August contracts down 25% year over year

From the Otteau Group:

Recent Housing Slump Extends to 4 Straight Months

Purchase contracts to buy a home in New Jersey fell by 25% in August compared to one year ago as the housing market continues to weaken in the aftermath of expired federal homebuyer tax credits. The August decline continues a string of 4 consecutive months of slumping home sales since the tax credits expired on April 30th.

This entry was posted in Economics, Housing Bubble, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

190 Responses to August contracts down 25% year over year

  1. chicagofinance says:

    First……………………

  2. grim says:

    August Contracts
    (GSMLS)

    Essex County
    2005 – 550
    2006 – 406
    2007 – 313
    2008 – 285
    2009 – 315
    2010 – 316

    Morris County
    2005 – 581
    2006 – 480
    2007 – 381
    2008 – 356
    2009 – 434
    2010 – 349

    Passaic County
    2005 – 349
    2006 – 288
    2007 – 201
    2008 – 191
    2009 – 265
    2010 – 202

    Union County
    2005 – 418
    2006 – 389
    2007 – 290
    2008 – 259
    2009 – 310
    2010 – 303

    Somerset County
    2005 – 489
    2006 – 371
    2007 – 309
    2008 – 255
    2009 – 331
    2010 – 233

    Sussex County
    2005 – 264
    2006 – 217
    2007 – 164
    2008 – 119
    2009 – 163
    2010 – 117

    Warren County
    2005 – 181
    2006 – 126
    2007 – 114
    2008 – 70
    2009 – 102
    2010 – 68

    Hunterdon County
    2005 – 171
    2006 – 135
    2007 – 133
    2008 – 104
    2009 – 122
    2010 – 101

  3. chicagofinance says:

    Absinthe is back after a nearly 100-year ban

    Share By Michael Pellegrino

    Ernest Hemingway and Oscar Wilde wrote about it. Pablo Picasso sculpted it. Vincent van Gogh cut off his ear after drinking it.

    Absinthe, an anise-flavored liquor that had been banned for 95 years, is legal again and making its way into trendy bars and restaurants.

    Because of the ban, most people have never tried absinthe, but anyone who witnesses the traditional la louche service will be tempted.

    La louche, French for murkiness, refers to the mysterious transformation that absinthe undergoes when served in the traditional way.

    One ounce of the lime-green spirit is poured into a clear glass; then a slotted spoon, with a lump of sugar resting on top, is perched over the glass.

    Up to three ounces of ice water is slowly trickled through the spoon, dissolving the sugar into the glass. A note of licorice fills the air as the cold water creates swirling clouds that quickly turn the “green muse” pale and milky.

    Unlike syrupy Sambuca, or the overpowering anise flavor of Jägermeister, absinthe is more refined. It does not overpower the taste buds. It does, however, pack a tongue-numbing punch at up to 140 proof (70 percent alcohol content, as compared with 40 percent in Black Label.)

    The drink’s history and the la louche service make it a cocktail experience. The sugar balances the spirit’s bitterness, and the water mellows the alcohol the same way a splash of water heightens the experience of a good scotch.

    A little chemistry 101 solves the mystery of absinthe. Elements of herbs (anise, fennel and wormwood) dissolve in the alcohol during distilling, but because they are not water soluble, their essences are released only when water is added.

    For those who like more drama in the presentation, there is the “Bohemian method” of service. It starts the same way, but the sugar cube is presoaked in absinthe and then set ablaze on the spoon before plummeting into the glass to set the drink on fire. Cold water is then added to snuff the flames and release the clouds. Flaming the green fairy in this way burns off some of the alcohol.

    Hemingway contributed his own recipe for absinthe, Death in the Afternoon, to a 1935 celebrity cocktail book, according to the New York Times. Hemingway instructed drinkers to: “Pour one jigger absinthe into a champagne glass. Add iced champagne until it attains the proper opalescent milkiness. Drink three to five of these slowly.”

    Pierre Ordinaire, a French physician, is credited with creating absinthe in the 1790s as an elixir. The anise provides a mild licorice flavor, but absinthe is all about the wormwood (Artemisia absinthium), which lends the name, the entrancing green color and a chemical called thujone, said to spur creative thought.

    Absinthe’s popularity grew from France to New Orleans. By the 1860s, the hour of 5 p.m. was called l’heure verte (the green hour) among Parisians. Early in the next century, the French were guzzling 36 million liters of absinthe per year — cutting into the sale of French wine. It was popular across social classes but gained special favor among the art community, where it earned a reputation for sparking deep thought and enlightened conversation.

    Hemingway wrote, “Got tight last night on absinthe and did knife tricks. Great success shooting the knife into the piano . . . You can always claim the wormwoods did it.”

    Wilde wrote of tulips suddenly sprouting through the floor of his favorite Paris tavern and brushing against his shins.

    Whether it was the thujone or the high alcohol content, absinthe eventually became anecdotally linked with violence and crime.

    The 1905 “absinthe murders” in Switzerland became worldwide news, when Jean Lanfray, a hopeless drunk, slaughtered his wife and family.

    Lanfray’s daily routine reportedly included two glasses of absinthe at breakfast, a crème de menthe, a cognac, six glasses of wine and brandy for a nightcap.

    Despite this assortment and volume of booze, the press ran with it as an anti-absinthe story. The “green devil” made him do it. By 1912, absinthe was banned in America and most of Europe. Almost 100 years later, medical studies have proven that thujone is harmless in small quantities and that absinthe is no more dangerous than other spirits. With the ban lifted, absinthe once again is being poured through lumps of sugar on slotted spoons.

    If you try it and things get out of hand, just be like Hemingway and blame it on the wormwood.

  4. chicagofinance says:

    un mod

  5. grim says:

    Sazerac was my drink of choice during a Mardi Gras themed party on Saturday night.

    Sazerac Rye and Peychaud’s Bitters in an Absinthe coated glass.

    Mufalettas with olive mix Fed-Ex’ed up from Central Grocery in NOLA! Those guys know how to party.

  6. Essex says:

    3. Tastes exactly like ass. IMHO

  7. grim says:

    6 – If you can drink straight Sambuca or Anisette you can drink Absinthe.

    Last time I had it Bohemian style was up at Flatiron Lounge in NYC. They even had the correct spoons and glass, nicely done.

  8. Fabius Maximus says:

    Sambuca some coffee beans and a match. Its the simple things in life tha give the most pleasure.

  9. Fabius Maximus says:

    Hat tip to Obermann for this one.

    During the Healthcare debates in here, when Jamil would bang on that over a third of Americans opposed Healthcare reform, I would have to point out that that number had about 9% that came from the left that felt that the reform did not go far enough.

    Well seems that 9% is now up to 23%

  10. Fabius Maximus says:

    File this under “the GOP is so fcuked!”

    Republican ‘Pledge to America’ Disappoints Some Conservatives
    http://www.myfoxny.com/dpps/news/republican-pledge-to-america-disappoints-some-conservatives-dpgonc-20100924-fc_9788093

    Responding to such criticism, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), who took the lead in assembling the document, said it was never intended to be all-encompassing.

    “You have to remember what this is — this is not a party platform,” said McCarthy. “You crawl before you walk, you walk before you run, and this is a start.”

  11. Mr Hyde says:

    A fun economic video

    Mike Maloney
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzef43gdupk&feature=player_embedded

    you should enjoy this poltroon

  12. Fast Eddie says:

    Fabius [10],

    If the Republicans gain just enough seats to create gridlock, then it’s a resounding victory.

  13. Fast Eddie says:

    When you’re of Italian ancestry, anisette and sambuca is a given.

  14. Poltroon says:

    I tend to think that I’m 9/10 of the way to flat-out crazy, and there’s no freaking way I’m drinking real absinthe (wormwood distillate). You drink enough of that crap, you’ll end up in a mental hospital. There’s a reason it’s illegal.

    I think a lot of what’s being marketed as absinthe is ersatz stuff.

  15. Poltroon says:

    A lot to chew on there, Hyde.

    Leveraged assets deflate, good and necessities inflate.

    A total planetary economic kill shot.

  16. chicagofinance says:

    Drink absinthe….fire a nuke at a UFO…..

  17. Fabius Maximus says:

    #16 Clot

    Can I ask the question what value does gold have? At the end of the day they only assest of value are tangible assets that can be used. Gold without a banking system just looks as pretty as a tulip. Its gone to $1300 but without $35 an ounce standard, there is no tie so it just floats and it just seems to float upward.

    Hyde how close is this to a gold chart.
    http://www.ajediam.com/investing_diamonds_investment.html

    Is there anyway you can ovelay the two. Diamonds is a set market where we know the price is controlled?

  18. chicagofinance says:

    The end is nigh…..

    WSJ
    BUSINESS
    SEPTEMBER 27, 2010
    Ben & Jerry’s to Drop ‘All Natural’ from Labels

    SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt.—Ice cream maker Ben & Jerry’s is dropping the phrase “all natural” from all labels after a request from a health advocacy group.

    The Center for Science in the Public Interest and the company confirmed the move Monday.

    The CSPI told the company last month it should not use “all natural” if products contain alkalized cocoa, corn syrup, hydrogenated oil or other ingredients that are not natural.

    Ben & Jerry’s, a unit of consumer products giant Unilever, said it’s not changing any recipes. It’s just removing the label from all products.

    The Food and Drug Administration has no formal definition for “natural.” But it won’t object to a term as long as products do not contain added color, artificial flavors or synthetic substances.

    The CSPI, based in Washington, said the government should define the term.

    “The Food and Drug Administration could do consumers and food manufacturers a great service by actually defining when the word ‘natural’ can and cannot be used to characterize a given ingredient,” CSPI Executive Director Michael F. Jacobson said in a statement.

    Ben & Jerry’s spokesman Sean Greenwood said the change would be phased in gradually across the Ben & Jerry’s product line.

  19. chicagofinance says:

    I think the same can be said of listening to too much Erasure…..

    Poltroon says:
    September 27, 2010 at 9:17 pm
    You drink enough of that crap, you’ll end up in a mental hospital.

  20. Confused In NJ says:

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Don’t look for tax forms and instructions in your mailbox next year. The Internal Revenue Service has decided to stop mailing them because so many people now file electronically.

    The Washington Post reports on its website Monday that the IRS expects to save about $10 million a year by eliminating mailing.

    More than 96 million people filed their returns through the IRS online service last year, and about 20 million filed paper returns through paid tax preparers.

    The IRS says only 11.5 million people who filed paper returns received forms in the mail.

    The agency says people who want to file paper returns will be able to obtain the forms from the IRS website or its offices as well as some libraries and post offices

  21. chicagofinance says:

    Diamonds? Are you fcuking kidding? Any time the Russians desire they can flood the market with 3x-4x what the South Africas and Israelis have….THEN the synthetics are going to undermine the rest……

    Fabius Maximus says:
    September 27, 2010 at 10:44 pm
    #16 Clot
    Is there anyway you can ovelay the two. Diamonds is a set market where we know the price is controlled?

  22. Al Gore says:

    15.

    Mike Maloney. Its as simple as the destruction of a monetary system only this time its not the Hapsburg’s. Its the entire western world. Im beginning to wonder if house values will even be denominated in US dollars vs ounces of gold or some other currency.

  23. jamil says:

    9 fab.
    You are so right. Thats why >50% of voters want it repealed, including more and more dem candidates. If O would just be more marxist, then he would be more popular /sarc

    Talk about out of touch..

  24. Mr Hyde says:

    Fabius 18

    What makes gold valuable? At the end of the day the value of gold is based on mankind’s eternal worship of Mammon, our constant indulgence of the deadly sins Lust, Gluttony, and Greed. Gold is valuable primarily because we make it so.

    In the late 1800’s aluminum was worth more then gold on a weight basis but no one lusted for it, it was simply an industrial metal that was hard to produce. Palladium holds much the same position today as aluminum once did. Its very high in value due to physical constratints and industrial use, but not due to human lust.

    The human lust of gold and our worship of Mammon provides the second characteristic of gold, its independence from government. Due to peoples historical desire for gold, it has the ability to act as a store of wealth when other currencies are debased or excessively manipulated by government.

    Gold is no perfect currency and has both strengths and weaknesses. Its overall utility depends on the circumstances and how it is utilized.

  25. Mr Hyde says:

    Fabius,

    what is the secondary market for diamonds…..

    Oh and we can now manufacture higher quality diamonds then you will ever dig out of the ground for a lower price then mining.

    gold and diamonds arent comparable in anything besides jewelry. Last i looked, FX markets dont trade diamonds

  26. Fabius Maximus says:

    #26 Jamil

    “50% of voters want it repealed”
    As usual the request is, show us a link or some supporting evidence.

  27. Fabius Maximus says:

    I’m off to hunt the Interweb for a tee shirt.

    I’m sure someone out there has come up with a design of a picture of Bonehead with “Stop this Pledge, Scrap It and Just Start Over!”

  28. Fabius Maximus says:

    #29 Hyde

    I takeyour points and don’t for the most part disagree.

    “what is the secondary market for diamonds…..”
    A portable store of wealth based on lust.

  29. chicagofinance says:

    I cannot believe I have failed to conjure this one up after 5 years…..

    Fabius….THIS EXPLAINS IT ALL….
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gSq8ZBdSxNU

  30. Fabius Maximus says:

    #25 Chi

    I’m so there, pick the date.

  31. NJGator says:

    Council Fails To Pass 2010 Budget To The Cheers Of Angry Taxpayers

    Council members must make suggestions for further cuts to Township Manager Marc Dashield by Wednesday afternoon so that they might be considered at a special meeting on Thursday.

    To a round of applause, a majority of Township Council members refused Monday night to pass a 2010 budget of $70,430,948 that would have sparked a 5.8 percent property tax hike when the school, municipal, and county increases are combined.

    “There has to be some action plan going forward,” said Councilor Rich Murnick. “We have a responsibility to you the taxpayers.

    “We can work harder … whether it’s October or November, we owe it to you to try to save every dollar because we can’t live like this,” he said.

    Murnick, Councilors Cary Africk and Renee Baskerville, as well as Deputy Mayor Roger Terry, all voted against the budget, while Mayor Jerry Fried, Councilors Kathryn Weller-Demming and Nick Lewis voted in favor of the budget.

    The latter three argued that it’s time to move on so that work can begin on the 2011 budget.

    “Clearly this kind of tax increase is not sustainable,” Fried said.

    But he pointed out that this year the Township has been faced with a 17 percent reduction in revenues and double-digit increases in pensions mandated by the state.

    And so it’s back to the drawing board on a budget that’s already resulted in layoffs, furloughs, and the shutdown of the social services department.

    Councilors were told to hand over their suggestions for further cuts to Township Manager Marc Dashield by Wednesday afternoon so that they might be discussed at a special meeting on Thursday.

    http://montclair.patch.com/articles/council-fails-to-pass-2010-budget-to-the-cheers-of-angry-taxpayers

  32. Fabius Maximus says:

    #33 Chi

    I bow down, that is priceless.

  33. chicagofinance says:

    dude….I can’t believe how much shite that is…it is so bad….I can’t wait to lay that one on Serious Wantans tomorrow……

    Fabius Maximus says:
    September 27, 2010 at 11:19 pm
    #33 Chi
    I bow down, that is priceless.

  34. chicagofinance says:

    I am just a schmuck in Colts Neck….chest hair main, nom, hockey rink rat etc. and Hyde call the shots…or steins as the case may be…

    Fabius Maximus says:
    September 27, 2010 at 11:18 pm
    #25 Chi
    I’m so there, pick the date.

  35. chicagofinance says:

    fab: maybe I meet JJ at Capital Grille…get him really lubed and toss him on the PATH….all of a sudden we are in JC and we get to hear some Bronx Tales….

  36. Poltroon says:

    gluteus (18)-

    Gold’s value is whatever its market of buyers and sellers determines it to be. Currently, its value is expressed as a function of fiat one-ply. When gold reaches its true, full, fair value, it won’t be expressed in those terms anymore. It will simply be money.

    When it all goes to black, try using diamonds as a means of exchange or a store of value.

  37. Poltroon says:

    chi (25)-

    GTG there? To beat up idiot JC twentysomethings?

    My wife has a new Taser I’d like to try out. Should be easy to lure one of those drunks into the alley for a little bzzt-bzzt action.

  38. Poltroon says:

    chi (33)-

    That is disturbingly gay of you.

  39. Essex says:

    Nice chart! 2010 is pitching a tent.

  40. Not sure if this has been posted yet; Morgan halts IB hiring for the rest of the year. BAC has been letting people go as well. In HF country a number of the big hedgies are paring costs back to the bone, further if they can.**

    ** Millenium got rid of the free lunches a while ago, now there’s no pizza on Fridays!!!!! /whisper… The horror

  41. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [25] chi fi

    A fine idea. And a strangely appropriate location.

  42. Fast Eddie says:

    Fabius,

    Monday, September 27, 2010 — Fifty-seven percent (57%) of Likely Voters nationwide now favor repeal of the new health care law, including 46% who Strongly Favor repeal, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

    http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/healthcare/health_care_law

    I’m going to work now to help pay for the Oblama supporters.

  43. Essex says:

    47. Clearly a 2000 page highly convoluted systemic approach to healthcare that rewards insurers….should be popular.

  44. grim says:

    My insurer will no longer cover spouses who work and are eligible for insurance through their employer.

    Had a huge impact on a number of two income families. Now instead of paying for family coverage, one spouse pays family and the other now has to pay for individual.

    Cost some here thousands of dollars a year.

    Correspondence from the insurer about the change pointed directly at recent legislation driving up costs.

  45. Poltroon says:

    O care:

    1. Massive gubmint campaign to gather information on individual Americans.

    2. Massive gubmint giveaway to insurance companies.

    3. Planned fail. Once insurers have r@ped us for all they can get, the program is declared unworkable, and the US is moved to a single-payer system. Gubmint control of every aspect of our lives will then be complete.

  46. yo'me says:

    This affirms JJ’s stance

    The next decade will be as good for investors as the 1990s, said Ken Fisher, the billionaire chief executive officer of Fisher Investments Inc., dismissing notions that developed economies face below-average growth.

    Fisher said the concept of a “new normal” is “idiotic,” pitting him against money managers including Mohamed El-Erian, the CEO of Pacific Investment Management Co., which coined the term to describe a world of high unemployment, more regulation, and the shrinking importance of the U.S. in the global economy.

    “We are chimpanzees with no memory,” Fisher said at the Forbes Global CEO Conference in Sydney. “The next 10 years are going to be just as good as the 1990s. The problems in this current environment we think are so different, and so new and so unique. It’s the same stupid old normal we’ve always had. We’ve got a great future

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-09-28/ken-fisher-dubs-new-normal-idiotic-sees-good-returns-over-next-decade.html

  47. Confused In NJ says:

    It’s the same stupid old normal we’ve always had. We’ve got a great future

    Never try and teach a Pig to sing, it can’t be done and annoys the Pig.

  48. yo'me says:

    #45 Tosh

    MS is moving away from IB and leaning towards lower risk-model.

    The change reflects how the two longest-surviving major investment banks have chosen different directions. Morgan Stanley Chief Executive Officer James Gorman, 52, has pushed his firm toward a lower-risk model, expanding into retail brokerage and leaving Goldman Sachs as the only firm among the 25 largest U.S. financial companies to get more than 60 percent of its revenue from investment banking and trading.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-09-27/goldman-trades-where-morgan-no-longer-treads-with-gap-widening.html

  49. yo'me says:

    My insurer will no longer cover spouses who work and are eligible for insurance through their employer.

    Will it still charge family coverage? My wife’s medical insurance which covers the whole family is going up 2% of base salary.She pays $35 bi-weekly and going up to $90 bi-weekly.Salary increase of 2% in july 2011.That sucks!!

  50. #54 – Thanks yo’me, I hadn’t been following MS’ shift in strategies. It should be interesting to watch this play out, especially if one expects increased market volatility.
    Now that you mention it, have to wonder if MS sees some writing on the wall and is trying to make itself look as small and un-threatening as possible.

  51. grim says:

    Yep, family is still the same cost. Covers employed plus kids minus spouse.

    Double whammy when you consider that our previous plan had a family deductible.

  52. grim says:

    I believe the fancy name they gave it was “spousal carve out provisions”.

  53. Mr Hyde says:

    What ever happened to the constitutional challenge to the healthcare bill on the basis that it forces you to buy a commercial product which is unconstitutional?

  54. hughesrep says:

    50

    Correspondence from the insurer about the change pointed directly at recent legislation driving up costs

    I believe this is insurancese for “We lost it at the casino.”

  55. Mr Hyde says:

    Apparently there are a few ardent O supporters left

    http://i.imgur.com/Cae9F.jpg

  56. Poltroon says:

    Fcuk the insurance companies. I went off my POS Horizon HMO (11.5K/year, giant deductibles, referrals required for everything) two months ago. The sun still rises every morning, and now I have 11.5K/year extra to either pay down debt or buy .223, shiny and provisions.

    If anything big happens to me or mine, insurance will refuse to pay, anyway. All the other stuff…we’ll either pay cash or arrange to make payments…after negotiating down the fee.

    My partner’s kid fell down and broke his shoulder last year. ER visit, release, etc…a tough injury for the kid, but hardly medical drama stuff. After Horizon deemed nearly everything done for the kid excessive in price or unnecessary, my partner was out 8K. Boy, was that an eye-opener.

    I’m done supporting the crooks. I only hope the day is coming when I can hunt them and shoot them.

  57. Poltroon says:

    Also done donating blood and platelets. Not walking into a MRSA-filled hospital once every six weeks to get bled out, then feel like a turnip for the next 12 hours.

  58. scribe says:

    Hyde,

    I was wondering about that, too. Maybe it’s that the mandate to buy insurance is a couple of years into the future, and the court cases being brought by some of the states will go on for another 2 – 3 years?

    I have health insurance through Oxford – one of 2 providers in the NYC market for self-employed people. The administrator has already said we should expect another 15% to 20% increase for 2011. Still pending final approval by NYS regulators. It’s gone from about $300 a month to $551 a month over the last couple of years. That’s without prescription drug coverage – major medical only – and with substantial co-pays on everything. The monthly will probably be about $650 to $700 next year. The providers tell me that I have one of the better plans for the big ticket items like hospitals, surgeons, etc. But soon it will be unaffordable for many people.

  59. JJ AKA John says:

    Me like, we can all say it is BCP day and instead spend the day there.

    chicagofinance says:
    September 27, 2010 at 10:57 pm
    GTG?
    http://www.zeppelinhall.com/

  60. Confused In NJ says:

    The only Good Medical Insurance is Public Sector Medical, period, unless you are in a Company Senior Executive Plan which is equivalent to Public Sector Medical.

  61. scribe says:

    Poltroon,

    One of the reasons to have insurance is that without it, you can’t determine the true cost of anything. I just had a knee replacement. Lenox Hill billed my insurance company about $55,000 for everything, including 3 days in the hospital. They paid about $20,000. That leads to the question – so what is the going rate for an hour in the operating room, or a day in the hospital?

    In 1985, it was $500 an hour for the OR. In 1990, around $1470. Today, you would never be able to get a straight answer to that question.

    If I didn’t have the insurance, all of the combined bills – including the 8 days in the nursing home and the at-home services from the visiting nurse service – would put it in the $100,000 range, easy. I would hate to be liable for that.

  62. Fabius Maximus says:

    Spousal carve out is nothing new. Most plans would add a surcharge if your spouse didn,t pick up their own coverage

  63. Confused In NJ says:

    You can ballpark hospital cost differences for major procedures with this link;

    http://www.njhospitalpricecompare.com/

    Warren Hospital is the most expensive, Hunterdon Medical the least expensive, retail.

  64. Mr Hyde says:

    I apologise to readers around the world for having defended the emergency stimulus policies of the US Federal Reserve, and for arguing like an imbecile naif that the Fed would not succumb to drug addiction, political abuse, and mad intoxicated debauchery, once it began taking its first shots of quantitative easing.

    My pathetic assumption was that Ben Bernanke would deploy further QE only to stave off DEFLATION, not to create INFLATION. If the Federal Open Market Committee cannot see the difference, God help America.

    Ben Bernanke has not only refused to abandon his idee fixe of an “inflation target”, a key cause of the global central banking catastrophe of the last twenty years (because it can and did allow asset booms to run amok, and let credit levels reach dangerous extremes).

    Worse still, he seems determined to print trillions of emergency stimulus without commensurate emergency justification to test his Princeton theories, which by the way are as old as the hills. Keynes ridiculed the “tyranny of the general price level” in the early 1930s, and quite rightly so. Bernanke is reviving a doctrine that was already shown to be bunk eighty years ago.

    Inflation targeting: is Bernanke the new Von Havenstein, head of the Weimar Reichsbank?

    So all those hillsmen in Idaho, with their Colt 45s and boxes of krugerrands, who sent furious emails to the Telegraph accusing me of defending a hyperinflating establishment cabal were right all along. The Fed is indeed out of control.

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/finance/ambroseevans-pritchard/100007777/shut-down-the-fed-part-ii/#dsq-content

  65. Poltroon says:

    scribe (67)-

    If and when I’m confronted with that sort of thing, I’ll BK. I don’t give a rat’s ass if I have one sitting on my credit report for the rest of my life, as there’s nothing I really want to use credit for, anyway.

    Have to say a lot of my strategy is predicated on many past years of me and mine having excellent health and fitness, combined with family histories remarkably free of cancer and heart disease (people in my family do have lots of mental health problems, but if I fall into that, I won’t give a damn about insurance or money, anyway). My cholesterol rarely goes over 160 (whiskey works!), and I still play soccer, so my pulse is like that of someone in their late 20’s. Our combined family medical visits last year amounted to four flu shots.

  66. Mr Hyde says:

    Poltroon,

    you might like this guy

    “I come in peace. I didn’t bring artillery. But I’m pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you FCUK with me, I’ll kill you all.” Gen. James Mattis, USMC

  67. Mr Hyde says:

    He also issued this brilliant piece of advice

    Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.

    -Gen. James Mattis, USMC

  68. Mr Hyde says:

    One last fun quote for Poltroon:

    You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn’t wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain’t got no manhood left anyway. So it’s a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them. Actually it’s quite fun to fight them, you know. It’s a hell of a hoot. It’s fun to shoot some people. I’ll be right up there with you. I like brawling. -Gen. James Mattis, USMC

  69. Mr Hyde says:

    I think #73 is my new e-mail signature.

  70. Juice Box says:

    re: #70 – Hyde writing is on the wall the Chinese have already said we have to take our medicine.

  71. Poltroon says:

    I think I missed my true calling.

    And when I see stuff like this, it makes me seriously doubt that the Marines will draw down on US citizens when TSHTF.

  72. Poltroon says:

    The military brass is on the record as understanding the #1 security threat to the US is what FedCo, Eraserhead & Co. and the banksters have done to our money and our economy. Allowing themselves to be used to suppress the citizenry runs counter to their own knowledge of the situation.

  73. Poltroon says:

    box (76)-

    Yeah, the Chinese are real geniuses. We taught them every trick in the book…except for the thingy where they build brand-new stuff, then tear it down before anyone even uses it.

  74. Poltroon says:

    Anybody got a cup of melamine milk and some cardboard buns I can borrow?

  75. Mr Hyde says:

    Poltroon

    I went Army, I should have gone Marine

  76. Mr Hyde says:

    Juice,

    The Chinese face greater and potentially more dangerous instability then we do as the global ponzy comes apart. They are not capable of feeding their own population internally and have an excess of young males. The population as a whole has been kept occupied by providing expanding factory jobs. Without those jobs, things could quickly deteriorate in china. When the chinese RE bubble pops it will be orders of magnitude worse then the US RE bubble and also has the potential to spark unrest.

    If we play our cards right ( to bad out current leaders are to stupid) we face much better outcomes then china if we forced the situation and nuked the Sino-American dual dependency.

  77. Mr Hyde says:

    Poltroon

    I dont have nay melamine milk, but i have some mercury basted fish if you are interested.

  78. jamil says:

    Fabius:
    It is a bit rich from you to demand proof and evidence when you started the discussion without any link or evidence simply by referring to some ludicrous claim what Shore G spouted on his daily cable show that has 13 viewers.

    I’m honestly interested if you
    a) seriously believe that ObamaCare is not popular because it is not leftist enough, or
    b) your IQ is approacing or exceeding average levels and you are merely carrying out campaign strategy as instructed by JournoList (or whatever it is called nowadays) and hoping that at least some idiot somewhere buys it and vote accordingly

    I know people can be out of touch, but believing that healthcare is not leftist enough and therefore unpopular would “require willing suspension of disbelief”.

  79. make money says:

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/39383634

    John,

    say it aint so…

  80. Juice Box says:

    re: #82 – My point is the Chinese have said they will not revalue> Their Premier said too many factories would go bankrupt. A revalue might only really only help America become more competitive in Manufacturing. Instead of GE building Wind Turbines in China they could try and built them here, with Steel made here too. For example 44,000 US based factories closed in the last decade. That Giant Sucking Sound of jobs that left first went to Mexico with NAFTA then those jobs left for China. We want them back and China has said no way no how.

    I laid out a scenario a few days ago that went like this.

    The general path here will be (1) Print,Print, Print (2) Trade sanctions, (3) Trade wars, (4) debt crises, (5) Currency crises.

    Congress is drawing up Trade Sanctions as we speak, Trade Wars are next in a year or two, expect Obama to Stump for re-election on Jobs, Job, Jobs to get us out of our malaise. When the Government Debt and Currency crisis will happen in the next five years plus or minus two years. I cannot see our refusal to take our write downs, cut our government spending last any longer than that, even with moderate inflation in the mid-teens to cushion the blow.

    As far as China’s own internal instability. We like the British empire are going to slowly draw down our Foreign Policy in Asia. We fought the Korean and Vietnam wars
    to keep the Communist Chinese from taking over all of Asia. I don’t think we are going to do it again. Slowly we will accede to the Chinese plans to unify Asia, so those unemployed men in China will have something to do I gather.

  81. Anon E. Moose says:

    Make [85];

    The derivatives are being commoditized and put on exchanges. Swoosh. Now you don’t need half the people you employ to trade and track those.

    You mean changes to the industry are vaporizing once highly paid jobs? *Wahh* Perhaps the Wall Street babies with their million+ dollar Greenwich starter homes can commiserate with the computer science majors whose help desk and programming jobs got outsourced to India. And those guys didn’t slurp oyserts or sip wine for the get go.

  82. Confused In NJ says:

    U.S. Dollar Is ‘One Step Nearer’ to Crisis, Yu Says (Update1)

    Sept. 28 (Bloomberg) — The U.S. dollar is “one step nearer” to a crisis as debt levels in the world’s largest economy increase, said Yu Yongding, a former adviser to China’s central bank.

    Any appreciation of the dollar is “really temporary” and a devaluation of the currency is inevitable as U.S. debt rises, Yu said in a speech in Singapore today.

    “Such a huge amount of debt is terrible,” Yu said. “The situation will be worsening day by day. I think we are one step nearer to a U.S.-dollar crisis.”

    Yu also said China is worried about the safety of its foreign-exchange reserves including those invested in U.S. Treasuries as the U.S. currency weakens, reiterating his earlier views on the dollar assets. The U.S. will record a $1.3 trillion budget deficit for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, the Congressional Budget Office said Aug. 19.

    The estimated budget deficit for this fiscal year would be equivalent to 9.1 percent of gross domestic product, the CBO said. That would make it the second-largest shortfall in 65 years, exceeded only by the 9.9 percent in 2009.

    The CBO also projected the U.S. would have a cumulative deficit of $6.27 trillion in the next decade, higher than its March estimate of $5.99 trillion.

    Reduced U.S. Holdings

    China, the biggest foreign investor in U.S. government bonds, cut its holdings by about 10 percent to $846.7 billion in the 12 months ended July, according to the Treasury Department.

    U.S. Treasuries fail to provide safety or liquidity in managing China’s $2.45 trillion foreign-exchange reserves, Yu said in an e-mail in August. To help cool demand for the securities, China needs to curb the growth of its foreign reserves by intervening less in the currency market, he said.

    China should reduce its holdings of U.S.-dollar assets to diversify risks of “sharp depreciation,” Yu said in July. The nation should convert some holdings in U.S. dollars into assets denominated in other currencies, commodities and direct investments overseas, he wrote in a commentary in the China Securities Journal.

    The increased convertibility of the yuan will ease pressure on the currency to appreciate, Yu said today at an event organized by Singapore Management University.

    The yuan has strengthened almost 2 percent against the dollar since June 19, when China’s central bank said it will pursue a more flexible exchange rate. China maintained a peg of 6.83 yuan per dollar from July 2008 to June 2010.

    Yuan Level

    China will independently determine the level of the yuan and the U.S. doesn’t need to vote on the issue this week, Vice Commerce Minister Chen Jian said in Taipei yesterday.

    The U.S. House of Representatives is due to vote tomorrow on legislation pressing China to raise the currency’s value amid assertions the yuan is undervalued and gives the Asian nation a trade advantage. The legislation would let companies petition for higher duties on Chinese imports.

    “The basic trend is for an appreciation” of the yuan, Yu said in an interview after his speech today. “No one can predict the specific pace of the appreciation. This is difficult to say as it depends on circumstances. We should not be speculators.”

  83. Richie says:

    What insurance company is giving that shaft? (not covering spouses)..

    I see this as their way of getting more $$ at the consumers expense.. I’m stuck with an HMO that covers family, but self-employed so paying quite a bit for it (with no prescription coverage to boot)…

    Insurance is all a scam.

    -Richie

  84. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    [70] hyde

    Velocity is up? I would have thought the other way, judging by the depressed tax receipts.

  85. Mr Hyde says:

    Nom,

    Yes velocity is decreasing while at the same time the FED is printing like mad to try and counter the effect. The end result is probably a hyper inflationary event. The confusing part is that you and i will see both inflationary and deflationary effects at the same time. In a fiat economy debt destruction, whether through default or retiring the debt is a net deflationary act.

    The video i linked at 11 and 15 explains it better.

    I just thought the piece by Pritchard was interesting given his previous stance, and the fact that he actually came out with a mea culpa

  86. Mr Hyde says:

    Nom,

    Now consider that every dollar issued is a debt for greater then 1$ that must be paid back to the treasury/FED. That is a monstrous transfer of wealth and productivity to the government and there is virtually no way to avoid it. The only way out of the trap is to issue a new currency that is at a minimum back by some % of physical assets. any 100% fiat currency is nothing more then a mechanism for the net transfer of wealth and productivity from the population to the governments and central banks.

    Of course Nixon bailed out of the remaining gold standard as they had over issued the $ and didnt have the physical gold to meet the existing liabilities. They couldnt have the governments of the world limited by such mundane matters.

  87. Mr Hyde says:

    I guess this guy was prescient.

    “When the Federal Reserve act was passed, the people of the United States did not perceive that… the United States were to be lowered to the position of a coolie country which has nothing but raw materials and heavy goods for export; that Russia [China, India…] was destined to supply the man power and that this country was to supply financial power to an international superstate — a superstate controlled by international bankers and international industrialists acting together to enslave the world for their own pleasure.”

    Rep. Louis T. McFadden, June 10, 1932.

  88. JJ AKA John says:

    It will be a blood bath of epic proportions with rates slowly rising. Issuers are issuing debt just because they can to lock in low rates. Issuers may not need to issue new debt for years. Once rates rise common folk can either sell at a loss or just hold to maturity. New issues is where the money is. That is starting to die. I am out of margin locked in 100K in profit in my fixed income account which is my downpayment money. Don’t want to lock in any more profit as it will kill my tax return. I do however, will be getting cash soon as I got three bonds the issuers just did new issue to pay off old debt. This is part of reason for melt up to come in stocks. People rushing out the door of fixed income will mean equities will benefit. .

    make money says:
    September 28, 2010 at 11:07 am
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/39383634

    John,

    say it aint so…

  89. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    Tax Prof Blog (not a conservative site by any means) calls Grayson’s Taliban Dan advertisement “The Most Despicable Political Ad. Ever.” Apparently, it was an out-and-out fabrication, a complete misrepresentation. The sort of things that Schab and Fabius accuse the GOP of on a regular basis.

    http://taxprof.typepad.com/

  90. JJ AKA John says:

    I doubt it, with a name like McFadden he is most likely catholic.

    Mr Hyde says:
    September 28, 2010 at 12:24 pm
    I guess this guy was prescient.

    “When the Federal Reserve act was passed, the people of the United States did not perceive that… the United States were to be lowered to the position of a coolie country which has nothing but raw materials and heavy goods for export; that Russia [China, India…] was destined to supply the man power and that this country was to supply financial power to an international superstate — a superstate controlled by international bankers and international industrialists acting together to enslave the world for their own pleasure.”

    Rep. Louis T. McFadden, June 10, 1932.

  91. The Orwellian Chairman says:

    95 nom: You need re-education. People love Dear Leader and healthcare law.
    People love Dear Leader and healthcare law.
    People love Dear Leader and healthcare law.

  92. sas3 says:

    Jamil, lack of a public option in the HCR bill is a draw back. The current bill rewards insurance companies who are responding by jacking up the prices anyway.

  93. Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison says:

    Shore Guy,

    You have mail.

  94. sas3 says:

    #97 Jamil

    WTF does HCR and O have to do with an attack ad in a congressional race in FL? Why don’t you just come out and say, “I hate the n!gg3rz” and get it out of your system?

  95. Shore Guy says:

    Spousal Carve Out:

    It sounds so Lizzy Borden, or Molly Hatchet. anyway.

  96. sas3 says:

    GOP use of filibuster explained well…

    “Why do Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell hand over the keys to DeMint?”

    And the answer is: time.

    Let’s say Reid wants to ignore DeMint’s demands, and run the Senate his way. First he begins on the path to passing one of these “hotlined” bills by asking unanimous consent to bring it up for consideration on the Senate floor. DeMint objects. Round One is now over, and DeMint wins.

    Round Two: Reid makes a motion to proceed to the measure DeMint objects to. DeMint filibusters. Reid files a cloture petition. But cloture can’t be voted on until the passage of a full calendar day after the day on which the petition is filed. So that’s two days of Senate time wasted right there, even if cloture passes 99-1. Round Two is now over, and DeMint wins, because that’s two days spent on debating whether or not to end debate on the question of whether or not to begin debate on this thing that DeMint objects to. And mind you, it’s probably the naming of a post office, not the tax bill you’d rather be spending those two days on.

    Round Three: The cloture motion passes 99-1. Senate rules, however, provide for up to 30 hours of post-cloture debate. And because it’s in the political interest of Republicans to waste as much time in a Democratic Senate as possible, DeMint’s allies help him eat that time up. Round Three is now over, and DeMint wins, because another day and a half is wasted debating the already decided question of whether or not to end debate on the question of whether or not to begin debate on the bill.

    Round Four: Debate finally begins on this thing that DeMint objected to. DeMint filibusters again. Reid files another cloture petition, but once again has to waste two days before being allowed to vote on it. DeMint wins.

    Round Five: Two days after filing for cloture, the cloture vote is held, and it passes 99-1. But again, there are up to 30 more post-cloture hours to kill, which can’t be spent debating the tax bill. DeMint wins.

    Round Six: A vote is finally held on naming that post office, and it passes 100-0! Everybody loved that bill after all! Reid “wins!”

    Approximate time elapsed: Eight days. (Assuming a Monday cloture filing, “normal” working hours, and no weekend session.) Only 375 more bills passed by the House but untouched by the Senate to go!

    So, anyone for some Senate rules reform? Or do we think Chancellor DeMint isn’t going to pull this ladder up behind him if the roles are reversed?

    http://david-waldman.dailykos.com/

  97. Shore Guy says:

    82/86

    If I am sitting in Beijing and watching the world’s economy going through a convulsion that will affect my ability to feed my people, India starts looking very enticing.

    Were it first weakened by a war with Pakistan, so much the better. If one loses 50,000,000 people in the conquest, it is not only a rounding error but it removes additional mouths to feed. One can also see a deal where China gives Kashmir, and perhaps a bit more, to Pakistan in exchange for little help with India.

    Captuting the subcontinent and pushing the native population into the southern cone provides one with all the leverage necessary to bring SE Asia in line, aand with it, the oil, rubber, and other raw materials a growing industrial power needs, while peventing the West and Japan from having access to them.

    India may have special weapons but they lack the number and the delivery systems the Chinese have.

  98. Shore Guy says:

    Nom,

    You also have mail.

  99. Mr Hyde says:

    Shore

    worst case, India could threaten to salt their nukes and use modern day scorched earth to more or less permanently deny the Chinese use of captured territory.

    I would also be surprised if we didn’t participate even if we just supplied them and perhaps “loan” India a few megaton weapons

  100. sas3 says:

    Shore, this time around, it will be framed as “democracy vs dictatorships” and US + India + Taiwan + Japan vs China?

    Who am I kidding, the portfolios of major banks and interests of mega corps at that instant will dictate the alliances.

  101. Mr Hyde says:

    Shore

    Russia could also become a strategic aly in the case of an expansionst china

  102. DL says:

    Ref 14: Clot, its soda pop with the same name. Nothing like the original.

  103. Poltroon says:

    hyde (93)-

    Funny that a garden-variety congressman in 1932 could figure out what a whole cadre of Nobel laureates and MIT math wonks can’t see right in front of their idiot faces today.

    This is all the proof we need to know that the current crises are cover for the biggest bank robbery of all time. When we are enslaved and homeless, it might occur to some that we’ve been had.

  104. Poltroon says:

    God damn America. Rev. Wright had it spot on.

  105. Poltroon says:

    Good to see Sastry return to the canard of implying anyone who isn’t a self-hating liberal is a racist.

  106. DL says:

    Clot: ref 78. A year ago I wrote an article that maintained the most serious threat to our sovereignty was dollar debasement and the Fed was our first line defense. I was not allowed to publish it. I later had a conversation with a 4 star that pointed out the most serious threats to our national security had no military response. Silence.

  107. jamil says:

    sastry “Jamil, lack of a public option in the HCR bill is a draw back. ”

    Are you still implying that the 57% of voters who want HC bill repealed are mostly ultra-left national sozialists like you who simply want it to be more gov controlled? It is kind of amazing to see how out of touch people can be.

    Yeah, this must be why dem candidates everywhere are proudly touting public option and HC, rather than, say, hiding from voters and promising to repeal HC and limit Gov control. I assume your conclusion of the economic mess is that we did not spend enough? Should have spent $2T on Stimulus rather than just $1T?

    I don’t think there is a cure for leftism.

  108. plze! says:

    To SAS3,

    I happen to have earned a living working in the strategy offices of large insurance companies and large hospitals. In fact, one of my jobs was to interpret new healthcare legislation and explain the impact it would have to our executives. Thus, I know a little about Obamacare.

    1) Many insurance companies can barely stay afloat as they can’t raise prices too high or people can’t buy insurance (10 out of 19 insurance companies lost money in the state I worked)
    2) Many hospitals are closing because they can’t afford to stay in business. In New Jersey, 25 out of just more than 100 hospitals have closed. More are to follow. This is despite sky high charges.
    3) Healthcare costs so much BECAUSE of government-not despite it. Medicare (government run) decided years ago to pay docs and hospitals based on the number of tests they perform-not patient outcomes. In addition docs found a loophole in the laws so they now buy and operate their own equipment where they can also refer. Thus, radiologists are able to buy and operate their own radiology equipment, surgeons can be “shareholders” in their own surgery center, etc. That means that docs now order a growing number of tests and refer them to own facilities where they make money on both the a) professional fee (time) and b) facility fee (equipment costs). This has caused costs to go through the roof. And patient outcomes have not improved substantially in many areas.
    4) Obamacare does NOTHING to address this issue. It’s instead driving costs higher by mandating more coverage of tests, etc. under a system that pays more for more testing -at a facility that a doc happens to also own! That’s why premiums are going up, not because insurance companies are greedy (though some are).
    5) The government needs to start paying providers based on outcomes and healthcare costs will magically go down substantially and patient care will improve.
    6) Many people in healthcare are fully aware of this and have told our politicians this , but they are beholden to lobbyists. I pray that Obamacare is repealed.

  109. Mr Hyde says:

    Dl

    why can’t we carpet bomb dc and all the major fed branches

    -Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.

  110. Mr Hyde says:

    Poltroon

    That senator was murdered about 2 years Fyer giving that speech

  111. Shore Guy says:

    Ket,

    Your comment presupposes that our policy makers want India to successfully repel a Chinese attack.

    As for Russia, I have said for years that we have much in common and if woulld just get past 1917-1991, we have every opportunity to create strong and warm relations.

  112. Confused In NJ says:

    Scott Rostan, founder of Training The Street, which provides courses in financial modeling and corporate valuation, said the small move in stocks compared to the big decline in confidence was indicative of a growing schism between consumers and traders.

    “There’s a big dichotomy between Main Street sentiment and Wall Street sentiment,” Rostan said. Right now, traders are more focused on sentiment and confidence among corporate executives than consumers, he said.

  113. Mr Hyde says:

    Shore 117

    not true, western support for India in said scenario requires only that the west wants to ensure china pays a very heavy price for victory or stalemate. Ensuring china pays a very high toll is in our best interest. In fact, the west supporting a Korean or Vietnam type policy where we support nonconventional warfare (guierlla) is in out ling term interest. Turn any Indian campaign into chinas Vietnam or Korea

  114. Shore Guy says:

    A long drawn out conflict may not be a bad thing for China. It will do more for reducing population in the hinterland than the one-child law.

  115. sas3 says:

    Plze,

    “…
    That means that docs now order a growing number of tests and refer them to own facilities where they make money on both the a) professional fee (time) and b) facility fee (equipment costs). This has caused costs to go through the roof. And patient outcomes have not improved substantially in many areas.

    6) Many people in healthcare are fully aware of this and have told our politicians this , but they are beholden to lobbyists. I pray that Obamacare is repealed.”

    The costs should/will go down because of the decrease in the number of uninsured. Your viewpoint is starkly in contrast with still_looking’s viewpoint. If I understood correctly, you point out that docs are ripping off the insurance companies, while sl states that medicare/medicaid are ripping off the doc’s.

    So, if medicare/medicaid are able to control prices better than insurance companies… can one make a very strong case for a single-payer system? On the other hand, if some docs are ripping off insurance companies by using their own hospital facilities, is there a case for a *gasp* NHS?

    One major issue… why does a private insurance company covering relatively young people link its payment procedures to medicare/medicaid?

  116. Mr Hyde says:

    Shore

    a sino-Indian conflict should be a huge boon for US economics. The more drawn out the better.

  117. sas3 says:

    Hyde #122… and all Indians and Chinese appreciate your good thoughts :)

  118. sas3 says:

    Though, a red-vs-blue conflict is also very likely if the Kochs of the world end up with no power to buy elections anymore.

  119. Mr Hyde says:

    sas3

    Nothing personal, Its all just a big chess game. A large scale conflict is all but guaranteed at this point, the only question is who the primary players are. SE Asia or the ME are the most likely theaters for the primary conflict.

    If it makes you feel any better, India could use China’s food import dependence against it and immediately strike the large number of industrial scale food operations china has established throughout Africa to cause some substantial logistics problems for them.

  120. Mr Hyde says:

    SAS3 121

    I believe the point that SL has made is that docs must often run operations as described just to stay afloat. Medicare pays below cost for a large # of procedures. I can demand a hamburger for 50 cents all day long and may even get a few, but at the end of the day the base cost of producing that hamburger is more then 50 cents and any system predicated on guaranteeing a price below the market price for the hamburger is doomed to implode.

    O care will never decrease costs for the average joe

  121. Zack says:

    Just came out of a Bankruptcy Auction from AJWillner.com

    6 Deanne Drive, East Hanover, NJ

    Final Bid Price : $750,000

  122. plze! says:

    1) Costs will not go down with an increased number of insured. Many people thought that more preventative care would lead to fewer expensive costs (ex: fewer surgeries needed if high blood pressure is controlled). However, I believe that recent studies have surprised many in healthcare and in fact have shown that more insured= more utilization = more costs. It kind of makes sense as preventative care does lead to more testing. Example: Positive mammogram results often lead to breast biopsies. I believe around 80% of biopsies are negative. No cancer is found. That being said, if you’re in the 20%, thank goodness for the mammogram! But it doesn’t reduce costs. That’s a fallacy.

    2) You do not need a single payer system to control docs ordering unneeded tests. That’s definitely killing an ant with an elephant. You just need to write a law that says docs cannot own their own testing equipment and facilities. It’s very simple. Laws were written like that but docs found loopholes. The loopholes need to be closed. Plus, docs take all the insured to their own facilities and leave the uninsured for the hospitals. Someone has to cover the costs of the uninsured being treated at a hospital…

    3) A single payer system would be a tragedy for patient care and here’s why: Historically, private insurance companies negotiate fees with docs that are similar to what Medicare decides for any given procedure. Recently, insurance companies can’t lower rates as much as the government or they won’t have any docs enrolled in their plans. That because Medicare has lowered their fees to such a degree that many docs are dropping out of Medicare. I have seen this personally over and over. Thus, 30% of Medicare patients now can’t find a doc to treat them. Medicaid is even worse. I get calls from docs on a regular basis…”I have a patient who has a brain tumor with medicaid. Do you know anyone I can refer them to who will accept medicaid?” The answer is “no!” Very, very few docs will see Medicaid patients because fees are so low. Thus, cancer rates are the same for Medicaid patients as for the unisured. I thank goodness I have private insurance every day! Democrats seem be confused about having insurance vs being able to be treated. Docs have told me they are paid $5 for a 15 minute visit with a Medicaid patient. I mean, come on! Thus, while Medicare/Medicaid may pay lower fees to docs than private insurers, they’ve negotiated so low that patients don’t have any docs to see–thus long, long waits have started!

    4) The reason that private companies link fees to Medicare (not Medicaid) is because it’s a complex formula that determines what should be paid for each procedure -and a lot of data is collected. The insurance companies would rather let the government pay for and do that work and copy their findings.

  123. Libtard says:

    For what it is worth, I got my achilles tendon repaired at a surgical center owned by my surgeon. Haven’t gotten the bill yet, but my BCBS of Minnesota already told me it will max out my deductibles and I will meet my maximum out of pocket expense. I guess if I’m gonna have my first ever insurance claim (still have never had a home/auto claim) I might as well go for the gusto.

    I agree with what the Repubs here are saying about Obamacare, but Obamacare is a former shell of itself. It was originally supposed to be single payer. It became corporate care when the single payer option was eliminated by republican decree. What’s new? Better to make everyone suffer than let the opposing party get a bone on occasion. In the end, it’s our loyalty to our corporate masters that is what matters and what the sheeple need to understand. Census reports today explained that the income gap grew once again in 2009, mostly attributed to excessive executive compensation. This whole thing is going to hit the fan hard. But keep believing one party is better than the other. The only party to get behind is Walmart. When everyone else is dead, they will still be hawking rollbacks and you will be paying for them with your WIC and food stamps.

  124. Libtard says:

    plze! Good stuff:

    But if everyone was on the government health plan, doctors would either work with these patients or starve. Perhaps we’d have fewer doctors, but eventually the rates would find an equilibrium. I think 12 people were involved in my 30 minute surgery on Friday. This is no exaggeration and I’m not including the office clerks and receptionists. As each one introduced themselves to me, I told them to stop telling me their names as my memory was already full. Really.

    All I know is that my health care premiums go up 10 to 15% every year as well as my copays, deductibles, percentage out of pocket and maximums. Something must change. I saw what Schedule D (I think that was Bush’s terrible prescription drug plan) did. Now I ask my pharmacist if it’s cheaper for me to pay for the prescription with or without my insurance. Neither party is in it for you and me. They are in it for Stryker, Zimmer, Schering and Express Scripts.

  125. Libtard says:

    In real estate news, the ten year is starting to drop again. 2.46 last I looked.

  126. Al Gore says:

    Ga Ga Ga Ga Gold Bitchez!

    Busted through that resistance at 1300. Nice. Death to the Federal Reserve Note.

  127. pine_brook says:

    This question is for Comrade Nom Deplume aux maison
    Hi Nom,
    I have a PhD in chemistry and working for pharma. My job will be gone soon and it is highly likely that I won’t find another one soon. I am thinking of getting in to law school and work in IP area. Do you think it is a good idea? Can you give me your thoughts? You can get my email from grim I beleive.
    Thanks in advance
    Pine_brook

  128. plze! says:

    I agree that both parties aren’t addressing the issue. Many docs are already leaving the profession (both of my family care docs did-one went into healthcare consulting; the other retired early) because they can’t make money. Thus, the equilibrium has passed us by. I mean how can a doc negotiate with the US government? They can’t!

    Some-but not all of the reason– you had 12 people working on you at a surgery center is because of all the regulation. One person has to collect all your insurance info (registrar), one person has to prep you for surgery (pre-op nurse), another person has to screen you to make sure you’re not sick and can really undergo surgery(anesthesia), another does anesthesiologiology during surgery (anesthesiologist), another does surgery (surgeon), another monitors recovery (post-op nurse), another bills insurance, etc. You get the point, the rules and regulations are sooooo complex that it requires a specialist for each every thing….Some things will never become simple, like surgery. But some is needlessly hard.

    I know insurance premiums are crazy, but you have to look at why. The insurance companies are covering higher adn higher costs themselves.. hope you’re surgery went well by the way.. I have to run…

  129. Al Gore says:

    121.

    Medicare and Medicaid are a joke. The only reason the patients patients in those programs are cared for is out of the good nature of the provider.

  130. Al Gore says:

    10 year at 2.46 eh. Im going to get my 3.75 30 year come hell or high water. Mark my words.

  131. Libtard says:

    Al Gore. I don’t like you, but I think you are right about your 30-year.

  132. sas3 says:

    plze… the math doesn’t add up somewhere…

    “Many docs are already leaving the profession (both of my family care docs did-one went into healthcare consulting; the other retired early) because they can’t make money.”
    “Insurance companies aren’t making money”.
    “Hospitals aren’t making money”.
    “Costs are going up very fast”.

    Is it that some docs/hospitals that game the system are causing suffering for everyone else?

    I hope the answers don’t start with “tort reform”…

    S

  133. Essex says:

    138. You don’t have to like the guy. But can he shoot straight?

  134. Essex says:

    131. Please Stu, remember that big pharma is your friend. Better living thru chemistry.

  135. Essex says:

    Just had to axe my lawn guy. really nice guy, but the lawn has never looked worse. Grubs….bare spots….you name it. Besides that is it the size of a postage stamp.

  136. plze! says:

    sas3.

    just because each member of the healthcare system is making less profit doesn’t mean the system costs less overall. if more tests are being ordered than ever before (because of perverse reimbursement incentives), than each person costs more to insure. that’s even if the profit margin of the insurance company, hospital, etc. is lower than ever.

    And yes, tort reform is a big issue. we have had to pay the malpractice costs of our ob/gyn docs for years at our hospital. otherwise, they’ll stop delivering babies (practicing obstetrics) adn just practice gynecology only. that mean our hospital will have less deliveries, neonatal intensive care, pediatrics, etc. the docs can’t afford to pay their own malpractice anymore. ex: an OB/GYN might pay $150,000 a year in malpractice costs when he only brings in $300,000 in revenue. plus, he has to cover office costs, staff costs, utilities, etc. out of that $300,000. it’s a very big issue.

  137. Confused In NJ says:

    Stocks rose on Tuesday after opening lower on weak economic data, with investors saying the data bolsters expectations the Fed will pump more money into the economy, which would support equities.

    Ben is buying Wall Street.

  138. Poltroon says:

    al (133)-

    Death to Bergabe. Death to Eraserhead.

  139. Al Gore says:

    ‘Gold-to-Go’ taps into gold fever with ATMs
    German firm plans to introduce machines in the United States this year

    “Thomas Geissler, creator of the Gold to Go brand and chief executive of Ex Oriente Lux, told Reuters on the sidelines of the London Bullion Market Association conference that the company aims to issue a “couple of hundred” machines next year.

    Gold to Go launched its first ATM in Abu Dhabi’s Emirates Palace hotel in May. They are now operating in luxury hotels in Abu Dhabi, Bergamo and Madrid as well as around Germany.

    “This year we will issue around 35 machines, and for next year we are looking for bigger numbers,” Geissler said on Monday, standing in front of one of the ATMS, which was colored and shaped like a giant gold ingot close to 2 meters tall.

    The machines, which update the gold price every 10 minutes to match international markets, take cash or credit cards and dispense small bars — including 1 gram, 5 gram, 10 gram and 1 ounce units — as well as coins such as South African Krugerrands, Australian Kangaroos and the Canadian Maple Leaf.”

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39383743/ns/business-personal_finance

  140. Double Down says:

    Good news, NJ will have a high speed train line after we’re $117 billion poorer, and dead:

    Amtrak to unveil $117B plan to build East Coast high-speed rail line by 2040
    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2010/09/amtrak_to_unveil_east_coast_hi_1.html

  141. Poltroon says:

    plze (144)-

    Good stuff you’re bringing today.

    What are your thoughts on armed overthrow of the gubmint?

  142. Poltroon says:

    Maybe Rahm can rent a little pied-a-terre in Cabrini Green.

    And maybe some civic-minded Crip or Blood can cap the mf’er on behalf of all of us.

  143. Al Gore says:

    To all the childish gun haters and government dependent slobs. Read it and weep.

    “Violent crime continued to fall in 2009, even as gun sales reached an all-time high, according to statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). This is “proof positive that gun prohibitionists have been consistently and undeniably wrong,” the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said in a statement.

    Released Tuesday, the violent crime statistics are part of the FBI’s yearly Uniform Crime Report, which collects crime statistics from localities all across the country and is the most comprehensive report on crime in America.

    According to the FBI, the number of violent crimes of all types declined in 2009 by 5.3 percent and property crimes declined 4.6 percent. In fact, the rate of violent crime declined 6.1 percent below 2008 figures.”

    http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/75359

  144. Poltroon says:

    They’ll pry my guns out of my cold, dead hands.

  145. sas3 says:

    Al Gore, [non-corporate] crime has been falling … unless we count the weekly school shootings and a lot of head less bodies in Arizona.

  146. Poltroon says:

    God help us all.

    “Rumor making rounds now that either of Pimco’s top two men could replace the man who destroyed Harvard’s endowment. Should either of these two be forced to quit Pimco, it would mean that QE would have to be massive to make sure that the Fed is a backstop of last reserve in case the next head of Pimco is unable to replicate his predecessor’s success.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/gross-el-erian-rumored-replacements-larry-summers

  147. Al Gore says:

    The only reason there is a rise in school shootings is because society forces these degenerates into school. You could throw a billion dollars at these dirtbags and still end up with a full time government dependent with a part time gig of drug selling or prostitution.

    You cant fix stupid and lazy. Its genetic. Give them a shovel. We have hundreds and hundreds of miles of canals that need dredging.

  148. Essex says:

    Ever notice how door to door salespeople don’t like dogs….much.

  149. Essex says:

    156. You can actually whip a lot of kids into shape without too much trouble if you get to them early enough.

  150. Poltroon says:

    sastry (153)-

    Hey- I loved that movie!!!

    http://www.amazon.com/Heads-Duffel-Bag-Framed-Poster/dp/B001Z4DTBM

    “…a lot of head less bodies in Arizona.”

  151. Essex says:

    In fact one solution to school violence is to fill the classrooms with literate ex-Marines. Let them take care of discipline problems.

  152. Poltroon says:

    I still think a good eugenics program can’t be beat. Clean up the gene pool, and raise the bar a little bit.

  153. sas3 says:

    Just like his name sake, Al Gore lacks the sense of humor, w.r.t. Chasty O’Donnell’s fear of weekly school shootings.

    On an unrelated note… Summer 2009, after house purchase — some big chunk of money that had to go into 401k/deferred comp (to get O’s 8k). S&P 500 did well — may be even better than Gold?

  154. Al Gore says:

    162.

    Nothing beats shiny. Nothing. Your S&P gains have already devalued by 10% since June. Make that 12% as of today.

  155. Poltroon says:

    sastry (162)-

    C’mon, man. You’re better than this.

  156. sas3 says:

    Clot, my retirement plans don’t allow shiny, and, more importantly, I am not at all keen on shiny — I don’t know anything about bonds, so S&P it was. I don’t believe in “nothing beats shiny [or anything else]”. I am sure people here have portfolios that beat shiny like a rented mule.

  157. sas3 says:

    #165, my bad… not better than Gold, but it did well. No complaints from my side…

    Oh, the time frame is June 2009+ — not that a couple of months make a big diff..

  158. JJ AKA John says:

    bonds and gold are at a top of a bubble, stick to S&P

  159. make money says:

    JJ(168),
    I’ll let Wanta respond to that.

    ps. can we close the year at $1,310? It would be nice.

  160. Poltroon says:

    sastry (166)-

    Your retirement plan is going to have you working until the day you die.

    Sort of an oxymoron, huh?

    “Clot, my retirement plans don’t allow shiny, and, more importantly, I am not at all keen on shiny…”

  161. Poltroon says:

    I think BC is probably prepping some charts of everything in the world vs. shiny over the last ten years.

    Honestly, guys, if you’re going to poo-poo gold, at least come up with a better argument than some CNBC hack.

  162. sas3 says:

    Clot: S&P vs shiny 20+ years…

  163. chicagofinance says:

    I’ve been waiting all day to whip it out…..now is the time….

    All you need to know….
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gSq8ZBdSxNU

  164. Shore Guy says:

    “substantial logistics problems for them”

    Long-range bombers and some decent destroyers could also cause huge problems for Chinese ships (or ships servicing China) to transport foodstuffs to Chinese ports.

    Having just one coast is a real downside for China — something it gets around by seizing the land north of Goa, say north of the 4A Highway. Or even a little further north, say from Mumbai to Visakhapatnam . Ahmedabad to Visakhapatnam also works, but it creates more difficulties for China with respect to the new frontier.

    Lebensraum, 21st Century style. Oy!

  165. Shore Guy says:

    Sastry,

    Don’t blow a gasket. I dont’t believe that anyone here is advocating any such action — just reflecting on what could make sense to the Chinese.

  166. Shore Guy says:

    How are you recovering, Stu?

  167. Shore Guy says:

    Gator,

    How is single life in Montclair?

  168. chicagofinance says:

    The end is nigh……

    C-ckroach joins Couric for lunch

    Katie Couric had a creepy crawler join her for lunch at Shun Lee Cafe on West 65th, which is featured in “Wall Street 2.” Couric tweeted on the anniversary of her webshow: “Just had lunch at a kinda fancy Chinese restaurant. Egg drop soup, garlic shrimp and giant c-ckroach crawling across the banquette. Yikes!” A regular at the eatery, Couric didn’t want to give the restaurant away but told us, “They squashed the offender immediately.” A Shun Lee manager said, “Unfortunately we had an univited guest in our dining room and we got rid of it. I’m sorry, this is New York.”

  169. dim says:

    179: to be fair, it *is* NY and roaches are pretty much everywhere. But I wonder what “grade” that restaurant got from DOH.

  170. Confused In NJ says:

    If you have to convert Gold to Paper to spend it, and Paper is worthless, does it matter how much Paper you get for your Gold? Or are we actually going back to a time when Gold is Coin of the Rhealm, and can actually be spent directly on purchases? Still have some $20 Gold Pieces.

  171. chicagofinance says:

    States Are Poised to Be Next Credit Crisis for US: Whitney

    Crippling debts and deficits are about to make individual states the next casualty of the credit crisis, analyst Meredith Whitney told CNBC.

    Speaking as her firm, Meredith Whitney Advisory Group, just released a lengthy report on the state of the states, the noted financial analyst compared the looming explosion to the collapse of the financial system in 2008 and 2009.

    “The similarities between the states and the banks are extreme to the extent that states have been spending dramatically and are leveraged dramatically,” she said. “Municipal debt has doubled since 2000, spending has grown way faster than revenues.”

    Whitney also offered another warning about banks, saying a sharp dropoff in trading revenue and a double-dip in housing would hammer at fourth-quarter earnings.

    But she reserved her harshest words for the states. She said the paper released Tuesday was the culmination of two years’ work by her firm and was made even more difficult by the lack of reliable data on state spending and debt.

    “It reminded me so much of the banks pre-crisis that we just kept working at it,” she said. “We couldn’t find anything that gave us a clear story, we couldn’t find any information that was transparent. So we did it ourselves.”

    There were some bright spots: Texas, Virginia and Nebraska were among states that have done a good job of controlling their finances over the years and aren’t threatened as much.

    But other states, such as California and Michigan, will burden the entire country should the federal government decide to step in with a bailout. States are required to balance their budgets, but massive debt-service payments could prevent that from happening in many states and necessitate the federal government to step in.

    “You have to look at the states and the risk that the states pose, because the crisis with the states will result in an attempt at least for the third near-trillion-dollar bailout,” Whitney said. “That has consequences on the dollar, that has consequences on just about everything. It certainly has consequences on the US recovery.”

    “Imagine you’re conservative, fiscally sound Nebraska and you have to bail out California, or you’re fiscally conservative Texas and now you have to bail out Michigan,” she added.

    On the banks, Whitney reiterated her call that some 80,000 financial services jobs will be lost this year, based on an expected 25 percent sequential decline in equity trading and “low single-digit” returns on equity.

    On top of that, she said housing numbers will begin to worsen. The monthly Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller housing report earlier in the day signaled that home prices were flattening but stabilizing; Whitney said that reading is going to get progressively worse.

    “This quarter is going to be unique for the banks because this will be the last quarter when they can dodge the credit bullet,” she said. “We think October, after the banks report, you’ll see a really ugly Case-Shiller number, which means the fourth quarter is going to be very tough for banks.”

  172. dim says:

    re: the whole health care back and forth btwn sas & plz – a few thoughts:
    1 – there isn’t a whole lot of contradiction between SL’s experience and the idea that MDs are out there making a killing due to the Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) model that took over the system. There is a whole lot of diversity in the MD ecosystem, income differential for different types of docs is tremendous. Plus, there are certainly many MDs who are much better at gaming the system, with no shortage of outright crooks. I’d venture to say that a majority of MDs wander that line with a team of dedicated coders/”reimbursement specialists” pushing the borders of reimbursement.
    2 – Medicare is too much a behemoth to simply categorize as under- or over-paying for care. It arguably overpays for much of the care provided. The typical news stories about underpayment is usually regarding primary care. Until just a few years ago, Medicare wouldn’t even pay for an annual physical. Medicare rewards procedure-driven specialties, and docs who specialize in outpatient procedures can go to town on the govt dime. Some of this has made the news – unnecessary cardiac catheterization, or knee replacements. This is not restricted to MDs – it crosses providers and settings. DME (direct medical equipment) was a huge fraud game and continues to be. Ever see any of those “get your free electric wheelchair” ads? That’s Medicaid fraud, usually, at thousands of dollars of your non-capped Medicare taxes going to some dealer and manufacturer.
    3 – SL is in primary care, hence the frustration. But why do even primary care practices still take Medicare and Medicaid patients even though the payments don’t cover the average per-pt visit cost? Aside from the feel-good moral of not dropping existing patients, the business answer is volume. Medical care is a commodity under the FFS payment system; fitting more 10-15 minute to a workday and getting any Medicare/Medicaid reimbursements is revenue. You don’t spend your overhead per patient, as with any business.
    4 – A single-payer system is advocated by economists because – at least under some schools of thought – health care is an asymmetrical market. Buyers do not have sufficient information to determine the value of what they are buying. Medicare is in fact the most efficient insurer out there, that has been shown to be empirically true. However, it is also Medicare’s fault that our system fell prey to the FFS model that constitutes one of the core reasons for cost inflation. Two major reasons why they needed the FFS were: 1) politically they needed something to sell the powerful AMA lobby on their side to get the votes – FFS was a carrot, and 2) it served to corral the sheer volume and complexity of health care into quantifiable units that could be handled by a single govt agency. Thus, even though the flawed markets of health care point to a single-payer as the elixir in an ideal situation, we know we don’t have an ideal situation in our country; to think single-payer would fix everything is as flawed as the obtuse vision of private markets as the ultimate solution. The way our govt handles bureaucracy, and – more importantly – the fact that govt is tremendously vulnerable to political concerns means that any single-payer system that the US govt tried to implement could turn out to be quite a troublesome beast, indeed.

  173. sas3 says:

    Dim… very well explained. I had the pleasure of getting a physical at a sh!thole clinic in West Orange (near the mall), where they made my wife and me undergo ultrasounds, cat scans, etc., for no reason.

    It turns out that we got so p!ssed at them, and waited to come back to Green Brook clinic for a small eye infection… Ended up looking at a place — one thing led to another and ended up with our current place. So, we should be thankful to that sh!thole clinic in a way.

  174. Fabius Maximus says:

    #84 Jamil

    A) I don’t call it ObamaCare as it deflects from the argument. Healthcare reform in this country is sorely needed. It has been reduced to a political argument. There was a case for true reform and at the start of the process there was a plan on the table that was a good compromise. The Insurance companies were on board and it should have gone through with a few tweeks. But the “Party of No” stepped up and said, “This is Soc1alism and there will be Death Panels we can’t let this through. The bill in the end pissed off all, but it did come through with a few golden nuggets.

    Is it left/Social1st enough for me, He11 no, I would like to see the Cuban model enacted. But, coverage for Pre-existing conditions and extension of kids coverage through college is a big step in the right direction and why I support it.

    One thing that is missed in this whole debate is that today what we look at is the Status Quo. Healthcare reform has not really kicked in, yet here, we are talking of spousal coverage getting yanked and I assume a five figure out of pocket maxs getting hit. The system is broken in some many ways but politicians are fighting change to the system and masking it under a cover of partisan bickering. That is the real issue.

    B) Yes my IQ is above average.

    Excuse the source but this is a good response to the Rasmussen poll Fast Eddie posted. I think that poll and a lot of others are skewed as they focus on likely voters as opposed to the populace at large. But this hist a few points that are getting lost in the noise

    Poll: Americans Want More Health Care Than Government Plan Provides
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/09/26/poll-americans-want-health-care-government-plan-provides/
    Republicans “are going to have to contend with the 75 percent who want substantial changes in the system,” said Stanford political science professor Jon Krosnick, who directed the university’s participation.
    “Republican legislators’ passion to repeal the legislation is understandable if they are paying attention to members of their own party,” Krosnick added. “But if they want to be responsive to all Americans, there are more Democrats and independents than there are Republicans.”

  175. Satara says:

    Dealer: Fiat currency are worthless.Nothing beats gold in value.
    Customer: But all I have is this worthless Fiat Currency
    Dealer: Will take it!

  176. sas3 says:

    Buy Gold now or be priced out forever!

  177. Fabius Maximus says:

    #95 Nom

    That ad has a long way to go before it even comes close to the GOP.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKFYpd0q9nE

  178. plze! says:

    Dim,

    Didn’t get a chance to write anymore last night. I agree with almost all that you wrote.

    Primary care docs are hurting cuz payment for regular office visits pay so little and they can’t perform tests where all the money is. Specialists that can order and perform tests/procedures are making a killing-especially if they own the facility where they do the tests. Next time a doc orders a test, ask him if he happens to own the facility. Most will look very uncomfortable! And the pharma companies, hospitals and supply equipment vendors are along for the ride. While unethical docs are certainly out there-it’s a flawed payment system designed by Medicare that has cultivated this corruptness!! Malpractice is a huge issue as well.

    One other thing. I get asked by docs pretty regularly how much we charge for so and so test (ex: MRI) because they have patients that have healthcare savings accounts. You can get the same MRI for $500 or $2000 depending on where you go. People that have healthcare savings accounts are VERY price conscious and shop around for prices. Since the money is coming from their personal stash, they care what xyz costs. Insured people don’t care how much things cost as the insurance covers it. That’s why people that enter healthcare savings accounts usually see a 30% drop in their healthcare costs just the first year. So more government coverage with less patient copays (Obamacare in theory), etc would probably lead to higher costs because the person wouldn’t care how much the government has to pay….. The whole system is backwards.

    And for the person who thinks Cuba’s healthcare system is great, don’t get me started. Michael Moore conveniently leaves out all kinds of facts. In fact, I don’t recall a single insurance company high level executive, hospital executive, etc being interviewed in Sicko-in other words, Michael couldn’t stand up to someone who really understands the business. He interviewed all kinds of patients-but being sick doesn’t make someone an expert-just a victim.

    Ex: We have lower infant mortality rates than some other countries. That’s because we have loads of infertility services for womeon who can’t get pregnant. These treatments cause more women to be pregnant with twins, triplets, etc. Multiples during a pregnancy usually lead to early labor and premature babies who have higher death rates and need more intensive healthcare treatments. In other countries, if you can’t get pregnant, too bad. But once you do, you’ll probably only be pregnant with one child and have a full term baby. Michael forgot to mention that.

Comments are closed.