Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Singha
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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 18:00

its deeply ingrained among the white collar whites that poor folks, immigrants, latinos and blacks will grab free healthcare and raise taxes for all. so long as their
cos were covering the tab and their health was safe, they were all against any canadian type welfare system.

now that copays are rising steeply, benefits are being scaled back, unemployment rising..this might change.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 18:04

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123486651894698861.html

Singapore sovereign funds combined loss in 2008 tops $100b :oops:

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 18:11

NYT - this is true not just in yindia but many poorer countries. only the EU/US think they can rape the world indefinitely.

Op-Ed Columnist
Yes, They Could. So They Did.

By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Published: February 14, 2009

So I am attending the Energy and Resources Institute climate conference in New Delhi, and during the afternoon session two young American women — along with one of their mothers — proposition me.

“Hey, Mr. Friedman,” they say, “would you like to take a little spin around New Delhi in our car?”

Oh, I say, I’ve heard that line before. Ah, they say, but you haven’t seen this car before. It’s a plug-in electric car that is also powered by rooftop solar panels — and the two young women, recent Yale grads, had just driven it all over India in a “climate caravan” to highlight the solutions to global warming being developed by Indian companies, communities, campuses and innovators, as well as to inspire others to take action.

They ask me if I want to drive, but I have visions of being stopped by the cops and ending up in a New Delhi jail. Not to worry, they tell me. Indian cops have been stopping them all across India. First, they ask to see driver’s licenses, then they inquire about how the green car’s solar roof manages to provide 10 percent of its mileage — and then they try to buy the car.

We head off down Panchsheel Marg, one of New Delhi’s main streets. The ladies want to show me something. The U.S. Embassy and the Chinese Embassy are both located on Panchsheel, directly across from each other. They asked me to check out the rooftops of each embassy. What do I notice? Let’s see ... The U.S. Embassy’s roof is loaded with antennae and listening gear. The Chinese Embassy’s roof is loaded with ... new Chinese-made solar hot-water heaters.

You couldn’t make this up.

But trying to do something about it was just one of many reasons my hosts, Caroline Howe, 23, a mechanical engineer on leave from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and Alexis Ringwald, a Fulbright scholar in India and now a solar entrepreneur, joined with Kartikeya Singh, who was starting the Indian Youth Climate Network, or IYCN, to connect young climate leaders in India, a country coming under increasing global pressure to manage its carbon footprint.

“India is full of climate innovators, so spread out across this huge country that many people don’t get to see that these solutions are working right now,” said Howe. “We wanted to find a way to bring people together around existing solutions to inspire more action and more innovation. There’s no time left to just talk about the problem.”

Howe and Ringwald thought the best way to do that might be a climate solutions road tour, using modified electric cars from India’s Reva Electric Car Company, whose C.E.O. Ringwald knew. They persuaded him to donate three of his cars and to retrofit them with longer-life batteries that could travel 90 miles on a single six-hour charge — and to lay on a solar roof that would extend them farther.

Between Jan. 1 and Feb. 5, they drove the cars on a 2,100-mile trip from Chennai to New Delhi, stopping in 15 cities and dozens of villages, training Indian students to start their own climate action programs and filming 20 videos of India’s top home-grown energy innovations. They also brought along a solar-powered band, plus a luggage truck that ran on plant oil extracted from jatropha and pongamia, plants locally grown on wasteland. A Bollywood dance group joined at different stops and a Czech who learned about their trip on YouTube hopped on with his truck that ran on vegetable-oil waste.

Deepa Gupta, 21, a co-founder of IYCN, told The Hindustan Times that the trip opened her eyes to just how many indigenous energy solutions were budding in India — “like organic farming in Andhra Pradesh, or using neem and garlic as pesticides, or the kind of recycling in slums, such as Dharavi. We saw things already in place, like the Gadhia solar plant in Valsad, Gujarat, where steam is used for cooking and you can feed almost 50,000 people in one go.” (See: http://www.indiaclimatesolutions.com.)

At Rajpipla, in Gujarat, when they stopped at a local prince’s palace to recharge their cars, they discovered that his business was cultivating worms and selling them as eco-friendly alternatives to chemical fertilizers.

I met Howe and Ringwald after a tiring day, but I have to admit that as soon as they started telling me their story it really made me smile. After a year of watching adults engage in devastating recklessness in the financial markets and depressing fecklessness in the global climate talks, it’s refreshing to know that the world keeps minting idealistic young people who are not waiting for governments to act, but are starting their own projects and driving innovation.

“Why did this tour happen?” asked Ringwald. “Why this mad, insane plan to travel across India in a caravan of solar electric cars and jatropha trucks with solar music, art, dance and a potent message for climate solutions? Well ... the world needs crazy ideas to change things, because the conventional way of thinking is not working anymore.”

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 18 Feb 2009 18:14

Californian dream turns into nightmare

In Contra Costa County, a few miles from San Francisco and the millionaires of Silicon Valley, widespread poverty has returned to California.

Buffeted by a housing collapse and a slumping economy, the county of 1m is struggling to cope with a sharp rise in the number of residents seeking welfare assistance.


Now I hv no doubt slumdawg will sweep the oscars.... can u think of a more costless way to mitigate the psychological trauma among growing ranks of the formerly well-off?

/Sarc off, maybe.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 18 Feb 2009 19:39

Switzerland threatened with bankruptcy

Cry me a bucket.

Germany may rescue debt-laden EU members

The debt-laden EU members are in a hole thx to their own pakiness. And now, more paki-like is their implied threat to take down Germany with them if they're not bailed out....

Meanwhile, costless psy-pain mitigation op in full swing....paint 'em turd worlders as snake charmers and elephant carers onlee...as opposed to our lily white advanced conomies onlee totally sans such dirty work....

Indian charmers want their snakes

Expect more digging and muckraking in the days ahead.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Tanaji » 18 Feb 2009 20:01

Dont know if its the sign of times, but an ad was posted at work here:

Clothes Exchange fair: Entry fee is 2 bucks, you bring 2 pairs of good quality clothes and can exchange them with others. :shock:

Note that this is in a decent, upscale area.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 20:03

shoe repairers and sewing repair shops are reporting boom in business.

if any of you have not read this, its worth it.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Grapes_of_Wrath

my american favs still remains "the old man and the sea" by hemingway and some of the mark twain stories.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 20:27

BW's chief economist is scolded by a reader not being D&G enough! gee I am
sure glad I didnt "buy" into the US and made a clean break when I did, wouldnt
like to plan for retirement there with my 401k->10k plan. all I need is some rice,
fish and beer which yindia will provide.

-----

Stock Decline Hits Depression Levels
Money invested 10 years ago in stocks have lost half their real value, matching the worst losses of the Great Depression

By Michael Mandel

During the darkest 10 years of the Great Depression, from September 1929 to September 1939, the stock market dropped roughly 50%, adjusted for inflation. With today's drop in the stock market, the U.S. has now matched that unfortunate milestone. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index, adjusted for inflation, is now down about 50% over the past 10 years from Feb. 17, 1999 to Feb. 17, 2009.

Other assets have done much better over the same period. For example, a nice safe investment in six-month certificates of deposit would have yielded a real total return of roughly 12% over the past 10 years. And despite the recent real estate bust, residential home values in the largest cities, adjusted for inflation, actually increased by about 30% over the past decade.

The Depression-level decline in the market has come during a stretch when many small investors, on the advice of financial advisers and the financial media, put much of their savings into equities. The enormously influential book Stocks for the Long Run by Jeremy J. Siegel, which was published in 1994, convinced people that they should ignore the short-term ups and downs of the market.
Should You Stay in Stocks?

But the mantra of "stocks for the long run" has reached its moment of truth. It's no longer possible to pretend that equities are a safe asset. Investors, looking at their depleted 401(k) and brokerage accounts, are being forced to ask the question: Do they have the stomach to stay in stocks, or are they ready to bail out?

Both approaches have their pluses and minuses. If you stay in stocks, you are accepting the possibility that the economy will plunge into a deep depression, and that your investments may never reach their original value again, much less show a profit. If you go into a safer asset, such as certificates of deposit, you are giving up any potential of an upside, especially if it turns out that the market has a big rebound.


Ultimately, you are placing a bet on the future of the U.S. and the global economy. Are we entering into a period of long-term stagnation or are there better days ahead? Two hundred years of history says that we are going to see more growth, but as the saying goes, past returns are no guarantee of future performance.

Mandel is chief economist for BusinessWeek.

# joe Feb 18, 2009 2:59 PM GMT The author is misleading. Stock dropped more than 80% from top to bottom during the Great Depression. Using data of 50% of drop from September 1929 to September 1939 only tells you part of the story. That only gives you an wrong idea that we are close to the bottom because S&P drops about 50% from the top in 2007. But if you want to compare to the data of Great Depression, please compare to the 80+% drop. We are far from the bottom yet!

# joe Feb 18, 2009 2:46 PM GMT In 1989, the Japanese NIKKEI 225 index was about 39,000. Yesterday it closed at 7534. The return on NIKKEI 225 index is -81% for about twenty years. AND IT STILL KEEPS GOING DOWN. S&P drops less than 50% from the top. Way to go for us! I believe we have about 30% for stocks to drop from current level. The author believe in our economy. Then good luck to you.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 18 Feb 2009 20:35

GMs impending implosion will be a major watershed in US history methinks.
a big tree will fall in forest.


--
Sweden slams GM for plans to drop Saab

By LOUISE NORDSTROM

STOCKHOLM

Sweden on Wednesday rejected General Motors' plea for government funding for its loss-making Saab unit, saying it was up to the U.S. automaker to save the brand.

In its restructuring plan, GM said Saab could file bankruptcy this month unless the government in Stockholm ponied up cash to help prepare the Swedish-based unit for a sale.

"I'm deeply disappointed in General Motors," Industry Minister Maud Olofsson said. "They have in practice removed their hand from Saab. ... Instead they are handing over responsibility to Swedish taxpayers."

GM said Tuesday it needed about $6 billion in support from the governments of Canada, Germany, Britain Sweden and Thailand to provide liquidity for its operations in those countries.

It also said it had "engaged its European labor partners to achieve $1.2 billion in cost reductions, which include several possible closures or spinoffs of manufacturing facilities in high cost locations."

Neither GM nor Zurich-based GM Europe, would elaborate further on which sites were being examined or what, if any, timetable was being looked at.

Juergen Ruettgers, the governor of North Rhine-Westphalia's said it was imperative "to fight for the position in Europe to stay safeguarded."

"This is an emergency situation," Ruettgers told German broadcaster ARD on Wednesday.

Ruettgers added that he hoped to get a clearer picture of the impact the announcement would have in Germany at an upcoming meeting with GM CEO Rick Wagoner.

Opel employs approximately 25,000 workers in Germany, and also builds cars in Belgium, Poland, Portugal and Britain. It is the third-most popular brand in Germany, behind Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz.

In Stockholm, Olofsson said GM was seeking 5 billion kronor ($570 million) from the Swedish government to save Saab. She said the government wasn't interested because it had already helped by offering credit guarantees, emergency loans and research funds to boost the Swedish auto industry.

GM negotiators "realize that every country is facing trouble when so many jobs are being threatened. Then it's easy for them to hand over responsibility to different governments," Olofsson said.

Philippe Houchois, a UBS auto analyst in London, said Sweden's response was not surprising.

"They (GM) haven't done much to use their European arms to support their U.S. business," he said.

In Germany's case, where the government has stated it is prepared to support Opel, the problem is that the country has six car manufacturers to defend.

"So very quickly, helping six car manufacturers may be very expensive," he said.

------

AP Business Writer Matt Moore in Frankfurt contributed to this report.

SwamyG
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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby SwamyG » 18 Feb 2009 20:47

For Uninsured Young Adults, Do-It-Yourself Medical Care

My friendly neighborhood conservative radio talk show host was laughing and ridiculing at do-it-yourself kit for some dental treatments in UK. He was saying, see this is what will happen in USA too if one follows UK's NHS. He was ridiculing the long wait times etc etc.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Liu » 18 Feb 2009 20:52

Singha wrote:NYT - this is true not just in yindia but many poorer countries. only the EU/US think they can rape the world indefinitely.

Op-Ed Columnist
Yes, They Could. So They Did.

By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Published: February 14, 2009

So I am attending the Energy and Resources Institute climate conference in New Delhi, and during the afternoon session two young American women — along with one of their mothers — proposition me.

“Hey, Mr. Friedman,” they say, “would you like to take a little spin around New Delhi in our car?”

Oh, I say, I’ve heard that line before. Ah, they say, but you haven’t seen this car before. It’s a plug-in electric car that is also powered by rooftop solar panels — and the two young women, recent Yale grads, had just driven it all over India in a “climate caravan” to highlight the solutions to global warming being developed by Indian companies, communities, campuses and innovators, as well as to inspire others to take action.

They ask me if I want to drive, but I have visions of being stopped by the cops and ending up in a New Delhi jail. Not to worry, they tell me. Indian cops have been stopping them all across India. First, they ask to see driver’s licenses, then they inquire about how the green car’s solar roof manages to provide 10 percent of its mileage — and then they try to buy the car.

We head off down Panchsheel Marg, one of New Delhi’s main streets. The ladies want to show me something. The U.S. Embassy and the Chinese Embassy are both located on Panchsheel, directly across from each other. They asked me to check out the rooftops of each embassy. What do I notice? Let’s see ... The U.S. Embassy’s roof is loaded with antennae and listening gear. The Chinese Embassy’s roof is loaded with ... new Chinese-made solar hot-water heaters.

You couldn’t make this up.

But trying to do something about it was just one of many reasons my hosts, Caroline Howe, 23, a mechanical engineer on leave from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and Alexis Ringwald, a Fulbright scholar in India and now a solar entrepreneur, joined with Kartikeya Singh, who was starting the Indian Youth Climate Network, or IYCN, to connect young climate leaders in India, a country coming under increasing global pressure to manage its carbon footprint.

“India is full of climate innovators, so spread out across this huge country that many people don’t get to see that these solutions are working right now,” said Howe. “We wanted to find a way to bring people together around existing solutions to inspire more action and more innovation. There’s no time left to just talk about the problem.”

Howe and Ringwald thought the best way to do that might be a climate solutions road tour, using modified electric cars from India’s Reva Electric Car Company, whose C.E.O. Ringwald knew. They persuaded him to donate three of his cars and to retrofit them with longer-life batteries that could travel 90 miles on a single six-hour charge — and to lay on a solar roof that would extend them farther.

Between Jan. 1 and Feb. 5, they drove the cars on a 2,100-mile trip from Chennai to New Delhi, stopping in 15 cities and dozens of villages, training Indian students to start their own climate action programs and filming 20 videos of India’s top home-grown energy innovations. They also brought along a solar-powered band, plus a luggage truck that ran on plant oil extracted from jatropha and pongamia, plants locally grown on wasteland. A Bollywood dance group joined at different stops and a Czech who learned about their trip on YouTube hopped on with his truck that ran on vegetable-oil waste.

Deepa Gupta, 21, a co-founder of IYCN, told The Hindustan Times that the trip opened her eyes to just how many indigenous energy solutions were budding in India — “like organic farming in Andhra Pradesh, or using neem and garlic as pesticides, or the kind of recycling in slums, such as Dharavi. We saw things already in place, like the Gadhia solar plant in Valsad, Gujarat, where steam is used for cooking and you can feed almost 50,000 people in one go.” (See: http://www.indiaclimatesolutions.com.)

At Rajpipla, in Gujarat, when they stopped at a local prince’s palace to recharge their cars, they discovered that his business was cultivating worms and selling them as eco-friendly alternatives to chemical fertilizers.

I met Howe and Ringwald after a tiring day, but I have to admit that as soon as they started telling me their story it really made me smile. After a year of watching adults engage in devastating recklessness in the financial markets and depressing fecklessness in the global climate talks, it’s refreshing to know that the world keeps minting idealistic young people who are not waiting for governments to act, but are starting their own projects and driving innovation.

“Why did this tour happen?” asked Ringwald. “Why this mad, insane plan to travel across India in a caravan of solar electric cars and jatropha trucks with solar music, art, dance and a potent message for climate solutions? Well ... the world needs crazy ideas to change things, because the conventional way of thinking is not working anymore.”



well, interesting..I think that the brand of "new Chinese-made solar hot-water heaters" should be "Huangming(皇明)",which is very popular in china. one of My neighbours has one on his hourse's roof.
Image

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Raghav K » 18 Feb 2009 21:15

Factory trouble for the 2008 quarter.
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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby SwamyG » 18 Feb 2009 21:41

For Japan, a Long, slow slide. Declines in Productivity, Population Combining to Stifle Economic Growth
Japan is quietly enduring a far more fundamental economic slide, one that seems irreversible.


Elsewhere, Ukraine's GDP reduced by 20% y-o-y in January.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 18 Feb 2009 21:55

Taiwan’s GDP plunges more than 8%

Meanwhile, PRC selflessly tries to recover value from its horde of IOUs...

China urges west to establish 'bad banks', warns of japan style recession

No doubt, major portion of the bad assets in western banks are directly or indirectly held also by PRC. A 'bad bank' would fetch some half-decent price for this junk at the US taxpayer's expense.

Lithuania urges EU to tackle crisis

OMG, but for Lithuania'a urging, 'em EUstanis wouldn't have known of the banking crisis onlee.... meanwhile kosovo, another grand western project celebrated its first 'independence day' yesterday, showcased grandly on the beeb.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby SwamyG » 18 Feb 2009 22:03

The screws are getting tighter on some Asian countries (Japan, China, Taiwan) {less tight on pyara desh} and some Eastern European countries. The pain is more than what the West is experiencing. Hm..... situation warrants some conspiracy theories.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby ramana » 18 Feb 2009 22:29

Serves the swedes and the Swiss all right for all the bad karma. the Swedes are teh number one hypocrites. Selling guns and dynamite all round the world and giving out Nobull prizes for peace. the Swiss are the money laundereres of the world. Most big corruption in the world will be reduced if Swiss go under.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby John Snow » 18 Feb 2009 23:05

ramana wrote:Serves the swedes and the Swiss all right for all the bad karma. the Swedes are teh number one hypocrites. Selling guns and dynamite all round the world and giving out Nobull prizes for peace. the Swiss are the money laundereres of the world. Most big corruption in the world will be reduced if Swiss go under.

Alps

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby ramana » 18 Feb 2009 23:57

Banking not literally!

cartoon from Deccan Chronicle!

Image

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 01:36

The 'Duh' vote goes to....

Gold transcends borders, penetrates every market, maintains a solid core of value throughout any storm. It is above the wily CBs ability to inflate/deflate or otherwise stretch an instruments value. It is armoured against hidden agenda and confiscation-by-other-means. It does not putrify by nature or political intrigue. It is almost infinitely divisible, transcends time, can be hammered and stamped to reflect whatever regimes' are in their cycle of power. It derives its power intrinsically and not from the by-your-leave sanction of powerful men. It cannot be counterfeited.
Many rail against its real utility. Nevertheless it is the yeoman's final suffrage, it is the commonman's refuge; it announces most clearly by its price and its hoarding that the Citizen repudiates the schemes of a central bank--a central money governor whose mandate has become not price stability, or preservation of purchasing power, but backdoor wealth redistribution.
Gold the final defense for men of means large and small. Gold, immune to the silent depredations of kingmen who view their subordinated peers as merely servants for wealth extraction; And paper money as the exchequer's right to make policy firewalled from the collective will of the people.


Nice prose though...

and yes, there's utility in even stating repeating the obvious... just so that the 'mature' pakis in the crowd are also brought into the same page.

Meanwhile, David Walker served as Comptroller General of the United States from 1998 through 2008. He is now the CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation and leader of the Fiscal Wake Up Tour. He has been a lone voice in the wilderness for the last decade regarding our looming fiscal disaster.

Some of his noteworthy pronouncements...

"The US government is on a “burning platform” of unsustainable policies and
practices with fiscal deficits, chronic healthcare underfunding, immigration and
overseas military commitments threatening a crisis if action is not taken soon."


Link

Right before he resigned former GAO Comptroller General David Walker also said:

“The federal government’s total liabilities translates into a de facto mortgage of about $455,000 for every American household and there’s no house to back that mortgage. In other words, our government has made a whole lot of promises that, in the long run, it cannot possibly keep without huge tax increases.”


Wow. $455k. Thats HUGE.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby ss_roy » 19 Feb 2009 02:07

Do not care about what the dying say.. they will be dead soon.

Meanwhile, costless psy-pain mitigation op in full swing....paint 'em turd worlders as snake charmers and elephant carers onlee...as opposed to our lily white advanced conomies onlee totally sans such dirty work....


Conspiracy theories are not necessary. The only thing worser that capitalism is mercantilism. Excessive savings, conservatism and accumulating money is the surest way to bring long term ruin. Capitalism works if money can circulate (like blood), if you let it accumulate at certain places without recirculation, it kills the economy.

If you do not believe that, ask yourself one simple question- What is the use of money that does not create jobs (even 'fake' jobs) thereby creating wealth and general prosperity?

The screws are getting tighter on some Asian countries (Japan, China, Taiwan) {less tight on pyara desh} and some Eastern European countries. The pain is more than what the West is experiencing. Hm..... situation warrants some conspiracy theories.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby SwamyG » 19 Feb 2009 03:23

What is the use of money that does not create jobs (even 'fake' jobs) thereby creating wealth and general prosperity?

I have heard the term 'create wealth' several times. What does it really mean?

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby John Snow » 19 Feb 2009 03:44

"Wealth is that which does not depend on circumstances or vary by relative comparisons to tangible or intangibles and is perceived by the possessor to be indestructible" Spinster Uvacha

Like truth wealth is abstract and is only felt in its absence :mrgreen:

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Rahul M » 19 Feb 2009 03:55

John Snow wrote:
ramana wrote:Serves the swedes and the Swiss all right for all the bad karma. the Swedes are teh number one hypocrites. Selling guns and dynamite all round the world and giving out Nobull prizes for peace. the Swiss are the money laundereres of the world. Most big corruption in the world will be reduced if Swiss go under.

Alps

:rotfl:

I almost chocked on a peanut and died !! :rotfl:

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Arya Sumantra » 19 Feb 2009 04:18

John Snow wrote:"Wealth is that which does not depend on circumstances or vary by relative comparisons to tangible or intangibles and is perceived by the possessor to be indestructible" Spinster Uvacha

Like truth wealth is abstract


It is not without reason that we indians say wealth is dynamic. Sometimes it is in stocks, sometimes in foodgrains, sometimes in mineral wealth, sometimes in gold, sometimes in oil. Like energy(thermal, potential, kinetic etc) is converted from one form to another with some loss, wealth is converted from one form to another with some commission/brokerage.
Paper money was created to facilitate easy handling for transaction and nowadays ease of printing(literally creating wealth). One cannot preserve its value by mechanically storing it. Hoarding the paper dollars was biggest mistake of East- Asia. Perhaps Confusing Values.
Last edited by Arya Sumantra on 19 Feb 2009 04:27, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby ss_roy » 19 Feb 2009 04:20

There are two answers to that question and I will give you the short answer right now.

What is difference between money and wealth?

Imagine that you were a maharaja or an emperor in an earlier age. You would have had lots of money (gold), however if you contracted smallpox (Louis XV), plague (Cyrus) or typhoid (Prince Albert)- your money would not have helped you survive the disease any better than a peasant. The question then is, why can a poor person in an indian city survive these diseases better than people who ruled large empires? The obvious answer is that we have effective drugs and better diagnostics.

The more extensive answer is that we have created more wealth (abilities, facilities, expertise, systems) that allow us to live more wealthier lives. Money is quite useless as long as you accumulate it, because unless you spend it on a product or service you cannot motivate other people to do anything useful. You have to pay people to develop build things, make things, provide services, maintain things, think of new ideas, work on new things etc. Therefore the velocity of money in a system is more important than the amount of money in it.

Why were european countries able to develop more things, than much richer indian kingdoms? Indians were far more interested in accumulating money for its own sake, and they did that exceedingly well. However this accumulated money was never used to do anything other than maintain the status quo. In contrast, poorer european countries were pushed into using money to create concepts and ideas to gain an edge over each other (and ultimately larger asian countries). Of course the first versions of capitalism were far from perfect.. heck it is still not very stable (and will require constant updating and tweaking), but it is the only system that allows us to create wealth from money.

Saving money and living within your means is paradoxically the easiest way to reduce the wealth in a society. Think about it, if you hoard money- there are fewer jobs, less innovation, less social mobility, more tensions and most importantly- fewer consumers!

For all its faults, consumerism has resulted in more progress and good than any other -isms. Believing in god, living simply, praying etc might make you feel nice for a while (delusion), but it won't create the velocity of money necessary to develop new innovations, concepts, ideas and jobs. The single biggest reason that Indians in the west do well is they (minority) are practicing mercantilism in a capitalist (majority) society. If everyone in the USA saved money like Indians, there would be no decent jobs, infrastructure or innovation. Think about that..

I will write a longer and more detailed version of this idea later.. I have finish some work stuff now.

I have heard the term 'create wealth' several times. What does it really mean?

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 04:34

well...what would you know...

UBS to pay $780 million fine over offshore services

Innoucuous looking, eh?

Here's the loaded punchline though....

As part of the agreement, UBS has agreed to turn over the names of up to 19,000 wealthy American clients. The unprecedented action blows a massive hole in Swiss banking secrecy.


Banking secrecy built on decades,nay centuries, of trust. Once thats evaporated, good luck rebuilding it anytime soon.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 05:24

I was expecting tax revolts but this happened faster...

Homeowners fight back against evictions

As resistance to foreclosure evictions grows among homeowners, community leaders and some law enforcement officials, a broad civil disobedience campaign is starting in several American cities to support families who refuse orders to vacate their homes.

The community organizing group ACORN introduced the campaign with a spirited rally last week in Brooklyn, New York, and will roll it out in at least 22 other cities in coming weeks. Through phone trees, Web pages and text-messaging networks, the effort will connect families facing eviction with volunteers who will stand at their side as officers arrive, even if it means risking arrest.

"You want to haul us out to jail? Fine. Let the world see how government has been ineffective," Bertha Lewis, ACORN's chief organizer, said in an interview. "Politicians have helped banks, but they haven't helped families in the way that it's needed, and these families are now saying, enough is enough."

At the onset of the foreclosure crisis, the problem was regarded by some as the fault of the homeowners themselves, the result of irresponsible decisions made by families who chose to live beyond their means. But as foreclosures spread across the country, devastating even solidly middle-class communities, the blame has slowly shifted to the financial companies that made questionable loans and have received billions of dollars in federal aid to stave off collapse.


Gandhian memes such as 'civil disobedience' taking root after MLK used them effectively in 1964.

But yes, the stand taken by some sheriffs and deptuies (elected posts in massaland) was impressive.
On Feb. 9, a man scrawled a message on the roof of his house in a suburb of Los Angeles: "I Want 2 Be Heard." Then he barricaded himself inside when deputies showed up to evict him, surrendering after a few hours. In October, a woman in San Diego chained herself to her front porch after the bank that held her mortgage refused to renegotiate the terms. She remains in her home, but has received a second eviction notice.

And last year in Boston, neighbors and activists locked arms outside eight buildings that had been foreclosed upon to prevent the authorities from forcing residents onto the streets.

Sheriffs in some places have also taken a stand. In Wayne County in Michigan, Sheriff Warren Evans suspended all evictions starting Feb. 2 until the federal government implements a plan to help homeowners facing foreclosures.

In Cook County in Illinois, which includes Chicago, Sheriff Thomas Dart directed a lawyer to review all eviction orders to protect people who kept on paying rent after the buildings where they lived had been seized by banks. In Butler County in Ohio, Sheriff Richard Jones ordered his deputies not to evict people who had no place else to go.

"This is a cold place in the winter and I will not give people a death sentence for not paying their debts," Jones said in an interview. "These are human beings, responsible middle-class people who fell on hard times, and I just can't toss them out onto the streets."

ACORN's strategy is modeled on a movement the group led in the 1980s, when squatters occupied and set out to renovate thousands of abandoned city-owned buildings in New York, Philadelphia and Detroit, among other cities. The motivation was to solve what Lewis has called "the working family's housing crisis."


Such can never happen in India. Unending stay orders against illegal encroachments on sarkari land are prime example.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 05:30

The meme repeats ...

Obama compliments Canadian regulation
President Barack Obama said the United States should take note of Canada's banks, which have avoided government bailouts and are now among the strongest in the world.

In advance of his first foreign trip, Obama said in an interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. on Tuesday that Canada has shown it is a good manager of its financial system.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Shivani » 19 Feb 2009 05:48

New York Post wrote:
Image

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby svinayak » 19 Feb 2009 06:58

http://www-cdn.npr.org/templates/story/ ... =100786812

Is It Time To Declare Some Big Banks Dead?


Mario Tama

The U.S. government decided against rescuing Lehman Brothers. The September decision, which led the financial giant to file for bankruptcy, is being watched for clues on how the government might handle future bank failures. Getty Images


Morning Edition, February 18, 2009 · As the government attempts to stabilize the nation's financial system, officials must decide whether to continue to prop up banks as private entities, nationalize them or shut them down.

NPR's Ari Shapiro asked economist Raghuram Rajan of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business what determines whether a bank falls into the category of "dead men walking."

"Well, the banks are making significant losses coming from the mortgage-backed securities that they held, coming from people who've lost their jobs and are now defaulting on credit card loans," says Rajan, formerly chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. "And some of the banks are essentially completely decapitalized — that is, their liabilities exceed the value of their assets. So to that extent, some of them are in fact dead men walking."

Is it possible that some of those liabilities will actually be worth more in a year or two if banks are not forced to sell off some of those toxic assets right now?

Quite possibly. And to some extent, that is almost true of banks all the time. Banks typically have fairly illiquid assets.

Assets that they are not able to sell immediately in that moment.

Absolutely. But if you held them to maturity, perhaps the loan would repay in full. The question is, will the market give me time?

And the answer is?

It's giving them time right now because the government is backing the banks. The government has insured the debt that the banks issue. Therefore, people are willing to lend to the banks. So long as the government continues backing these banks, they have time. The question for the government is, how long should it continue backing the banks, and how big [are the] losses they [are] going to make over this process? And is there a time when the government should go and say, "You're done. No more"?

Or should the government just say, "We're going to buy you up so we don't have to keep dumping money into you"?

There is this question of nationalization that keeps coming up. When the government actually owns these banks, it becomes responsible for all the liabilities of the banks. Supposing the government goes in and replaces the equity holders and says now these are government-owned banks. Then the government becomes responsible to all the debt holders who otherwise have made losses. In other words, with a nationalization, what you get is a transfer of wealth from the taxpayer to all the bondholders who earlier were dependent on the private bank to repay them. Now [they] can depend on the full faith and credit of the government to repay them.

Why do so many economists think we should do this now?

Well, I think some of it is driven by the sense that if we don't nationalize, then these equity holders in the banks are getting a free ride where the bank can be run with government protection — where the debt of the banks is insured, the equity holders get all the upside, the government gets nothing for it.

We've been talking about the banks as though they are a monolithic body. But in fact, there's a lot of variation in the health of one bank versus another. How do you tell which banks are worst off, which banks are doing pretty well and what the difference is?

This is a problem. We don't know, which is why the government has suggested that it will go in and do what it calls stress tests. You go in and you try and find out what is the value of the bank under the worst-case scenario. And then you decide whether it's worth saving by putting in more money, or whether it should be broken up and sold in pieces, or whether it should be merged with another bank. The real question that the government hasn't made any statements on, partly because this is a very sensitive question, is what will it do when it finds out that the bank actually is dead when it does these stress tests?

What do you think is the appropriate thing for the government to do if it finds out that these banks are essentially, as you've described some of them, dead men walking?

Well, it will have to figure out what parts of the bank are salvageable. It will also have to figure out whether these banks have a variety of contracts which, if they fail, will cause disruption in the markets. And if these banks are forced to fail, those markets may get roiled. We don't know. We do know that when Lehman [Brothers] went bankrupt, there were problems in some markets. Eventually, over time, that got sorted out. Perhaps the government has a better sense now how to limit the damage to the markets, and it can actually close down some of these larger banks. But that's a guess.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 19 Feb 2009 17:19

Reuters:

UBS tax deal is Swiss bank secrecy's Waterloo
Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:07am GMT


By Lisa Jucca - Analysis

ZURICH (Reuters) - UBS's landmark settlement deal with U.S. tax authorities could be the final nail in the coffin for Switzerland's prized bank secrecy and will have far-reaching consequences for the whole offshore financial industry.

Under pressure from Washington, Berne agreed to let UBS pass on data of certain U.S. clients without waiting for an ongoing appeal process against the data transfer by some of these clients, an unprecedented step in Switzerland.

Switzerland's leading newspaper, Neue Zuercher Zeitung, called the $780 million (543 million pound) settlement, which UBS agreed with Berne's blessing, a "capitulation." :rotfl:

"For Switzerland, it is a true catastrophe for the country's first industry, that is to say the banking sector," Geneva lawyer Charles Poncet, a former member of the Swiss parliament, told Radio Suisse Romande.

Switzerland is the world's biggest offshore centre, managing about a third of an estimated $7 trillion of wealth. The industry has prospered thanks to undeclared accounts that protect the privacy of ultra-rich customers, whether from potential kidnappers or from tax authorities.
(yeah talk about aiding and abetting crime on a grand scale over decades)

Lawyers say other Swiss banks and all institutions involved in offshore banking should watch out as the U.S. tax axe may continue to grind.

"This is part of a general move towards greater transparency," said Stephanie Jarrett, a tax expert at law firm Baker & McKenzie.

Under Swiss law, bank data can be transferred to foreign tax authorities only in clear cases of tax fraud, not tax evasion. The latter is not a criminal offence in Switzerland. :eek: Clients have the chance to appeal against a data transfer.

The country's financial regulator, FINMA, said last night it had found evidence of some mismanagement at UBS. It said it had decided to push ahead with the U.S. tax settlement as the investigation had "put (UBS's) existence at risk."

French-language newspaper Le Temps, which broke the news of an imminent deal late on Wednesday, said the government agreed to lift its bank secrecy rules during an emergency meeting on Wednesday night.

"This is a political decision. Berne has reviewed the definition of what constitutes a violation of bank secrecy," the newspaper said.

WIDER MOVE

The tax spat had been closely watched by cash-strapped western governments and could set a precedent for similar deals with other banks or by other jurisdictions.

"Any success by the U.S. tax authority could encourage tax authorities in other jurisdictions to pursue a similar strategy," Merrill Lynch analysts said in a note.

Tax experts say Germany and France in particular have been watching carefully and may take action against their own banks.

German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrueck has taken aim at Switzerland, repeatedly accusing the country of hiding untaxed money.

UBS itself had warned of potential further actions by other states in its latest financial report.

"Following disclosure of the U.S. cross-border matter, it is possible that tax or regulatory authorities in various jurisdictions will focus on the cross-border wealth management services provided by UBS and other financial institutions," the bank said in a note on litigation.

Tax experts say Switzerland will continue to retain some privacy rules, but expect the country and other smaller jurisdictions to co-operate more and more with western tax authorities when required.

"The offshore industry is dead for customers coming from countries where there is a will to enforce tax obligations," said a Swiss tax lawyer involved in the tax dispute.

(Editing by John Stonestreet)

(Additional reporting by Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva)

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 19:31

NYC to retain, retrain laid off Wall streeters

Just as Michigan is scrambling to retrain laid-off auto workers, New York City officials have come up with a plan to find new work for the unemployed from one of its core industries: financial services.


Let the games begin?

The plan is intended to stem a potential exodus of banking professionals from the city during the restructuring of the financial services industry, which has been the city’s economic engine for decades, and to speed the industry’s recovery, which will take at least several years, officials said.


A decades old economic engine going kaput relatively suddenly spells dislocation on a grand scale onlee. Something like Calcutta after partition when the jute mills were idling because the feeder fields were stuck in BD.

Detroit though had several yrs to prepare for eventual liquidation, IMHO.

City officials also plan to try to lure big banks and financial companies from Asia and elsewhere to set up operations in New York, filling some of the void created by the implosion of large American firms like Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns. They hope the federal and state governments will let them use $30 million in federal money to attract those companies and other financial firms to Lower Manhattan.


Color me foxed but why would Asians wanna setup I-banks in NYC? Last I heard London was more desperate and will offer sweeter terms....

Mr. Bloomberg said that he could not predict how the financial services business would bounce back, but he said he was confident that it eventually would.


I see the audacity of hope all around... sure count on p00r stratfor pathetically trying to pee on desi audacity to dream but hey Shri Bustberg must be right coz he be the a child of the renessaince onlee, eh?

City officials admit that those people may feel less of a need to be in New York after this crisis. To counteract that notion, city officials are concentrating on retaining and developing New York’s financial infrastructure, like the New York Mercantile Exchange, and trying to rally the financial community around the idea of New York as a hothouse for entrepreneurs.


IOW, we hope this ponzi scam will continue after the interval.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 21:02

Don't leave Ukraine to its fate

Resident alarmist at the Telegraf Sri Ambrose E Pritchard makles a passionate case to print euros so that ukraine can be bailed out else a domino collapse in eastern bloc thx to its $1.74 trillion debt cannot be ruled out that will take with its western europe's banking system with sweden, austria, switz and belgium most at risk.

The finance minister has resigned in disgust, no longer willing to serve as a "political pawn" in a government that tears up its agreements.

The IMF has stormed off, refusing to disburse the next tranche of its $16.4bn (£11.5bn) rescue loan. Kiev's leaders are winking at Russia, hoping that this sort of geo-strategic blackmail will force the West to open its purse strings.

Meanwhile gross domestic product has contracted by 20pc over the last year, apparently worse than early Bolshevism or the Stalin famine. {WTF? Really? Soon you'll be telling me the global impact on BD's economy extracted a heavier toll than the TSPA genocide in '71.}


What we are seeing is a vicious circle where falling currencies are ratcheting up the real burden of East Europe's $1.74 trillion foreign debt, which in turn leads to more capital flight.

Some $400bn must be rolled over this year – an impossible challenge. Unless this poisonous dynamic is stopped by outside help from the IMF, the European Central Bank, and the leading political powers of the EU, we risk a full-fledged meltdown.

This will not remain on the East side of the old Warsaw Pact/Nato line.

West Europe's banks are an integral part of the lending debacle. It was they that provided all this debt in euros, dollars, and Swiss francs. In the case of Austria, Sweden, and perhaps Switzerland and Belgium, their exposure puts the broader banking system at risk.

This cannot be allowed to run its course. The European Central Bank is going to have to put a clothes peg over its nose and use its printing powers to rescue the region.

If it resists for ideological reasons, history will hold its governors to account.


Yup. Just like history held the Swiss dealings with Nazi gold to account. Or the Belgians for their innovations in the congo that the liberians and sierra Leonese have now adopted (amputations for example).

These euro blowhards can certainly do w/o our SDRE sympathy/ empathy/ Ganapathy onlee. Its vital that theie genteel veneer and civilized pretences be exposed for their gruesome past. :evil:

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby vsudhir » 19 Feb 2009 21:10

Meanwhile UKstan's Ministry of Truth seems to be ghostwriting gub-mint speeches there these days....

Economy could begin to recover in April, claims Gordon Brown

No kament.

Meanwhile, elsewhere:
From Merrill Lynch's Fund Manager Survey (dated 18 February, by Gary Baker and Michael Hartnett):

A jump in optimism on the Chinese economy (growth expectations leaped from -70% to -21%) and further policy ease led to a marked improvement in global economic sentiment. While 90% of investors think we are currently in a global recession only a net 6% see a weaker economy in the next 12 months (versus 24% last month and 60% in October).


And PRC appears ready to get into the verbal duel and give back Geithner as good as it gets and then some more.

China to U.S.: 'We hate you guys'

China learns what fiat currency is the hard way

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 19 Feb 2009 21:19

big banks and financial companies from Asia

why would they expand to serve the need of a bankrupt society? they are
very comfortable where they are in asian cities.

however SBI or Punj national bank will be glad to open a wall st branch
and pay regular desi salaries to american workers willing to work for third
world banks onree.

no 300% bonus onree and $1000 take home for a mid level person.

tent cities will have to spring up in central park to house these new banking elites cheaply while squatters, dope growers and gangs set fire to the upper east side.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby SwamyG » 19 Feb 2009 23:11

Thanks to all those who answered the "What is wealth" question. Looking at the answers, no doubt our ancient wise rishis looked at all this and started thinking a way out of this 'samsara'. It reminds me of the joke that I read as a kid (I don't have the full text). There is a young lad idling under a tree, a passer by asks him why he is wasting his time.....they exchange questions/answers and ultimately the young lad kind of reasons why he is lying down on his butt doing nothing.

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 19 Feb 2009 23:15

a friend of ours has this in her orkut slogan: Doing nothing is very hard to do, you never know when you're finished :twisted:

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 19 Feb 2009 23:37

a grim wind blows across the snowy land..through the leafless trees....remember seveso ? :(

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/20/nyreg ... ml?_r=1&hp

Newly Poor Swell Lines at Food Banks Nationwide

By JULIE BOSMAN
Published: February 19, 2009

MORRISTOWN, N.J. — Cindy Dreeszen and her husband live in one of the wealthiest counties in the United States. They have steady jobs, his at a movie theater and hers at a government office. Together, they earn about $55,000 a year.

But with a 17-month-old son, another baby on the way, and, as Ms. Dreeszen put it, “the cost of everything going up and up,” the couple went to a food pantry this month to ask for some free groceries.

“I didn’t think we’d even be allowed to come here,” said Ms. Dreeszen, 41, glancing around at the shelves of fruit, whole-wheat pasta and baby food. “This is totally something that I never expected to happen, to have to resort to this.”

Once a crutch for the most needy, food pantries have responded to the deepening recession by opening their doors to what one pantry organizer described as “the next layer of people,” a rapidly expanding group of child-care workers, nurse’s aides, real estate agents and secretaries who are facing a financial crisis for the first time. Over all, demand at food banks across the country increased by 30 percent in 2008 from the previous year, according to a survey by Feeding America, which distributes more than two billion pounds of food every year. And while pantries usually see a drop in demand after the holiday season, many in upscale suburbs this year are experiencing the opposite.

Here in Morris County (median household income, $82,173), the Interfaith Food Pantry added extra hours this month after seeing a 24 percent increase in customers and 45 percent increase in food distributed in November, December and January compared with the same period last year.

In Lake Forest, Ill., a wealthy Chicago suburb, a pantry in an Episcopal church that used to attract people from less affluent towns nearby has been flooded with people who have lost jobs. In Greenwich, Conn., one pantry organizer reported a “tremendous” increase in demand for food since December, with out-of-work landscapers and housekeepers as well as real estate professionals who have not made a sale in months filling the line.

And amid the million-dollar houses of Marin County, Calif., a pantry at the San Geronimo Valley Community Center last month changed its policy to allow people to stop by once a week instead of every other week, since there are so many new faces in line alongside the regulars.

“We’re seeing people who work at banks, for software firms, for marketing firms,
and they’re all losing their jobs,” said Dave Cort, the executive director. “Here we are in big, fancy Marin County, but we have people who are standing in line with their eyes wide open, thinking, ‘Oh my God, I can’t believe I’m here.’ ”

The demand is not limited to pantries, which distribute groceries from food banks, supermarket surplus and individuals who donate through church or school can drives. The number of food-stamp recipients was up by 17 percent across New York State, and 12 percent in New Jersey, in November from a year before. When a mobile unit of the Essex County welfare office, as part of a pilot program to distribute food-stamp applications in other counties, stopped in Shop-Rite parking lots recently in Morris County, it was swamped.

“If one of our richest counties has people signing up for food stamps who have never signed up before, that indicates the depth of this problem with the lack of food,” said Kathleen DiChiara, executive director of Community FoodBank of New Jersey. “It’s the canary in the coal mine.”

Experts said that chronically poor people tend to adapt to the periods where money is scarce by asking for support from friends or tapping into social services, but that working-class people who suddenly lose jobs or homes often find themselves at sea, unsure how to navigate the system or ashamed to seek help.
(true...thats a skill pakis for instance have perfected)

It is those people who, over the last several months, have started arriving in growing numbers at food pantries, which are often the first tentative step for those whose incomes are too high to qualify for government assistance. (Many pantries have a no-questions policy, though they might determine how many bags of groceries a customer can receive by the number of people in their household.)

“These are people who never really had to ask for help before,” said Brenda Beavers, human services director for the Salvation Army in New Jersey, which dispenses emergency food supplies at 30 pantries throughout the state. “They were once givers and now they’re having to ask for assistance.”

In Morristown, Rosemary Gilmartin, executive director of the Interfaith Food Pantry, has over the last several months watched a steady stream of new faces pushing shopping carts among the cardboard boxes on metal shelves in a former nursing home. In 2008, the pantry gave away 620,000 pounds of food, a 24 percent increase from 2007.

Along with fresh apples and Nature’s Path Organic Soy Plus cereal, Ms. Gilmartin, who began volunteering at the pantry 13 years ago, gives children “Dora the Explorer” books. In the past few months, she has found herself fielding more inquiries about social service programs like the Earned Income Tax Credit from people who clearly had never before hovered this close to the poverty line.

“They look shellshocked,” she said. “I’ve had people walk back out and say, ‘I can’t do this.’ ”

She recalled one recent walk-in, a television sound engineer who lost his house to foreclosure. “His life just went reee-eeer,” Ms. Gilmartin said, twirling her finger in a downward circle.

Usually, the pantry distributes food at two locations several mornings a week, including most Saturdays, and on the first and third Wednesday evenings of the month. But this month, Ms. Gilmartin decided to also open on the second Wednesday because she has been having trouble accommodating everyone.

By 5:30 p.m. on that Wednesday, a half-hour before the pantry was to open, a line of nearly two dozen had formed. Once inside, people were escorted individually through the shelves of low-fat mozzarella cheese, dried beans and Pepperidge Farm chocolate chunk cookies, where a few paused — often reluctantly — to explain what had brought them.

“A deadbeat husband and a loss of a job,” said one woman in her 20s, who spoke on condition of anonymity because she did not want her friends to know she had been visiting the pantry. It was her second visit. The first time, she could barely get out of her car. “Let me put it this way — it took me a long time to come here,” the woman said as she added a bag of lentils to her cart. “I felt like a loser. I felt like a total lowlife.”

A woman wearing gold earrings and a red Vera Bradley bag over her shoulder, who is in her 50s and gave only her first name, Louise, said she had recently lost her job and has been struggling to pay her bills.

“I can understand why people would be embarrassed to come here,” she said, as she loaded her groceries into the trunk of her silver Chevy Malibu. “I guess I am a little embarrassed.”

Joan Verba, 53, said she had been coming up short financially since she quit her job as an accountant after her husband became ill with cancer. When her husband died, leaving her and a 14-year-old son, she put off plans to re-enter the work force.

“The job market is so bad right now,” she said. “My son eats 24-7. I just need this to supplement my food bills.”

Her mother, Carol Morrison, stood nearby. “I’m just here for moral support,” she said, inspecting the shelves. “And nosiness.”

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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Singha » 19 Feb 2009 23:43


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Re: Perspectives on the global economic meltdown

Postby Raghav K » 20 Feb 2009 00:04

222000 store closings this year. :eek:
Nice video.

Get Ready for Mass Retail Closings
Posted Feb 19, 2009 11:58am EST by Tech Ticker in Investing, Products and Trends, Recession
About 220,000 stores may close this year in America, says our guest, retail consultant Howard Davidowitz of Davidowitz & Associates. As more Americans save and spend less, it's clear there's too much retail space. Just visit Web site deadmalls.com and track retail's growing body count. And luxury retailers? They're on "life support," Davidowitz says.
Among the brandname stores Davidowitz says are in trouble:
*
Nordstrom *
Neiman Marcus *
Tiffany *
Jeweler Zale Corp. *
Saks *
J.C. Penney *
Sears

Plus, earlier we discussed:

* Retail goods on sale -- perhaps permanently.
* And the 'worst is yet to come:' Americans' standard of living permanently changed.

http://finance.yahoo.com/techticker/article/187534/Get-Ready-for-Mass-Retail-Closings;_ylt=AgMATPOVriQaMFc5aXs6F1PyKIkA


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