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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 19, 2013 2:30 pm 
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Question: Apparently some airports are now installing basically air lock style doors for egress from the airport in lue of actual security on site. This is to leave the freaking airport. To disuade people from coming back in to baggage claim I would guess I don't really see the point and certainly not the expense.

Why? Why not just employ more security officers?

http://consumerist.com/2013/11/18/new-a ... thing-fun/


The terrorists have won already. Air Travel is fucking miserable.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 19, 2013 4:52 pm 
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This is from the NY Post, so I think you need to take it with a grain of salt. But, it wouldn't surprise me if true.

Quote:
Census ‘faked’ 2012 election jobs report

In the home stretch of the 2012 presidential campaign, from August to September, the unemployment rate fell sharply — raising eyebrows from Wall Street to Washington.

The decline — from 8.1 percent in August to 7.8 percent in September — might not have been all it seemed. The numbers, according to a reliable source, were manipulated.

And the Census Bureau, which does the unemployment survey, knew it.

Just two years before the presidential election, the Census Bureau had caught an employee fabricating data that went into the unemployment report, which is one of the most closely watched measures of the economy.

And a knowledgeable source says the deception went beyond that one employee — that it escalated at the time President Obama was seeking reelection in 2012 and continues today.

“He’s not the only one,” said the source, who asked to remain anonymous for now but is willing to talk with the Labor Department and Congress if asked.

The Census employee caught faking the results is Julius Buckmon, according to confidential Census documents obtained by The Post. Buckmon told me in an interview this past weekend that he was told to make up information by higher-ups at Census.
Ironically, it was Labor’s demanding standards that left the door open to manipulation.

Labor requires Census to achieve a 90 percent success rate on its interviews — meaning it needed to reach 9 out of 10 households targeted and report back on their jobs status.

Census currently has six regions from which surveys are conducted. The New York and Philadelphia regions, I’m told, had been coming up short of the 90 percent.

Philadelphia filled the gap with fake interviews.

“It was a phone conversation — I forget the exact words — but it was, ‘Go ahead and fabricate it’ to make it what it was,” Buckmon told me.

Census, under contract from the Labor Department, conducts the household survey used to tabulate the unemployment rate.
Interviews with some 60,000 household go into each month’s jobless number, which currently stands at 7.3 percent. Since this is considered a scientific poll, each one of the households interviewed represents 5,000 homes in the US.

Buckmon, it turns out, was a very ambitious employee. He conducted three times as many household interviews as his peers, my source said.

By making up survey results — and, essentially, creating people out of thin air and giving them jobs — Buckmon’s actions could have lowered the jobless rate.

Buckmon said he filled out surveys for people he couldn’t reach by phone or who didn’t answer their doors.

But, Buckmon says, he was never told how to answer the questions about whether these nonexistent people were employed or not, looking for work, or have given up.

But people who know how the survey works say that simply by creating people and filling out surveys in their name would boost the number of folks reported as employed.

Census never publicly disclosed the falsification. Nor did it inform Labor that its data was tainted.

“Yes, absolutely they should have told us,” said a Labor spokesman. “It would be normal procedure to notify us if there is a problem with data collection.”

Census appears to have looked into only a handful of instances of falsification by Buckmon, although more than a dozen instances were reported, according to internal documents.

In one document from the probe, Program Coordinator Joal Crosby was ask in 2010, “Why was the suspected … possible data falsification on all (underscored) other survey work for which data falsification was suspected not investigated by the region?”
On one document seen by The Post, Crosby hand-wrote the answer: “Unable to determine why an investigation was not done for CPS,” or the Current Population Survey — the official name for the unemployment report.

With regard to the Consumer Expenditure survey, only four instances of falsification were looked into, while 14 were reported.

I’ve been suspicious of the Census Bureau for a long time.

During the 2010 Census report — an enormous and costly survey of the entire country that goes on for a full year — I suspected (and wrote in a number of columns) that Census was inexplicably hiring and firing temporary workers.

I suspected that this turnover of employees was being done purposely to boost the number of new jobs being report each month. (The Labor Department does not use the Census Bureau for its other monthly survey of new jobs — commonly referred to as the Establishment Survey.)

Last week I offered to give all the information I have, including names, dates and charges to Labor’s inspector general.

I’m waiting to hear back from Labor.

I hope the next stop will be Congress, since manipulation of data like this not only gives voters the wrong impression of the economy but also leads lawmakers, the Federal Reserve and companies to make uninformed decisions.

To cite just one instance, the Fed is targeting the curtailment of its so-called quantitative easing money-printing/bond-buying fiasco to the unemployment rate for which Census provided the false information.

So falsifying this would, in essence, have dire consequences for the country.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Thu November 21, 2013 11:49 pm 
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This is a serious question that I've had for a while. The way I understand it, when the Fed wants to start selling Treasury securites (or print money, if you will), there's an exclusive number of banks (primary dealers) that get the privilege to deal directly with the Fed. When you look at the list of primary dealers, it's the usual suspects of the largest financial institutions. My question is this: what makes these institutions so special in that they are the only ones that get to deal directly with the Fed?


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 22, 2013 2:23 am 
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Green Habit wrote:
This is a serious question that I've had for a while. The way I understand it, when the Fed wants to start selling Treasury securites (or print money, if you will), there's an exclusive number of banks (primary dealers) that get the privilege to deal directly with the Fed. When you look at the list of primary dealers, it's the usual suspects of the largest financial institutions. My question is this: what makes these institutions so special in that they are the only ones that get to deal directly with the Fed?


basically a family tree sprouted off of Goldman..


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 22, 2013 2:27 am 
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stip wrote:
2.) The underutilized "industrial capacity" may not be capable of producing goods that provide a value to society regardless of profit.



I would assume he would argue, and I would agree if he did, that the work these jobs produce is probably providing a value to society. I guess this also depends on what constitutes 'value'. Most of the shit we buy now is of dubious value. We buy it because it's there, or because we're convinced it would be good for us if we did. I'm not sure why that couldn't continue.

broken iris wrote:
3.) The unemployed or underemployed may not possess skills that could be utilized by existing employers



that's possible, although many of the unemployed HAD skills that were potentially useful at one point. And it's not like service jobs require advanced degrees. And what skills these people have are likely to atrophy while they are out of work. I'd argue that while some jobs are better than others, employment is just a flat investment in human beings.

broken iris wrote:
4.) The unemployed or underemployed may not have the intellectual capacity to be retrained to work in viable industries


As long as we deem that work is necessary to be able to access the resources necessary for survival work becomes a positive good in itself.


If your point is that in capitalism, work is good for the economy and the soul, I agree. And let's say I concede that it's in society's interest and within the government's purview to try and correct this. What possibilities exist that could employ millions? More strip mining? Some kind of large scale agricultural project in the south?

stip wrote:
There's a larger question underneath some of your points that is probably worth its own thread, which is whether or not we need to rethink the nature of the relationship between work and access to resources as we just need fewer workers to staff the 'viable' industries.


Well.. that's the thing. Someone is going to have to work. In a knowledge based economy, it's not going to be the people with some skill, but those will in-demand skills and with the genetics to continuously learn new skills. That's a pretty small subset of the population. Your response suggests you think those people should work for the good of everyone else. Intellectual slaves, like the awful Atlas Shrugged.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 22, 2013 3:35 am 
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I think you are overhyping the 'knowledge based economy' a bit

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 22, 2013 8:10 pm 
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stip wrote:
I think you are overhyping the 'knowledge based economy' a bit


Tell that to everyone in Arlington and San Francisco. It's not that we necessarily need the elements of the knowledge-based economy, we don't need the Internet and cell phones and farming robots, but we can become dependent on them (and for the most part we have), and that gives them incredible power over us.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Fri November 22, 2013 9:26 pm 
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doug rr wrote:
Green Habit wrote:
This is a serious question that I've had for a while. The way I understand it, when the Fed wants to start selling Treasury securites (or print money, if you will), there's an exclusive number of banks (primary dealers) that get the privilege to deal directly with the Fed. When you look at the list of primary dealers, it's the usual suspects of the largest financial institutions. My question is this: what makes these institutions so special in that they are the only ones that get to deal directly with the Fed?
basically a family tree sprouted off of Goldman..
Sounds about right. :haha: But hypothetically, does the Fed have unilateral power as to whom it declares a primary dealer?


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun November 24, 2013 10:58 am 
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broken iris wrote:
stip wrote:
I think you are overhyping the 'knowledge based economy' a bit


Tell that to everyone in Arlington and San Francisco. It's not that we necessarily need the elements of the knowledge-based economy, we don't need the Internet and cell phones and farming robots, but we can become dependent on them (and for the most part we have), and that gives them incredible power over us.


I would suggest that Arlington and San Francisco flatter themselves when they consider themselves a template for the rest of the country

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Sun November 24, 2013 2:33 pm 
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stip wrote:
broken iris wrote:
stip wrote:
I think you are overhyping the 'knowledge based economy' a bit


Tell that to everyone in Arlington and San Francisco. It's not that we necessarily need the elements of the knowledge-based economy, we don't need the Internet and cell phones and farming robots, but we can become dependent on them (and for the most part we have), and that gives them incredible power over us.


I would suggest that Arlington and San Francisco flatter themselves when they consider themselves a template for the rest of the country


They don't consider themselves a template, they consider themselves our superiors and their success in equity markets misallocates resources away any industry that may actually solve what Prof. Wolf was getting at in that article.




We are much closer to Brave New World than you may be willing to admit.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Mon November 25, 2013 3:29 am 
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We may be talking past each other here. Do we both agree that the knowledge based economy is overhyped as the next necessary phase of economic evolution, which is to say that it's power and influence reflects economic and political strength (which can be contested) more than something that is ontologically inevitable?

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Mon November 25, 2013 7:10 pm 
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stip wrote:
We may be talking past each other here. Do we both agree that the knowledge based economy is overhyped as the next necessary phase of economic evolution, which is to say that it's power and influence reflects economic and political strength (which can be contested) more than something that is ontologically inevitable?


No, I don't think we agree on that. I think the technocrats underestimate their weaknesses (there is only so much Gallium to make integrated circuits and we still haven't solved graphene on an industrial scale) and as the person in the video acknowledges, they cannot fight mobs (yet), but we overestimate democracy's power to fight them in a meaningful time-frame.

Here's a couple of articles that hint at the issue:
http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/silicon-chasm_768037.html?page=1
http://freebeacon.com/welcome-to-the-jungle/


Zuckerberg's immigration stance is a perfect example of them wielding power. He speaks about "civil rights" (thus if you oppose him you are a racist) while really wanting cheap imported coders that he doesn't have to offer stock options to, as opposed to his current expensive ones that could threaten his power or create a rival business.

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Last edited by broken iris on Mon November 25, 2013 9:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Mon November 25, 2013 8:54 pm 
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broken iris wrote:
Here's a couple of articles that hint at the issue:
http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/silicon-chasm_768037.html?page=1
"Average Is Over: Powering America Beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation. There, Cowen bluntly predicted what he called “wage polarization.” The increasing ability of computers to perform ordinary tasks will inexorably transform America into an income oligarchy in which the top 15 percent of people—with skills “that are a complement to the computer”—will enjoy “cheery” labor-market prospects and soaring incomes, while the bottom 85 percent, that is to say, 267 million out of America’s 315 million people, will be lucky to find Walmart-level jobs."

I see this as the future. Full employment is a pipe dream, especially as we get more environmentally aware. Meaningful employment will be a thing of the past for that 85%. The 85% will be in no position to job share on the 15% jobs with cheery labour markets due to a skill set deficit. I can see a complete type of economic caste system being part of the social order. As much as those with good jobs are magnanimous, they will have nearly all the social and political power and will only vote so often against their short term best interests for the sake of the public good.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 3:51 am 
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this assumes the 267 million Americans decide they want to go along with this charming state of affairs. We'll see if that kind of economy can retain any functional legitimacy and if it is compatible with the sort of repressive police state it will require.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 4:46 am 
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stip wrote:
this assumes the 267 million Americans decide they want to go along with this charming state of affairs. We'll see if that kind of economy can retain any functional legitimacy and if it is compatible with the sort of repressive police state it will require.

Why do you think it will require a repressive police state? Hell, the masses are already going along with it. You don't notice because your kids are too young, you belong to the 15% and teach kids who hope to belong to the 15%. When succeeding takes a very refined skill set, you don't need a repressive police state. People drop out, lose interest and give up all on their own.

The Occupy Wall Street rallies were possibly a last gasp attempt for quite a while. When you're representing the 85%, there's going to be too many nut cases to ever have a unified, cohesive message. That played against the political capital and $ of the 15%, well it's going to take something special.

Every time I see the thread heading I get the same thought, "Not the President, not Congress, not the Senate."


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 12:21 pm 
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surfndestroy wrote:
stip wrote:
this assumes the 267 million Americans decide they want to go along with this charming state of affairs. We'll see if that kind of economy can retain any functional legitimacy and if it is compatible with the sort of repressive police state it will require.

Why do you think it will require a repressive police state? Hell, the masses are already going along with it. You don't notice because your kids are too young, you belong to the 15% and teach kids who hope to belong to the 15%. When succeeding takes a very refined skill set, you don't need a repressive police state. People drop out, lose interest and give up all on their own.

The Occupy Wall Street rallies were possibly a last gasp attempt for quite a while. When you're representing the 85%, there's going to be too many nut cases to ever have a unified, cohesive message. That played against the political capital and $ of the 15%, well it's going to take something special.

Every time I see the thread heading I get the same thought, "Not the President, not Congress, not the Senate."



I think OWS was actually the first act in what is going to become a much larger phenomena. So do people in power (political and economic). They're terrified of it. And much of the security apparatus this country has built is being retooled to protect elites from class war


I teach at a working class college. The kind of school the community college kids go to to finish their degree. I am not teaching the 15% (nor am I in it. I make 67,000 a year. With the excessive overtime I put in, which causes hardships for my family, I clock in at 78%. My wife works too, with her salary we make it up to 85% nationally, but we live in a very expensive area) . I am teaching the students who are doing everything society tells them to do and are becoming aware of the fact that they will not be rewarded for doing so. And what you are describing is precisely the stuff I do teach and research (class, power, resistance, legitimacy, alienation, exploitation, the relationship between economic and political power, and how the way we think about that relationship helps determine how we can respond to it). People may just give up and drop out on their own. The best kind of power is the power you can get people to internalize. It's cheap and effective. But it can only be maintained as long as people believe the status quo has legitimacy, and that legitimacy is declining rapidly. Then it will be protected through overt violence. And what happens after that we'll have to see.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 4:47 pm 
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stip wrote:
surfndestroy wrote:
stip wrote:
this assumes the 267 million Americans decide they want to go along with this charming state of affairs. We'll see if that kind of economy can retain any functional legitimacy and if it is compatible with the sort of repressive police state it will require.

Why do you think it will require a repressive police state? Hell, the masses are already going along with it. You don't notice because your kids are too young, you belong to the 15% and teach kids who hope to belong to the 15%. When succeeding takes a very refined skill set, you don't need a repressive police state. People drop out, lose interest and give up all on their own.

The Occupy Wall Street rallies were possibly a last gasp attempt for quite a while. When you're representing the 85%, there's going to be too many nut cases to ever have a unified, cohesive message. That played against the political capital and $ of the 15%, well it's going to take something special.

Every time I see the thread heading I get the same thought, "Not the President, not Congress, not the Senate."



I think OWS was actually the first act in what is going to become a much larger phenomena. So do people in power (political and economic). They're terrified of it. And much of the security apparatus this country has built is being retooled to protect elites from class war


I teach at a working class college. The kind of school the community college kids go to to finish their degree. I am not teaching the 15% (nor am I in it. I make 67,000 a year. With the excessive overtime I put in, which causes hardships for my family, I clock in at 78%. My wife works too, with her salary we make it up to 85% nationally, but we live in a very expensive area) . I am teaching the students who are doing everything society tells them to do and are becoming aware of the fact that they will not be rewarded for doing so. And what you are describing is precisely the stuff I do teach and research (class, power, resistance, legitimacy, alienation, exploitation, the relationship between economic and political power, and how the way we think about that relationship helps determine how we can respond to it). People may just give up and drop out on their own. The best kind of power is the power you can get people to internalize. It's cheap and effective. But it can only be maintained as long as people believe the status quo has legitimacy, and that legitimacy is declining rapidly. Then it will be protected through overt violence. And what happens after that we'll have to see.

I think there's something wrong with how we value things when you only make $67k. I don't understand how people with two kids get by.

I'm definitely not part of the solution. I just want to know the rules and figure out a way to make them work for me. It's self centered but it's also truthful.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 6:40 pm 
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Another problem with that article/book is that it makes gross assumptions about which and how many jobs computing technologies will eventually make obsolete, how soon or quickly they will do so, and how it will change the market landscape in general. Put another way: it bases its predictions about the future on today's reasonable understandings, which is a big mistake when talking about technology.

It's very likely that the next 30 years of digital discovery is going to make the last 30 years look like the stretch before the race, and I have to assume that things are going to get very, very weird as a result.

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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 7:19 pm 
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[quote="McParadigm"]Another problem with that article/book is that it makes gross assumptions about which and how many jobs computing technologies will eventually make obsolete, how soon or quickly they will do so, and how it will change the market landscape in general. Put another way: it bases its predictions about the future on today's reasonable understandings, which is a big mistake when talking about technology.

It's very likely that the next 30 years of digital discovery is going to make the last 30 years look like the stretch before the race, and I have to assume that things are going to get very, very weird as a result.[/quote]
I can only speak from my area of software but in the last ten years the advances made are pretty astonishing. We implemented software 18 months ago that automated much of the work of 4-5 well paid CPA's doing financial consolidation work. CPA level accounting was a career that was well paid and safe. It is going to be a dwindling field unless you find your niche, such as taxation consulting.
As the big platform software gets better, we're able to be more productive designing the reports and applications that drive the business. Automating processes that educated and smart people were previously doing.
I think Stip's ideal of full employment is a pipe dream. I just can't see it happening. Especially if any sort of care or concern is to be had for the environment. The earth has something like 3 billion working age people. My guess is that that many people at full employment would be disasterous for the world and environment.


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 Post subject: Re: Does anyone care about the economy?
PostPosted: Tue November 26, 2013 7:32 pm 
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you are still here, and so made to figure

you are an important part of the computer

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