by Doug French
hat tip: Mises Daily
Monday, May 24, 2010
Anyone who follows financial markets has to wonder at times, “What are people thinking? How did they come to make those decisions?”
It’s hard to imagine that John Muth and Robert Lucas came up with what’s known as the “rational-expectations theory,” wherein, as explained in Wikipedia,
it is assumed that outcomes that are being forecast do not differ systematically from the market equilibrium results. That is, it assumes that people do not make systematic errors when predicting the future, and deviations from perfect foresight are only random.
Muth and Lucas should watch daily programs on the financial channels like Jim Cramer’s Mad Money, which is supposedly to help individual investors, or CNBC’s Fast Money, a show clearly geared toward speculators. No viewer can watch these shows and walk away believing, “people do not make systematic errors when predicting the future.”
So while financial markets have been a series of speculative bubbles as the Federal Reserve creates money ad infinitum, rational-expectations economists Robert Flood and Robert Hodrick daringly conclude, “The current empirical tests for bubbles do not successfully establish the case that bubbles exist in asset prices.”
By Greg Palast
hat tip: opednews.com
I’ve seen this movie before. In 1989, I was a fraud investigator hired to dig into the cause of the Exxon Valdez disaster. Despite Exxon’s name on that boat, I found the party most to blame for the destruction was … British Petroleum. That’s important to know, because the way BP caused devastation in Alaska is exactly the way BP is now sliming the entire Gulf Coast.
Deepwater Horizon in flames before sinking. Photo provided by D.Becnel
Tankers run aground, wells blow out, pipes burst. It shouldn’t happen but it does. And when it does, the name of the game is containment. Both in Alaska, when the Exxon Valdez grounded, and in the Gulf over a week ago, when the Deepwater Horizon platform blew, it was British Petroleum that was charged with carrying out the Oil Spill Response Plans (“OSRP”) which the company itself drafted and filed with the government.
by Geoffery S. Shough
hat tip: GeofferyShough.wordpress.com
“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.” —Thoreau
For the past century, a general trend has taken shape in America where Americans are finding it harder and harder to make ends meet. There was a time in this country when only one member of the average household needed to work in order to support a family, and now it is not uncommon to have both adults in the household working to support their families. To make matters worse, many of the products we buy are declining in quality, and in many cases these same products are becoming more expensive. America has gone from a nation of savers and producers to a nation of debtors and consumers.
There are many explanations behind why this trend is occurring in America, but the most cogent among them is that the Central Bank, called the Federal Reserve (Fed), through its ineptitude in managing monetary policy, produces a hidden tax and causes serious imbalances in the economy with long term and far reaching effects.