Friday, July 29, 2016

GM Signals Economy in Reverse

I was just driving by so....

"GM’s Barra says ‘undervalued’ carmaker can sustain profit" by David Welch Bloomberg News  June 08, 2016

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — General Motors Co. chief executive Mary Barra considers the largest US automaker undervalued.

It’s easy to see why after record profit last year and higher earnings in the first quarter.

Barra made the case in an interview with Bloomberg Television that GM can handle a downturn and sustain profits if the economy slumps in the next few years. The company also is making investments in ride-hailing and self-driving cars to ensure its long-term future.

“I absolutely think, and we think, we’re undervalued right now,” Barra, 54, said ahead of GM’s annual meeting Tuesday in Detroit. “We’re going to continue to work to keep making sure people understand exactly the mission of General Motors and what we’re working toward. I believe that as we continue to do that, that’s something that will take care of itself.”

Getting the stock price going is proving to be one of Barra’s most difficult challenges. Despite record profits, the shares have lingered below the $33 price from GM’s initial public offering in November 2010.

She will have a tough time getting the stock up, said David Whiston, an analyst with Morningstar Inc. in Chicago. Many investors believe that the auto market has peaked and want to see how GM weathers a downturn before going back into the stock.

“This is the biggest issue for investors,” Whiston said in a phone interview. “A lot of people think it’s peak auto and there’s no reason to own auto stocks right now. We may need a recession for people to realize GM is different than the old GM.”

There is one coming because a debate is expected to rage next year on whether the country’s banking system is strong enough to withstand another crisis.


Sales are already slowing, and look on the bright side; it will enable you to get a new gig.


GM on the hook for ignition lawsuits, court rules 

It's a major setback for GM, and thus AmeriKa.

Regulators look into exhaust fume problem in Ford Explorers
Suzuki chairman to step down as chief executive after fuel economy scandal
Takata CEO to step down in midst of costly air-bag recall
GM recalling Takata inflators, but says they are safe

Some companies are still installing them!

US urges owners of older Hondas and Acuras to stop driving them
Feds probe Fiat Chrysler over alleged false sales reports

That caused Fiat Chrysler to 1,300 layoffs in Michigan, a swing state in this election that -- be a free and fair one -- should go red this year.

Time to go to work:

"San Francisco bracing for life after tech bubble" by Alison Vekshin Bloomberg News  June 10, 2016

SAN FRANCISCO — San Francisco is preparing for a different kind of Big One.

Municipal officials are drafting an ‘‘economic resiliency plan’’ — one of the first of its kind in the United States — to ensure the city of 865,000 can better withstand a financial earthquake akin to the one that roiled global markets in 2008 and left some US cities on the verge of economic ruin.

San Francisco leaders are still haunted by memories of the dot-com bubble of the early 2000s and the Great Recession, which caused the largest collapse in state revenues on record and forced cities to reduce police spending, close libraries, and wade deeper into public-pension debt.

Some cities and states are trying to ensure they aren’t caught off guard again by boosting reserves and girding their residents against the next collapse. Utah is stress-testing its budget to find weakness in advance.

‘‘There are things that you need to do to prepare your house so it doesn’t fall down,’’ said Todd Rufo, director of the San Francisco Office of Economic and Workforce Development. ‘‘We haven’t forgotten what 2008 was like and that’s why we want to be as prepared as we can be.’’

The propaganda pre$$ now the preppers they laughed at?

A tech boom spurred by companies like Twitter, Uber Technologies, and Airbnb has transformed San Francisco into one of the hottest economies in the United States. The unemployment rate was 3.1 percent in April, the lowest since 2000, and home values are at a median of $1.1 million, the largest among the 50 biggest US cities. Mayor Edwin Lee on May 31 released a record $9.6 billion budget proposal.

But officials haven’t forgotten when a projected $460 million shortfall in the fiscal 2010 budget forced 1,600 job cuts, the closing of city-owned recreation centers, reductions in street cleaning and a program that provided subsidized meals for seniors, and the need to pull $79 million from a rainy-day fund. Statewide, the cities of Stockton and San Bernardino filed for municipal bankruptcy.

‘‘The impacts of the last economic downturn resulted in near double-digit unemployment with thousands of residents out of work and our small businesses left struggling,’’ Lee said in a statement. ‘‘We must not take for granted the vibrancy of our economy. Now is the time to plan ahead.’’

San Francisco’s report, to be released in about eight months, will offer step-by-step actions aimed at protecting jobs and industries and spell out how to best spend tax dollars and federal stimulus funds on public works projects to prop up the local economy.

While California’s budget has recovered from the recession and has enjoyed several years of surpluses, Governor Jerry Brown repeatedly warns the good times won’t last and has insisted the state stash away billions to gird against spending cuts once the economy falters.

I need to explain something to you here. 

The state has already stashed billions that have been lost through corruption, you are straining for services out there, and these guys are saying stash the money for later. As in Massachusetts, it's to make bond rating agencies happy.

You know, the same ratings agencies that signed off on all the MBS- and CDO-backed debt schemes and rated them triple AAA, which pension funds, college endowments, cities, and towns then bought. When they all collapsed like a house of cards, so did your pensions. That is why the pre$$ did a quick pivot to collective labor givebacks and why the pensions have never come back.

Btw, what f***ing good times is he talking about?

‘‘In any scenario, there are no halcyon days ahead,’’ Brown said in May when he updated his budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Is that the drug they are giving him?


Maybe this will help:

San Francisco enacts broad ban on foam cups, coolers, toys

San Francisco plan to rent out grassy park space draws furor

Just another big city.

And from the bigge$t city of all:

"Janet Yellen says uncertainties justify cautious approach on rates" by Christopher Condon Bloomberg News  June 21, 2016

WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen opened two days of semiannual monetary-policy hearings saying that despite her own optimism about the economy’s longer-run prospects, “we cannot rule out the possibility expressed by some prominent economists that the slow productivity growth seen in recent years will continue into the future.”

Yellen’s remarks move her closer to the argument made for some time by former treasury secretary Lawrence Summers that forces holding down growth and interest rates may be longlasting. St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, who until recently had taken a more hawkish stance on policy, also shifted his views in a paper published last week suggesting the US economy is stuck in a rut for at least the next two to three years.

Must be why we are getting so many shootings, terror events, and war mongering from the authorities and their mouthpiece pre$$.

Responding to questions from lawmakers, Yellen said the odds of a US recession were low. She also said the central bank stood ready to act if needed in the event UK voters decide to leave the European Union, causing financial-market turmoil....

Yeah, blame them.


Also seeYellen faces GOP criticism over weak economic growth

That's the mechanic fixing the economy?

That made stocks slip and you best stay put.

The next time she opened her mouth, she....

raised the risk of recession over the next year to 50 percent. ‘‘We have long argued that the US economic and business cycle that started in 2009 is in its descending, rather than ascending, phase,’’ he said. The fog of doubt surrounding the Fed’s next move is making Yellen’s congressional testimony Wednesday particularly tricky." 

Yeah, it's tough to lie right in public like that, and their "long argued point" is in opposition to what the administration and pre$$ is spewing on a daily basis. 

Of course, the main worry is that... 

"financial companies were among the biggest decliners amid growing anxiety that interest rates would remain low and sap bank profits."

Yellen yelled that she would not reverse course on interest rates, but "economic growth has once again disappointed the Fed’s expectations in the early months of 2016."

If they are con$i$tently wrong, why is the pre$$ li$tening to them?

Then questions began to grow over the...

"bad loans piling up — or that have not been dealt with effectively since the global financial crisis."

At a time when the...

"central banks the saviors during the crisis —  are finding their toolboxes empty

and are growing....

"increasingly uncertain about the fate of the nation’s economic recovery, as global turmoil threw into question forecasts they had made just six weeks earlier. There were bright spots, however. The ongoing strength of the labor market was cited." 

Good thing so many of us have dropped out entirely, and how wonderful for them to have saved us with our money from the crisis they created and profited from, huh? 

And you wonder why I'm no longer reading this slop?

It's not for you or me, it's a banker's pre$$ bordering on public fellatio.

The question now becomes....

"have central banks lost their ability to boost struggling economies?" 

Why do you think those economies are struggling?

Fortunately, they are too bigger to fail, so they will be kept alive with another bailout if need be.

And look at who they are blaming: 

"The Fed is waiting for consumer spending to pick up, which could happen if Americans spend more of their savings from lower gas prices. 

Yeah, blame it on the very same people who have been impoverished by your policies -- the same policies that also so enriched them.

This week, the government said retail sales slipped in February and that Americans spent less in January than previously estimated. The Fed has two mandates: to maximize employment and to keep prices stable."

Meaning you were LIED TO by this government -- TWICE! 

And that thing about the Fed mandates.... what's that from, a p.r. brochure they hand out?

Just watching the bouncing ball now....

Federal Reserve to meet, discuss higher interest rates
Fed officials differ on inflation
Fed minutes show officials wary of April rate hike

"Finance ministers and central bankers from around the globe gather in Washington this week for spring meetings of the IMF and World Bank, as well as a Group of 20 session."

Those pathetic patsy terrorists that are backed by the U.S. and their allies sure have a horrible sense of timing, huh? They never really hit important people or things unless they are war games or crisis drills planned.

Fed considering interest rate hike next month
Negative rates fail to spur investment in Europe

They found that stealing your money didn't help you spend it(??).

Fed survey finds modest growth in economy in many regions
Fed gives OK to 30 banks to up dividends, buy back shares
Fed takes step toward rate hike later this year

Let me step back minute:

"Federal Reserve chairman Janet Yellen, speaking at the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia, painted an optimistic picture of the health of the US economy on Monday. Yellen emphasized the progress the economy continues to make in recovering from the Great Recession. Mostly, though, Yellen stressed her optimism in the path of the recovery, citing employment gains, wage growth, and the relatively low number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment insurance. ‘‘The overall labor market situation,’’ she said, ‘‘has been quite positive.’’

Yes, ‘‘Yellen’s speech was clearly aimed at calming nerves.’’ 


Bank mergers increase as profits are squeezed

Let's take a look at the usurious statements:

"Bank of America’s earnings fell 20 percent in the second quarter, the bank said Monday, as historically low interest rates dented the bank’s profitability, just as they have done at major competitors. The Charlotte, N.C.-based banking giant earned $3.87 billion, or 36 cents per share, before dividends to preferred shareholders. That’s down from $4.8 billion, or 43 cents per share, in the same period a year earlier. The results beat analysts’ expectations, however. Analysts polled by FactSet expected the bank to earn 33 cents per share. Revenue at the nation’s second-largest bank by assets fell to $20.4 billion from $21.96 billion."


Bank of America Boosts CEO pay 23 percent

How poor was their profit?

"Chad Gifford, one of the leading figures in Boston’s financial community, will end a 50-year career in banking next month when he retires from the board of Bank of America Corp. Gifford, 73, has served on Bank of America’s board since 2004. When Gifford retired as an executive of Bank of America in 2005, he received a $16 million severance package, plus the right to purchase Red Sox tickets from the bank’s corporate tickets for the rest of his life. Gifford was the highest paid nonmanagement director on Bank of America’s board last year, earning more than $607,000 in fees, stock award and other compensation, including a secretary and office space. Gifford also still continues to earn essentially a pension from Bank of America. As part of a supplemental retirement plan, the bank has been paying him about $3.1 million annually for life since 2005. Bank of America announced Gifford’s retirement from the board in its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday. His last day will be the bank’s annual meeting on April 27."

I'll bet Montag is feeling poor.

John Henry even sent his Asian girl over to perform some fellatio:

"What drives Chad Gifford crazy? Big bank bashing" by Shirley Leung Globe Staff  March 25, 2016

When he sees both Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump and US Senator Elizabeth Warren find common ground attacking bankers, Chad Gifford is beside himself.

“That drives me crazy,” said the 73-year-old banker, who will retire next month from the board of Bank of America. “We have not done a good enough job explaining the importance of big banks.”

By “we,” he means the banking industry, which has become the boogeyman for what’s wrong with America.

Gifford’s departure from Bank of America marks the end of an era of a different kind, back when prominent bank executives had time to play an outsized civic role. Their portfolios weren’t as big, their empires not as far-flung.

That allowed Gifford to dabble as a deal maker in other areas, including brokering legislation that persuaded the New England Patriots to build a new stadium in Foxborough instead of moving to Connecticut.

He sat on nonprofit and corporate boards; locally, Gifford is still on the boards of Eversource Energy and Partners HealthCare. He has also been a passionate supporter of Boston public schools. When FleetBoston was sold to Bank of America, he made sure the new owner from North Carolina maintained a certain level of philanthropy in Boston, recalled Anne Finucane, the vice chairman of Bank of America who has worked with Gifford since their FleetBoston days.

Finucane said that Bank of America today gives away more money locally — close to $12 million annually — than Fleet did.

Gifford is also the last of his kind in another respect — in the art of the bank mega deal.

“I don’t see big banks like JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America merging any time soon,” said Cathy Minehan, the former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. “Like everything else, there are pendulums in life. . . . We’re still in the swing of regulation, regulating everything that walks, particularly what exists in the big bank.”

Which means it’s not clear where Bank of America — and Gifford’s legacy — may end up....

Good idea.



Lawyer says his client just wasn’t that bright

Citigroup changes way executive bonuses are calculated

"Bruce Van Saun (left), the chief executive officer of Citizens Financial Group, took home a nearly $8 million compensation package in 2015."

Robbery at Citizen’s Bank

Brockton man sentenced to 10 years for bank robbery spree

Don't worry; he didn't work there.

Two former Deutsche Bank traders charged with rigging interest rates

Former Teamsters member sentenced to prison

My printed headline says the judge was lenient.

Rule to require employers to disclose use of anti-union consultants

The lying Labor Department looking out for you!

Eastern Bank gets to $10 billion mark

"Goldman Sachs had its worst quarter in more than four years as volatile markets hit nearly all of the company’s business lines. In results announced Tuesday morning, Goldman said that its revenue in the first three months of the year declined 40 percent from the same period a year earlier. Its profit was down even more sharply. The company earned $1.1 billion, or $2.68 a share, down 55 percent from the year-earlier period."

Goldman sells stakes in 5 hedge funds for $800m

Time to close shop then.


"Stocks climbed again Wednesday as quarterly earnings from JPMorgan Chase gave the banking sector a big lift. The largest US bank led a rally in financial stocks, rising 4.2 percent after its results came in better than expected. The market’s gains over the last two days have brought stocks to their highest levels of 2016. Julian Emanuel, at UBS, said it didn’t take much to send banks, the worst-performing sector this year, higher. Any good news “is likely to underpin those stocks,’’ he said. Bank of America gained 3.9 percent, Wells Fargo rose 2.6 percent, and Citigroup jumped 5.6 percent. Banks have slumped this year because investors worry they will take big losses on loans to energy companies. Low interest rates are also affecting bank stocks because they reduce the profits banks can make on loans."

Oh, the poor banks, poor Wells Fargo, and you $ee how hard the Fed is trying to push interest rates up during this Grand Depression.

JPMorgan Chase expected to settle hiring probe

Just taking care of bu$ine$$.

JPMorgan Chase to allow ATM withdrawals via cellphone

Have no fear of hacking.

"Morgan Stanley will pay $3.2 billion in a settlement over bank practices that contributed to the 2008 financial crisis, including misrepresentations about the value of mortgage-backed securities, authorities announced Thursday. The nationwide settlement, negotiated by the working group appointed by President Obama in 2012, says the bank acknowledges that it increased the acceptable risk levels for mortgage loans pooled and sold to investors without telling them. Loans with material defects were included, packaged into the securities and sold."

Time for me to start selling:

"State Street will pay $530m to settle foreign exchange cases" by Beth Healy Globe Staff  July 26, 2016

State Street Corp. will pay $530 million to settle years of regulatory investigations and private lawsuits alleging that it overcharged pensions, mutual funds, and other clients on foreign currency trades. 

They made billions of it, but the chump change $ettlement is more accurately described as a kickback to a government that let's it happen. They are colluding on looting you!

Under an agreement with federal authorities announced Tuesday, the Boston-based financial services giant will pay $167.4 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission and $155 million to the Department of Justice, as well as $50 million to pension clients.

The payouts are aimed at concluding investigations that State Street has faced since 2009, when Wall Street whistle-blower Harry Markopolos filed a lawsuit on behalf of the nation’s largest public pension funds, in California. He later filed additional lawsuits in Massachusetts and around the country. 

Why did it take a private citizen to blow the whistle? 

Why aren't the authorities doing their job? 

Why did they overlook Bernie Madoff for decades?

“Mutual funds and other registered investment companies should not face overreaching by the very banks hired to safeguard their assets,’’ Paul G. Levenson, director of the SEC’s Boston regional office, said in a statement.

State Street said it was settling the cases because “matters of this nature can drain both time and resources.”

The agreements still need approval from a federal court.

The company said it had previously set aside reserves to cover the costs of litigation and settlement payouts. It also reserved funds to pay an additional $147.6 million to resolve private class-action lawsuits filed by customers over the same issues, the company said.

State Street is scheduled to release its quarterly earnings Wednesday morning.

The alleged misconduct took place from 1998 to 2009. A large custody bank with major investment clients around the world, State Street admitted to the US attorney that, despite promising to get customers the best possible currency trades, it had hidden mark-ups, which boosted its profits.

Get your magnifying glass out when they send you a statement, and then hustle over to your CPA's house.

“State Street’s custody clients, many of whom were public pension funds, financial institutions, and non-profit organizations, had a right to expect that State Street would execute transactions in an honest and forthright manner,” US Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz said in a statement. Instead, she said, the company reaped “substantial profits” at the expense of its custody clients.

That makes the theft even worse.

Bank of New York Mellon Corp. last year agreed to pay $714 million to settle the government’s foreign exchange probes, as well as private lawsuits.

Markopolos will earn whistle-blower’s fees in the case. This was his first major case after he tried repeatedly to alert authorites to the Bernard Madoff swindle.



"State Street Corp. has $28 trillion in assets under custody for mutual funds, pensions, and other clients. Its money management arm, State Street Global Advisors, oversees $2 trillion in investments. While revenue slid, the drop was narrower than Wall Street had anticipated. State Street said it expects a previously reported cost-cutting program to deliver $140 million in savings this year — a faster clip than projected — including a shift to new technology and staff reductions announced last fall."

Whose going to miss a few million -- or BILLION -- for that matter?

Let's take stroll down Wall Street now:

"Asked about bankers on NBC’s ‘‘Today Show’’ Thursday morning, Republican Donald Trump described the executives as ‘‘good people like everybody else. They’ve got a lot of money. I think they’re paid too much money but what are you going to do? I mean, you know, it’s one of those things.’’  

I was under the impression that you were going to do something about, Don?

‘‘It has been a long time in coming, because on this controversial issue, it is challenging to develop a rule, which both meets the mandate of the law and at the same time is focused and fair,’’ Debbie Matz, chair of the National Credit Union Administration, one of the agencies involved in developing the rules, said in statement."

Yeah, it's the credit unions that are stealing money from the banks.

I'm sure Iran had something to do with it, too, so sanctions are in order (on one of the three countries in the world that don't have a central bank. North Korea and some Pacific atoll no one cares about are the others. Thus you understand the war rhetoric surrounding Iran and Korea all these years).

"Four times a year there’s a kind of parade on Wall Street: Companies announce their quarterly earnings, banks first, then tech companies, then the retailers bringing up the rear. Stocks can rise or plunge based on the results. But regulators are wondering if it’s time for a change. Quarterly reports are supposed to help investors make informed decisions. But the Securities and Exchange Commission said it may change the rules, noting their drawbacks, like the time and money companies spend to prepare the reports and the possibility that important information gets lost in the flood of stuff companies must disclose. The SEC didn’t propose any specific new rules or commit to making changes. But it’s asking questions: What do investors need? What’s the balance between transparency and burdening companies with regulations? The simplest option might be making companies report results twice a year instead — as the European Union does."

Yeah, limit the transparency of money-laundering banks by claiming it's a move aimed at hampering cash transactions by terrorists, drug dealers, and money launderers, and allow companies to hide problems even longer. 

What a $hell game!

Maybe you can sue 'em:

"Want to sue your bank? Regulators push to make it easier" by Ken Sweet Associated Press  May 05, 2016

NEW YORK — If government regulators get their way, it’s going to become a lot easier to sue your bank.

By and large, US bank customers have signed away their right to sue their bank in court, often without being aware of it. Buried in the fine print of credit card agreements, bank accounts, and insurance policies are what are known as binding, or mandatory, arbitration clauses. It means customers are generally required to take any disputes with a bank to a third-party mediator instead of going to court.

The nation’s top consumer financial regulator wants to put a stop to that....


Still thinking about it?

As we pass the auction houses and restaurants of Midtown I'm wondering how the kings of the street are doing, and wondering who will be the new queen:

"A game changer, not just for soccer and sports, but for little girls and grown women everywhere. Mark your calendars, because today is the day that the wage gap should become an issue not for a few but for the many."

Fix the wage gap with transparency
More Boston businesses join drive to end gender wage gap

Imagine being a woman AND black:

Xerox revenue down as sector struggles

"Ursula Burns, the first African-American woman to run a Fortune 500 company, will step down as Xerox’ chief executive when the struggling technology and services company splits itself in two later this year, Xerox announced Friday. Burns has spent her entire career at Xerox. The news represents a backward step for diversity at the top of corporate America."

I'm sure someone will step forward.

White male doctors earn 35 percent more than black male doctors
Who’s best at finding women for corporate boards? Other women
Little headway made with number of women on company boards
Boston Foundation shakes up leadership, elects two women to lead board
Publicizing female CEOs has a downside
There’s more to diversity than being different

Specialists say that race and gender should not automatically disqualify anyone for a corporate diversity leadership position.

Unless you are a white male and not Jewish.

As for the world:

"The World Bank on Wednesday pledged $2.5 billion to educate and empower adolescent girls in low-income countries as a way to improve their well-being and fight poverty. Speaking at the spring meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund, World Bank president Jim Yong Kim (left, with Michelle Obama) said that enabling girls to attend school helps them delay marriage; have fewer, healthier and better educated children; get better jobs and earn money. The funds will be allocated by 2020 and 75 percent of the money will go mostly to countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia."

I love it when groups that cause poverty fight poverty, don't you? If I was so hungry from being poor I'm $ure I'd be thinking $traighter!

At least my region is better than anywhere else in the world:

"More New England employers are expected to increase hiring and raise wages in the first quarter of this year, according to a survey by the Federal Reserve. The improving labor market is making it harder for companies to find workers, particularly for retail and low-skill manufacturing jobs, the survey, released on Wednesday, found. Still, companies are feeling generally positive about the region’s economic outlook. Most retailers and manufacturers reported higher sales, even though the strong dollar and global slowdown presented some challenges. The survey, known as the Beige Book, collects anecdotal information from businesses in each of the 12 Federal Reserve districts. It is published eight times a year in advance of the central bank’s policy meetings. Fed officials next meet in Washington, D.C., on April 26 and 27. Nationwide economic growth is holding up at a modest to moderate range, with the labor market continuing to strengthen, according to the report. The unemployment rate in March was 5 percent, a slight uptick as more sidelined workers returned to the labor force in search of jobs. The survey also found that investment sales in commercial real estate in Boston are down from a year ago and prices are starting to level off. Low inventory continues to drive parts of the New England residential housing market, with median prices rising and the number of days a home is on sale declining, according to the report."

Something coming from the engine stinks!

Time to take a look under hood:

Tesla car in fatal crash was exceeding speed limit

I'm done chasing the dream and reaching for the stars.

No longer have the heart for it and am keeping my feet on the ground.

"MIT tech leader tapped for new military R&D lab" by Curt Woodward Globe Staff  July 26, 2016

The Defense Department has tapped a leader from MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory to anchor the Cambridge office of a new military R&D lab, part of a push by the Pentagon to more quickly harness innovations from the region’s tech sector.

Bernadette Johnson will serve as chief science officer of the Defense Innovation Unit-Experimental, known as DIUx, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said at an event in Cambridge Tuesday. Johnson, who has previously studied chemical and biological defense, most recently served as the Lincoln Lab’s chief technology officer.

Yup, hooray for women in high places. Soon the five most powerful people in the world will be women, and then the wars will end and the world will heal.

Cambridge is the second location for the DIUx program, which opened a Silicon Valley office last year. Carter appointed new leadership for the DIUx initiative in May, an overhaul meant to build stronger connections with private-sector entrepreneurs and tech experts.

The lab awarded a new contract within a month of that leadership change, and DIUx expects to award more contracts in the weeks ahead, including projects that focus on network security and water-based drones, the Pentagon said.

Globe and web shielding this:

"There's no shortage of money available for military research programs -- Carter's latest budget proposal would spend $72 billion on R&D next year -- but the slow pace of government contracting makes it difficult to capture the latest private sector innovations, officials said. 

That was with a B, yes, and for ONE YEAR!

Shield AI, which has operations in San Diego and Cambridge, is among several companies finalizing contracts with the Defense Department as part of  The DIUx program. Shield AI is developing small, autonomous drone aircraft intended to help American combat troops collect intelligence in tight quarters, such as inside buildings or tunnel systems."  

For all the places Pokemon can't get to!

Speeding up military contracting could also help entrepreneurs secure investment from private financiers, who want to quickly see proof that customers are interested in a startup's product, said Helen Greiner, the chief executive of drone manufacturer CyPhy Works. 


Nowhere to be found, and not the first time the Globe has backed down.

On Tuesday, Carter acknowledged the region’s long history of military R&D, which includes the pivotal role researchers at the MIT Radiation Lab played in developing modern radar systems during World War II.

More recently, Boston-area companies have worked with the military to push the boundaries of robotics, such as two- and four-legged robots from Boston Dynamics that try to mimic human and animal gaits.

The Terminator was right.

“This city is home to a tremendous legacy of service—one that will continue in a new way with DIUx,” Carter said. “It’s a testament to the fact that Boston has always been a place where great minds and great ideas come together to help advance the safety and security of our country.”

"We're now able to engineer an organism to fabricate things that might be useful in aerospace, might be useful in undersea warfare," he said. "There are a whole lot of things that the field of biology offers."

It's all coming together, pharmaceuticals, agriculture, health and medicine, technology, war contractors, as we are being ushered into a Brave New World!

Carter also announced new members of the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Advisory Board, a group headed by Alphabet Inc. chairman Eric Schmidt. New advisors from the Boston area include Broad Institute president Eric Lander and Harvard law professor Cass Sunstein.

Well, now I know my ABCs

Cass Sunstein a new advisor, huh?


Related: MIT Lincoln Labs With Defense Department

And Snowden

This next idea I first saw mentioned on the blogs, and it shows you how desperate the ma$ters of the univer$e have become while validating what I've been saying.

"To end persistent poverty, a guaranteed job or free money?" by Evan Horowitz Globe Staff  July 26, 2016

Let’s break through the narrow confines of political possibility. Say you’re ready to end poverty and ensure that everyone in America has a chance to thrive. Would it better to give every willing person a job? Or simply give them some money?

If we pursued a guaranteed jobs program, that could eliminate unemployment and dramatically boost economic output, but it would mean lots of government-sponsored work, with the risk of spending good money for poor results.

And where is this bankrupt and wasteful government going to get the money? 

Borrow it from the Fed? 

This isn't 1932 interns of U.S. government solvency!

A guaranteed income would be more universal, reaching those who can’t work, like children or people with disabilities. But such a promise could also have some perverse side effects, like enabling people to laze about rather than pursue full-time jobs.

Yeah, you wouldn't want a population living like a bunch of bankers and the rest of the elite cla$$. Corporate welfare is now problem!

The US welfare system leans heavily toward the workfare side of things, providing benefits to people who either hold jobs or earnestly pursue them. Only a few programs run on the “free money” principle, like food stamps (and even then, some states add work requirements).

Then there are all the tax subsidies and tax breaks offered to profitable corporations.

But with income inequality rising, and one in seven Americans still living in poverty, our half-hearted hybrid approach isn’t working. Why not start pushing for a more ambitious solution?

Everyone gets a job

The economy doesn’t produce enough jobs for everyone. That’s not because people are lazy or undertrained. Grit and new skills might help many folks find jobs, but there would still be unemployment. And it’s not because regulations are stifling new businesses. It’s just the way capitalist economies operate. In fact, part of the responsibility of the Federal Reserve is to make sure unemployment doesn’t get too low because that might spark inflation.

I was told above...., never mind. If that's the way "capitalist economies operate" then we need something else because this isn't working anymore, neither here or there -- unle$$ you happen to be of a certain cla$$.

And so long as unemployment is a natural part of the modern economy, there will always be families with one too few paychecks — and less money than they need.

But what if the government stepped in, with a massive jobs program open to anyone willing to work?

It’s not exactly an original idea. During the depression in the 1930s, the federal government organized a variety of large-scale jobs program through the Works Progress Administration, which not only put people to work but also helped improve the nation’s infrastructure.

A guaranteed jobs program for the 21st century could be built on a similar model. After all, we have our mix of infrastructure needs: fixing roads, restoring bridges, expanding rail services, building an energy grid better suited to a post-carbon world.

What have they been waiting for?

And while it’s true that the unemployment rate is a low 4.9 percent — nothing like during the Great Depression, when a quarter of the country was out of work — there are still a lot of people without a paycheck. Many of them just don’t count as unemployed because they’ve given up on their careers. Consider that back in 1965 nearly 95 percent of men aged 25 to 54 held jobs, today, it’s less than 85 percent.

Actually, the rate is closer to 39% because only 62% of eligible and able adults are working.

That's what my job has become: refuting the daily dose of $hit from the Bo$ton Globe.

A guaranteed jobs program could woo these lost workers back into the job market, with huge benefits for their current and future families.

They called that Soviet Communism, and you saw what happened.

That includes not just economic but also psychological gains. After all, there’s more to work than just a paycheck. Work gives meaning to peoples’ lives, a sense of productive purpose that unemployment can take away — and that a universal jobs program might help restore.

Obviously, there are a lot of details that would have to be worked out. How much do workers get paid? How would projects be chosen? What happens to workers who break rules or fail to contribute?

Who do you trust to set up such a thing? 

A lying, looting government of wealth and privilege?

But with the right approach, a universal jobs program could help provide struggling Americans with much-needed money, training, and daily purpose — not to mention a fix for the country’s crumbling infrastructure.

So what is the other idea?

Everyone gets a check

There’s a big problem, though, with a universal jobs program. It’s not really universal. It’s only for people who can work.

But most people living in poverty don’t actually fit that description. About 25 percent are children. The elderly and those with disabilities make up another 25 percent. For these people, it’s not clear that the promise of ready employment would make a substantial difference.

Pretty dim spin on those poverty statistics. They are old and young, so they don't really count.

Yup, HALF the POOR ain't really poor!

A monthly check, though — as part of what’s often called a universal basic income — that could make a real difference in their lives and prospects. Even a relatively small benefit, like $3,000 per year, might cut the nation’s poverty rate in half.

Too bad you aren't a bank, war contractor, lobbyist, or going corporate concern. I'm sure the check would be much bigger. 

$3,000 would cut the poverty rate in half? Really?  

Btw, where is all this money to pay people coming from? He hasn't addressed that yet.

Also, think how much easier it is to run a universal basic income, as opposed to a massive jobs program. All the government needs to do is cut checks and send them to every tax-filing household in the country — no vetting of beneficiaries, no detailed project management, no layers of bureaucratic oversight.

What if you are too poor to pay taxes? 

Or, like GE, you end up paying no taxes and receiving billions in government subsidy checks?

And WHERE is the GOVERNMENT going to GET the MONEY to just "EASILY CUT A CHECK?" 


There’s a certain “get-the-government-off-my-back” appeal, too, because the money doesn’t come with any strings. Everyone is free to use it as they like, based on their own priorities and interests.

Of course, with simplicity and freedom come certain risks. What recourse is there for children whose parents spend selfishly? Or women whose abusive husbands demand control of the money?

And once stories of prodigality start to surface — as they inevitably will — could the program really survive? Imagine the lurid tales of people who blow their money on alcohol, gambling, or video games. Or those who choose to stay home, rather than take jobs. Which might well happen; give people free money, and they have less incentive to work.

This has reached a level of such insult it is not even funny anymore. 

Even if they "blow" it, it will still stimulate GDP numbers the pre$$ can crow about regarding the economy! 

Maybe they will even PLAY the LOTTERY! 

After all, the state has “a responsibility to look at every possible source of new revenue, and this is one of them” -- even if they lie to you about the odds!!

Hey, “the player wins a lot, even though in the end his money is gone. There’s a lot of winning experienced along the way.”

All this coming from a STATE and PAPER that think CASINOS are going to SAVE THE ECONOMIC DAY!

Nonetheless, despite all these challenges, a universal income could still be the simplest, most effective way to spread opportunity across the US economy.

Wait . . . you forgot to talk about the costs

There’s no question that the costs would be high. For a universal jobs program, you’d need a big pot of money for payroll; with a universal basic income, you’d need to fund every check.

Depending on the details, the annual tally could run into the trillions.

But in some ways, cost is a distraction. There is no cheap way to end poverty and radically increase opportunities for all Americans. There’s only a choice between various, expensive routes. These are two of them.

That's what is new$paper, and so much for where is the money coming from. He never answered it! 

That means this is nothing but HOT AIR! They aren't going to do either! It's just something to talk about while the rich get richer and the rest get poorer. 

Of course, the rea$on he dropped it so fast is because all that free money would have the Fed printing presses rolling 24-7. 

If they were going to do that, why didn't they buy your house for you rather than bailout the banks and let them fraudulently foreclose on you? Would have cost less, too, but then the banks wouldn't have had any debt interest to collect.

What should we do?

“A little of both” counts as a perfectly fine answer. But even then, the balance is important and the political obstacles daunting.

Since the welfare reforms of the Bill Clinton era, the United States has shifted toward welfare programs that emphasize work. That’s not the same as actually providing jobs, but it does mean that help comes with lots of work requirements.

That's seems to have been forgotten amidst the campaign, that and the tough on crime policies of him and other Democrats that led to the current crisis in race relations -- and yet still the minorities line up like lemmings.

That would seem to favor a WPA-style jobs program. Not all at once, perhaps, given the likely costs and logistical difficulties of managing work for millions. But perhaps it could start with more robust support for job training — targeted at workers hurt by global trade. That way, you could build a constituency for something broader.

A universal basic income is trickier. Politically, there’s not much stomach for aid that looks like a handout.

Unless it's going to Israel, some war contractor or other concerned corporation.

Btw, they just cut food stamps again. See if you can stomach that.

Partly, that queasiness is about wasting taxpayer dollars, but also about long-simmering concerns about the mythical welfare queen.

He just dragged Reagan's lie out of the grave, and they have the gall to denigrate Trump on a daily basis. 

Does $3,000 bucks make a queen? 

Or is that only how much Hillary's pant suit cost?

Still, there may be ways to inch in this direction, possibly with a child-focused version benefit aimed at all families with kids.

Now they think waving kids in front of us will do it. 

Reached for that well once to often, you pos pre$$.

In the end though, dreaming big and acting small is no way to address the human cost of poverty or to change the economic landscape so that everybody has a shot at success.

Sometimes, large-scale change really does require dramatic action. And while there are certainly important, debate-worthy differences between a universal jobs program and universal basic income, the real fight is more primal. Should the richest country in world history marshal more of its resources to boost opportunity. Or should we accept poverty and inequality as the inevitable shadows of economic life?

Should I keep reading their mouthpiece of a paper?


It's mutton for lunch in keeping with the tone of times (serfs and lords):

"Clones of Dolly the Sheep age like any other sheep, study says" by Joanna Klein New York Times  July 26, 2016

NEW YORK — Dolly the Sheep’s birth, 20 years ago this month, blew the world away. Scientists had taken a single adult cell from a sheep’s udder, implanted it into an egg cell that had been stripped of its own DNA, and successfully created a living, breathing animal almost genetically identical to its donor.

But Dolly’s health challenges, along with other cases in which cloned animals developed symptoms of diabetes or obesity, made it harder to grapple with the ethical and safety controversies of the procedure. Not only did many countries, including Canada and Australia, ban reproductive cloning in animals, but the United Nations banned all kinds of cloning in humans in 2005. Last year the European Union made importing food from cloned animals or their offspring illegal.

The inefficiencies of cloning have fed into these prohibitions.

But “evidence disproving premature aging in cloned animals really changes the perception of how people look at cloning.” 

I wish I had one; he could take over here.

Many scientists hope that changes in perception will lead to advances in reproductive technology that will enable us to provide food for a growing global population, save endangered species and develop advanced therapies. Scientists involved in and separate from the study don’t think it will mean we might clone humans anytime soon, nor do they condone it, but they can’t say someone won’t try.

But is cloning safe?

Cloning won’t be truly safe until embryos survive at rates similar to those produced through natural conception or in vitro fertilization. Even then, welfare and ethical concerns will remain....

Abnormalities may be lurking undetected so let's hope they don't burn you to a CRISPR.


No, “they are not monsters,” but what do the real ones have planned for all us "useless eaters" that have no money? 

Time for me to recede for a while.