Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Total number of deposits in US banks as of that date: Roughly $9 trillion.
There's not enough money in the fund to cover even one percent of the country's insured deposits should more banks fail...in fact there's barely enough to cover one-third of one percent of the country's deposits.
How much do you want to bet that more than one-third of one percent of US banks fail in 2009? During the Great Depression, bank failure percentage rates were in the double digits for several years.
But everything's fine, of course. The gubment says so.
There's been a lot of griping recently from the Right about how there are no web-native news outlets on the right, or that they aren't seen as having a lot of credibility or that the people who write for them get no respect. And then you read that Pajamas Media, the right-leaning blog outfit started a few years back with a crazy amount of VC money just hired Joe the Plumber to be their new war correspondent in Israel.Awesome and win, now in paragraph form.
Much like Fox's Half Hour Comedy Hour, wingnuts are only actually funny when they believe they are serious.
Private employers shed 693,000 jobs in December, up sharply from the revised 476,000 jobs lost in November and far more than economists estimated, separate reports showed Wednesday.And given how bad the holiday retail sales season was in December and the new fiscal quarter/year upon us, I think that January prediction of one million jobs lost is going to be very accurate.
ADP released its forecast using new methodology that the firm said would more closely reflect the nation's economic picture. The company's numbers had been consistently missing the mark, underestimating job losses as calculated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Another report, from outplacement company Challenger, Gray & Christmas, showed that planned layoffs at U.S. firms eased in December from the previous month's seven-year high but they were up an astounding 275 percent annually as the year-old recession cut a huge swathe of destruction through job market.
As bad as 2008 was, 2009 is going to be wall-to-wall disaster for the economy. If this level of job loss in America continues a full blown depression is certainly feasible. Could 2009 really see ten million jobs lost in 12 months? I honestly don't think that's out of the picture at all.
It may even be lowballing it. That's how worrying this is.
The temporary cease-fire will take place in the "whole of the Gaza Strip" from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. (6 a.m. to 9 a.m. ET) today, Israeli Defense Ministry spokesman Peter Lerner told CNN.Gosh, that's downright considerate of them to take a breather before expanding the incursion into phase three.
The three-hour truce is scheduled to take place each day.
"This is in order to enable replenishing of supplies and allow aid activities," he said.
Lerner noted that Israeli forces would respond to any aggression toward them during the pause.
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert convened a security cabinet meeting Wednesday to weigh expanding the army's offensive in the Gaza Strip and discuss an Egyptian ceasefire initiative, officials said.The third stage of course would be the invasion and capture of Gaza City and other towns in Gaza in an effort to root out Hamas once and for all. I don't see how this can result in anything other than the occupation and outright destruction of what little infrastructure Gaza has left. Israel's not tipping its hand on this meeting to have the plan shot down. It's doing so for the express purpose of announcing to the Palestinian world that Gaza is about to become an abattoir and that there's nothing anyone can do about it as the people in Gaza are unable to flee. It's collective punishment of the first order and Israel knows that as long as the US backs them unconditionally, they can get away with it.
"The cabinet is now meeting to discuss the operation in Gaza and to discuss the latest ceasefire initiative," a government official said.
According to a senior defense official, the cabinet will consider whether to expand the ground offensive, launched Saturday night, deeper into Palestinian towns.
"(Defense Minister Ehud) Barak has instructed the army to prepare for the third stage of the operation," the official told AFP.
"We can't see the operation stopping in the coming days. We still have to study the details of the Egyptian proposal," the official said.
We may be looking at the beginning of what could even be the medium-term US style occupation of Gaza by the IDF. Surely Fatah is waiting in the wings for the chance to take over, and they figure when Israel then gracefully offers the choice between Israeli occupation and Fatah rule, the people of Gaza (well, the remaining ones) will choose Fatah. Israel will pack up and go home, Fatah will vow to rebuild, and everything will be all peachy. That's the plan, anyway.
Plans rarely survive first contact with the enemy. In the next few days, the casualties in Gaza are going to get brutal, ugly, and very graphic. There's a reason why Israel is keeping all reporters out of the combat zone (even US reporters) since this went to a ground operation: that's the one lesson they did learn from Lebanon in 2007. They know their ability to stay in Gaza past January 20 depends on the public relations war more than the military one.
- The Fed predicts a deteriorating economy and employment picture well into 2010.
- An Israeli airstrike on a UN school in Gaza kills 40 and enrages the world.
- National Guardsmen stationed in Afghanistan are extending their tours to avoid the economy at home.
- Europe is scrambling to avoid natural gas shortages after Russia has cut them off.
- Predictions for Friday's December job loss numbers range from 450,000 to 750,000 or more.