Saturday, July 18, 2009

Cap and Trade Emissions Bill is The Latest Pyramid Debt Scam

Wall Street financial banking barons, exploitative imperious arrogant elites, and opportunistic cronies by their backing of yet another illegal controlled pyramid scam law presented to the U.S. House of Representatives implicate themselves in massive world wide criminal conspiracy and fraud in the latest debt scheme Cap and Trade Carbon Emissions Bill HR 2454.

Controlled Markets

Because emissions trading uses markets to determine how to deal with the problem of pollution, it is often touted as an example of effective free market environmentalism. The cap is usually set by a political process of government imposing a fixed policy on carbon pollutiion. Instead we have a brand new controlled monopolistic market with individual companies forced to choose how they will reduce their emissions with purchases of futures and commodities contracts.

Basically, this is government policy dictating control, giving Wall Street Barons a green light to sell worthless paper carbon tax derivatives and future commodities contract debt creation. The created market control further assists the bloated greed driven kleptocracy a new billion dollar revenue stream. This is the basis of the latest Pyramid and Reverse Pyramid Schemes.

Pyramid Scheme

At the top of this latest pyramid scam is none other than Reverse Robin Hood's Merry Men, Goldman Sachs with their $3.5 million lobby on behalf of this carbon bill. Subsequently, the masses, the public, and the victims continue to be duped into the belief that these exploitative elites and their Wall Street operative cronies are conducting complex financial transactions that continue to magically increase value for the benefit of investors, thereby saving us from a green house gas calamity.

This law will do nothing for global warming except assist the Wall Street criminal barons and elites. The Cap and Trade Emissions bill is a simple age-old pyramid debt scam which benefits the kleptocrat operatives at the top only. All pyramid schemes are zero sum scams that can never be sustained over time and inevitably collapse.

Reverse Pyramid

When the Cap and Trade Carbon Emissions pyramid scam collapses the pyramid scam is turned upside down 180 degrees. The government steps in with "To Big To Fail" illegal forced stimulus money which bails out the Wall Street Reverse Robin Hood operatives once again. The illegal forced taxpayer bailout money transfers instantly - not over decades - to the criminal gangs of Wall Street, so they get paid twice.

This is a repeat of the banking, housing, insurance, mortgage, and auto industry government forced taxpayer bailout scams. The retrofit subtle wording 400 year old pyramid debt scam repeats history c.1720 This is not a bubble, not a Ponzi scheme, nor is it complex mathematical abstract theory.

Mediocrity Is Unattainable

The new 21st Century America has reached such new low standards of accountability, corrupt moral subterfuge, lawlessness, and incompetent leadership that a comparison to the black hole of Calcutta is but a tiny pin hole. There is no bottom to the continued assault on US citizens.

The continued subterfuge manifests itself with extreme arrogance that is unparalleled. This imperious arrogance assists corrupt opportunists in controlled markets, the demise of free market systems, illegal scams, outright daily criminal theft, outrageous stereotyping, and character assassinations, negatively impacting the future world with debt slavery, world wars, destitution, famine, poverty, death and destruction.

The demise of the USA is now in effect with every minute of unfolding factual events hidden by corrupt corporate media barons with continued subterfuge, disconnect, and distraction.

website: 21st Century Reverse Pyramid Scheme


City suspends payment of contracts

Running out of cash because of the state budget deadlock, the City of Philadelphia has stopped paying many of its bills until the impasse is resolved, City Finance Director Rob Dubow said this morning.

The city must temporarily withhold about $120 million in July and August to avoid running out of cash completely, Dubow said. Payments to contractors stopped Wednesday. Dubow, Budget Director Stephen Agostini and Treasurer Rebecca Rhynhart said that the city will pay its payroll, benefits, debt service and "emergency" contracts. The $4 million a month paid to foster parents, for instance, is considered an emergency, and other contracts will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

In a noon press conference, Mayor Nutter said the city would ask vendors to "understand where we are."

"We're asking them to work with us through this crisis," Nutter said.

The city is suffering for a number of reasons, all related to the state budget, city officials said.

First, the city anticipated receiving nearly $100 million in state payments in July and August that are frozen until a new budget passes. Second, the city is asking the legislature to approve a 1-cent increase in the sales tax, which would generate about $9 million a month, beginning Aug. 1. Third, the city had planned, as it does every year, to take out a $275 million, short-term "tax revenue anticipation note" or TRAN, which municipalities use to provide cash to cover expenses until their tax revenues are collected.

Without the expected state payments and sales tax revenues coming in, borrowing the $275 million would be prohibitively expensive, Dubow said.

“I have made repeated trips to Harrisburg over the last several weeks and I know that lawmakers are working hard to pass a fair and balanced budget,” Nutter said in a press release. “That said, the delay in the State budget process is severely impacting the City’s cash flow and we have no option but to take these difficult steps.”

Passage of the state budget would immediately solve part of the problem, though the city is also dependent on separate legislation to allow a sales-tax increase, and approvals to changes in the pension plan are needed before the city can borrow the $275 million with the TRAN, Dubow said.

Nutter said that "all new capital projects will be under stringent review."

"Over the next few days the City will review every capital project and will determine which can proceed in the absence of the passage of the State budget and the passage of legislation authorizing the City to raise the sales tax by 1% and make changes to its pension payments," Nutter's press release stated.

Even by suspending contract payments, the city cash on hand would dip to $111 million at the end of August. Agostini said anything under $150 million presents a potential problem for the city.

At a news conference outside his Harrisburg office, Rendell urged lawmakers to approve the 1-cent sales tax increase the city is asking for.

“It’s my hope that the state will do at least the one percent temporary increase in the Philadelphia sales tax. I stress temporary, and I think the citizens can believe the mayor when he says temporary," said Rendell who nevertheless predicted it won't happen until after the state budget is done.

Asked whether the city's predicament adds urgency to getting the state budget done, Rendell said: “I don’t think that can be the tail that wags the dog. I am concerned about it, just as I am concerned about our ability to meet our vendor bills. But look, this is so important to the state’s future…that we have got to get this right. As much as those short-term exigencies concern me, they can not be what motivates me.”

Was John F. Kennedy Jr. Murdered?

Judge For Yourself

The report of the National Transportation Safety Board came out on August 8, 2000, 13 months after the plane crash of JFK Jr. It contradicts many of the lies pushed in the media. For example, the L.A. Times reported "The accident that killed Kennedy was caused by an inexperienced pilot .. the NTSB concluded in its final report" (LA TIMES, 7/7/00, page 1). In fact, the NTSB report shows that Kennedy was highly experienced (he had more than enough hours for an instructor's license), he was described by his trainers as "excellent", "methodical", and "very cautious." (NTSB report, page 3) The media say the visibility was poor. But the NTSB quotes the Tower manager at Martha's Vineyard, where the plane went down, saying that there were "stars out" and visibility was "between 10 and 12 miles" (NTSB report, page 5). Why did the media lie? Why have they always lied about the murder of his father?

1) The rescue: This is enormouly important. The FAA radar tracked Kennedy's plane crash. The U.S. Coast Guard has reported that Kennedy contacted the tower on his final approach. THIS IS ENORMOUSLY IMPORTANT!!! It means they would have known his plane was going down before it hit the water. FAA regulations require that a search begin immediately when a plane reports itself on final approach and does not land within 5 minutes. Yet it took them 14½ hours to send the first planes and boats to Martha's Vineyard. (Boston Herald, 7/20/99 "Time gaps in early hours of search are beyond explanation" Jack Sullivan and David Talbot) (LINK5)WHY?

2) The plane: Kennedy's plane had autopilot, capable of flying itself to within 100 feet of the airport. All a "cautious and methodical" pilot had to do was sit back and let the plane fly itself. (NTSB report, page 18)

3) The sabotage: Kennedy's plane had a black box. No other private non-jet plane on earth had one. He knew they wanted to kill him and he wanted to make it hard. The NTSB, says the battery had been removed, destroying all record of conversation in the cockpit. (NTSB page 10) All planes have an Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT), which sends out a beacon signal in case of a crash. It took 5 days to locate Kennedy's plane. Why? Was it missing? Disabled? The report says nothing. According to the NTSB report, the fuel valve had been turned to OFF (NTSB report, page 12). This valve had a safety device on it so that it could not accidentally be turned to OFF. Turning it off during flight would be suicide, since at top speed, the engine will die in 45 seconds!! Because the results are potentially deadly, the valve cannot be turned by accident. A safety-release button must be pushed down and held while turning the valve. This piece of evidence is the smoking gun. It is positive proof of foul play. Was Kennedy committing suicide? If he wasn't, there can scarcely be any question but that he was murdered. So who turned the valve? Read on. Kennedy's flight logbook is missing. (NTSB report, page 2) This will be seen as critical in one minute, because the logbook would have recorded the presence of a flight instructor on the plane. The media talked about a "graveyard spiral" and various forms of disorientation. The NTSB report describes Kennedy's plane making two mild explainable maneuvers; and then the plan plunged drastically to the right and plummeted straight down, crashing 2600 feet in 45 seconds. It sounds like someone grabbed the controls and suddenly shoved the plane into the water. But this description of a suicide plunge is consistent with the "suicide" position of the fuel valve.

4) The flight instructor: All of the early reports said there was a flight instructor on the plane (e.g. The New York Times, Saturday July 17, 1999). Then the flight instructor disappeared from the reports. Kennedy very rarely flew at night without a flight instructor. Out of 310 hours of flight time, and 55 hours at night, he had only 45 minutes at night without an instructor. (LINK12)He was very cautious. He had his wife on board. It is almost unthinkable that he would not have taken an instructor.

5) Egypt Air 990: Two months later Egyptian Air flight 990, with 30 of the highest ranking members of the Egyptian military on board, crashed. (It was big news for several days. The pilot's family and the Egyptian government objected to the NTSB finding that the pilot was committing suicide. "He was happily married. Moslems don't commit suicide" etc.) This pilot had walked into the cockpit, said "Allah help me', grabbed the controls, and tried to force the plane to crash. Three other pilots, grabbed him, and there was a struggle; he gave up, turned around, and he turned the fuel valve OFF.

Both pilots, Kennedy's flight instructor and the Egyptian, were programmed, using hypnosis or other mind control, to act in exactly the same way. The CIA has settled lawsuits by victims of their mind control experiments, the MK Ultra program. One of the physicians, Dr. John Gittinger, Chief Psychologist of the CIA, tortured by his conscience, has come forward to expose the existence of these programs and their purpose: to create walking, pre-programmed human time bombs, set to go off on cue, taking out their intended victim.

Kennedy's emergency locator was removed, the cockpit recorder was disabled, the flight log was taken, and the body of the flight instructor was removed. (But they forgot to return the fuel valve to ON!!) They delayed the rescue 14 hours to do it. They were waiting in the water for the plane to crash. Who was? Who indeed?

But why would anyone want to kill John Kennedy Jr.? He was planning to run for National office according to Newsweek and People. He told friends he would have run for Senate in New York, but let Hillary Clinton run instead. And he would have won. He was the most popular man in the US. And for good reason. He was a great guy. But he was the only Kennedy to ever acknowledge a conspiracy in his father's death. He not only acknowledge it, he published an article by Oliver Stone, in his magazine, George, about assassination, conspiracies, and lying history books. Who would want to kill him? The people who killed his father had to kill him. Kennedy Jr. was going to go after them.

Deathwatch: 35,000 UK shops to close this year?

As many as 35,000 UK shops could close this year as the recession bites hard into the British economy. That’s a prediction included in a report by Experian and featured on The Money Programme tonight on BBC2, presented by retail ghoul Mary Portas (right).

Stats assembled by the British Retail Consortium suggest that sales fell 0.6 per cent in May, following brisk figures for March and April. Additionally, Job Centre statistics reveal that 165,000 shop workers claimed benefits last month – 49 per cent up on the year before.

With predictions that unemployment might reach three million before long, the shops could be hit harder still as money dries up and people resort to buying only necessities. Gateshead, Tyne And Wear has been named as the country’s biggest retail ghost town, with 60% of shop units standing empty.

What does the retail landscape look like where you live? Are you finding that local shops for local people are closing down and driving you more and more into the welcoming clutches of your nearest supermarket. Would you like to openly mourn a favourite retail establishment that has recently gone spectacularly tits up? Tell us now, because we might never meet again.

By Andy Dawson

Bankruptcy Filings up 33 Percent over a 12-month Period: Total 12-month Total of Bankruptcy Filings 1.2 Million. In last Report, Filings up 27 Percent

Bankruptcy filings are soaring in the United States. In the last data point, we had 134,282 bankruptcy filings for the month of March 2009. Bankruptcy data usually lags 3 or 4 months but the trend is ominous. For the last 12 months some 1.2 million bankruptcy filings have occurred. Much of this is linked to the 26,000,000 unemployed or underemployed Americans being unable to pay their bills or even service their debt. What is more telling is the amount of Chapter 7 bankruptcies occurring since these are straight liquidations and not like a Chapter 13 restructuring.

Let us examine the most recent data for bankruptcies that highlight this troubling trend:


What you’ll notice is a significant spike in the March data point. This monthly jump was enormous. This was the largest number of quarterly bankruptcy filings since December of 2005 when many were rushing to beat the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005. Yet even with the law making it harder for people to file bankruptcy, most are being forced into austerity and it is hard to squeeze anything further out of a turnip. What this tells us is that for average Americans there is still a significantly large amount of pain in the real economy. The unemployment rate is understated by the 9.5 percent headline number.

Below is data showing quarterly bankruptcy filings:


It is interesting to note, that even during the supposedly boom times of this decade, there were more people filing bankruptcy than during the bust since the recession started in December of 2007. The new bankruptcy legislation is designed to make it much harder for borrowers to file but ironically, during this same time banks have been having nearly unlimited borrowing power from the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve. As I discussed in a previous article the Federal Reserve will protect banks before it seeks to protect consumers.

The major sticking points of the 2005 legislation requires means tests, higher filing fees, mandatory credit counseling, and other obstacles preventing people from filing bankruptcy. If you put enough hurdles, you will see a decline. But let us flip the tables for a second. Imagine if we required this from banks that we have been bailing out. Have we had them go through “credit counseling” or have we required them to go through means tests? If anything, they have been given the money simply because they demanded it. For the consumer bankruptcy is the last option but for banks, the only option is a taxpayer funded bailout.

But as the times have gotten tougher in this recession, there really isn’t much a bank can do when someone has lost their job and is unable to pay their bills. By any standard, someone who has no money will fall below the median household income for that state. The average American household brings in roughly $46,000 to $50,000 per year so there isn’t much room to maneuver. With credit drying up, this was virtually the last lifeline. And banks refuse to lend because now after a decade of lax lending they are now verifying basic levels of capital and collateral:



Banks are holding tight to the funds because they want to avoid their own bankruptcy. Consumers are left to their own devices. As the year goes on, we can expect surging levels of bankruptcy creating further writedowns for banks. A $50,000 credit card debt that once was an asset for a bank can quickly turn into a loss when the borrower defaults. After all, some of this money might have been spent on food, medical costs, vacations, and other things that have no remedy of being recovered. The rise in bankruptcy is a key indicator that the economy is still feeling much pain.

Newly Restored Video of Apollo 11 Moonwalk

NASA has released newly restored video of the Apollo 11 Moon landing to celebrate the 40th anniversary of this feat.

Fifteen key moments are available, including Neil Armstrong’s first step on the Moon and Buzz Aldrin and Armstrong planting the American flag. The videos are part of a larger project to restore more video of the moonwalk.

A team of Apollo-era engineers who were responsible for the live broadcast of the moonwalk in 1969 gathered the best available video of the event from around the world and worked with experts who specialize in restoring old Hollywood classics.

In 1969, the live broadcast was recorded, along with biomedical, voice and other data, onto one-inch telemetry tapes as a backup if the live feed failed. But those tapes were lost, and a three-year hunt for them was unsuccessful.

So engineers were left with recordings of the TV broadcast, which lost a lot of resolution as they traveled from the Moon to ground-based tracking stations, to satellites via microwave links and through analog landlines to Mission Control in Houston.

“The restoration is ongoing and may produce even better video,” engineer Richard Nafzger at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, who oversaw television processing at the ground tracking sites during Apollo 11, said in a press release. “The restoration project is scheduled to be completed in September and will provide the public, future historians, and the National Archives with the highest quality video of this historic event.”

NASA TV will be streaming the footage in HD from noon to 7 p.m. EDT July 16 and 17.

See Also:

Check the video link ......

Use State Licensing Requirements to Reduce Federal Tax Gap


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Any added effort to collect the taxes due from corporations should be started right away. The corporations violate every social condition the Citizen is expected to obey, they cheat, lie, overcharge and enjoy life everlasting. Corporations should be taxed a heavy death tax every 50 years. corporations should not be allowed to own property or licenses. Corporations are allowed to put anything into the marketplace, including releasing virus to spur sales of antidote. Lets close all overseas tax havens, stop all bailout of corporations and begin a process of public ownership of all patent holding or patent awarding.

Government Creates Human Suffering

Just how bad is the current plague of economic fallacy?

Consider the front page of the New York Times today (July 15, 2009):

SEACHANGE IS SET IN A HEALTH PLAN – House Democratic leaders took a big step toward guaranteeing health insurance for most Americans on Tuesday as they unveiled a bill that detailed how they would expand coverage, slow the growth of Medicare, raise taxes on high-income people and penalize employers who do not provide health benefits to their workers.

A BLEAKER PATH FOR WORKERS TO SLOG – In California and a handful of other states, one out of every five people who would like to be working full time is not now doing so. It is a startling sign of the pain that the Great Recession is inflicting, and it is largely missed by the official, oft-repeated statistics on unemployment.

It's sometimes said that economics is a difficult subject because it requires high-level, abstract thinking, and tracing of cause and effect through several logical steps. And yet, really, how hard can it be to see the contradiction in the above?

Here is the problem. Mandating benefits to employees imposes costs on employment. The would-be worker bears the cost. It makes the worker more expensive to hire. The employer has to pay not only a salary but also a benefit. If you make it more expensive to hire people, fewer people will be hired.

It is no different from eggs at the supermarket. If they are $2 each, you will purchase fewer of them – you will economize. This is nothing but the law of demand: consumers will demand less of a good at a higher price than a lower price. A salary plus benefits amounts to a price that the employer must pay to purchase the work of a laborer. At a higher price, less work will be purchased by the employer

That means that requiring employers to provide health benefits to employees and potential employees will make the job situation today worse not better. It will intensify the current problem that people want to work more but are having a hard time getting employers to hire them.

The answer is the same in every recessionary environment. The price of labor must fall in order for the surplus of workers to be absorbed into the market. Raising the cost of hiring only further entrenches the problem and creates new forms of unemployment.

There is no real reason to prove these assertions empirically since they flow from the logic of economics. Nonetheless, Richard Vedder and Lowell Gallaway spent years accumulating evidence of the link between full employment and lower labor costs, on the one hand, and higher labor costs and unemployment on the other. What they found in their book Out of Work was that the entire problem (or nearly the entire problem) of unemployment can be explained through the issue of the costs of hiring and employing. In other words, there is no mystery here. Unemployment can be created or solved by the application of policies and laws.

In a free market, however, there is no unemployment that persists that isn't chosen by the workers themselves. That's because the price of labor is continually fluctuating based on supply and demand. Everyone who wants to work can work, simply because we live in a world in which there is always work to do. Only artificial interventions can generate the unemployment problem we have today.

Even so, and for reasons that are unknown and can only mystify the learned person, the Congress and the Obama administration keep trying to pretend as if reality doesn't exist. Here they are imagining that they can just order businesses to give everyone health care and then suddenly health care for all comes into being.

As with all programs, we have to ask: what is the cost? I don't mean what the cost adds up to in terms of government spending. I mean: what is the social cost of overpricing labor relative to what the market would bear? In this case, there is no way to know in advance, but we can know that fewer people will be hired than otherwise.

And then what happens? Business goes to government hoping for a subsidy or for fully socialized medicine as a way of sloughing off the costs on the whole of society instead of bearing them directly.

Sadly, there is no way that free health care can be granted to all living things with the stroke of a pen. Broadening availability will require that the entire sector be turned over to the private sector, so that it can be controlled through the price system like everything else.

As it is, the imposition of new penalties on business will make them less, not more, likely to hire people, which will thereby intensify the labor problem. It is like trying to cure a drug overdose with the injection of poison. New mandates on business are exactly what we do not need.

In other words, the whole idea is just plain dumb, not to mention incredibly ill-timed. The worst possible time to be imposing new mandates on business of any sort is during a downturn. Make the mandates labor specific and you have a recipe for causing the unemployment rate to land in the double digits and go up from there, higher and higher until the entire economy shuts down.

Presumably, not even Congress and the President would benefit from this result.

Books by Lew Rockwell

LRO Sees Apollo Landing Sites

NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, or LRO, has returned its first imagery of the Apollo moon landing sites. The pictures show the Apollo missions' lunar module descent stages sitting on the moon's surface, as long shadows from a low sun angle make the modules' locations evident.

The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera, or LROC, was able to image five of the six Apollo sites, with the remaining Apollo 12 site expected to be photographed in the coming weeks.

The satellite reached lunar orbit June 23 and captured the Apollo sites between July 11 and 15. Though it had been expected that LRO would be able to resolve the remnants of the Apollo mission, these first images came before the spacecraft reached its final mapping orbit. Future LROC images from these sites will have two to three times greater resolution.

All images credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/Arizona State University

Labeled LROC image of Apollo 11 landing site
Apollo 11 lunar module, Eagle.
Image width: 282 meters (about 925 ft.)

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Labeled LROC image of Apollo 15 landing site
Apollo 15 lunar module, Falcon.
Image width: 384 meters (about 1,260 ft.)

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Labeled LROC image of Apollo 16 landing site
Apollo 16 lunar module, Orion.
Image width: 256 meters (about 840 ft.)

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Labeled LROC image of Apollo 17 landing site
Apollo 17 lunar module, Challenger.
Image width: 359 meters (about 1,178 ft.)

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Labeled LROC image of Apollo 14 landing site
Apollo 14 lunar module, Antares.
Image width: 538 meters (about 1,765 ft.)

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Labeled LROC image of Apollo 14 landing site

"The LROC team anxiously awaited each image," said LROC principal investigator Mark Robinson of Arizona State University. "We were very interested in getting our first peek at the lunar module descent stages just for the thrill -- and to see how well the cameras had come into focus. Indeed, the images are fantastic and so is the focus."

Buzz Aldrin and the Lunar Module
This photograph shows Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin in front of the lunar module. The photo helps provide a scale to the LROC images shown above. Credit:
NASA/Neil Armstrong

Although these pictures provide a reminder of past NASA exploration, LRO's primary focus is on paving the way for the future. By returning detailed lunar data, the mission will help NASA identify safe landing sites for future explorers, locate potential resources, describe the moon's radiation environment and demonstrate new technologies.

"Not only do these images reveal the great accomplishments of Apollo, they also show us that lunar exploration continues," said LRO project scientist Richard Vondrak of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. "They demonstrate how LRO will be used to identify the best destinations for the next journeys to the moon."

The spacecraft's current elliptical orbit resulted in image resolutions that were slightly different for each site but were all around four feet per pixel. Because the deck of the descent stage is about 12 feet in diameter, the Apollo relics themselves fill an area of about nine pixels. However, because the sun was low to the horizon when the images were made, even subtle variations in topography create long shadows. Standing slightly more than ten feet above the surface, each Apollo descent stage creates a distinct shadow that fills roughly 20 pixels.

The image of the Apollo 14 landing site had a particularly desirable lighting condition that allowed visibility of additional details. The Apollo Lunar Surface Experiment Package, a set of scientific instruments placed by the astronauts at the landing site, is discernable, as are the faint trails between the module and instrument package left by the astronauts' footprints.

Launched on June 18, LRO carries seven scientific instruments, all of which are currently undergoing calibration and testing prior to the spacecraft reaching its primary mission orbit. The LROC instrument comprises three cameras -- two high-resolution Narrow Angle Cameras and one lower resolution Wide Angle Camera. LRO will be directed into its primary mission orbit in August, a nearly-circular orbit about 31 miles above the lunar surface.

Goddard built and manages LRO, a NASA mission with international participation from the Institute for Space Research in Moscow. Russia provided the neutron detector aboard the spacecraft.

Supplemental Material

graphic depicting locations of Apollo landings
This graphic shows the approximate locations of the Apollo moon landing sites.
Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center Scientific Visualization Studio

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Exploring the Moon, Discovering Earth

July 17, 2009: Forty years ago, Apollo astronauts set out on a daring adventure to explore the Moon. They ended up discovering their own planet.

How do you discover Earth … by leaving it? It all started with a single photograph:

Apollo 8 was the first crewed Saturn V launch and the first time humans were placed in lunar orbit. Mission plans called for the astronauts to photograph possible landing sites for future missions. Before this, only robotic probes had taken images of the Moon's far side.

As the astronauts in their spacecraft emerged from behind the Moon, they were surprised and enchanted by an amazing view of Earth rising over the lunar horizon. Bill Anders quickly snapped a picture of the spectacular Earthrise – it was not in the mission script.

His timing could not have been better. It was Christmas Eve, 1968, the close of one of the most turbulent, fractured years in U.S. and world history. The picture offered a much needed new perspective on "home."

For the first time in history, humankind looked at Earth and saw not a jigsaw puzzle of states and countries on an uninspiring flat map – but rather a whole planet uninterrupted by boundaries, a fragile sphere of dazzling beauty floating alone in a dangerous void. There was a home worthy of careful stewardship.

The late nature photographer Galen Rowell described this photo as "the most influential environmental photograph ever taken."

"It changed humanity's entire orientation," says Kristen Erickson of NASA headquarters in Washington, DC. "And similar photos taken by the Apollo 11 through 17 crews reinforced the impact of this first view."

Apollo photos of the big blue marble energized grass-roots green movements and led directly to the modern fleet of Earth observing satellites NASA uses to monitor and predict weather, examine ozone holes, investigate climate change, and much more.1 Like Anders' camera, these satellites have transformed the way we view the planet we call Earth.

Right: 40 years after Apollo, a fleet of satellites encircle Earth, monitoring and studying our home planet. Image credit: NASA

We gained all this by shooting for the Moon.

The Apollo astronauts were, by their own admissions, profoundly moved and changed when they gazed upon Earth from their unique position in space.

"It changed my life,"2 said Rusty Schweickart, Apollo 9 astronaut.

"…You only see the boundaries of nature from there…not those that are manmade," said Eugene Cernan of Apollos 10 and 17. "It is one of the deepest, most emotional experiences I have ever had."3

Apollo 17 was the last crewed Moon mission. Since then, no humans have been to the place where they can float and gaze at the whole Earth. The crew of the International Space Station has a beautiful view of Earth, but not the whole Earth. Because the space station is in low-Earth orbit, only a portion of the planet can be seen at any one time. For the big picture view, the Moon can't be beat.

Soon, we'll be back. Right now, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is circling the Moon gathering critical data NASA scientists need to plan for renewed human exploration. NASA is once again charting a daring mission to the Moon -- this time to stay.

Above: "The Big Blue Marble." This is one of the last Apollo photos of the whole Earth, taken by the crew of Apollo 17. [more]

There are many compelling reasons to return. Former space shuttle astronaut Joseph Allen thinks our own planet is one of them:

"With all the arguments, pro and con, for going to the Moon, no one suggested that we should do it to look at the Earth. But that may in fact be the most important reason."4

In his recent confirmation hearing to take NASA's helm as administrator, former astronaut Charles F. Bolden said, "I dream of a day when any American can launch into space and see the magnificence and grandeur of our home planet."

Until then, a few astronauts will take the ride for all of us, and they'll be carrying cameras a thousand times more advanced than Apollo.

What the space agency shows us will surely expand our vision. It always has.

Michigan unemployment tops 15%

Government says jobless rate is the highest for a state since 1984. Rate tops 10% in 15 states and District of Columbia.

NEW YORK ( -- Michigan became the first state in 25 years to suffer an unemployment rate exceeding 15%, according to a report released Friday by the Labor Department.

The state's unemployment rate rose to 15.2% in June. It was the highest of any state since March 1984, when West Virginia's unemployment rate exceeded 15%.

Michigan, which has been battered by the collapse of the auto industry and the housing crisis, has had the highest unemployment rate in the nation for 12 months in a row.

Rhode Island had the second highest unemployment rate at 12.4%, followed by Oregon at 12.2%.

A total of 15 states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rates of at least 10%.

Friday's report from the U.S. Labor Department also showed that six states recorded record-high unemployment rates in June.

Over the month, jobless rates increased in 38 states and the District of Columbia. Michigan's 1.1 percentage point increase from May to June was the highest in the nation, followed by Wyoming's 0.9 point increase.

On an annual basis, jobless rates where higher in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Michigan also recorded the highest yearly increase at 7.1 percentage points. Oregon came in second with a year-over-year increase of 6.3 percentage points in its unemployment rate.

The national unemployment rate rose for the ninth straight month in June, climbing to 9.5% from 9.4%, and hitting another 26-year high. Nearly 3.4 million jobs have been lost during the first half of 2009, more than the 3.1 million lost in all of 2008.

Unemployment rates decreased in five states, and seven states had no rate change.

North Dakota's 4.2% jobless rate was the lowest in the nation, followed by Nebraska at 5%.

The Midwest and West both had jobless rates of 10.2%. The jobless rate in the Northeast rose to 8.6% from 8.3% but was the lowest of any U.S. region. In the South, unemployment rose to 9.2%.

Non-farm payroll employment fell in 39 states and the District of Columbia in June. California had the largest month-over-month decrease in jobs.

Payrolls increased in 10 states and were unchanged in one state. The largest over-the-month increase occurred in North Carolina.

By Ben Rooney, staff writer

Israel Prevents Medical Mission to Gaza

Check this link ..........

Joe Biden: ‘We Have to Go Spend Money to Keep From Going Bankrupt’

CNS) – Vice President Joe Biden told people attending an AARP town hall meeting that unless the Democrat-supported health care plan becomes law the nation will go bankrupt and that the only way to avoid that fate is for the government to spend more money.

“And folks look, AARP knows and the people with me here today know, the president knows, and I know, that the status quo is simply not acceptable,” Biden said at the event on Thursday in Alexandria, Va. “It’s totally unacceptable. And it’s completely unsustainable. Even if we wanted to keep it the way we have it now. It can’t do it financially.”

“We’re going to go bankrupt as a nation,” Biden said.

“Now, people when I say that look at me and say, ‘What are you talking about, Joe? You’re telling me we have to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt?’” Biden said. “The answer is yes, that’s what I’m telling you.” (Listen to Audio)

The event, sponsored by the AARP – which supports the Obama administration’s plan – was attended by mostly AARP members who were bussed in for the meeting.

Biden told the group that the Obama health plan will not eliminate people’s ability to choose their health care insurance and that people who cannot afford insurance will be covered by the plan.

“They’ll be a deal in there so there’s competition, so what you’ll have in there is you’ll have the ability to go in there and say, ‘Now look, this is the policy I want. This is the one,” Biden said.

“And those people who can’t afford to get in there, up to a certain income, we’re going to subsidize them, you get in there and we’ll help you pay for it,” Biden said.

After opening remarks by Biden and AARP CEO A. Barry Rand, the audience asked questions, which were fielded by Biden, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Nancy Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform.

Source: CNS News

by sakerfa


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Ron Paul 7/16/09 “Federal Reserve Inflation Wipes Out The Middle Class, Protects The Wealthy”

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Nouriel Roubini's Misquoted

Nouriel Roubini's Global EconoMonitor

Roubini Statement on the U.S. Economic Outlook

“It has been widely reported today that I have stated that the recession will be over 'this year' and that I have 'improved' my economic outlook. Despite those reports - however – my views expressed today are no different than the views I have expressed previously. If anything my views were taken out of context.

“I have said on numerous occasions that the recession would last roughly 24 months. Therefore, we are 19 months into that recession. If, as I predicted, the recession is over by the end of the year, it will have lasted 24 months with a recovery only beginning in 2010. Simply put I am not forecasting economic growth before year’s end.

“Indeed, last year I argued that this will be a long and deep and protracted U-shaped recession that would last 24 months. Meanwhile, the consensus argued that this would be a short and shallow V-shaped eight-month long recession (like those in 1990-91 and 2001). That debate is over today as we are in the 19th month of a severe recession; so the V is out the window and we are in a deep U-shaped recession. If that recession were to be over by year end – as I have consistently predicted – it would have lasted 24 months and thus been three times longer than the previous two and five times deeper – in terms of cumulative GDP contraction – than the previous two. So, there is nothing new in my remarks today about the recession being over at the end of this year.

“I have also consistently argued – including in my remarks today - that while the consensus is that the U.S. economy will go back close to potential growth by next year, I see instead a shallow, below-par and below-trend recovery where growth will average about 1% in the next couple of years when potential is probably closer to 2.75%.

“I have also consistently argued that there is a risk of a double-dip W-shaped recession toward the end of 2010, as a tough policy dilemma will emerge next year. On one side, early exit from monetary and fiscal easing would tip the economy into a new recession as the recovery is anemic and deflationary pressures are dominant. On the other side, maintaining large budget deficits and continued monetization of such deficits would eventually increase long-term interest rates (because of concerns about medium-term fiscal sustainability and because of an increase in expected inflation), thus leading to a crowding out of private demand.

“While the recession will be over by the end of the year the recovery will be weak given the debt overhang in the household sector, the financial system and the corporate sector. Now there is also a massive re-leveraging of the public sector with unsustainable fiscal deficits and public debt accumulation.

“Also, as I fleshed out in detail in recent remarks the labor market is still very weak. I predict a peak unemployment rate of close to 11% in 2010. Such a large unemployment rate will have negative effects on labor income and consumption growth; will postpone the bottoming out of the housing sector; will lead to larger defaults and losses on bank loans (residential and commercial mortgages, credit cards, auto loans, leveraged loans); will increase the size of the budget deficit (even before any additional stimulus is implemented); and will increase protectionist pressures.

“So, yes there is light at the end of the tunnel for the U.S. and the global economy. But as I have consistently argued, the recession will continue through the end of the year, and the recovery will be weak and at risk of a double-dip, as the challenge of getting right the timing and size of the exit strategy for monetary and fiscal policy easing will be daunting.

“RGE Monitor will soon release our updated U.S. and Global Economic Outlook. A preview of the U.S. Outlook is available on our website:

Mounting Job Losses Will Hurt Consumption, Housing, Banks’ Balance Sheets, Public Finances and Lead to Protectionist Pressures

Nouriel Roubini | Jul 14, 2009

Recent data suggest that job market conditions are not improving in the United States and other advanced economies. In the U.S., the unemployment rate, currently at 9.5%, is poised to rise above 10% by the fall. It should peak at 11% some time in 2010 and remain well above 10% for a long time. The unemployment rate will peak above 10% in most other advanced economies (especially Europe and Japan), too, where social safety nets are broader and thus leading to less short term job losses and pain, but where the effects of the crisis on growth have been even more severe than the U.S.

But these raw figures on job losses, bad as they are, actually understate the weakness in world labor markets. If you include partially employed workers and discouraged workers who left the U.S. labor force, for example, the unemployment rate is already 16.5%; even temporary employment is sharply down. Monetary and fiscal stimulus in most countries has done little to slow down the rate of job losses as economies suffer from problems of insolvency, not just illiquidity, and as the fiscal stimulus programs are too small and not labor intensive enough. As a result, total labor income – the product of jobs times hours worked times average hourly wages – has fallen dramatically.

Moreover, many employers, seeking to “share the pain” of the recession and slow down the rate of layoffs, are now asking workers to accept cuts in both hours and hourly wages. Thus, the total effect of the recession on labor income of jobs, hours and wage reductions is much larger.

Other indicators are suggesting a protracted period of job losses and a persistently high unemployment rate even after the recession is over. The average duration of unemployment is not at an all time high in the U.S. Many manufacturing sectors are on a secular decline (autos, etc.) and employers are shedding jobs on a permanent basis; employment in the previously bubbly sectors (housing and related housing/real estate services, banking and financial services) is falling sharply and will not recover for a long time. The process of offshore outsourcing of both blue collar and white collar jobs is still in full swing. A lot of the job losses in the U.S. and in other advanced economies are structural rather than cyclical; many jobs will never come back.

A sharp contraction in jobs and labor income has many negative consequences on both the economy and financial markets. There are at least five important ones that we will discuss next:

Read more

Roubini on a Bloomberg Panel: Recession will Last Another Six Months and the Recovery will be Shallow

7/9/09 - Bloomberg - Roubini Says U.S. Recession Will Last Six More Months (Click here for video)


July 9 (Bloomberg) -- Nouriel Roubini, a professor at New York University's Stern School of Business, and Robert Shiller, chief economist at MacroMarkets LLC and an economics professor at Yale University, talk with Bloomberg's Tom Keene and Ken Prewitt about the outlook for the U.S. economy.

The economy contracted by 5.5 percent in the first quarter and 6.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008, the most since 1958, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. (Source: Bloomberg)

00:00 Outlook for the U.S. economy, recession

07:07 Reasons for current economic condition

11:50 Unemployment rate; fiscal consolidation

18:29 Case-Shiller Index; green shoots in housing

30:05 Second stimulus package; consumer spending

34:43 Roubini, Shiller respond to questions.

Running time 53:52


Check out the following reports produced from the panel discussion:

Roubini Sees Six More Months of Recession, ‘Shallow’ Recovery

Lost ‘Animal Spirits’ Worsen Economy, Roubini Says (Update1)

RGE Monitor – U.S. Economic Outlook: Q2 2009 Update

Christian Menegatti | Jul 8, 2009

Greetings from RGE Monitor!

The first half of 2009 has ended and we at RGE Monitor are in the process of updating our quarterly Global Economic Outlook. Below you will find a preview of our views on the short-to-medium term prospects for the U.S. economy. The full version of the RGE U.S. economic outlook (available for RGE Premium subscribers) will include analysis on:

  • U.S. Consumer Comeback?
  • Is the U.S. Housing Sector Stabilizing?
  • U.S. Commercial Real Estate the Next Shoe to Drop?
  • U.S. Industrial Production and Investment in a Severe Downturn
  • U.S. Exports Under Pressure
  • U.S. Labor Market Pain Continues
  • Fiscal Stimulus Provides Inadequate Stimulus
  • Ballooning U.S. Fiscal Deficit Raises Concerns
  • Fed Too Soon to Exit Easing Mode, but Time to Talk About It
  • Inflation Pressures Not in Sight Quite Yet
  • U.S. Treasuries
  • U.S. Dollar
  • Structural Weaknesses Will Constrain the U.S. Economic Recovery

The RGE Monitor Global Economic Outlook presents analysis on over 70 countries and several global crucial issues. Specifically, in this Q2 update, our analysts cover trade and protectionism, risks of rising fiscal deficits around the world, global imbalances and climate change, among other issues. The RGE Monitor Global Economic Outlook will be available soon to RGE Premium subscribers.

Now back to our U.S. preview.

Read more

New Monthly Roubini Column for Project Syndicate

Nouriel Roubini | Jul 8, 2009

For the last year, Bob Shiller and I have been alternating each month in writing a column for Project Syndicate (a syndication service that published such columns in hundreds of newspapers around the world). I am now contributing to this column – entitled “After the Storm” - on a monthly basis. My latest column was written in about a month ago in mid-June when asset markets – equities, credit and commodities – were still bubbly and rallying as they had been since March 9th.

I pointed out in that column that markets had moved up too fast too soon relative to market fundamentals and that a significant correction of this bear market rally was likely to occur soon as the alleged green shoots would likely turn into yellow weeds. Since then U.S. and global equity markets – including in emerging market economies – have started to head south; oil and other commodity prices have started to fall; credit spreads have started to widen again; and emerging markets equity markets have corrected more than those of advanced economies. Indeed the excessive optimism about spring green shoots have shown them to be mostly summer yellow weeds that may actually turn into brown manure by late 2010 after a minor economic recovery in the first half of 2010. Indeed, the June US employment report last week has brought back a reality check after the misplaced euphoria of the second quarter.

For those of you who missed this column a month ago here it is in full text:

Financial Gain, Economic Pain

June 15th, 2001 NEW YORK – In the past three months, global asset prices have rebounded sharply: stock prices have increased by more than 30% in advanced economies, and by much more in most emerging markets. Prices of commodities – oil, energy, and minerals – have soared; corporate credit spreads (the difference between the yield of corporate and government bonds) have narrowed dramatically, as government-bond yields have increased sharply; volatility (the “fear gauge”) has fallen; and the dollar has weakened, as demand for safe dollar assets has abated.

But is the recovery of asset prices driven by economic fundamentals? Is it sustainable? Is the recovery in stock prices another bear-market rally or the beginning of a bullish trend?

While economic data suggests that improvement in fundamentals has occurred - the risk of a near depression has been reduced; the prospects of the global recession bottoming out by year end are increasing; and risk sentiment is improving - it is equally clear that other, less sustainable factors are also playing a role. Moreover, the sharp rise in some asset prices threatens the recovery of a global economy that has not yet hit bottom. Indeed, many risks of a downward market correction remain.

First, confidence and risk aversion are fickle, and bouts of renewed volatility may occur if macroeconomic and financial data were to surprise on the downside – as they may if a near-term and robust global recovery (which many people expect) does not materialize.

Second, extremely loose monetary policies (zero interest rates, quantitative easing, new credit facilities, emissions of government bonds, and purchases of illiquid and risky private assets), together with the huge sums spent to stabilize the financial system, may be causing a new liquidity-driven asset bubble in financial and commodity markets. For example, Chinese state-owned enterprises that gained access to huge amounts of easy money and credit are buying equities and stockpiling commodities well beyond their productive needs.

The risk of a correction in the face of disappointing macroeconomic fundamentals is clear. Indeed, recent data from the United States and other advanced economies suggest that the recession may last through the end of the year. Worse, the recovery is likely to be anemic and sub-par – well below potential for a couple of years, if not longer – as the burden of debts and leverage of the private sector combine with rising public sector debts to limit the ability of households, financial firms, and corporations to lend, borrow, spend, consume, and invest.

This more challenging scenario of anemic recovery undermines hopes for a V-shaped recovery, as low growth and deflationary pressures constrain earnings and profit margins, and as unemployment rates above 10% in most advanced economies cause financial shocks to re-emerge, owing to mounting losses for banks’ and financial institutions’ portfolios of loans and toxic assets. At the same time, financial crises in a number of emerging markets could prove contagious, placing additional stress on global financial markets.

The increase in some asset prices may, moreover, lead to a W-shaped double-dip recession. In particular, thanks to massive liquidity, energy prices are now rising too high too soon. The role that high oil prices played in the summer of 2008 in tipping the global economy into recession should not be underestimated. Oil above $140 a barrel was the last straw – coming on top of the housing busts and financial shocks – for the global economy, as it represented a massive supply shock for the US, Europe, Japan, China and other net importers of oil.

Meanwhile, rising fiscal deficits in most economies are now pushing up the yields of long-term government bonds. Some of the rise in long rates is a necessary correction, as investors are now pricing a global recovery. But some of this increase is driven by more worrisome factors: the effects of large budget deficits and debt on sovereign risk, and thus on real interest rates; and concerns that the incentive to monetize these large deficits will lead to high inflation after the global economy recovers in 2010-11 and deflationary forces abate. The crowding out of private demand, owing to higher government-bond yields – and the ensuing increase in mortgage rates and other private yields – could, in turn, endanger the recovery.

As a result, one cannot rule out that by late 2010 or 2011, a perfect storm of oil above $100 a barrel, rising government-bond yields, and tax increases (as governments seek to avoid debt-refinancing risks) may lead to a renewed growth slowdown, if not an outright double-dip recession.

The recent recovery of asset prices from their March lows is in part justified by fundamentals, as the risks of global financial meltdown and depression have fallen and confidence has improved. But much of the rise is not justified, as it is driven by excessively optimistic expectations of a rapid recovery of growth towards its potential level, and by a liquidity bubble that is raising oil prices and equities too fast too soon. A negative oil shock, together with rising government-bond yields – could clip the recovery’s wings and lead to a significant further downturn in asset prices and in the real economy.

U.S. Job Report Suggests that Green Shoots are Mostly Yellow Weeds

Nouriel Roubini | Jul 2, 2009

The June employment report suggests that the alleged ‘green shoots’ are mostly yellow weeds that may eventually turn into brown manure. The employment report shows that conditions in the labor market continue to be extremely weak, with job losses in June of over 460,000. With the current rate of job losses, it is very clear that the unemployment rate could reach 10 percent by later this summer, around August or September, and will be closer to 10.5 percent if not 11 percent by year-end. I expect the unemployment rate is going to peak at around 11 percent at some point in 2010, well above historical standards for even severe recessions.

It’s clear that even if the recession were to be over anytime soon – and it’s not going to be over before the end of the year – job losses are going to continue for at least another year and a half. Historically, during the last two recessions, job losses continued for at least a year and a half after the recession was over. During the 2001 recession, the recession was over in November 2001, and job losses continued through August 2003 for a cumulative loss of jobs of over 5 million; this time we are already seeing more than 6 million job losses and the recession is not over.

The details of the unemployment report are even worse than the headline. Not only are there large job losses right now, but as a way of sharing the pain, firms are inducing workers to reduce hours and hourly wages. Therefore, when we’re looking at the effect of the labor market on labor income, we should consider that the total value of labor income is the product of jobs, hours, and average hourly wages – and that all three elements are falling right now. So the effect on labor income is much more significant than job losses alone.

The details also suggest that other aspects of the labor markets are worsening. If you include discouraged workers and partially-employed workers, the unemployment rate is already above 16 percent. If you consider also that temporary jobs are falling now quite sharply, labor market conditions are becoming worse. And the average duration of unemployment now is at an all-time high. So people not only are losing jobs, but they’re finding it harder to find new jobs. So every element of the labor market is worsening.

The unemployment rate rose only marginally from 9.4 percent to 9.5 percent, but that’s because so many people are discouraged that they exited the labor force voluntarily, and therefore are not counted in the official unemployment rate.

The other element of the report that must be considered is that, for the summer, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is still adding between 150,000 and 200,000 jobs based on the birth/death model. We know the distortions of the birth/death model – that in a recession jobs created within firms are much smaller than those created by firms that are dying. So that’s distorting downward the number of job losses. Based on the initial claims for unemployment benefits, it’s more likely that the job losses are closer to 600,000 per month rather than the figures officially reported.

These job losses are going to have a significant effect on consumer confidence and consumption in the months ahead. We’ve also seen extreme weakness in consumption. There was a boost in retail sales and real personal consumption-spending in January and February, sparked by sales following the holiday season, but the numbers from April, May, and now June are extremely weak in real terms. In April and May you saw a significant increase in real personal income only because of tax rebates and unemployment benefits. In April, there was a sharp fall in real personal spending, and in May the increase was only marginal in real terms.

This suggests that the most of the tax rebates are being saved rather than consumed. The same thing happened last year. Last year, with a $100 billion tax rebate, only thirty cents on the dollar were spent while seventy cents on the dollar were saved. Last year, people expected the tax rebate to stimulate consumption through September. Instead, there was an increase in April, May, and June, with the increase fizzling out by July.

This year it’s even worse. We have another $100 billion in tax rebates in the pipeline. But the numbers suggest that in April, real consumption fell. And in May it was practically flat. So this year households are even more worried than they were last year about jobs, income, credit cards and mortgages. Most likely only around 20 cents on the dollar – rather than 30 cents last year – of that increase of income is going to be spent. In any case, that increase in income is just temporary and is going to fizzle out by the summer. So you can expect a significant further reduction in consumption in the fall after the effects of the tax rebates fade.

The other important aspect of the labor market is that if the unemployment rate is going to peak around 11 percent next year, the expected losses for banks on their loans and securities are going to be much higher than the ones estimated in the recent stress tests. You plug an unemployment rate of 11 percent in any model of loan losses and recovery rates and you get very ugly losses for subprime, near-prime, prime, home equity loan lines, credit cards, auto loans, student loans, leverage loans, and commercial loans – much bigger numbers than what the stress tests projected.

In the stress tests, the average unemployment rate next year was assumed to be 10.3 percent in the most adverse scenario. We’ll be already at 10.3 percent by the fall or the winter of this year, and certainly well above that and close to 11% at some point next year.

So these very weak conditions in the labor market suggest problems for the U.S. consumer, but also significant increasing problems for the banking system as these sharp increases in job losses lead to further delinquencies on loans and securities and lower than expected recovery rates.

The latest figures – published this week - on mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures suggest a spike not only in subprime and near-prime delinquencies, but now also on prime mortgages. So the problems of the economy are significantly affecting the banking system. Even if for a couple of other quarters banks are going to use the new Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) rules and under-provisioning for loan losses to report better-than-expected results, by Q4, with unemployment rates above 10 percent, that short-term accounting fudging will have a significant impact on reported earnings. And this will show the underlying weakness in the economy. So banks may fudge it for a couple of other quarters, but eventually the effects of very sharp unemployment rates and still sharply falling home prices are going to drag down earnings and have a sharp effect on losses and capital needs of the banks and of the entire financial system.

Essentially, the results today suggested that there are not as many green shoots. These green shoots, as we’ve argued, are mostly yellow weeds that may even turn into brown manure if a double dip W-shaped recession occurs in 2010-2011. And it’s not just the employment situation. Real consumption and retail sales remain weak. Industrial production remains weak. The housing market, in terms of price adjustment, remains weak, even if the quantities - demand and supply - may be closer to bottoming out. Indeed, the inventory of unsold new homes is so large that you could stop producing new homes for almost a year to get rid of that inventory. Moreover, about 50% of existing home sales are distressed sales (short sales and foreclosed homes).

The labor market conditions may have a significant effect on how long it takes for the housing market to bottom out. It’s already estimated that by the end of this year, there will be about 8.4 million people who have a mortgage who have lost jobs, and therefore have essentially little income. Therefore, the number of people who will have difficulties servicing their mortgages is going to rise very sharply.

Home prices have already fallen from their peak by about 30 percent. Based on our analysis, they are going to fall by at least 40 percent from their peak, and more likely 45 percent, before they bottom out. They are still falling at an annualized rate of over 18 percent. That fall of at least 40-45% percent of home prices from their peak is going to imply that about half of all households that have a mortgage – about 25 million of the 51 million that have mortgages – are going to be underwater with negative equity in their homes, and therefore will have a significant incentive to just walk away from their homes.

The job market report is essentially the tip of the iceberg. It’s a significant signal of the weaknesses in the economy. It affects consumer confidence. It affects labor income. It affects consumption. It affects the willingness of firms to start increasing production. It has significant consequences of the housing market. And it has significant consequences, of course, on the banking system.

Overall, it’s an extremely weak report and suggests that weakness in the labor markets is going to continue, and that the recession is more likely to continue through the end of the year and the beginning of next year. It also suggests that recovery will be anemic, subpar, below trend. We are still estimating that U.S. growth next year is going to be 1 percent above the 2009 level, well below a potential growth rate of 3 percent. This is because there is little deleveraging of households, corporate firms and financial institutions while there is a massive re-leveraging of the public sector with sharply rising deficits and debts as many of the private losses have been socialized.

There are also signs that there may be forces leading to a double-dip recession, sometime toward the second half of next year or towards 2011. If oil prices rise too much, too fast, too soon, that’s going to have a negative effect on trade and real disposable income in oil-importing countries (US, Europe, Japan, China, etc.). Also concerns about unsustainable budget deficits are high and are going to remain high, with growth anemic and unemployment rising. These deficits are already pushing long-term interest rates higher as investors worry about medium- to long-term stability. If these budget deficits are going to continue to be monetized, eventually, toward the end of next year, you are going to have a sharp increase in expected inflation - after three years of deflationary pressures - that’s going to push interest rates even higher.

For the time being, of course, there are massive deflationary pressures in the economy: the slack in the goods markets, with demand falling relative to supply-and-excess capacity. The rising slack in labor markets, which are controlling wages and labor costs and pushing them down, implies that deflationary pressures are going to be dominant this year and next year.

But eventually, large budget deficits and their monetization are going to lead – towards the end of next year and in 2011 – to an increase in expected inflation that may lead to a further increase in ten-year treasuries and other long-term government bond yields, and thus mortgage and private-market rates. Together with higher oil prices driven up in part by this wall of liquidity rather than fundamentals alone, this could be a double whammy that could push the economy into a double-dip or W-shaped recession by late 2010 or 2011. So the outlook for the US and global economy remains extremely weak ahead. The recent rally in global equities, commodities and credit may soon fizzle out as an onslaught of worse- than-expected macro, earnings and financial news take a toll on this rally, which has gotten way ahead of improvement in actual macro data.

The Chinese Proposal for a New Global Super Currency

Nouriel Roubini | Jun 26, 2009

As I discussed a few weeks ago in a New York Times op-ed the Chinese are flexing their muscles on the question of the global reserve currency system dominated by the dollar.

With the revision of the SDR basket (so far including only dollar, euro, yen and pound) coming to the table next year it is clear that the Chinese will push for including the renminbi in the new SDR basket. And senior Brazilian policy sources suggest in private that, if the RMB is included in the SDR, so should the Brazilian Real as there is already a much deeper bond market for Real debt and as - unlike China - Brazil has a more liberalized capital account. And the Russians are now openly pushing for commodity currencies - the Canadian and Australian dollar but also the Ruble - to be included in the SDR basket. And the BRICs are on record pushing for the IMF to issue SDR denominated debt.

So the process that will lead - in the medium-long term - to a challenge of the US dollar as the major global reserve currency has started. The US creditors - the BRICs, the Gulf states and others - are becoming increasingly alarmed that the US will deal with its unsustainable fiscal path via inflation and debasement of the value of the dollar via depreciation. So they will not sit idly waiting for this to happen: they are already diversifying into gold, into resources (as China purchases mines and energy, mineral and commodity resources all over the world) and into shorter term maturity US Treasuries that have less market risk than longer term Treasuries. With two-thirds of US Treasuries, being held by non-residents and the average maturity of such government debt down to 4.5 years, the risk of a refinancing crisis and disorderly fall in the dollar will increase over time unless the US presents a credible plan for medium term fiscal consolidation.

Increasingly it is clear that unless such reduction in fiscal deficits occurs the incentive to continue monetizing them will increase. In the short run such massive monetization has not been inflationary as money velocity has collapsed and as the slack in goods and labor markets is still rapidly rising. But over time - late 2010 and 2011 - deflationary pressures will lead to an increase in expected inflation and then in actual inflation if monetization of persistently large fiscal deficits continues. Indeed some in the US argue that wiping out the real value of public debt and dealing with the private sector debt deflation through a bout of double digit inflation may be the most desirable way to reduce the overhang of public and private debt. While such arguments have many flaws as inflation will have serious collateral damage one cannot rule out that the US will use inflation and depreciation as a way out of its public and private debts. Greenspan's concerns about the long term inflationary effects of large US budget deficits - expressed today in a FT op-ed - go along the same lines. Thus, our creditors' nervousness about the eventual debasement of the US dollar has some increasing validity.

And here again is the full text of my recent NYT op-ed in case you missed it the first time:

From The New York Times:


By Nouriel Roubini

May 13, 2009

THE 19th century was dominated by the British Empire, the 20th century by the United States. We may now be entering the Asian century, dominated by a rising China and its currency. While the dollar status as the major reserve currency will not vanish overnight, we can no longer take it for granted. Sooner than we think, the dollar may be challenged by other currencies, most likely the Chinese renminbi. This would have serious costs for America, as our ability to finance our budget and trade deficits cheaply would disappear.

Traditionally, empires that hold the global reserve currency are also net foreign creditors and net lenders. The British Empire declined and the pound lost its status as the main global reserve currency when Britain became a net debtor and a net borrower in World War II. Today, the United States is in a similar position. It is running huge budget and trade deficits, and is relying on the kindness of restless foreign creditors who are starting to feel uneasy about accumulating even more dollar assets. The resulting downfall of the dollar may be only a matter of time.

But what could replace it? The British pound, the Japanese yen and the Swiss franc remain minor reserve currencies, as those countries are not major powers. Gold is still a barbaric relic whose value rises only when inflation is high. The euro is hobbled by concerns about the long-term viability of the European Monetary Union. That leaves the renminbi.

China is a creditor country with large current account surpluses, a small budget deficit, much lower public debt as a share of G.D.P. than the United States, and solid growth. And it is already taking steps toward challenging the supremacy of the dollar. Beijing has called for a new international reserve currency in the form of the International Monetary Fund special drawing rights (a basket of dollars, euros, pounds and yen). China will soon want to see its own currency included in the basket, as well as the renminbi used as a means of payment in bilateral trade.

At the moment, though, the renminbi is far from ready to achieve reserve currency status. China would first have to ease restrictions on money entering and leaving the country, make its currency fully convertible for such transactions, continue its domestic financial reforms and make its bond markets more liquid. It would take a long time for the renminbi to become a reserve currency, but it could happen. China has already flexed its muscle by setting up currency swaps with several countries (including Argentina, Belarus and Indonesia) and by letting institutions in Hong Kong issue bonds denominated in renminbi, a first step toward creating a deep domestic and international market for its currency.

If China and other countries were to diversify their reserve holdings away from the dollar, and they eventually will, the United States would suffer. We have reaped significant financial benefits from having the dollar as the reserve currency. In particular, the strong market for the dollar allows Americans to borrow at better rates. We have thus been able to finance larger deficits for longer and at lower interest rates, as foreign demand has kept Treasury yields low. We have been able to issue debt in our own currency rather than a foreign one, thus shifting the losses of a fall in the value of the dollar to our creditors. Having commodities priced in dollars has also meant that a fall in the dollar value doesn't lead to a rise in the price of imports.

Now, imagine a world in which China could borrow and lend internationally in its own currency. The renminbi, rather than the dollar, could eventually become a means of payment in trade and a unit of account in pricing imports and exports, as well as a store of value for wealth by international investors. Americans would pay the price. We would have to shell out more for imported goods, and interest rates on both private and public debt would rise. The higher private cost of borrowing could lead to weaker consumption and investment, and slower growth.

This decline of the dollar might take more than a decade, but it could happen even sooner if we do not get our financial house in order. The United States must rein in spending and borrowing, and pursue growth that is not based on asset and credit bubbles. For the last two decades America has been spending more than its income, increasing its foreign liabilities and amassing debts that have become unsustainable. A system where the dollar was the major global currency allowed us to prolong reckless borrowing.

Now that the dollar position is no longer so secure, we need to shift our priorities. This will entail investing in our crumbling infrastructure, alternative and renewable resources and productive human capital, rather than in unnecessary housing and toxic financial innovation. This will be the only way to slow down the decline of the dollar, and sustain our influence in global affairs.

Nouriel Roubini is a professor of economics at the New York University Stern School of Business and the chairman of an economic consulting firm.

Dr. Doom Has Some Good News

Nouriel Roubini | Jun 25, 2009

From the Atlantic:

Nouriel Roubini, the New York University economist who accurately forecast the bursting of the housing bubble and the resulting economic contraction, has become famous for his pessimism—he has been the gloomiest of the doomsayers. Which is what makes his current outlook surprising: Roubini believes that the Obama administration’s policy makers—and especially the much-maligned Tim Geithner—have gotten a lot right. Pitfalls may still abound, but he is now projecting an end to the recession, and he sees growth ahead.

by James Fallows


Dr. Doom Has Some Good News

Image: Bruce Gilden/Magnum Photos

On March 28, 2007, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke appeared before the congressional Joint Economic Committee to discuss trends in the U.S. economy. Everyone was concerned about the “substantial correction in the housing market,” he noted in his prepared remarks. Fortunately, “the impact on the broader economy and financial markets of the problems in the subprime market seems likely to be contained.” Better still, “the weakness in housing and in some parts of manufacturing does not appear to have spilled over to any significant extent to other sectors of the economy.” On that day, the Dow Jones industrial average was above 12,000, the S&P 500 was above 1,400, and the U.S. unemployment rate was 4.4 percent.

That assurance looks bad in retrospect, as do many of Bernanke’s claims through the rest of the year: that the real-estate crisis was working itself out and that its problems would likely remain “niche” issues. If experts can be this wrong—within two years, unemployment had nearly doubled, and financial markets had lost roughly half their value—what good is their expertise? And of course it wasn’t just Bernanke, though presumably he had the most authoritative data to draw on. Through the markets’ rise to their peak late in 2007 and for many months into their precipitous fall, the dominant voices from the government, financial journalism, and the business and financial establishment under- rather than overplayed the scope of the current disaster.

With the celebrated exception of Nouriel Roubini, an economist from the Stern School of Business of New York University. At just the time Bernanke was testifying about the “contained” real-estate problem, Roubini was publishing a paper arguing that the depressed housing market was nowhere near its bottom, that its contraction would be the worst in many decades, and that its effects would likely hurt every part of the economy. In September 2006, with markets everywhere still on the rise, he told a seminar at the International Monetary Fund’s headquarters that the U.S. consumer was just about to “burn out,” and that this would mean a U.S. recession followed by a global “hard landing.” An economist who delivered a response dismissed this as “forecasting by analogy.” The IMF’s in-house newsletter covered Roubini’s talk as a curiosity, under the headline “Meet Dr. Doom.”

Roubini is thus enjoying his moment as the Man Who Was Right, a position no one occupies forever but which he is entitled to for now. As markets have collapsed, the demand for his views and predictions has soared. He travels constantly, and late this spring I met him in Hong Kong to ask what he was worried about next.

Roubini, who is 50, has a tousled look, from his curly black hair to his rumpled clothing. The initial impression he gave was of total physical exhaustion. When he spoke, at mid-afternoon in Hong Kong, he would scrunch his eyes closed tight, as if forcing himself awake, and shove his suit jacket sleeves and shirt sleeves high up from his wrists to his forearms in the same effort.

You often see this paralyzing fatigue in people who’ve recently made the flight to Asia. What was unusual in Roubini’s case is that even with eyes closed he kept emitting high-speed and complex answers, which proved on transcription to consist of well-formed sentences and logical sequences. They were delivered in an accent that is what you might imagine from someone who spent his first 20-plus years in Turkey, Iran, Israel, and Italy before going to the United States as a graduate student at Harvard. In a few cases, I later realized, the polish of his responses was because he was reciting passages from papers he had written, as if from an invisible teleprompter. But mostly he seemed to be drawing on data points and implications that were so much on his mind they could be processed and expressed even when the rest of him was spent.

The conversation was surprising in three ways: for the relatively high grades Roubini gave Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, generally the least-praised member of the Obama economic team; for the overall support (with one significant exception) he expressed for the administration’s response to the economic crisis; and for his willingness to look far enough beyond today’s disaster to speculate about the problems a recovery might bring. He was also full of advice about China’s reaction to the world financial crisis, including the suggestion that its options are narrower than its leaders may grasp.

Roubini’s compliments for Geithner were in the context of the intellectual and policy history of how the crash had developed and why its effects have been so severe. The dot-com and larger tech-industry crash of 2000 eliminated a tremendous amount of stock-market wealth. During the panicky sell-off of 1987, nearly a quarter of the New York Stock Exchange’s total value was lost in one day. By comparison, defaults on subprime mortgages would seem more limited in their capacity to harm the economy. Why, then, had so much gone so deeply wrong?

Roubini said that the difference was partly “debt versus equity.” That is, a loss of stock-market value is damaging, but defaults on loans, which put banks themselves in trouble, had a “multiplier” effect: “When there’s a credit crunch, for every dollar of capital the financial institution loses, the contraction of credit has to be 10 times bigger.” This was the process at work last fall, when banks that were concerned about their own survival cut off working capital to everyone else.

The more important difference between this crash and others, Roubini said, was that the speculative bubble involved so much more of the economy than the term “subprime” could suggest. “It was subprime, it was near-prime, it was prime mortgages,” he said, warming up to rattle off a long list. “It was home-equity-loan lines. It was commercial real estate, it was credit cards, it was auto loans.” The list was just getting started, and he used it to emphasize that almost every form of borrowing had been taken beyond reasonable limits, and that most forms of asset had been bid unreasonably high. And not just in the United States: “People talk about the American subprime problem, but there were housing bubbles in the U.K., in Spain, in Ireland, in Iceland, in a large part of emerging Europe, like the Baltics all the way to Hungary and the Balkans,” and most parts of the world. “That’s why the transmission and the effects have been so severe. It was not just the U.S., and not just ‘subprime.’ It was excesses that led to the risk of a tipping point in many different economies.”

Roubini’s case against Ben Bernanke and his predecessor Alan Greenspan is that they kept interest rates too low for too long—and downplayed the significance of the bubble they helped create. “They kept on arguing that this was a minor housing slump, and this housing slump was going to bottom out,” he said. “They kept repeating this mantra that the subprime problem was a ‘niche’ and ‘contained’ problem.” These were serious analytic errors, he said, of a sort that is common near the end of a bubble. “Bernanke should have known better, but it’s not really about him. It’s in everybody’s interest to let the bubble go on. Instead of the wisdom of the crowd, we got the madness of the crowd.

“So when the proverbial stuff hit the fan in the summer of 2007, [the Fed and the Bush administration] were initially taken by surprise,” he concluded. “Their analysis had been wrong. And they didn’t understand the severity of what was to come. And all along, their policy was two steps behind the curve.” He was much more respectful of the judgment that Timothy Geithner showed.

“You know, when Geithner became president of the New York Fed [late in 2003], the first eight speeches he gave were about systemic risk,” he said. (Most were about the way the growing complexity and interconnectedness of financial systems made it harder to know the real degree of risk the entire financial network was exposed to, and how far regulation was lagging behind the quickly changing realities. Most read well in retrospect.) Behind this difference in tone, according to Roubini, was a deeper contrast in belief about what the government could or should do when it saw a financial bubble beginning to form.

About the response once a bubble collapses, most economists are in agreement. Central banks around the world have been lowering interest rates to near zero and pumping new money into their economies. But could they have done anything to forestall the need to? According to Roubini:

“Bernanke, like Greenspan, had this wrong attitude toward asset bubbles. The official philosophy of the Fed was: on the way up with a bubble, you do nothing. You don’t try to prick it or contain it. Their argument was, How do I really know it’s a bubble? And even if I tried to ‘prick’ a bubble delicately, it would be like performing neurosurgery with a sledgehammer.”

The damage done in these boom-and-bust cycles, Roubini says, is greater than politicians and the media usually acknowledge. Stock-market averages eventually recover, as all buy-and-hold investors now keep telling themselves. (Except in Japan, where the main stock index stood near 39,000 in the late 1980s and is around 9,000 today.) But that doesn’t take into account the damage done to the real economy by the swings up and down. “These asset bubbles are increasingly frequent, increasingly dangerous, increasingly virulent, and increasingly costly,” he said. After the housing bubble of the 1980s came the S&L crisis and the recession of 1991. After the tech bubble of the 1990s came the recession of 2001. “Most likely $10 trillion in household wealth [not just housing value but investments and other assets] has been destroyed in this latest crash. Millions of people have lost their jobs. We will probably add $7 trillion to our public debt. Eventually that debt must be serviced, and that may hamper growth.”

Was there any alternative? Yes, if central bankers had taken a “more symmetric approach” to bubbles, trying to control them as they emerged and not just coping with the consequences after they burst. Geithner, he says, was one of those who saw the danger: “While Ben Bernanke was talking about a ‘global savings glut’ as the source of imbalances, Geithner was talking about America’s excesses and deficits. Like the Bank of England and the Bank for International Settlements, he was warning at the New York Fed that we had to be more nuanced in the approach of how you deal with asset bubbles.”

The disagreements about proper bubble management are of more than historical interest, Roubini argues, because he sees the beginnings of another bubble already in view. He was more supportive on the whole than I would have expected about the Obama administration’s financial plans. “I have to give them credit that, less than a month after they came to power, they had achieved three major policy successes,” he said. These were passing the $800 billion stimulus plan, the mortgage-relief plan to reduce foreclosures, and the “toxic asset” plan to help banks clear bad loans from their books. He said that the initial version of the bank-rescue plan was “botched, because it was rushed,” but that the later version was better. “On each of these things, you can criticize specific elements,” he said. “But they did the big things, and those are the main parameters of what is a constructive policy response. For now, you have to deal with the problem you are facing. All in all I think the policy is going in the right direction.”

But someday, the emergency will be over. Then the side effects of today’s deficits-be-damned efforts to spend money and loosen credit will become “the problem you are facing.” Roubini has been tart about the things public officials should have known and the dangers they should have foreseen three or four years ago. What, I asked him, are the decisions of 2009 that we will be regretting in 2012?

For the only time in our conversation, he sat without responding for a measurable interval. “The regrets could be many,” he began. Uh-oh , I thought. “Even the best policies sometimes have unintended consequences.” He then itemized three.

The first involved banks. Like Paul Krugman and others, Roubini had been warning that many banks were weaker than they seemed. Rather than trying to nurse them along, he said, the government should move straightaway to nationalization: “I’m concerned that we’re not going to deal with the bank problem as we should,” he said. “Some banks are insolvent. To prevent them becoming zombie banks, the government should take the problem by the horns and, on a temporary basis, nationalize them. Take over these banks, clean them up, and then sell them back to the private sector. Not doing that is one mistake we may make and regret.”

Next, “monetizing the debt.” This sounds similar to the complaint that the government is spending too much now and will regret it later on, which was the main Republican argument against the stimulus plans. Roubini’s concern is different, and mainly involves the delicate process of turning off the extraordinary stimulus measures now being turned on full force.

“The Fed is now embarked on a policy in which they are in effect directly monetizing about half of the budget deficit,” he said. The public debt is going up, and the federal government is covering about half of that total by printing new money and sending it to banks. “In the short run,” he said, “that monetization is not inflationary.” Banks are holding much of the money themselves; “they’re not relending it, so that money is not going anywhere and becoming inflationary.”

But at some point—Roubini’s guess is 2011—the recession will end. Banks will want to lend the money; people and businesses will want to borrow and spend it. Then it will be time for what Roubini calls “the exit strategy, of mopping up that liquidity”—pulling some of the money back out of circulation, so it doesn’t just bid up house prices and stock values in a new bubble. And that will be “very, very tricky indeed.”

He mentioned cautionary recent examples. The last time the Fed tried to manage this “mopping up” process was after the recovery from the 2001 recession. To minimize the economic impact of the 9/11 attacks, following immediately on the dot-com crash, Alan Greenspan quickly lowered the benchmark interest rate from 3.5 percent, reaching 1 percent in 2003. By 2004 a full recovery was under way, and Greenspan began raising rates at what he called a “measured pace”—25 basis points, or one-fourth of 1 percent, every six weeks. “That implied it would take two and a half years until they normalized the rate,” Roubini said. “And that was one of the important sources of trouble, because at that point money was too cheap for a long time, and it really fed the bubble in the housing base.” So the lesson would be, when a recovery begins, get rates back to normal, faster.

“But that is very tricky,” he continued, “because if you do it too fast, when the economy is not recovered in a robust way, you might end up like Japan and slump back into a recession. But, of course, if you do it too slowly, then you risk creating either inflation or another asset bubble.” The great difficulty of making these fine distinctions is part of the “brain surgery with a sledgehammer” argument against attempting to intervene at all.

In Roubini’s view, there is no choice but to intervene. “We have to do what’s necessary to avoid a real depression,” he said. But he added that it is not too soon to lay plans for avoiding the consequences of too much money flowing rather than too little.

Roubini had recently been in China and met officials there. We talked about the bind that the world economic slowdown had created for China’s leadership—not despite but because of its huge trade surpluses and foreign-currency holdings. Many Chinese commentators have blamed American overborrowing and excess for dragging them into a recession. But even they realize that the very excess of American demand has created a market for Chinese exports. Chinese leaders would love to be less dependent on American customers; they hate having so many of their nation’s foreign assets tied up in U.S. dollars and subject to the volatility of American stock exchanges. But for the moment, they’re more worried about keeping Chinese exporters in business. To do that, they want to prevent their currency from rising. And for reasons laid out in detail in a previous article (“The $1.4 Trillion Question,” January/February 2008 Atlantic), the mechanics of finance require them to keep buying U.S. dollars and entrusting their savings to the United States. “I don’t think even the Chinese authorities have fully internalized the contradictions of their position,” Roubini said.

I agree. But I can report that for these past six months, virtually every economic conference I’ve heard of in China and every special supplement in a Chinese business publication has been devoted to the changes the country would have to make in order to reduce its vulnerabilities.

I asked Roubini whether, similarly, American authorities and the U.S. public appreciated the contradictions in their own position. He answered by returning to the damage caused by boom-and-bust cycles and the need to find a different path.

“We’ve been growing through a period of time of repeated big bubbles,” he said. “We’ve had a model of ‘growth’ based on overconsumption and lack of savings. And now that model has broken down, because we borrowed too much. We’ve had a model of growth in which over the last 15 or 20 years, too much human capital went into finance rather than more-productive activities. It was a growth model where we overinvested in the most unproductive form of capital, meaning housing. And we have also been in a growth model that has been based on bubbles. The only time we are growing fast enough is when there’s a big bubble.

“The question is, can the U.S. grow in a non-bubble way?” He asked the question rhetorically, so I turned it back on him. Can it?

“I think we have to …” He paused. “You know, the potential for our future growth is going to be lower, because of the excesses we’ve had. Sustainable growth may mean investing slowly in infrastructures for the future, and rebuilding our human capital. Renewable resources. Maybe nanotechnology? We don’t know what it’s going to be. There are parts of the economy we can expect to lead to a more sustainable and less bubble-like growth. But it’s going to be a challenge to find a new growth model. It’s not going to be simple.” I took this not as pessimism but as realism.

Recent Bloomberg Roubini Interview

Nouriel Roubini | Jun 24, 2009

6/24/09 - Bloomberg - Nouriel Roubini Says U.S. Economy `Sort of Stabilizing' (Click here for Video)


(Bloomberg) -- Nouriel Roubini, professor at New York University's Stern School of Business, talks with Bloomberg's Deirdre Bolton and Tom Keene about the state of the U.S. economy.

Roubini, speaking from London, also discusses Federal Reserve monetary policy, personal savings and the outlook for the U.S. unemployment rate. (Source: Bloomberg)

00:00 U.S. economy "sort of stabilizing"

01:13 Fiscal concerns, deficit, inflation; Fed

06:10 "Most of" Eastern Europe is in "trouble."

12:13 Health-care spending; personal savings rate

16:11 Trade deficit; exit strategy from stimulus

18:31 Unemployment rate to peak at 11 percent

Running time 20:29

Recent CNBC Roubini Interview (Paris)

Nouriel Roubini | Jun 22, 2009

6/22/09 - CNBC - Oil, Rates May Stifle Recovery: Roubini (Click here for video)


(CNBC) -- The price of oil, which is rising too fast, and long-term interest rates that are beginning to creep up are likely to suppress a budding recovery, Nouriel Roubini, president of RGE Monitor, told CNBC Monday.

Click on the following links for associated text:

Clamp Down on Too Big to Fail Banks: Roubini

Oil at $100, Interest Rates May Stifle Recovery: Roubini