Monday, July 23, 2018

Stetching A Point Until It Breaks



"Nobody wins a trade war."  We've all heard it for near  half a century whilst China has been winning a trade war.  To exhibit how far some people will go to stretch a point here is an article.
----- 

Add rising lobster trap prices to the growing list of difficulties facing Maine’s lobster industry.
Some trap makers had already increased their prices in the spring to cover the rising cost of steel and labor. Then last month, the U.S. levied a 25 percent tariff on raw imported steel, driving up the cost of the Canadian, Mexican and Chinese steel used to make the plastic-coated wire mesh used in traps. American steel producers quickly raised their prices to match.

As a result, the biggest U.S. supplier of the mesh used to make Maine lobster traps, Riverdale Mills Corp. of Massachusetts, has seen the price of its raw steel double in 2018, said CEO James Knott Jr. But Riverdale is absorbing that price hit so far, by slowing the rate at which it is retiring construction debt and dipping into energy savings.
“We are who we are because of the lobster industry, so we’re doing everything we can to make sure this won’t hurt the industry,” Knott said. “We can take the hit for a while, but we need the tariffs lifted as soon as possible. It’s very damaging to us. These tariffs mean we can’t invest in our business, our employees, our equipment or technology. There is real trickle-down.”
Knott hopes the Trump administration eliminates the tariffs before he must decide between trimming jobs at Riverdale, which employs 100 people, or raising the price of its lobster trap wire, called Aquamesh. Raising the price would undoubtedly force trap makers to pass that cost along to lobster fishermen, including many of Maine’s 4,800 commercial lobstermen.

The state’s two largest trap makers, Friendship Trap Co. and Brooks Trap Mill, buy wire mesh from Riverdale. The companies said Riverdale has not passed on the cost of the steel tariff increases to them.
Still, they saw Aquamesh prices go up in 2017 and 2018 to offset the rising cost of steel, zinc and labor. That was before the tariff was implemented.

-----

Anyone who thinks the input cost of retail lobster is anything like a few percent after labor, interest, fuel, other capital is insane.  Then remember that it is 25% of the landed valu not the retail value and then remember it is 1/3rd of all imported steel. 

171 comments:

Lawyerliz said...

I don't understand thte last paragraph...
So, the cost of traps goes up, then the price of lobsters. Which restaurants will figure that enables them to raise prices 5X from previously. I don't feel sorry for people who regularly eat lobster.

Lawyerliz said...

As I've said before we've just managed to notice there is a trade war. T is managing it in the worst possible way

Rob Dawg said...

The cost of steel in traps that have a 4 year lifespan as part of the total cost of retail lobster is vanishingly small and no matter how small at least 2-3 years away before it effects the input prices.

Lawyerliz said...

Totally agree. I think it's quite possible that everyone along the chain will make more money. Consumers will pay more for lobsters. Waa-boo.

Lawyerliz said...

I was reading a book about morality.
It said our morality was mostly derived and evolved from tribal times long ago.
It also said a mentally comfortable sized tribe was between 150 and about 225. We still size departmental units and military units about that size.
So, an explanation of the blindness of the tycoon class to problems of the mid middle class and below.
The billionaires don't know anybody of that class,unless they are servants. Indeed the upper middle are often regarded as high class servants, like doctors and lawyers, dentists and architects. So the tribe of the tycoons includes other tycoons, and maybetheir wives and children, maybe fixers, and high ranked politicians, and generals sometimes and in some cultures high ranked religious leaders. There are no positions left for lower ranked people.
So there's no room for for the lesser ranked, unless they appear in very large numbers waving funny picket signs and insulting balloons. Some try to get around this by working with people of different stripes for a day or two. One of Florida's governors did that. Some royals have been known to escape and sneak around.
What to do? Jefferson sometimes worked in the fields. Many of the founders were lawyers who argued cases for the middle class. Ike didn't start out as a general.
Suggestions are welcome
One Bush has never seen a modern check out line.

Lawyerliz said...

O deported a lot of people with scarcely a murmur. His tribe included black people
With T a major blow up resulted. He insults group after group, unnecessarily. Will he end up with no tribe?

Rob Dawg said...

Trump insults to strip away years decades longer the veneer to expose long unquestioned bad wood. Our southern border as a social safety valve for Mexico for instance. In this post the lie that trade wars are always bad and always lost. The insults to NATO got renewed commitments to the pact.

LBD said...

Good Morning!

Firemane, I left a comment on the last post.

Every body wants to correct the unfair trade but do not want to take their portion of the medicine. Decades of failure make the medicine all the more bitter. High prices will have to come to support the high cost of doing business in the US. It seems to me that lobster farming is the same as AG farming. Tough biz to produce low cost raw product when the down stream players make far more profit in the end. My answer to farmers is they need to control it from harvest to retail or be at the mercy of market prices. Cut out the fat of middle men who trade for profit.

Harley is crying about tariffs but that is not their core problem. Their customers are dying and kids are not interested in old very out dated odd fire thumpers and pirate costumes. HD made a great come back and have not made the transition to the new order. They bought NHRA motorcycle drag racing not because they are good but the bought in to NHRA and the racers to rewrite the rules and the Foreign bikes didn't have a chance to compete. That's not competition, that's fixing the game.

So everybody pays now when small increments over decades should have balanced the problems out. Thanks Red and Blue mobs.

Did Bill, Hillary, Oummer, Bush ever work in the fields or was that just for us little people?

Back to work easy day clean up, pool and a nap is the order of the day.

Lawyerliz said...

The trade war thing was something I always did agree with.
How do you explain Putin? Oh, hmm I kinda agree with him on the Fed.
I still believe he is crazy and now I believe he is a traitor. I hope he isn't the first emperor. Julius Ceasar was very smart.

Unknown said...

Reading the history of what FDR tried to do makes T look calm and sane. FDR once had something struck down by the SCOTUS so he tried to get congress to double the number of judges just so he could appoint them all and stack the bench.

LBD said...

Putin? nothing there to require the Hate campaign of the loony left. I still question the release of the CIA report before the trip. The talks fallowed months of negotiating conversations and not a time to attack Putin over what I expect they did and will do again. Many countries and groups want to influence our elections. Why no Screaming about Hillary and the ridiculous reset button. T handled it correctly but poorly giving the Loonies a theme to hate T. T has a rough job and the loonies want to self destruct. IMO.

Lawyerliz said...

My son bought a Harley. After a while, he hated it.

Lawyerliz said...

Am I looney?

Lawyerliz said...

That doesn't nean Putin should help it along.

LBD said...

No your not. You put thought in to what you say and don't parrot every talking point your told.

EngineerJim said...

Just read an article that said Trump's popularity has reached a new high for his presidency.
Imagine that, after the MSM has been calling Trump a traitor for the last week.
It's pretty much what I expected -- the over the top rhetoric by Dems would drive more people to Trump.

Lawyerliz said...

I mean Trump

Lawyerliz said...

Just saw a local pol at our mom and pop eatery. One ofhis businesses is an Elvis imitator. I like Elvis, but the look isn't gonna get him votes. He's speaking at our church next week.

Lawyerliz said...

Well, the Repubs weren't happy with his performance.

You know, if we are interfering everywhere--and we are--maybe the EU and China should get a Representative hete. In a No Taxation Without Representation sort of spirit.

Lawyerliz said...

Here

Firemane said...

I'd be interested to know where the article about Trump's popularity came from.

Per 538, he's currently at a -12.0 aggregate (based on their polling average).

His current approval is 41.4. His highest outside of his first couple of months in office (by the 538 metric) was 42.6 about a month ago.

Mostly they show a pretty consistent 40-50 baseline with only a +/- 2% from that line based on immediate news. Nobody on EITHER side is changing their mind regardless of the news or rhetoric. Trump was correct that he could shoot somebody on 5th avenue and it wouldn't impact his popularity.




Rob Dawg said...

> Per 538, he's currently at a -12.0 aggregate (based on their polling average).

Look at the unadjusted numbers. The latest Rassmussen poll has 5 points cropped off Trump's approval rating.

He's close to 50% which is higher than Reagan and Obama at this point. And before Firemane correctly points out: both Reagan and Obama were in deep recession territory at this point in their terms.

EngineerJim said...

>I'd be interested to know where the article about Trump's popularity came from.

This article:
http://thehill.com/homenews/the-memo/398471-the-memo-dems-grapple-with-trumps-resilience

"An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Sunday showed Trump’s approval rating rising to 45 percent, his highest level in that poll since taking office. And an Economist/YouGov survey showed no significant deviation from Trump’s numbers the previous week."

LBD said...

Didn't Hillary win in the polls? They can really be wrong so I see little value.

Firemane said...

LBD,

I'm familiar with the Rasmussen effect.

Of course, that NBC poll was taken July 15-18. So, not exactly current.

I will point out one thing about Rasmussen compared to other pollsters. There is a fairly large "no response" or "don't know" in every poll EXCEPT Rasmussen. Rasmussen basically doesn't accept "don't know" as valid - so, the Rasmussen total (Approve/Dis) is almost always 99.

Take a look at some of the latest results if you add the approve and disapprove.

YouGov = 91
Rasmussen = 99
Quinnipiac = 96
Gallup = 96
ARG = 94
PPP = 95
Ipsos = 94
NBC = 97
SurveyMonkey = 98

Actually, for Rasmussen (the poll that skews the most right of all the major pollsters), Trump actually hit 51% approval several times in recent months:

April 4
April 16
May 4


So, the 44% approval he got on July 18th and 20th was his lowest since January.

But, this just proves the idiocy of blasting news (good or bad) based on ***ONE*** poll. Every pollster has outliers. This is one reason the aggregators (like 538 and RCP) make a lot more sense. The averages prevent the outliers from creating needless, stupid noise.

Now, I get that not everyone trusts 538, (even though of all the pollsters, he gave Trump the best chance (33%) back in 2016).

But stories about individual polls are written by morons who know nothing about the science of polling and wouldn't know a "good" poll from a bad one. They're just looking for a splashy headline to sell "today".

But, "nothing here to see" doesn't sell.

Back in December Trump's net went beyond -20.
It bounced back after he finally passed the tax bill.
And "most" of the gains from that have stuck.

But, his approval has moved mostly sideways for 3 months, in the same -10 to -12 range. But, that doesn't sell, so idiot writers create a banner headline based on a single outlier poll and watch the sheeple on one side eat it up. And three weeks from now, there will be an outlier in the other direction, and you'll watch the same exact thing happen only from people on the left slathering all over themselves about the upcoming doom for the Red team in November.

Is he doing better today than a year ago? Absolutely. That was true back in March. Is he doing any better today than the first of May. No. Nor worse.

It's still an historically bad approval rating.

Basically, he's where Carter was after the botched hostage rescue mission. And this is his HIGH point?!? Sad.




Lawyerliz said...

Yep.

LBD said...

I can decide if he is doing good or not. I am surprised how well he is doing and my vote was against Hillary more then anything. Would I vote for him today? Yes but I also have to consider who he is running against and the current events when the time comes. Till then polls are all water cooler chatter.

Lawyerliz said...

So can I. He isnt.

Lawyerliz said...

How about Elizabeth Warren? (She boasts a fine name.) I agree with her policies, now has enough credentials and is IMO honest. Smart and cute too, as well as not crazy.
But I assume you don't agree with any of her policies.

EngineerJim said...

Considering that the MSM is about 99% negative on Trump, it's amazing he has an approval of 45%

Lawyerliz said...

MSM isn't evil, hmm but it is unreliable and frivolous. Everything I've personally observed and was reported was significantly wrong. It's rather stupid to insult them all the time though.

Lawyerliz said...

And by the way China is or was winning the trade war
Bigly.

EngineerJim said...

Yeah, I don't think the term "fake news" is correct.
It should more accurately be called dishonest news.

Lawyerliz said...

Nity nite.

EngineerJim said...

Good nite.

TJandTheBear said...

Elizabeth,

How do you possibly get to "traitor"? The Clintons met Putin more times, took cash from Russia and pushed through their uranium purchase.

POTUS *job* is to engage foreign leaders in the national interest, NOT to sell out to them in their own interest. T is doing the former, whereas B&H excelled in the latter.

Lawyerliz said...

I am not opining on the Clintons. That press conference says it all IMO. You know all the arguments. I believe that proTrumpers are emotionally invested in such a way that neither fact nor logic can prevail. As someone recently said you can't logically dissuade people from a position, when they didn't get there by logic to begin with. I know that you and Dawg and the rest will feel highly insulted by that, and I'm very sorry about that, and I respect you all highly, and I'm sure in you professions you are very logical.
I personally loathed the Clintons, and still do, but I voted for her because there wasn't anybody else running who could possibly win. I think and though he was crazy, which is better than being treasonous, in that there is no personal fault in being crazy. I have tried not to loathe him, in accordance with my belief that you you attain cosmic brownie points by being able to look at any human person and say thou art God. (SEE the Art of Godliness) But there he gets on TV and says stuff that makes my blood boil, which is certainly an emotion too.

Lawyerliz said...

I would really like to resurrect Teddy Roosevelt and grow the Bull Moose party, but that option isn't available. Anybody volunteer to be Teddy? Both parties are in their senescence, I think.
I really should watch Trump, beczuse it destroys any inner harmony I have attained.

Lawyerliz said...

Should NOT!!

Lawyerliz said...

Liz ducks

Lawyerliz said...

To change to a more pleasant subject, the contractor's subs are working away. And the contractor came by to see how things were doing.

LBD said...

Good Morning!

There has never been a perfect politician. History is written in either a very romantic way or hatred. Supporting T when he makes a poor decision or comment does not make him immediately horrible. He has not crawled his way to the White House sucking up to the Republican party like the rest. First time in my life to whiteness this. When he doesn't get his way at least he is exposing problems and the needed cure. Past presidents where whips and played the party game he certainly does not. Clinton crime family had to be stopped just like Bush co. He reads the public and responds correctly with his crazy like a fox comments.

We are now openly questioning the propaganda the MSM is pumping. The extremest loonies are jumping off a cliff every week with a new hate rant provided to them, just like brainless parrots.

I am never insulted here but a bit intimidated at times. My method of self improvement is playing over my head and has worked great for me.

Keep swing and thanks Dawg!

Unknown said...

When I was younger, I never understood why there should only be two choices. I was 18 in Bush V Gore and I voted for Nader. I live in Texas so my vote doesn't matter, but if I'd been a Florida Nader voter I'd have regretted it when Bush took office. When it happened, I was too young to understand that Bill was only elected because Perot stole more votes from Bush Sr. In 2000 the Republicans actually paid people to canvas for Nader just to weaken Gore. The system rewards the underhanded, so it's no surprise when underhanded people get elected. These days I don't expect them to be good people, and I tune out their personal lives and just try to look at what they are doing and not what they are saying. T says a lot of things, but what has he actually done? Censor our scientists(bad), reform the tax code(good), understaff the executive office(bad IMO), kidnap children at our border(so bad he had to backpedal), implement tariffs(too soon to tell), and he is about to appoint a SCOTUS judge.

Lawyerliz said...

It is very pleasant here today, actually especially in the shade

Lawyerliz said...

Oh, I've never been impressedwth the MSM. Since 60s when I was at a march and a reporter tried to get a friend to start a riot.

Lawyerliz said...

Yep. In my Goldwater days, the worst people got to start up the ladder.

LBD said...

People used to trust what was reported especially in print. It was the only source of news. Then came radio and TV and we believed our lying eyes by editing. Now with satellite, cable and coat hanger TV we get flooded with from all angles and it has become very opinionated. Sifting through all of it not only is hard but close to impossible.

Ross Perot, he really did throw the election. But again the choice of the lesser evil. I didn't vote for Clinton.

Lawyerliz said...

One lSt effort on tariffs . in CR days, I recogized a trade war, and was pro tariff and I got yelled at.
But if an industry moved so they could pollute more, or pay slave wages, where there were no safety nets so they could produce more cheaply, I proposed that those industries be targeted, which we could do, some by satellite.

Lawyerliz said...

Save the steel industry? Started when i was a kid, massive fail. Let's get m.ore miners black lung

Lawyerliz said...

Last
T is not doing any of that.

Lawyerliz said...

You know the taxpayers wilo end up paying for that. Tax the mining companies to pay for black lung treatment so the full cost of production is reflected. You know T would never agree to that.

Firemane said...

On the media.

Walter Cronkite was once the most trusted man in America. This was when news was simply reading facts - (i.e. - boring). Editorial were rare - and were specifically set aside from "news" and "EDITORIAL" was posted in big white letters on those rare occasions. And, in some cases, a few days later, some other person would be given equal time to offer a rebuttal to an editorial.

Today, there is little news - Fox is 98% opinion. So is MSNBC. So is CNN. The 30 minute network nightly news are still more "news" than all of the editorializing networks - but there's still vastly too much commentary and "analysis" (often using the attempted disguise of "questions").

But, even the opinion networks and network news actually still do publish and show the facts. The problem is the *VIEWERS* are incapable of differentiating between fact and editorial.

I know what Trump said in response to questions at the summit.
I can reach the conclusion that he threw our intelligence agencies under the bus and said he believes Putin is telling the truth about not meddling because I saw him say it. The problem is the "news" people feel compelled to explain what happens - creating editorial content in every story. Even if the editorial content is valid (based on the facts), it is NOT journalism or reporting. It's editorializing.

Now, if LBD or Dawg views Trump saying he believes Putin and wants to put their own internal spin on it that is different than mine, no skin off my nose.

Of course, Trump cannot agree what he said with himself - so that complicates matters - but, again, I can draw my own conclusions when he goes from saying, "why would he?" to "why wouldn't he?" (after getting vilified, (not by the press - but by multiple members of his own party).

The question American are not taught to ask THEMSELVES is "If I'm wrong, how would I know?" Instead, we are taught from day one to the end of formal education -- "Trust your teachers! Simply regurgitate what you hear from your betters." Active thought is discouraged. Questioning authority is viewed as traitorous, treasonous, or just plain evil.

So, what do Americans do when two different "authorities" offer different views of "truth?" We pick one - and we stick with that one, (because we are taught that "flip-flopping" is also evil and wrong). And both camps end up diving ever deeper into their logic-absent bubbles - where any attempt at trying to find common ground or discuss things in a civil manner is treated as an attack by the brainless opposition.

So, the rich and powerful get to continue writing rules that keep them rich and powerful.



Lawyerliz said...

Home depot reasonably busy. This one will stay.
Some of this is akin to religious mania, but we don't burn people anymore.

LBD said...

Possibly you missed this line on the Putin summit. "T handled it correctly but poorly giving the Loonies a theme to hate T." Not exactly an in the tank supporter of T but more objective. I am considering the long game and a game he does play.

We are on the same page but a bit different view. T has turned out to be quite refreshing. The rich will always control but the wise will learn to work with and around the system set in place. We still have the closet thing going next to freedom. IMO.

On a different note, visit to one of my banks today we walked in on a strange thing going on. A young hefty man (looked like a bouncer from a bar) with a neck chain and official police badge siting in front of the branch managers office. Two ladies riffling through her desk with a bunch of plants lined up like a wall. Not a good sign I would say.

Firemane said...

Mentioning odd bank stuff reminds me of Oak City, NC.

I grew up 6 miles away.

Oak City made national news (early '80s, IIRC), when a bank robbery gone bad turned into a hostage situation. It made the national news because after something like a 6 hour standoff, one of the hostages, a very large black woman, made a break for it, successfully got out of the building, and came running out of the bank with her hands up screaming ... and the police gunned her down.


Lawyerliz said...

Sounds like a bit of embezzlement being investigated.
Is refreshing the same as bitter hilarity? I hoped he was playing games for a while but concluded he's too stupid.

LBD said...

Sounds like T is making head way with European tariffs and nat gas sales. Buddy Putin won't like that. =:0>

Lawyerliz said...

Nitey nite.

TJandTheBear said...

Elizabeth,

You sound like the one reacting emotionally. There is no evidence of collusion whatsoever, and no evidence that the election was decided by anything other than the Democrat's arrogant incompetence. Hell, they even had neocon Republicans actively campaigning against Trump and couldn't pull it off.

Most of us would have preferred there be a choice other than lesser evils, but when it comes to crazy/corrupt/treasonous HRC is light-years ahead of Trump. All the histrionics since the election is a case study in mass hysteria; the ignorant Dem faithful spewing bile over policies that mostly haven't changed since Bill was in office.

Perhaps you're simply affronted by his decidedly un-presidential behavior? Frankly I'm far more concerned with actions than appearances, and most politicians out there have been politely selling us out for decades.

IMHO the next administration should be even more "interesting", as I expect an EPIC economic meltdown before too long.

Lawyerliz said...

oh I agree I am both emotional and logical-- I'm a woman tight?

You need to recognize which aspect is functioning. KNOW THYSELF.

What do you think of my trade ideas?

Lawyerliz said...

I've lost 2 comments. Damn. On unemployment. Summary: I hope that the economy blasts ahead ahead for the next couple of years, although I think it will do so for at most a year.
I hope unemployment reaches 3.2% and u6 5.7%.

Lawyerliz said...

I would like to see that after a million discouraged workers come out of the woodwork, and start looking and many finding. I would like to see unemployment go even lower to say 2.8%%. U6 to say 4.5. That would really force employers to raise wages, and I'd like to see those raises be concentrated in the lower 60%, and especially the lower 30%.

Lawyerliz said...

I'd like to see black unemployment drop to under 5%. And drop 10 whole % for black youth, from whatever horrible statistic it's at now.

Lawyerliz said...

Remember Wolf's chart. I'd like to see it updated, and wages go up so it deserved updating.

Firemane said...

Liz,

Hate to say it, but IMO, you're more likely to fall desperately in love with Donald Trump in the next year than for almost any of your employment wishes to come true.

The last time U3 was under 3.5 was 1969. The only time we actually had U3 numbers at 3.2 was immediately after WWII, in the midst of the workforce chaos of returning servicemen, Rosie the Riveter returning to the kitchen, and the post-war conversion from war-time to peace-time economy riding both the psychological wave of winning the war AND ending the Great Depression.

To reach 3.2% U3, one has to assume 97.8% of "potential" American workers are in fact sustainably employable. Our current drug and alcohol rates alone probably prevent that.

Mind you - we ARE in a time when I believe the historical unemployment numbers are likely to grow increasingly meaningless. Once we actually hit the point where more people are leaving (retiring) the labor force than entering it, we may well have a case of steady unemployment RATE (maybe as low as 3.5 ... though I'm skeptical), while NFP numbers go negative, (the labor force is shrinking).

Just fyi, the June number, black U3 jumped back up from the all-time low of 5.9 to 6.5. (Note: as sub-grouping slices get smaller, they all tend to get more volatile, making it even more important to ignore the monthly print and pay attention to the 6-month+ trends).

One of the limitations of data is reliance on the truth of those reporting. For the 16-19 year olds, PARENTS (by law) have to be the ones reporting. So, parents are stating whether their child is looking for work. Since 1948, there has been a steady down trend in teen participation, (fewer even attempt to get jobs, as HS dropout rates have plunged, and college attendance rates have surged).

By 1962, (since I was born), the teen U3 has rarely dropped below 15%. So, the current overall teen U3 (12.6) is close to a 50 year low. But, so is the participation rate (about 35%).

I too, would love to see the black U3 drop. But, I think that happens AFTER we stop gunning down people for being black.




LBD said...

Good Morning!
Good Morning!


Local unemployment here is low (around 3%) as the UP still can't get enough employees offering $20-25K hiring bonus. Drug test and hard working conditions must be a turn off.

Just announced yesterday an incentive to move here or stay here and work for a Chamber member will receive up to $10,000 moving assistance and hiring bonus. The local biz idiots have mismanaged for their own benefit and not the community. Now young people don't want to live in a town of selfish old coots I assume. If I had to make a living it wouldn't be here. A line cook was advertised at one of the better restaurants for $10 an hour. Seems low for a reasonably skilled job not a regular burger flipper. No idea of weekly hours either. So low employment numbers are not always good. IMO.

Firemane said...

Had to laugh when I got a Blue Team beg for money post this morning citing the same NBC poll mentioned earlier. "Trump's approval rote to 45%, the highest *THIS POLL* has measured since he was sworn in ..."

*Head desk*

I checked that poll history at RCP.

Until recently, the poll had been "all adults". They recently switched to Registered voters.

7/15-18: 45 - 52 (RV)
6/1-4 : 44 - 53 (RV)
4/8-11: 39 - 57 (A)
3/10-14: 43-53 (A)

Gee, it moved one whole point more toward Trump between 6/4 and 7/18.

Good reporting might take the time to say:

Here's the average of the "all adults"
Here's the average of the "registered voters"
Here's the average of the "likely voters" (Rasmussen only major polling doing LV polls this early).

The reality is that the "all adults" polls always show the worst Trump numbers.

The "registered voters" polls are always closer.

The "likely voter" polls get weird, as every pollster has its own unique way of determining "likely", so the spread often is wider than RV, but the aggregate can fall either way.

So - when **ALL** the pollsters switch from "All Adult" to "Likely Voter" models - there's going to be a shift in results - even without any actual underlying shift in perceptions.

How do I know this? Because I read the fine print from places like RCP and 538 ... because *I* wanted to understand why the polling data often seems to be all over the place, (it isn't really - the REPORTING is focused on the outliers - in ***EITHER*** direction).

Lawyerliz said...

I still miss Walter.

Lawyerliz said...

Certainly agree with the last paragraph!
Unimproment for back teens was near 50% last time I looked. Maybe it's half of 35% which would be ok

Firemane said...

In economic news, the final Atlanta GDP now for Q2 dropped from 4.5 to 3.8. (Advance Q2 GDP estimate is out tomorrow).

The various "real time" GDP estimates all seem to run a little high based on my (minimal) attention to them. So, I'm not expecting a Q2 quite that high - but I do expect the advanced to at least be solidly in the 3s. But, GDP isn't really my focus, so more of a WAG than an analysis.

I do think there are some signs in housing (based on CR data) that the housing tail wind has peaked. Bill still remains bullish on housing for another couple of years in one of his recent comments. But, the rise in interest rates has already stifled the refi market, and *my* belief is it is starting to impact New Home sales, (Cali may be a 'leader' in the turn down).

I'm sticking to my guess that momentum keeps the ship plowing ahead through election day, and the warning bells and economic klaxons start ringing immediately thereafter.

Lawyerliz said...

Some times when I do answer I lie because I dislike the whole idea of polls. Mostly we hang up. And we have a land line!
Many people don't.
Some people pick up only when they recognize a number.
I fail to see how any of these polls are anywhere near accurate. And they sport no error bars.

dilbert dogbert said...

Back in the day when I had a subscription to National Fisherman, I read an article where they graphed the price of fish in supermarkets over time against the price fishermen were paid at the boat. No correlation at all. Lobsters may be different.
Full disclosure: My father in law had a wholesale fish business in Morro Bay CA. I subscribed to read John Gardner's articles on boat building.

Lawyerliz said...

Haheho.
It would keep going if someone couls figure out how to build houses if someone could figure out how to build for the 30 to 65% centiles. Small, building regs softened etc.

dilbert dogbert said...

Firemane
Re: Media
I remember how TV news changed. First came if it bleeds it leads. Then Happy Talk news. Then pretty face news readers with cleavage and great legs.
This household does not do TV any more. Sad.

Lawyerliz said...

Vitually All the tv I do is the National Public variety. Or japanese or uk news. Or BBC efforts.

Lawyerliz said...

We watch MsM to see what the party line iz.

LBD said...

I miss Der Spiegel news on line. Still skim almost daily, BBC, Detroit Free Press, Mish, ZH, Rocky Mnt news, NBC news, Tucker on Fox News and of course Exburban Nation. All taking bias in to consideration, some more then others.

Firemane said...

dilbert,

Understood. I get the bulk of my news on-line now, (but only if I can read it - and NOT listen to some talking head), though I do listen to my local TV news each morning (mostly for the weather and traffic).

I actually did an experiment in the early 2000s. I read *BOTH* MSNBC and FoxNews on-line news stories each day for a year. What I found was that both were using AP and Reuters for the vast bulk of their actual news stories - which were surprisingly UNBIASED (on either site). But, I didn't go anywhere near any of the opinion stuff. It IS still possible to get old fashioned "news" (mostly from the AP), devoid of the partisan wrappers - but it's boring.

There were minor differences, (mostly in headline makeup and positioning), that reflected some bias. But even that was exception rather than rule.

I also watched alternating prime time Fox and MSNBC for a time. But, stopped when it was clear that the ratio of data to opinions on both networks was so skewed it didn't really matter. My perception was that MSNBC put more effort into presenting data to support their opinion monologues, while Fox seemed (relative to MSNBC) "dumbed down", where they'd present one data point and then just hammer on that for 30 minutes, rather than even try to build some kind of logical case for a position. But, there was no balance. Even on shows with panels intended to present the appearance of balance (like "The Five"), it still came down to selling a pre-set narrative.

Out of the whole lot (both networks), Chris Hayes was my favorite, being the wonkiest of the bunch and would more often wade into details like how and where certain data came from. But, in the end, most of what are referred to as "news networks" are opinion networks. It's safer and (sadly) easier to do my own research to scrape up the unspun truth than work to filter out the hours of opinion to get to the seconds of fact.

Lawyerliz said...

I hate happy talk news. The was one segment I rather liked. A homeless man called the police because he needed a shave. Actually to fix his electric razer.
The cop ends by shaving him. Seemed McDs nesrby say he could have a job if he got c he cleaned up. Nice fluff. Also, McDs must be desperate.

Lawyerliz said...

The networks may have realized how stupid the viewers are.

Firemane said...

LL,

I think it's an oversimplification to think of humans as innately stupid.

Humans are "learners". We are (typically) as smart as we are taught.

Yes, there is a range of intelligence. Some people learn faster than others. But, for all of human history 95% of life is regurgitating and applying what someone else has previously figured out.

Racism is TAUGHT - not instinctive.
Conservatism and liberalism are TAUGHT - not instinctive.

Slavery was morally acceptable for thousands of years, because it was taught as morally acceptable. Eventually, this was questioned, and eventually slavery was taught as being morally reprehensible.

For most of history, and across most cultures, it was taught that whatever class/caste you were born into was by "God's will", so that was where you were forever stuck. The Founding Fathers of the USA had a different idea - that regardless of how miserable a start a person has - her life should ultimately be determined by actions - and not due to some random or arbitrary circumstance of birth. But, even with that concept - and with phrases like "all men are created equal", they still weren't ready to condemn slavery, because they had been taught it was a reasonable thing.

When we had just the three networks it was MUCH harder to be unreasonable. It was difficult to wander from the center (or be unbiased) without screams from one side or the other. Today, outlandish sells - and people self-segregate into their bubbles of choice, reinforcing false narratives in echo-chambers of arrogance. And they do it, not because they are stupid. They do it, because they were taught from age 4 to trust authority figures - and all they need do is pick one, and blindly accept whatever that voice tells them.


Lawyerliz said...

I can't take authority figures seriously. They dress up funny to impress us
They say stuff that is clearly ridiculous.
Since they they can get away with stuff, they become mean. And the money thing. Clearly money makes you happy only to a.certain point, until it doesn't. Like fat people who think all problems will be solved hmm by losing weight. Well weight related problems will be solved and money related issues mlm if you did that too, but all the others are still there waiting.

Lawyerliz said...

They tried to teach me to be respectful of Catholic authority figures. It didn't take.

LBD said...

We are as smart as we let ourselves become. Environment is only a challenge if you let it take you down. Making money is easy and hard work but unrealistic goals become depressing failures. We teach people success comes when you conform to their model. Most likely you will fail as they intended. IMO.

Lawyerliz said...

Yeah, there talk about independent or
Critical thinking in school, but you challenge what they say oooooh. I can do it because I'm 3x as old, and I don't care.
Actually, I think you can't teach critical thinking , although you can make it more effective. You can teach baby math and reading and writing by repetition.
The power distribution between student and teacher is such bbn that challeging the teacher is very hard to do.

Lawyerliz said...

Some actually intend you to fail, but most don't.

Lawyerliz said...

Ok where's the Dawg?

TJandTheBear said...

I can't stand network news; they act like the rest of the world doesn't exist most of the time. Furthermore, they're biases aren't so much in what they cover as much as what they choose to cover.
--
The absolute worst is that they publish whatever politicians say these days no matter how ridiculous. There's no critical policy coverage because they're all part of the system now.

Lawyerliz said...

They do weather, sports scores, fires, who got elected and by how much ok. Stuff that requies not much thinking on anybody's part.

Lawyerliz said...

They never follow up on things.

Lawyerliz said...

Where is Dawg?

LBD said...

Good Morning!

Where's Cinco?

Lawyerliz said...

Yeah?

Lawyerliz said...

CR reports excellent GDP.

Lawyerliz said...

I suppose many of you will feel that this is a chimera and illusion. And at the same time think T is to be credited with it.
I will stick with my optomistic unemployment figures.

LBD said...

FREEP has an article on possibly shutting down under performing out of date car assembly plants in the US. They are all running one shift instead of three. The other choice is move production to Mexico.

https://www.freep.com/autos/

Lots of jobs and trickle down economy at risk.

Lawyerliz said...

Trickle down almost never works,.I've read. The rich don't need to spend the money much, and they don't. IF you want spending and trickle down and must, are absolutely impelled to, hand it to the well off, get it into the hands of the 70th to 95th percentile. They will spend it! Or, better the 60th. That will trickle down.

Lawyerliz said...

Hehe, suppose Mexico wouldn't take it!!
Or demanded appologies, money for the incarcerated people, and their kids and citizenship for everyone here.
(I read sci fi too, and a lot of that has come to pass. Sample are coming back from a couple os asteroids!!!

Lawyerliz said...

I just hemmed pants I like. And did not send them to the dru cleaner to do. 1. No addition to GPA. 2. Addition to GPA.
Women's, or men's work at home is worthless.
Nonsense.

LBD said...

Car manufactureing is a point of trickle down on a lower level. The Idiots can't wait to give the rich their hard earned wealth. The rich look out for themselves, most of the clueless don't. I think Obumer did nothing for the car biz really but buy votes from the union and retirees. Giving Chrysler to the Italians was wrong. It should have auctioned off Ram truck and jeep to American interest. I don't care if it sold for a dollar. They have already killed car production anyway. Sad to hear Sergio Marchionne died so suddenly.

Unknown said...

Cash 4 Clunkers was a HUGE benefit to the car manufacturers. The effect of removing the old cars from the market and gutting the used car inventories are still being felt. Used cars hold their value longer, and the price difference between used cars and new cars is much smaller than it used to be.

Firemane said...

Liz,

It matters where you start from.

In 1980, when Reagan initially lowered the top marginal rate, it was 70%. He lowered it to 50%, (but also closed a ton of loopholes). It was tax simplification - but intended to be revenue neutral. (It wasn't - but there was at least some tax simplification). The thing was. This was done when inflation and interest rates were both sky high and unemployment was bad (and about to get a lot worse).

There WAS a stimulative effect from the tax cut - and though first year Federal Revenues dropped - the bounce back in both Federal revenue and GDP were substantial.

The SECOND tax cut (top rate from 50% to 28%) was a disaster. Why? Because the first one had ALREADY done the work. The economy had turned, it was growing, things were great. The businesses that were going to take the benefits of the first cut and reinvest and hire new workers already had. The second became a straight give away to the rich.

Same thing with the "W" tax cuts. They happened while we were already sitting on full employment. It's possible they muted what could have been a worse recession - but even that is unlikely.

The Obama tax cuts (part of the stimulus package) were actually very successful. They helped arrest the employment plunge quicker, and got the economy actually turned around and growing slightly faster than the Reagan tax cuts did.

They can work (to a degree). But, they don't "sustain" growth - they change the direction of growth. This is why the Trump cuts are (IMHO) foolish. We were at 4.1% unemployment when implemented. There's nothing to stimulate. Nobody left to hire. There's a nominal 1 or 2 quarter bump from the employers who could hand out raises WITHOUT sacrificing profits, (nice PR and helps retention in a job-tight economy). But, mostly it will just bloat the deficit and officially end the last pretense that anyone left in the Republican party is actually a fiscal conservative.

I think it's tragically hilarious that the Republican party is the one that creates an economic problem for farmers with tariffs then proposes to "fix" the problem it created by handing out money to farmers and not even pretending to fund the expenditure.

Lawyerliz said...

Bitter laughter. I bet that Goldwater is rolling in his grave.
I still wonder what happened to that housefull of money in Mexico.

Lawyerliz said...

Money is somethig that motivates someone to do something, not tequired to support family and tribe.

Lawyerliz said...

Ir make it too clear it's just paper oe electrons.

LBD said...

Um, I got killed on taxes a few times so lower rates are always better especially when government pisses money away like crazy. It used to work for the captive market loop but not in the global economy. Tax the rich and say good bye just like the cost of doing business.

Today I am upset that congress has done nothing again to stop or slow illegal immigration. Abolish ICE? how about abolish IDIOTS first. IMO ;)

Lawyerliz said...

Actually, fewer Mexicans are coming in. It's Nicaraguans we will see.

LBD said...

I don't care where they come from but like a leaking boat plug the biggest hole first, The Mexican boarder.

dilbert dogbert said...

Liz, Hopefully the dawg is up in Redding fighting the fire.
The family and I spent many a Memorial Day weekend up at Whiskeytown Regatta racing sailboats. We camped out at Brandy Creek Campground with friends. Every night was potluck. Then singing songs around the campfire till late in the evening.
Here is the fire map for your viewing pleasure: https://yubanet.com/Fires/carr/

TJandTheBear said...

Said it before and I'll say it again... Obrador's sounding a lot like Chavez but inheriting a situation that could easily go full-Maduro. Imagine THAT on our southern border.

Lawyerliz said...

Very few For Sales signs here although there's a few more lately. A couple of subdivisions have broken ground at 200 to 300k$. we have some new space biz with some well paid positions. We need some houses in the 150 range, for the mid middle class! Those are needed too!

Lawyerliz said...

Also since we shopping for stuff related to our home redecoration and repair, we're hearing a lot about long term employees leaving for greener pastures, some with annoyed small biz employers some with have a good life employers. Everbody in construction is insanely busy. Certainly no one is fighting for our business. We still have hrricane repairs, and they were insanely busy before that. Some of our long term bums have disappeared. A fait amount of small commercial and restaurant stuff being built, while a lot of strip stores sit empty. Mall hurting of course.

Lawyerliz said...

Clarification: we needed no hurricane repairs personally.

Lawyerliz said...

Home Depot is always busy. We heard thar a kitchen/bath designer left there.

LBD said...

Good Morning!

The house a crossed the street is still for sale. Two months so far. Cruising the neighborhood I see more then usual. Slow down continues as does the greed.

Big box (like Home Deopt) counting to run 11% off sale quite often. Must not be hitting the sales numbers they want.

Mall announcing a new anchor Store today. I hope it does well.������

Lawyerliz said...

Was At home Depot to pick out bathroom stuff. Busy as always. After 2 hours of looking around, I reached sensory overload. We did buy a mirror and some light fixtures.

Lawyerliz said...

I think in Kali, there will a burst of biz after the fires are put out.
I do hope Dawg is ok.

dilbert dogbert said...

Liz: Kali is currently busting with biz.
Shasta County is mostly recreation and retirement. Folks rebuilding will have a tough time getting contractors as they are very busy with the Napa fire rebuilding. Napa means big money so contractors will work there first. So far 500 structures burned. Not a lot of high end structures for sure.
The hope is the weather and winds will cooperate and let the firemen a chance to get it under control.

Lawyerliz said...

I hope so.

Lawyerliz said...

Local News sez Kali fires are getting worse and firepeoples from here are going out there to help.

Lawyerliz said...

Also that internet people are worrying what to do about coastal fiber lines which are in danger of being damaged by rising sea levels caused by global warming presumably.
Raining here of course. No tropical systems tho.

Lawyerliz said...

Where is Dawg?

Lawyerliz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lawyerliz said...

More political ads. Yuck. Bring back car ads and laxative ads!

dilbert dogbert said...

Liz: Here is a link to the big Kali fire at Redding: https://yubanet.com/Fires/carr/
Scroll down for the fire map. See Lewiston? It is being evacuated. My mom taught 4th grade in Weaverville. I and the family spent decades racing my sailboat at the Whiskeytown Regatta every Memorial Day.

Lawyerliz said...

How horrible.

Lawyerliz said...

I found Whiskeytown, but not the rest. I assume they are nearby?

Lawyerliz said...

Where is Dawg?

LBD said...

Good Afternoon!

Thee days of family fun and eating to much good food. Fires eating Kali again. Sad.

Lawyerliz said...

We just get rained on
Nearly every single day.🤪🌨🌦☁️🌫

Lawyerliz said...

Global warming?

Lawyerliz said...

Global warming.

Lawyerliz said...

Fires not close to being put out, I see. Florida's and others firefighting planes can't fly.

LBD said...

Over crowding of people increase chances of starting fires.

Lawyerliz said...

Agreed.

LBD said...

Good Morning!

Fifteen ton of river rock coming! Boys and toys, The greatness of machines! :)

Lawyerliz said...

What are you gonna use it for?

Lawyerliz said...

Contractors are here and painting away.

LBD said...

Landscaping and pave the RV area. Last big job for the summer then play and RV trip.

Lawyerliz said...

Cool.

Firemane said...

I've pretty much decided to buy into two Vanguard funds with my Mom's life insurance:

VTI (their 'total stock market' ETF).
BND (their Bond fund).

Probably going to split 60/40 toward Stocks, but still debating that part.

EngineerJim said...

Probably can't go wrong with VTI.
I've owned VT (similar total stock market fund) for a few years, and it has done well.

Unknown said...

If you think we are 6 months from a recession/contraction why would you buy into a market fund now?

Firemane said...

Because I'm getting zilch with it sitting in my checking account.
And the idea of sticking it all in bonds (for the moment) has crossed my mind.

Of course, I figure if I do put it in the market now, I increase the likelihood my FECES theory is correct!

EngineerJim said...

Dare we ask what the FECES theory is ?

LBD said...

I would check out short term CD's and if you are correct then Buy in to the stock funds when it drops. IMO.

Lawyerliz said...

When I get the proceeds from the sale of my condo, I don't know where to put it. I nearly doubled my money, but got sick of dealing with tenants.

Lawyerliz said...

Can I ask, anybody know where dawg is?

LBD said...

Fun is it LL? Really gives you a different perspective of the idiots we have among us.

I think of selling some of mine but there isn't anything close to rolling your own money and the profit a rental can make. Then their is taxes to deal with.

Cinco is over at Reddit.

Firemane said...

Engineer Jim,

FECES stands for: Full Employment Contingent Economic Slowdown.

The concept is that full employment is a critical state which more or less guarantees a recession will soon appear, (historically we're talking 7-10 months in all but one case I can identify). This does not mean that it is the only critical state or "cause" for recessions.

Essentially, I believe that full employment (which itself is not a specific number), it a tipping point, that simply makes it easier for any random economic disturbance to trigger a recession.

=========

6 month CD might not be that bad of an idea. I shall consider it.


Lawyerliz said...

It wil and take a fair amount of time to reach full employment. So add 10 months, and you may get up to a year and a half to years, which is i think the longest time to be expected anyhow

Lawyerliz said...

I think it would be a good thing for younger people to experience what prosperity feels like. They haven't so fat.

Unknown said...

Rent to income is nowhere close to the point that a young person could feel prosperous.

Lawyerliz said...

True, but I hooe full employment would drive salaries up. Increase in minimum wage would help too.

Lawyerliz said...

After taxes and inflation of course.

LBD said...

Increase in minimum wage will push less jobs, opens the door for Tech, Robotics and black market. Kids can't find jobs as it is. A lot of these jobs are not adult family income jobs. Crazy idea how about education teaches real life and employable students.

Lawyerliz said...

The less job thing isn't true. I think it means small biz can no longer compete by cutting wages, and they all have to raise them at the same time. So they must compete on a different basis.

LBD said...

The different basis is if they raise the price of product and lose business does not work. The only alternative is to cut cost and labor is a big part of it. Today the fat has been cut in most businesses so that leaves more tech, robotics and black market. Let's import more poverty, that will fix it! :)

Lawyerliz said...

No. What I am saying is if only one fast foodery orone hardware store raises salaries all customers goes somewhere cheaper. If they all raise wages at once nobody goes anywhere for that reason, could shop elsewhere because of service, quality etc. That airport mall in the west made all the shops raise salaries to $15 an hour, and as far as I know it was a success. Captive audience sorta.
It might be more workers will come out of the woodwork too, as 600k did recently.

Lawyerliz said...

Just lost a big post
😥

Lawyerliz said...

Where is dawg?

Firemane said...

LL,

The lowest unemployment rate since 1970 is ... 3.8% (achieved in May this year). We are already at full employment. Have been since October last year.

I agree with the stance that minimum simply resets an industry bar to a new standard. It is effectively no different than an increase in the cost of gasoline or sugar or coffee. It impacts people in a given industry equally, so it "shouldn't" cost jobs, (except on the margins, from those entities that were already in trouble). But, it should cause some inflation, (how much would depend on the specific industry).



Firemane said...

I think it helps to look at minimum wage adjusted for inflation:

https://www.infoplease.com/business-finance/labor-and-employment/annual-federal-minimum-wage-rates-1955-2015

(the above is based on 1996 dollars - but only runs through 2015).

Since minimum wage went to 7.25 in 2009, it's been 9 years of inflation since an increase.

From '55 - '82, minimum wage increased by very small amounts every 2-5 years. Since then, it's been long (10 year) gaps, where the Feds play "catch-up" - implementing much larger jumps - but spreading them out over 2-3 years to try and mitigate the shock.

The annoying thing (IMO) is that because of the delays in increases, the jumps are larger and the screaming from the right is louder - but at the same time, smaller percentages of companies are actually still paying the minimum (just the most egregious abusers of the system).

But, it's not like the fast food industry, or grocery stores, or most other minimum wage industries collapse every time the minimum wage is increased.

LBD said...

I wish it worked that way but it doesn't. My experience shows different results. Wages go up then prices have to go up (if you don't eliminate jobs) which ends up making it at best a raising of the bar creating inflation consuming the raise. IMO.

Lawyerliz said...

I'd love it if it cane out bill of CEO's salaries.

Lawyerliz said...

Remember productivity hasn't been shared in ages and ages. Wolf's chart.

LBD said...

Big Corp CEO's are global so not much chance that will happen. Labor is partly why so many jobs left as it is.

EngineerJim said...

>Big Corp CEO's are global so not much chance that will happen.

Except that in other countries, CEO's make about 20x the average worker.
In the US, CEO's make 400x the average worker.
Wonder how that is maintained.

Lawyerliz said...

Me too. Palsy backscratching Boards of Directors.

LBD said...

Good Morning!

Hard to say but I guess there is the size of the global corp, profits made and the response of the countries culture. Ours has been dying for decades. Then who owns the government? Banks and Big biz? Few care how much they make as long as you can tag along for the ride, $. IMO.

Rob Dawg said...

New post.