February 14, 2014

But All Is Well … NOT

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 3:23 pm


Factory production in the U.S. unexpectedly declined in January by the most since May 2009, adding to evidence severe winter weather weighed on the economy.

The 0.8 percent decrease at manufacturers followed a revised 0.3 percent gain the prior month that was weaker than initially reported, figures from the Federal Reserve showed today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for a 0.1 percent advance. Total industrial production dropped 0.3 percent even as utility output climbed the most in almost a year.

Logically (yeah, I know that’s dangerous), if the weather is solely responsible for this and other negative reports, we should see an incredible roar-back in March and April as manufacturers frantically work to meet the massive amount of pent-up demand throughout the economy.

Who believes that?

Then for heaven’s sake, people, stop blaming the weather for everything.

Mark Zandi, Call Your Office: 4Q13 GDP Is Probably Getting Revised Down; Santelli Notes That ‘Jump Starts’ From the Fed Have Failed to Make the Economy ‘Self-Sustaining’

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:34 am

On the ADP conference call last week, Mark Zandi of Moody’s said that he “Sees no evidence to argue that Q2 will be lower than 3.2%.”

Well, some “evidence” must have since materialized.

Rick Santell at CNBC says it’s going to come in a 3.0% or below, and that 1Q14 is going to be in the 2% range (via Zero Hedge):


“… we are seeing all the revisions that I look at for the next addition of our second look at fourth quarter GDP most likely to be under 3%.”

“… maybe more important is the fact that many shops are also downgrading Q1. And it isn’t from 4% to 3%, you know, we were all thinking we were going to get the lofty numbers. We’re looking at Goldman, for example, Goldman at 1.9%.

“… the sustainability is the issue, and many of these … strategies to jump-start the economy work. But they don’t jump-start it to the point where it’s self-sustaining.”

Five years later, and the economy still isn’t self-sustaining. What a colossal failure.

Friday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (021414)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 10:00 am

This open thread will stay at or near the top today. Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow. Other topics are also fair game.

Note: Items were added between 9-10 a.m. this morning.


Newspeak — “NPR Spins Euthanasia as ‘Medical Care That May Hasten Death’”


The reason Syria’s not in the news, in a question addressed to White House Press Secretary James Carney by ABC’s Jonathan Karl, one of maybe a half-dozen reporters out there still doing the job they’re supposed to do — “Isn’t it time to acknowledge that easing the humanitarian crisis in Syria, that the President’s policy has been an absolute failure?”


Diana West, Feb. 6“A Nation of Laws, Not Men, Must Impeach Obama”


Two days in, the Associated Press’s national site still hasn’t recognized the existence of Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis’s virtual flip-flop on abortion.


Ninth Circuit Federal Appeals Court: “The Second Amendment Means Americans Have the Right to Bear Arms.” Imagine that.


The accelerating slippery slope“Belgium Approves Measure Allowing Doctors to Euthanize Children; The Belgian Parliament voted today to extend euthanasia to children with disabilities, in a move pro-life advocates worldwide had been fearing would come and expand an already much-abused euthanasia law even further.”


A congressional investigation has shown the following relative to IRS 501(c)(4) monitoring and harassment (HT Gateway Pundit):

At Washington, DC’s direction, dozens of groups operating as 501(c)(4)s were flagged for IRS surveillance, including monitoring of the groups’ activities, websites and any other publicly available information. Of these groups, 83% were right-leaning. And of the groups the IRS selected for audit, 100% were right-leaning.

But President Obama says there’s “not a smidgen of corruption” at the IRS. Well, in a perverse sense he’s right. There’s pervasive corruption.


Ron Fournier and Kirsten Powers are both sick of defending Obamacare. This is a problem with an easy solution, guys — Don’t.


CBS Blames Global Warming for Harsh Winter Weather”

NewsBusted (021414)

Filed under: NewsBusted — Tom @ 7:55 am

Here we go:

– Valentine’s Day
– Chris Matthews
– Winter Olympics
– Michelle Obama
– NYC Mayor Bill DeBlasio
– McGruff the Crime Dog
– Cher
– Kevin Trudeau
– Invisibility Cloak
– California Drought
– Jerry Brown
– Al Gore

Best Lines:

  • “People attending the Winter Olympics in Sochi are complaining about the city’s awful food. They say the food is almost as bad as a Michelle Obama school lunch.”
  • “California’s drought has gotten so severe, Governor Jerry Brown has gotten Al Gore to speak, hoping it will cause blizzard.”

Positivity: National Marriage Week recognizes foundations of society

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Washington:

Feb 13, 2014 / 05:14 pm

Catholics across the U.S. are joining in a celebration of National Marriage Week to promote the sacrament and vocation upon which society is built.

“National Marriage Week provides an opportunity for the Church, and for the entire nation, to affirm and support married couples and to promote the vocation and sacrament of marriage,” said Bethany J. Meola, assistant director of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Secretariat of Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth.

The week, she told CNA, is a chance “for the Church to remind married couples of the dignity of their vocation” and to reassure them “that the Church is in their corner and provides numerous supports for them.”

The U.S. Bishops are inviting Catholics to observe National Marriage Week from Feb. 7 to 14, joining with Catholics around the globe in celebrations for World Marriage Day, held on Feb. 9.

National Marriage Week has been celebrated in the United States since 2002, springing out of Marriage Week International and World Marriage Day.

At the week’s conclusion, Pope Francis will hold an audience with engaged couples, entitled “The Joy of Yes Forever.”

In the United States, the week includes a variety of initiatives to advance marriage, including the “For Your Marriage” and “Por Tu Matrimonio” websites, which offer marriage and relationship advice to couples, as well as “Marriage, Unique for a Reason,” which explains the purpose of marriage in society.

In addition, the bishops are hosting a virtual marriage retreat during the week, presenting daily themes for reflection, meditation and spiritual nourishment.

In a Jan. 17 letter to the bishops of the United States, Bishop Richard Malone of Buffalo praised the week’s role in helping to “promote and strengthen marriage both as a natural institution” and as a sacrament.

Bishop Malone, who chairs the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, stressed the need to recognize the proper role and value of marriage in the modern world.

“Marriage and the family face many challenges in our contemporary society,” he said, pointing to threats ranging from pornography to political attempts to redefine marriage.

He urged the bishops to remember “that in the midst of ongoing challenges, there are always opportunities to proclaim the Gospel more clearly,” pointing toward the upcoming Extraordinary Synod on the Family to take place in Rome in October 2014. …

Go here for the rest of the story.