October 30, 2014

3Q14 Gross Domestic Product Growth, First Reading: An Annualized 3.5 Percent (Two-Thirds From Govt. and Exports)

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:57 am

From the Bureau of Economic Analysis:

Real gross domestic product — the value of the production of goods and services in the United States, adjusted for price changes — increased at an annual rate of 3.5 percent in the third quarter of 2014, according to the “advance” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the second quarter, real GDP increased 4.6 percent.

The Bureau emphasized that the third-quarter advance estimate released today is based on source data that are incomplete or subject to further revision by the source agency (see the box on page 3 and “Comparisons of Revisions to GDP” on page 5). The “second” estimate for the third quarter, based on more complete data, will be released on November 25, 2014.

The increase in real GDP in the third quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), exports, nonresidential fixed investment, federal government spending, and state and local government spending that were partly offset by a negative contribution from private inventory investment. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, decreased.

Business Insider predicted a reading of 3 percent.

Key components:

  • Personal consumption expenditures: +1.22-point contribution, down from 1.75 point in Q3.
  • Gross investment excluding inventories: +0.74-point contribution, down from 1.45 points in Q3.
  • Inventories: -0.57-point contribution; was +1.42 points in Q3.
  • Net exports: +1.32-point contribution, up from -0.32 points in Q3.
  • Government: +0.83-point contribution, up from 0.31 points in Q3. (Could we please can all the talk about “austerity”?)

I don’t have time for detailed analysis at the moment, but my gut reaction is that today’s reading will come down in future revisions because of recently reported marginal results in durable goods and other indicators.

Zero Hedge’s Sum-up: “Sharp Slowdown In Consumption, Pushed Higher By Government Spending Spree”

Initial Unemployment Claims (103014): 287K SA; Raw Claims down 16% From Same Week Last Year

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:43 am

From the Department of Labor:

SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA

In the week ending October 25, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 287,000, an increase of 3,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised up by 1,000 from 283,000 to 284,000. The 4-week moving average was 281,000, a decrease of 250 from the previous week’s revised average.

… UNADJUSTED DATA

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 270,238 in the week ending October 25, an increase of 14,187 (or 5.5 percent) from the previous week. The seasonal factors had expected an increase of 11,639 (or 4.5 percent) from the previous week. There were 325,326 initial claims in the comparable week in 2013.

Business Insider didn’t even bother with an expectations disclosure.

The seasonal adjustment factors for last week and the same week last year were virtually identical.

This week is in sync with previous weeks, with no apparent trouble signs.

Rasmussen, With 75%-Plus ‘Wrong Track’ Results Among Everyday People: It Really Matters

Filed under: Activism,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 12:11 am

Rasmussen’s latest “right direction/wrong track” poll is consistent with previous weeks — consistent in saying that roughly three-quarters of those not in the Political Class believe that the country is on the wrong track:

Only roughly one-quarter of voters of all ages think the country is headed in the right direction.

Seventy-one percent (71%) of whites and 55% of other minority voters say the country is on the wrong track. Blacks disagree by a 43% to 38% margin.

The basis for the relatively high black dissatisfaction (considering their 93% support for President Obama’s reelection in 2012) could be an indicator that the left is losing its iron grip on the black vote. If so, that has to be considered a good thing. Everyone’s interests are better served when no one’s vote is taken for granted.

The money quote from Rasmussen:

Seventy-three percent (73%) of the Political Class believe the country is headed in the right direction, but 76% of Mainstream voters disagree.

What in the world is the Political Class — which, to remind everyone, consists of people in both major parties — smoking?

Dissatisfaction is not enough without voting to express it, which is why “It Matters“:

October 29, 2014

AP’s Bauer Effectively Admits That Media Didn’t Vet Mary Burke

M.D. Kittle at Watchdog.org’s Wisconsin Reporter scooped everyone covering the Badger State Governor’s race on Tuesday when he reported that Democratic candidate Mary Burke’s resumé is not what her campaign’s web site says it is.

Burke’s campaign bio claims that she “played a central role in Trek’s expansion as the Director of European Operations.” Kittle found “multiple former Trek executives” who told him that, in Kittle’s words, she “was fired by her own family following steep overseas financial losses and plummeting morale among Burke’s European sales staff.” The real question to me is why it took until a week before Election Day to learn this.

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USAT Lists 7 ‘Things’ Middle Class Can’t Afford, Including Medical Care

On Saturday, Erika Rawes at USA Today’s Wall Street Cheat Sheet engaged in some impressive gymnastics as she discussed the middle class and identified seven things its members “can’t afford anymore” (the headline) or that “a larger percentage of people have trouble paying for” (the content).

It’s a sloppy list. One of the items — debt — isn’t a “thing” at all, but rather the result of buying too many “things” without paying for them. Rawes also managed to avoid citing any government policies or practices which might be contributing to the problem. It’s not like there’s a shortage of items in the past 6-1/2 years (since the recession as normal people define it began), or the past dozen (if you want to go back to where the housing bubble began to inflate in earnest), or even the past 25 (if you want to talk about roughly when the mad rush to have things made in Communist China began). One of the six legitimate “things” on the list is of far more recent origin (HT Political Outcast; bolds are mine):

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CBS Fails to Challenge Warren’s Discredited ‘Republicans Cut Ebola Funding’ Claim

Tuesday’s CBS This Morning show was an especially disgraceful display of media bias.

Late yesterday morning, NewsBusters’ Jeffrey Meyer noted how the show’s Nora O’Donnell admitted to throwing “a softball of a question” at Democratic Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. The question: “What’s going to happen if Republicans take control (of the Senate)?” NB’s Scott Whitlock additionally observed that the program “alternated between confusion as to why Barack Obama may be driving Republicans to a big midterm victory and strident declarations that the GOP would have no mandate.” Still another item needs to be separately cited: Warren’s tired, refuted, but unchallenged assertion that Ebola is the GOP’s fault, specifically (bolds are mine throughout this post):

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Senator Mike Lee of Utah: It Matters

Filed under: Activism,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 3:04 pm

Lee tells Americans: “Vote this year as if your life depends on it, because it does.”

Stated more succinctly, Lee is saying to vote because “It Matters“:

And yes, it does.

October 28, 2014

Ann Romney Blasts Dems, Media Over Handling of Sheheen’s Nikki Haley ‘Whore’ Comment

Apparently Ann Romney believed that no one was going to call Democrats and the press onto the carpet over their disgraceful conduct and non-reaction, respectively, after South Carolina Democratic gubernatorial candidate Vincent Sheheen called incumbent Palmetto State Governor Nikki Haley a “whore” — and failed to “apologize” for it for four days.

Mrs. Romney, sadly, is presumptively correct. Searches indicate that the Associated Press still has no national or regional story on what Sheheen said (“we’re gonna escort whore out the door”). She correctly asserts that “if a Republican had said this, it would be blowing up in their face like nobody’s business.” For those who haven’t seen it, the Sheheen video, along with excerpts from coverage at Charleston’s Post and Courier, follow the jump.

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Latest PJ Media Column (‘Is the Left Losing Its Iron Grip on the Black Vote?’) Is Up

Filed under: Activism,Economy,Immigration,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 3:58 pm

It’s here.

It will go up here at BizzyBlog on Thursday afternoon (link won’t work until then) after the blackout expires.

The timing couldn’t be better.

Wow: ‘Chicago Activists Unchained, Destroy Black Leadership’

Filed under: Activism,Economy,Scams,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 2:21 pm

Just watch … never thought I’d see this in my lifetime … and it is sooooooo long overdue:

Chicago Activists Unchained, Destroy Black Leadership

Money Quote: “Most of the people are homeless, livin’ in the street. And it’s because of you Mr. President.”

More on the “Brother’s Keeper” program referenced in the video is here.

It looks like someone has figured out that “It Matters.”

Is An Historic Turnaround Opportunity Being Missed?

Filed under: Activism,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:56 am

Grabbed this in the process of doing my CNN post last night:

CNNenthusiasm102614

I realize you can show up and vote while not being enthusiastic, but really? After almost six years of mistreatment, GOP voters are only 2/3 as enthusiastic about doing something about it? And on the Democrat side, with all the disappointment they have with Obama and their representatives, they’re 25% less enthusiastic?

If this is an indicator of turnout compared to 2010, an historic opportunity is being missed — and the people who I would think would be less likely to show up would be those who are the most dissatisfied.

That’s not good. Turnout needs to be off the charts so that the clowns who interpret the results have no choice but to conclude that it was all about voter dissatisfaction — across the ideological board.

The alternative? As the song says, “The people in charge hope that you don’t care” — and they’ll get their way, secure in the knowledge that the populace is so beaten down that it won’t rebel against anything.

So that’s why “It Matters” that you and others you know get informed, get involved, and vote:

September Durable Goods Take a Dive

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:03 am

From the Census Bureau:

New Orders

New orders for manufactured durable goods in September decreased $3.2 billion or 1.3 percent to $241.6 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This decrease, down two consecutive months, followed an 18.3 percent August decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 0.2 percent. Excluding defense, new orders decreased 1.5 percent.

Transportation equipment, also down two consecutive months, led the decrease, $2.8 billion or 3.7 percent to $73.4 billion.

Shipments

Shipments of manufactured durable goods in September, up three of the last four months, increased $0.1 billion or 0.1 percent to $245.6 billion. This followed a 1.8 percent August decrease.

Expectations for orders were for a 0.5 percent increase.

Those are two pretty weak months for shipments, which should maybe cause the people who are blithely assuming 3 percent annualized growth in the third quarter to reconsider. But not so far:

On Thursday the government will release its first estimate for overall economic growth for the third quarter as measured by the gross domestic product. Analysts project that the economy grew at a 3 percent annual rate, and many believe growth will continue at that healthy clip in the final three months of this year.

3 percent is “healthy”? It isn’t, considering the mostly mediocre past five years.

October 27, 2014

CNN’s Poll Coverage Ignores Historically Awful 76% Voter Dissatisfaction

The most recent CNN/Opinion Research poll covering October 24-26 shows that 68 percent of those surveyed said that they are “very angry … or somewhat angry … about the way things are going in the country today,” and that 60 percent are “very scared” or “somewhat scared.” CNN’s web coverage and the poll report presented on Jake Tapper’s show today relayed that info.

But, predictably, the poll was seriously cooked. Its 31%-21%-48% breakdown of Democrats, Republicans and independents is a sick joke. Gallup’s continuously running breakdown as of mid-October, by comparison, is 29%-33%-35%, a 14-point swing from the CNN poll. So CNN’s video reassurance that voters have a one-point generic ballot preference for Democrats really translates to at least a +4 for Republicans in the real world. Especially given the poll’s party skew, the finding which didn’t make it into either the web or TV report is stunningly bad for the left — which explains why it remained hidden.

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Why ‘It Matters’: Almost 70% of Americans Are ‘Angry’; 74% Are ‘Dissatisfied’

Filed under: Activism,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:16 pm

Regardless of age, ethnicity, or party affiliation, the vast majority of Americans are:

Despite that, and though “early predictions of dismally low turnout might be too pessimistic,” they’re still not impressive by any stretch.

If you’re dissatisfied or angry and you don’t vote, you’re letting everyone else unduly influence how angry or dissatisfied you’ll be 2, 4, and more years from now. That’s why “It Matters” that you get informed, get involved, and vote:

Press Was All Over GOP Gov. Candidate’s ‘Sweetheart’ Comment in Sept., Ignores Dem’s Nikki Haley ‘Whore’ Comment

In late September, Charlie Baker, the Republican who is the party’s gubernatorial candidate in Massachusetts, told female reporter Sharman Sacchetti, who had already asked him a series of questions: “OK, this is going to be the last one, sweetheart.”

That was enough to send the press into a tizzy. Jack Coleman at NewsBusters noted how Rachel Maddow at MSNBC turned Baker’s statement into proof that the GOP is engaged in a “war on women,” even though Baker quickly apologized directly to the reporter and indicated that, as paraphrased by the Associated Press, “the comment was a mistake and doesn’t represent his work attitudes.” This would be the same Associated Press which has, based on searches, not had a single national or local story on South Carolina Democratic gubernatorial candidate Vincent Sheheen calling incumbent Republicn Nikki Haley a “whore” — even though Sheheen waited four days to (insincerely, in my view) apologize.

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