Thursday, August 18, 2011

Buy Suze Orman books or else

August 17, 2011
Personal finance expert Suze Orman tells CNN's John King how consumers can cope with Wall Street's wild swings.

Added On August 17, 2011
CNN's John King and Jessica Yellin talk about the president's new proposal geared toward creating jobs

Mother Jones,The Next Debtpocalypse: Fiscal Meltdowns in the States:Inside the plan to gut state budgets and keep corporate America happy.

the Huffy Post, "Obama For America's New Mexico Director Sends Out Email Bashing 'Firebagger Lefty Blogosphere'"

Star Tribune/AP, Report: Justice Department investigating Standard and Poor's mortgage securities ratings.
Updated: August 17, 2011 - 10:43 PM

Annie Lowrey, Deliverance:The U.S. Postal Service must make massive changes if it is going to survive

I generally like Annie Lowrey's reporting, but this was really disappointing, just the usual boilerplate about a government agency needing to become lean and mean and innovative, blah blah blah, at the expense of its workforce. Presumably Lowrey and her peers have to periodically remind you that they work for the Washington Post and mustn't rock the austerity boat. People worry about jobs, and the further deterioration of the economy. OK, how about not laying off 120,000 more postal workers and not getting apoplectic about how the USPS needs to break even? (Does the post Osama Afghanistan war have to break even? How about the not-war that we're not-waging on Libya? Couldn't we use cheaper missiles or fewer sorties and still achieve a protracted stalemate?)

Lowrey does mention "innovating" by allowing the Post Office to set its own postage rates (You know, like their private sector competitors already do), as opposed to waiting for the congress to vote on any rate changes. Of course they could have done this years ago if the Democrats and Republicans weren't intent on starving the beast. As one commenter observed, the problem is the Post Office is underfunded.

CNN: Bachmann: I'll bring back $2 gas How can you not vote for her?

Alternet, 6 So-CalledSo-Called "Job Creators" Who Won't Hire The Unemployed
Allstate Insurance, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and the University of Arizona are just a few of the companies advertising that they will only hire people who already have jobs.

TV reporter:"The Down House owner Chris Cusack said the customer called the bartender a "twerp" on Twitter, and the manager showed her the door."
Tweet Gets Houston Customer Kicked Out - HOUSTON

-- A Houston diner is kicked out of a restaurant not for something she did, but apparently for something she said on Twitter. Wednesday, August 17, 2011.

Unintentional humor is often the funniest.( watches Fox News so you don't have to...)
Fox's Eric Bolling Asks If Warren Buffett Is "Completely A Socialist" This Is For Everyone Who Thinks The US Can't Fund Its Own Debt
This idea that we need to borrow from China is dangerous nonsense.

Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes? | Rolling Stone Politics
Imagine a world in which a man who is repeatedly investigated for a string of serious crimes, but never prosecuted, has his slate wiped clean every time...

(OK, so she doesn't say buy my books or else.)

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At August 19, 2011 3:52 AM, Blogger Mimi said...

I understand your disgust at the idea of robbing workers of their jobs, but Jon, what's the alternative? I live in a very small southern Jersey town, which is surrounded by even smaller towns. Every little burg--Tuckerton, Little Egg, West Creek, Parkertown, Stafford, and others you've never heard of, with populations of a few hundred or fewer--has its own post office, open from 8:30 to 4:30 five days a week, and until noon on Saturday. How can this be sustained?

At August 19, 2011 5:48 PM, Blogger Jonathan Versen said...

Mimi, people keep saying, "people need jobs, the government has to do something!" or alternately, "the government can't create jobs!"

Well, how expensive is it to not further contract the post office and not layoff another 120,000 people?

5-10 years ago, when we had all that banking consolidation, one big bank merges with another big bank to form a much bigger bank, over and over, the next thing we're told is that they're going to lay off newly superfluous personnel to increase efficiency, and productivity, etc.

Supposedly this was a good thing, as it rewarded shareholders with increased profit margins, and the increased productivity and was supposed to mean more and better jobs, even if it actually meant more profits for some and crappier and less secure jobs for many, albeit not enough of them.

Then some years down the road we had the bank bailout because we had all these super-efficient banks that were "too big to fail", so evidently all that efficiency had a cost, apart from to the people laid off.

Let Tuckerton and Little Egg have their own post offices. I don't see how it hurts anybody. If anything, people who are already out of work probably appreciate not having to compete for jobs with another round of newly laid-off mail carriers. If this is less efficient, should we really be worshipping efficiency?

You sustain it by increasing taxation on the wealthy and ending the war in Libya, the war in Afghanistan, the occupation of Iraq, the semi-secret wars in places like Yemen and Somalia, etc.

But I have a feeling you knew I was going to say something like that.

At August 20, 2011 3:49 AM, Blogger Mimi said..., I didn't know you were going to say that, but come to think of it, it makes sense. Unfortunately, the whole quesiton may be moot. I'm convinced the P.O. will be taken over by for-profit corporations, as will school and prisons (it has already happened to some). It's all part of the relentless war on the populace to disabuse them of the notion that govenment is supposed to do the most good for the most people.


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