flag atop no ship of fools

Robert Wenzel and Jim Grant bitch-slap the Dirty Fed

I'll give the New York Fed some credit: they're man enough to invite dissidents in to smack them upside the head with a 2x4 of Truth.

For whatever reason, the groupthinking central planners allowed critics to come tell them just how horrible they are.

And Robert Wenzel and Jim Grant did not disappoint. Click on over and read the whole things.

Wenzel.

Grant.

Zimbabwe Ben: keep those deficits coming; I need more debt to monetize!

Bernanke on the "fiscal cliff" of allowing the Bush tax cuts, the Obama 99-week unemployment benefits, and the Obama Social Security Trust Fund-looting payroll tax cut all to expire on December 31:
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke on Wednesday warned he won’t be able to save the economy if Congress takes the country over a “fiscal cliff."

The Fed chairman continued to sound the alarm about the "fiscal cliff" the nation is facing at the end of the year, when a slew of policy changes are set to take effect that could drain billions of dollars from the economy.
Yeah. Four years after the financial crisis is obviously waaaaay too soon to stop running Greece-sized deficits. Party on, Boehner!

For a more adult view of our nation's fiscal insanity, see Federal Budget in Pictures from Heritage.org.

Quotations from Chairman Varones

I think I've thought a thousand thoughts
Of thinking thoughtful thoughts
I think I thought them thoughtlessly 
Or so I think I thought.

Got milk? Mad cow disease found in California dairy cow

Bloomberg:
     April 24 (Bloomberg) -- A case of mad cow disease has been found in a dairy cow in central California, John Clifford, the USDA’s chief veterinarian, told reporters today in a briefing in Washington.
     The animal was found at a rendering facility, Clifford said. Its meat did not enter the food chain and the carcass will be destroyed, Clifford said. This is the fourth confirmed case of the brain-wasting disease in the U.S. cattle herd since the first was discovered in December 2003 in an animal that came from Canada.
But, hey, there probably aren't any documented cases of people getting mad cow disease through milk.  The hormones and antibiotics probably kill the disease anyway.  Drink up!

UPDATE: Your USDA-factory-farm-complex at work.

Social Security: Apocalypse Now

Bruce Krasting summarizes the disastrous 2012 Social Security Trust Fund Report.  The highlights:

 * NPVof unfunded liabilities is now $20.5 trillion, up 15% in one year.
 * Trust fund depletion date moved up 3 years to 2033.  Legal deadline for benefit cuts to hit in 2026, so people in their 50's now are going to get whacked.
 * Disability Fund "drop dead date" moved up to 2016.

Obviously, Obama looting the Social Security Trust Fund to give the economy a sugar high through Election 2012 isn't helping.

On the bright side, this can and will be resolved in two ways:

1) Means-testing Social Security.  If you're privileged enough to have saved a little in a 401(k), you obviously don't need any handouts.  Watch this start at the fairly affluent, then descend to start cutting off the middle class.

2) Raising the age limit. Social Security is already delayed until age 67 for those born in 1960 or later.  Bump that up to age 70 and you'd be amazed how much it extends the life of the Social Security Trust Fund.  Heck, let's push it to 75.  Grandpa can still say "Welcome to Walmart."

It's either cutting off the old or raising taxes on the young, who are already screwed from inheriting $16 trillion in federal debt, trillions in unfunded state and local pensions, crushing student loan debt, and bleak employment prospects to deal with.

The Disability Fund part is tougher.  It's hard to separate the genuinely disabled from the malingerers and fraudsters.  You'd be amazed how many people become disabled when you pay them to be disabled.  Yep, it's the General Theory of Liberalism again, this time come to deplete the Social Security Disability Fund!

Sunday night funnies

This, from funnyordie.com, is one of the funniest things I've seen in a while.

Really strong language warning.  If you don't have the sense of humor of a 12-year-old boy, don't even go there.


Happy Earth Day from George Carlin



Happy 420



Remember, kiddos, weed kills.

Green Cars

Spending a little time in London I noticed that that failure of an Italian car company Chrysler offers a car with an MPG rating that blows away anything for sale in the United States. Check out the Ypsilon

Can someone please explain to me why this "green" administration, that is financing billions in Solyndra like failures, that bailed out Chrysler, doesn't insist that Chrysler provide the Ypsilon in the US. I mean if the government weren't involved at all do you think this car would be sold here? That would probably upset the gas companies though and we wouldn't want that...

Please ask your local Prius driving Democrat why cars that far exceed that battery box in efficiency aren't sold in the US. If we want to be green then we should have the option to purchase green cars don't you think?

Volvo has an equivalent.
I'd buy that car if it were available in the US.

Sheila Bair exposes how ZIRP is just a transfer of wealth from the middle class to the banksters

This blog has not often had anything positive to say about Sheila Bair.  Not when she looted the FDIC insurance fund to bail out the wealthy, uninsured depositors of IndyMac.  Nor when she wasted FDIC funds hiring celebrity huckster Suze Orman to pimp bank deposits.

Frankly, we never saw why so many on the Zero Hedge - Naked Capitalism - Jr. Deputy Accountant - Matt Taibbi anti-bankster front seemed to view Sheila Bair so positively.

But in retirement, Sheila Bair just found redemption by writing an epic column for the ages, exposing for the masses Ben Bernanke's ZIRP as a looting of the middle class to bail out the banksters.

For several years now, the Fed has been making money available to the financial sector at near-zero interest rates. Big banks and hedge funds, among others, have taken this cheap money and invested it in securities with high yields. This type of profit-making, called the “carry trade,” has been enormously profitable for them.

So why not let everyone participate?

Under my plan, each American household could borrow $10 million from the Fed at zero interest. The more conservative among us can take that money and buy 10-year Treasury bonds. At the current 2 percent annual interest rate, we can pocket a nice $200,000 a year to live on. The more adventuresome can buy 10-year Greek debt at 21 percent, for an annual income of $2.1 million. Or if Greece is a little too risky for you, go with Portugal, at about 12 percent, or $1.2 million dollars a year. (No sense in getting greedy.)

Think of what we can do with all that money. We can pay off our underwater mortgages and replenish our retirement accounts without spending one day schlepping into the office. With a few quick keystrokes, we’ll be golden for the next 10 years.
Bair is exactly right. Wall Street fatcats blew up the financial system and crashed the economy. Now the Federal Reserve is bailing them out by giving them 0% loans at the expense of widows and orphans earning 0% on their dwindling savings.

Pricey Three Way

Couple bids $100,000 for a day with Tim Tebow. Kinky dogs...
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- There are a lot of fans who would give anything just to spend a couple of minutes with Tim Tebow.

...

One couple is willing to spend $100,000 to spend a day with the New York Jets quarterback.

"That day I feel like I've got to do a few extra things to be special, you know? I've got to try to be a little bit better."

...

"I got goose bumps thinking about it because that's what the night was......and then you found out what their motives are.....

...

"I think Tim was stunned," Dellenback said. "Then I'm sure he went in his head and thought, 'What am I going to do for a day?' But it's great. Now that he knows what he's going to do, he's so excited to do it."
We can read between the lines ESPN, well done reporting on the perverted world of sport.

But 100K?!? Would Jenna Haze cost that for a day?

Big Brother is Watching You

Look what just popped up in the sleepy little beach town of Leucadia, California.


Look... up in the sky... it's a bird... it's a plane... it's... a government surveillance camera recording citizens' activity.



I'm guessing the city got a federal grant to install it. Just for traffic safety, you know. Nothing to be alarmed about.

And to get the sheeple used to being monitored, much as they've become accustomed to being groped by TSA goons for the privilege of air travel... or to allowing no-knock warrants and asset forfeiture without due process in the name of the "War on Drugs."  Heck, no one even noticed when Obama signed a bill allowing the indefinite detention of U.S. citizens without charge.

Are you OK with this, America?

Greenspan's Body Count in Academia

Look who's cited in the Journal of Gender, Social Policy & the Law: little ol' W.C. Varones!

Elizabeth L. MacDowell, Associate Professor of Law at UNLV, discusses the 2008 Karthik Rajaram murder-suicide in her paper When Reading Between the Lines is Not Enough: Lessons from Media Coverage of a Domestic Violence Homicide-Suicide:

In this context, the story was soon  swept up in what Associated Press writer Kelli Kennedy characterized as a trend of suicides and murder-suicides across the country attributable  to worsening financial conditions.  In the blogosphere, W.C. Varones even included the Rajaram family in his “Greenspan’s Body Count”—a list of suicide and murder victims whose deaths he attributes to former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan’s policies.
While we're honored to be cited in such a prestigious journal as the Journal of Gender, Social Policy & the Law, the author is a complete loon steeped in Grievance Studies nonsense. From her intro:
This was obviously a domestic violence homicide, by virtue of the fact that Karthik had killed his family. But in the aftermath of violence, significant questions remain about what occurred beforehand. Statistics tell us that a history of abuse most likely preceded this killing. Whether that was the case in this family, whether these killings were preventable, and what this tragedy would teach us about preventing domestic violence in the future, all remain to be seen.

However, media accounts of domestic violence homicide and homicide-suicide typically forego explora tion of these significant questions, presenting domestic violence crimes as isolated events that are unrelated to other similar cases. As a result, these accounts tend to cloud rather than clarify the problem of domestic violence. Coverage of the Rajaram case would take these familiar concerns to new levels, as the emerging narrative first inspired incredulity, and then anger.

This Article is a response to the secondary, routine acts of violence enacted in the media that utterly efface victims of domestic violence, even in death. In particular, it grew from a desire to do some small justice on behalf of Subasri Rajaram, whose position as the erstwhile safety net in her family is easy to imagine and empathize with. While it would be dishonest to pretend that we can discern the truth of her story from the scant details provided about her in media reports, or from mere demographics, it would also be irresponsible to ignore what is known about similarly situated women in considering the circumstances that led to her death.
Get that? If the media even discuss the contribution of economic stresses to a murder-suicide, the media themselves are committing violence against the victim!

Can you believe your tax dollars are going to fund dingbats writing drivel like this? Or that your children's five-figure annual college tuition is going to fund it?

The sooner the higher education bubble bursts and these professors take up new jobs as Walmart greeters, the better.

Seen on Facebook



Ron Paul: Liberty. "I guess you guys aren't ready for that, yet.  But your kids are gonna love it."

Keep the faith




Stocks dipped a little today, and gold and gold stocks were worse, on Fed minutes indicating no imminent QE3.

Sure, we could get a brutal correction this year in stocks, gold, or both. You could argue Bernanke needs a bad correction politically before he can fire up the printing presses again.

But keep your eye on the horizon. Long term, there's no way the $15 trillion (and counting) in debt can ever be paid back in sound money. Nobody can afford sound money -- not homedebtors, not the banks, and certainly not the federal government which wouldn't be able to make interest payments without slashing Social Security and Medicare.

Therefore, there will be no sound money. Devaluation is the only way out. Real assets for the long run.

"Constitutional law professor" Obama either completely clueless or blatantly lying

Does he think we don't remember what happened? And that we can't check facts on the Internet?

CBS News:
"Ultimately I am confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress," Mr. Obama said in the Rose Garden appearance.
Strong majority? It passed 219-212 after months of backroom deals, bribery, arm-twisting, and lies. That's a strong majority?

Unprecedented? How about the Flag Protection Act of 1989? It passed the House 380-38 and the Senate 91-9. Now that's a strong majority. And then the Supreme Court went ahead and precedented all over it.

Want another precedent? How about McCain-Feingold? That passed 240-189 and then got struck down by a Supreme Court that could read the First Amendment.

I'm no Constitutional law professor, and I came up with those two precedents off the top of my head.  What the hell are they teaching at Harvard Law?

Being willfully ignorant of historical precedent is bad enough. But Obama's statement indicates he doesn't even understand the basic concept of having a Constitution.  His argument would mean that the Supreme Court and the Constitution are completely irrelevant and Congress can always do whatever it wants. If you went to Chicago and Obama was your professor for Constitutional law, you might want to take a refresher course.

Separated at birth

Cesar Chavez and Jamie Dimon
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