News: Real Estate, Risk, Economics. Jul. 9, 2016

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Table of Contents
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1) To Defeat ISIL's Brand, Its Territory Must Be Reclaimed | The National Interest Blog

2) Banning the magic wand is not enough, heads must roll

3) Trump Foreign Policy Adviser Calls For 'Mutual Respect' in Moscow Lecture – ABC News

4) Tiny Rooftop Cabins Could Solve Urban Housing Crunch – Curbed

5) Top White House Economist Dismisses the Idea of a Universal Basic Income – Real Time Economics – WSJ

6) Tiny Houses Are Affordable, Energy-Efficient and Often Illegal | RISMedia

7) Brexit vote batters consumer confidence | Business | The Guardian

8) Construction Labor Force Shrinks, Job Numbers Flat

9) The Daily Shot; July 8 – Global Macro Currents

10) United States Unemployment Rate | 1948-2016 | Data | Chart | Calendar

11) Reports of Fires, Explosions Lead to Huge Hoverboard Recall

12) World faces deflation shock as China devalues yuan at accelerating pace

13) Employment Rebounds in June, but Unemployment Edges Higher | Jobs Bytes | Data Bytes | Publications | The Center for Economic and Policy Research

14) The Strange Gaps in Hillary Clinton's Email Traffic – POLITICO Magazine

15) Pressure mounts for secret Plan X to be investigated | News | ekathimerini com

16) Sanders loses on trade at Democratic platform meeting – The Washington Post

17) Employment Situation Report is a Monthly Statistics Lesson – The Big Picture

18) Moody's warns political contagion from Brexit vote could threaten EU's existence | City AM

19) For Too Many, the Job Market Isn't Working – Bloomberg View

20) Globalization for the 99%: can we make it work for all? | World Economic Forum

21) Celebrate Your Freedom: 7 Reasons NOT to Buy a Home | Apartment Therapy

22) mainly macro: Opportunity costs

23) A staggering percentage of Americans are too poor to shop | New York Post

24) Yanis Varoufakis: Only Europe's Radicals Can Save the EU

25) Anatomy of a Failed Coup in the UK Labour Party | Opinion | teleSUR English

26) Moneyness: Hyperinflation 2.0?

27) Freedom Is Receding Around the World – Bloomberg View

  1.    To Defeat ISIL's Brand, Its Territory Must Be Reclaimed | The National Interest Blog

    Ah, writers that include one from the RAND Corporation, hmmm (a long story).

    The article says IS must be stripped of land holdings. It doesn't say how. It leaves that to your imagination.

    If the nations had done what I said the moment IS started gaining territory, or is that terror-tory, this whole thing would have been over almost as soon as it began.

    What did I say the moment after IS rolled into Iraq and the Shiites dropped their US supplied weapons and abandoned their US supplied vehicles and ran away from the far smaller and less well-equipped Sunni dominated IS?

    I said that the US, Russia, Turkey, the Kurds, the Syrian government (under Assad), Iraq, and Iran primarily needed to band together and stop IS. I even suggested that the Saudis should also join (because the jihadis really don't like the Saudi regime at all and will turn on them as soon as they are able, which they've done with recent bombings in Saudi Arabia). I included Jordan and all the rest of the nation-states in the region too.

    What happened instead?

    The US continued aiming false propaganda at Russia over Ukraine and Crimea. Turkey turn on its Kurds. The Saudis ramped up funding of Sunni jihadis in Syria. The US turned a blind eye to the Saudis attacking Yemen.

    Now there have been bombings all over the place, and Turkey has changed its tune but not enough: still being dead set against democracy in Syria deciding whether Assad will continue on as Syria's President.

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  2.    Banning the magic wand is not enough, heads must roll

    Speechless, other than to say that this follows the link above unfortunately so well.

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  3.    Trump Foreign Policy Adviser Calls For 'Mutual Respect' in Moscow Lecture – ABC News

    I read a number of articles on Carter Page's visit to Russia. Surprisingly, ABC News had the least grossly neocon-slanted take.

    Neoconservatism is an anti-democratic, elitist, corporatist, globalization movement desirous to use the US military and NATO to force world-acceptance of its ideology.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  4.    Tiny Rooftop Cabins Could Solve Urban Housing Crunch – Curbed

    Sewage?

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  5.    Top White House Economist Dismisses the Idea of a Universal Basic Income – Real Time Economics – WSJ

    Jason Furman is absolutely wrong.

    Furman thinks UI would make income inequality worse. The people who aren't getting anything would be getting the UI. That's not worsening inequality. Nothing in the UI plan prevents taxing the rich more. It doesn't do away with progressive taxes. In fact, those living solely on the UI shouldn't pay any income taxes at all. Income taxes should be solely on income earned above the UI and should still be progressive if that's what the People vote for after we've had a full airing of the issue.

    His arguments are grounded on nothing.

    There could, and should, be jobs programs even with the UI.

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  6.    Tiny Houses Are Affordable, Energy-Efficient and Often Illegal | RISMedia

    I'm a big advocate of solid zoning and building codes but not for zoning and codes designed to keep housing unaffordable or that force owners to subsidize anti-green "utilities."

    I'd like to see tiny-house cities spring up where living off the grid is not only legal but encouraged. It would be great for those cities to be designed around community-owned-and-operated vegetable-and-fruit farms too that could feed those cities.

    As for what to build the housing out of and how to build them, well, just how safe do you want them?

    Urban sprawl would remain a concern, so stacking is an option. Vertical community farms are also.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  7.    Brexit vote batters consumer confidence | Business | The Guardian

    Uncertainty.

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  8.    Construction Labor Force Shrinks, Job Numbers Flat

    "The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this morning that the nation added 287,000 net new jobs in June, led by job growth in leisure, healthcare, professional/business services, retail and finance. The information sector also added jobs as striking Verizon workers returned to work. Given the recent rise in oil prices, construction industry stakeholders may be speculating that some workers may have left the industry for the energy production sector," said Basu.

    It will be interesting to see what Brexit does to the US economy. The Republican and especially Democratic conventions could further increase negative economic sentiments. Racism is also front and center again, not that it ever left that spot for many.

    Oil rigs are up, but prices can't keep rising enough to make a return to the pre-drop era in oil-industry employment.

    So, there's been a rush to US bonds and mortgage rates are lower, but construction employment doesn't bode well for affordable housing, which is what the People need. Plus, foreign investment is piling into cheaper housing here, which will only increase the strain on low-income households.

    Yes, minimum wages are going up in various places, but they'll be phased in over the long run.

    More jobs were added, but more people are now looking for work too. That means there was always plenty of labor slack.

    The Fed should stand pat.

    I'm still looking at a slowdown unless we get some really good news that fundamentals have changed. I don't mean changes that will create bubbles either. I mean real reforms, not problem-causing libertarian ones.

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  9.    The Daily Shot; July 8 – Global Macro Currents

    1. In the energy markets, US gasoline inventory draw was much weaker than expected.
    Crude oil inventory decline missed as well.
    Crude oil tumbled in response to the above report.
    And gasoline futures were down over 6% on the day.
    2. With gasoline markets oversupplied, refiners turn to diesel where margins are now better.

    3. US transport of crude oil by rail declines as imports become cheaper (CBR = "crude by rail").

    4. A great deal of fracking equipment in the US is now idle.

    5. Improved technology is helping fracking firms extend the life of crude oil wells.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  10.    United States Unemployment Rate | 1948-2016 | Data | Chart | Calendar

    US unemployment rate went up to 4.9 percent in June 2016 after falling by 0.3 p.p. to 4.7 percent in the previous month. The figure came in worse than market expectations, as more people entered the labor force. The number of unemployed persons increased by 347,000 to 7.8 million, offsetting declines in May and bringing both measures back in line with levels that had prevailed from August 2015 to April.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  11.    Reports of Fires, Explosions Lead to Huge Hoverboard Recall

    All I can say is, it's about time!

    More than 500,000 hoverboards are being recalled after dozens of reports of fires and spewing smoke.

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  12.    World faces deflation shock as China devalues yuan at accelerating pace

    Bumpy to come, or hard landing? Maybe it's time to bailout and deploy that parachute to land in a different country.

    The White House has become neuralgic about the strength of the US dollar after a 20pc surge since mid-2014, one of the most dramatic spikes of the post-War era. US officials read the riot act at the G20 summit in Shanghai in February, warning Japan and Europe that use of negative interest rates as a stealth tool to drive down exchanges would not be tolerated.

    … The country is hostage to an investment-led growth model that was not reformed in time, and relies too heavily on exports.

    Xi will panic.

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  13.    Employment Rebounds in June, but Unemployment Edges Higher | Jobs Bytes | Data Bytes | Publications | The Center for Economic and Policy Research

    By demographic group, the most disturbing item is the reported rise in the unemployment rate among black teens to 31.2 percent. It had been 23.3 percent in February. These data are highly erratic, but the trend is large enough that it could reflect a substantial deterioration in the labor market.

    On the whole, this should be seen as a modestly positive report. The job growth in the establishment survey was impressive, but it still only brings the three-month average to 147,300. At the same time, the household survey is indicating a much weaker picture. The establishment survey is generally a better measure, but even the establishment survey is not showing strong job growth over the three-month period.

    I think it's neutral at best.

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  14.    The Strange Gaps in Hillary Clinton's Email Traffic – POLITICO Magazine

    Gigantic, global risk-management issue: the honesty and competency of the President of the United States (not to mention equal application of the law):

    The State Department has released what is said to represent all of the work-related, or "official," emails Clinton sent during her tenure as secretary—a number totaling about 30,000. According to Clinton and her campaign, when they were choosing what correspondence to turn over to State for public release, they deleted 31,830 other emails deemed "personal and private." But a numeric analysis of the emails that have been made public, focusing on conspicuous lapses in email activity, raises troubling concerns that Clinton or her team might have deleted a number of work-related emails.

    We already know that the trove of Clinton's work-related emails is incomplete. In his comments on Tuesday, Comey declared, "The FBI … discovered several thousand work-related e-mails that were not in the group of 30,000 that were returned by Secretary Clinton to State in 2014." We also already know that some of those work-related emails could be permanently deleted. Indeed, according to Comey, "It is also likely that there are other work-related e-mails that [Clinton and her team] did not produce to State and that we did not find elsewhere, and that are now gone because they deleted all emails they did not return to State, and the lawyers cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery."

    Why does this matter? Because Clinton signed documents declaring she had turned over all of her work-related emails. We now know that is not true. But even more importantly, the absence of emails raises troubling questions about the nature of the correspondence that might have been deleted.

    I still can't imagine that deleting emails during an on-going official investigation by the government (that Hillary Clinton and her campaign and lawyers knew was on-going) wasn't an illegal act.

    As an insurance broker, if I were informed by the Commissioner of Insurance that my correspondence with an insurance company under investigation is needed and I were to tell the Commissioner that I turned over all such emails but deleted others during my search for them that had nothing to do with the insurance company and then the Commissioner were to discover that I had not turned over all my emails and that the ones I didn't turn over were some of the ones I deleted on purpose after I knew the Commissioner had officially informed me of the investigation and the need to see those very emails to see whether they contain any evidence for or against that company, I would fully expect to be in deep trouble.

    Now, I'm just an insurance broker. We're talking about someone who wants to be President of the United States and is closing in on being the Democratic Party's nominee, concerning whom we aren't quite sure what she considers personal, such as Clinton Foundation deals with foreign nations with whom she was dealing at the time as Secretary of State and who benefited that Foundation, which benefited Hillary Clinton and her immediate family members.

    In obtaining my insurance license, the government rightly impressed upon me the importance of avoiding conflicts of interest. Do you think Hillary Clinton has never had that impressed upon her?

    Everyone makes honest mistakes, but is that what we have here? If it has all been a huge honest mistake, then it is an equally huge indicator of incompetence.

    The rest of the article does raise major grounds for being suspicious even beyond what was revealed by Comey.

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  15.    Pressure mounts for secret Plan X to be investigated | News | ekathimerini.com

    When it becomes illegal or wrong or stupid in Greece to have a contingency plan if the nation is asked to subject itself to abject poverty of its citizenry (on a scale worse than the depths of the Great Depression in the US) due to impossible austerity and privatizations desired by EU powers and bondholders, let me know.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  16.    Sanders loses on trade at Democratic platform meeting – The Washington Post

    Unfortunately, this article is written for those who have been following the issue. It does not follow "Journalism 101," which unlike "Economics 101," set some pretty useful standards for such reporting.

    What it fails to do is give any background on why Sanders opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership. His reasons are many.

    The biggest reason of all that people oppose all of the trade deals Barack Obama's administration and other corporatists are pushing is that it gives unelected bureaucrats at the international level ultimate power over all other law in trade disputes falling under the deals language.

    The argument made by those for the deals is that such language has been in other deals for many years and that the US has always prevailed.

    However, we're talking now about the largest block of deals in the history of the US and, frankly, world (yes, including the EU). There are world organizations that deal with trade, but the scope and depth of corporate power and control would be cemented with these new proposals in ways never before agreed to by so many nations at once.

    There is zero guarantee that the US would continue to prevail in dispute resolutions. In fact, there's strong reason to believe that it wouldn't. Other nations have fared poorly. Can you rule out that the US did well for the very reason that down the line, major deals as now proposed would be highly suspect and those pushing them would want to be able to say not to worry because of the US record of prevailing.

    I'll spare you all the history of the Democratic Platform fighting that's been going on; but, if you really want to understand this article, you should do a news search on it.

    The article should have given a brief overview of the major issues and steps that have already occurred to give the reader at least some background understanding, but such is today's journalism.

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  17.    Employment Situation Report is a Monthly Statistics Lesson – The Big Picture

    You aren't necessarily stupid if you don't know this already, but it will be stupid of you if you don't accept it.

    Check him out on it. I learned this stuff a long time ago.

    Barry Ritholtz:

    … those 35,000 striking Verizon workers muddied the water both months, but if you have the a PhD. in applied mathematics, you might be able to perform the arithmetic functions of ADD 35,000 to MAY and SUBTRACT 35,000 to June — it should not throw you too much.

    Let me remind readers (again) that the monthly employment situation report has a margin of error of 100,000 jobs. So last month could very likely have been as high as 173k (38 + 35 + 100) and this months could very likely be as low as 152k (287 — 35 — 100). If you understand this simple math, you should be able to understand why I insist on noting the actual BLS official monthly number ain't all that.

    However, "…could very likely…" is overstated. The odds are very low the farther out on the edges of the margin of error one goes. Barry knows that. He's not trying to be misleading.

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  18.    Moody's warns political contagion from Brexit vote could threaten EU's existence | City A.M.

    I won't say to Moody's to tell us something we didn't already know. I'm glad they are doing a vastly better job, trying much harder, after the crash of the Great Recession.

    Many people new to thinking and reading about these things do not read alternative sources first or aren't yet able to discern which ones know what they're doing.

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  19.    For Too Many, the Job Market Isn't Working – Bloomberg View

    If the federal government took over licensing, it could sharply reduce the number of licensed occupations and allow licensed workers to move freely among states.

    Well, licensing fees are a revenue source.

    States argue that decentralization allows for more variation fitting local conditions and greater experimentation leading to wider adoption of better practices.

    There certainly could be revenue sharing and greater harmonization while allowing some localized rules, regulations, and experimentation, etc.

    A huge problem is governmental capture by corporations.

    Democratizing the system is the best approach. The "representative" system we have now is unacceptable. Representatives do not do the will of those who vote them in. That's why there's capture.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  20.    Globalization for the 99%: can we make it work for all? | World Economic Forum

    Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize-winning economist who has written extensively on this topic…. The lack of transparency and openness has meant that we've wound up with a form of globalization that works for a few, but not for all of us," he explains in a video.

    Alden outlines a range of ways for making globalization work, some that will be greeted with almost unanimous support — skills development for those whose jobs are displaced — and others that are slightly more controversial — a basic universal income and a (limited) restoration of some forms of trade protectionism.

    Transparency means democracy. Joseph Stiglitz is on board with that.

    I'm dropping the "basic" from Universal Income. My proposed UI is multiples above "basic."

    I should think that 3 times the poverty line should be the minimum starting place, all funded without issuing a single bond, and with any inflation handled via taxes on incomes earned above the UI in a sliding scale (progressive).

    The more democratic we become, the less personal, private income there will be, as people will come to realize that cooperation and the giving and sharing (at no charge) economy is the ultimate way forward: the ultimate platform and my target.

    I'm not an incrementalist, but I am a realist.

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  21.    Celebrate Your Freedom: 7 Reasons NOT to Buy a Home | Apartment Therapy

    If the shoe fits …

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  22.    mainly macro: Opportunity costs

    … makes no economic sense.

    Oh dear.

    Simon, you get credit for your blog that has so many posts for the laypeople. I think the point is that you can improve your ability to do that by being more of a renaissance man, so to speak. I don't think anyone wants you to fall down on your job of keeping up with the macro field but become a leader in bridging the gap for the very reason that doing so would be doing more of what you're already doing as much of or more than anyone else while learning to do it even better.

    You'll need to up the democrat in you if you want the self-motivation. You don't really have to read anything new to do that either.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  23.    A staggering percentage of Americans are too poor to shop | New York Post

    Retailers have blamed the weather, slow job growth and millennials for their poor results this past year, but a new study claims that more than 20 percent of Americans are simply too poor to shop.

    How is that good for growth? What's wrong with the UI?

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  24.    Yanis Varoufakis: Only Europe's Radicals Can Save the EU

    Best analysis I've seen on Spain: Yanis Varoufakis:

    Spain's establishment is in a bind. To stay in power it must continue with the narrative of Europeanization and of continual transfers of authority away from itself toward the EU's technocracy. At the same time, however, it is clear to a majority of the Spanish citizenry that the EU's technocracy has lost the plot, has inflicted upon the European periphery unnecessary recession, has lost the support of a large majority of Europeans, and is now losing control of important EU realms, like the U.K.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  25.    Anatomy of a Failed Coup in the UK Labour Party | Opinion | teleSUR English

    Well, you won't see this in the US or UK mainstream media, but the neocons and neolibs have no intention to give up trying to topple Jeremy Corbyn. As the famous philosopher, Yogi Berra, said, "It ain't over 'till it's over."

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  26.    Moneyness: Hyperinflation 2.0?

    JP Koning:

    On paper this sort of system should work fine… as long as the RBZ doesn't abscond with the funds in the foreign bank accounts. Unfortunately, this may be exactly what happened. …

    One hopes that rumors that the regime has absconded with the RBZ's funds are false and that the current bank run and potential inflation is just a temporary spate of animal spirits. But in my experience, most sustained bank runs are underpinned by something real.

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


  27.    Freedom Is Receding Around the World – Bloomberg View

    Noah Smith can be infuriatingly simplistic. I can't tell if he got the job because he's naive or because he's a closet neocon.

    How in the world can he write this right in the face of the Chilcot report? If he's going to throw the term "illiberal" around, he should shine the spotlight back on the US.

    Doesn't Noah understand blowback or other nation's legitimate concerns about US driving regime changes under false pretenses, via often utterly false but official US propaganda?

    I realize he's young, but ….

    Bloomberg gave him a megaphone why?

    Add your comment. Including the article/link number will help.


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