50 Economic Numbers About The US That Are "Almost Too Crazy To Believe"

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Fri, 12/16/2011 - 15:00 | 1987680 Killtruck
Killtruck's picture

That's some scary shit.


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 15:12 | 1987737 Jonbutterfly
Fri, 12/16/2011 - 15:32 | 1987823 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

And he gets paid damn well to do so!

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 15:43 | 1987860 redpill
redpill's picture



I've already sent 500 soon-to-be-worthless FRNs his direction, can you all send him 100 or 50 please?

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 16:01 | 1987937 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

America where the obese car and home owners are considered poverty stricken.

As long as they contnue to define poverty as the bottom 1/6th,

any economic downturn will result in >=1/6th of the population being poverty stricken.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 17:17 | 1988212 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

this post is not balanced enough.

there are plenty of points in america's favor.

i thought real hard and managed to find two of them.


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 17:26 | 1988248 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

No other socio economic system or all others combined have done as much for the advancement of mankind since 1776. It is not even remotely close either.

 But thanks for playing.


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 17:34 | 1988281 tmosley
tmosley's picture

*Implying that we have had the same socio-economic system the entire time.

We havent.  We had a limited free market (the limitation being slavery), then a high level free market (ie minimal government intervention in the economy), then a mixed market, with ever increasing government intervention in the economy.

Government intervention stole my flying car.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 17:53 | 1988367 smlbizman
smlbizman's picture

i just heard on bloomberg that we can use the 100 watt bulb.....their presentation made me feel like i should get down on my knees and thank this politico who granted us this freedom to have a choice in lighting....im so thankful that this time of year the christmas spirit has moved our heros to give us permission to use what ever light bulb we want {temporarily}.....and as fucking stupid as this next statement is ,you know i'm right....

you may be a terrorist if you have an incandescent light bulb...


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 18:32 | 1988538 sqz
sqz's picture


Your first point is very well taken.

However, your point about extent of government intervention is simply incorrect. It is not the extent, it is the nature.

During what is considered the Golden Age of Capitalism (1945 to 1971) by many economists, where the world saw the longest period of unparalled global growth, government intervention was large. Protectionism was high and, much more importantly, capital controls globally were enormous. After the Great Depression, finance was simply not allowed to run amok and against the interest of the real economy, so it was strongly constrained. It was made "boring" and invisible.

The focus by central banks and economists was also first and foremost on job creation. This combination by fiscal and monetary authorities meant that wealth recirculated strongly within national economies. This in turn fostered large corporate and employee investment and led to the lowest real unemployment rates the West has ever seen.

In short, it is not government intervention that is the problem. The core issue is governments acting exclusively to rollover the short term interest of a country by using debt as their vehicle, to create a rent system for financial market participants, as well as furthering political ambitions and goals (such as a military hegemony), instead of investing in their long-term natonal interests.

The medium and long-term upshot of this, assuming the West is simply unable to adapt fast enough (highly likely), is that more and more people will emigrate in droves and intially move to small countries with strong balance sheets (e.g. Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Scandinavian countries) and longer term to the Emerging Markets. This will exacerbate the current trend for the ever dwindling working population relative to supported population and further increase wealth inequality in the West. In other words, the West - led by the US - has already lost in the long term by their actions from the past. With debt for forty years, the future has been stolen from your country.

The fact the US is and will be a safe haven for a while from the Eurozone mess, will not save its outlook, which is bleak indeed.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 18:33 | 1988591 Surly Bear
Surly Bear's picture

And as bad as it is the probability is we will reelect most of not all of congress as well as the President so I ask you...is it that bad?


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 18:53 | 1988652 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

All sounds great but at the end of the day,

Doubled the supply of labor in the 70's by adding women,

now 40yrs later realizing the effect on wages.

and of course no one needed two incomes to survive in the 70's either.



Fri, 12/16/2011 - 19:12 | 1988726 trav7777
trav7777's picture

"Sadly, child poverty is absolutely exploding all over America. According to the National Center for Children in Poverty, 36.4% of all children that live in Philadelphia are living in poverty, 40.1% of all children that live in Atlanta are living in poverty, 52.6% of all children that live in Cleveland are living in poverty and 53.6% of all children that live in Detroit are living in poverty."

Gee, help me out...what do these cities have most in common?

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 19:32 | 1988782 Thadeous
Thadeous's picture

Too many WASP's...?


What did I win?

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 19:42 | 1988811 gmrpeabody
gmrpeabody's picture

A set of Samsonite luggage as a parting gift.  LOLs

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 23:18 | 1989251 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

And a box of Rice-A-Roni because after all...

It's a San Francisco Treat !!!

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 23:36 | 1989287 Hugh_Jorgan
Hugh_Jorgan's picture

Please. America knows nothing about poverty.


Go to Africa if you find shocking poverty.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 00:37 | 1989430 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

Actually America does know about poverty. Crushig poverty. It's not even too deeply hidden actually. Trailer parks and homelessness and hunger is rampant in the US.

In fact, in most metrics, the US has been slipping like crazy into what was called 3rd world numbers..... children starving, poverty line living, life expectancy.... on and on....

DOne for...



Sat, 12/17/2011 - 01:58 | 1989502 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

One of our problems is that we mistake things like big teevees for "food security."  Heh.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 04:44 | 1989580 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

indeed Blunderdog. They've managed to shift perceptions so far from reality that it's mind-boggling.


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 21:19 | 1989006 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

OOOOHHH OOOOHHH I know I know, pick me!  (hand shoots up) RACISM. 

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 22:04 | 1989106 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Liberal governments.

You were probing for "black citizens", because you want to attribute EVERYTHING to race.  You know, like a simpleton.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 01:39 | 1989490 trav7777
trav7777's picture

BZZZZT.  they have liberal governments in Portland and everywhere in the NE.

Thanks for playing!  You win a swift kick in your dumb ass!

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 23:19 | 1989250 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

corrupt governments who convince stupid citizens from other jurisdictions that it's some social groups fault?

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 00:16 | 1989397 CompassionateFascist
CompassionateFascist's picture

Every single one of these White CosmicLibs who junked Trav is living in an urban high rise. The day the EBT cards stop working, they will curl up into a ball and kiss their asses goodbye.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 10:53 | 1989735 msamour
msamour's picture

Hey Dufus, I live in the Canadian country side. The thing about assuming, his you make an ass of yourself...

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 12:34 | 1989824 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

Whatever helps you sleep at night, Wal-Mart shopper.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 21:41 | 1989057 Shocker
Shocker's picture

There is so much going on today, and no one is talking about it. Its pretty insane. We are worried about what is on TV tonight





Fri, 12/16/2011 - 22:48 | 1989187 SilverDOG
SilverDOG's picture

Xkwisetly Paneful,


Inflation you 'tard.

Get your head up, off the "pane full" of blow.



Sat, 12/17/2011 - 10:18 | 1989705 flattrader
flattrader's picture

Uh, perhaps no one you know.

Plenty of families needed two incomes.

But, please don't let me disturb your "Leave it to Beaver" world.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 20:39 | 1988927 goldsaver
goldsaver's picture

During what is considered the Golden Age of Capitalism (1945 to 1971) by many economists


Wrong. The exponential growth of the economy during those years was due primarily to two factors, the end of WWII and the subsequent requirement for rebuilding the European and Japanese infrastructure that resulted in massive consumer products and raw materials been allocated and the deficit financing of such massive growth with inflation and debasement. When you account for the massive destruction of the purchasing power of the consumers and the real take home incomes, that era was not as rosy and had nothing to do with protectionism and government intervention. Add to that the fact that you conveniently leave out the hangover after the mess (post 1977) that has required two income families just to make ends meet and the current debt bubble at all levels. Saying that government intervention does not negatively impact the free markets by using that period as an example is like claiming that a 400 pound man got a heart attack due to the side salad he had for lunch.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 07:33 | 1989617 onthesquare
onthesquare's picture


and you may find yourself behing the wheel of a large automobile

and you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife

and you may ask yourself

well...how did I get here?

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 15:17 | 1990117 Transformer
Transformer's picture

That is the fucking question alright.


Fri, 12/16/2011 - 22:11 | 1989115 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Odd that one would call the era of mixed markets the era of capitalism.  They might look the same at first glance, but they are not.

Of course, at that time, we had central banks and governments spending more than they had, and we paid for it with the stagflation of the 70's, stagflation that very nearly collapsed into hyperinflation as we abandoned the gold standard.  

You see, it is easy to live well for a few decades by consuming the inheritence left to you by your parents.  Not just the cash, but managing their companies, and generating a revenue stream.  The problem comes when the new generation takes prosperity for granted, and spends more than they take in, until eventually they get to the point that they are consuming more than they have in income from those inherited businesses.  Then they start consuming the capital, and taking out loans, until one day there is nothing left but a giant unpayable debt.  It looks like today is that day.

Big government and central banks are the MBAs of nations.  They screw with the balance sheets to produce a few quarters of outperformance, collect their bonuses, then abandon the company to deal with the ruin they brought upon them.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 23:20 | 1989255 Lost1
Lost1's picture

That this concept is lost on the "Smart People" is what really blows my mind. We haven't seen a capatilist system in my lifetime. If I understand free markets correctly bad actors would be culled from the herd not given golden parachutes and a new CEO job down the street. These guys and the bad behavior would be weeded out of the system. As for the fed, I see this as a symptom of the underlying problem the inability of governments to control spending.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 02:14 | 1989519 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

"What do you give the Govt that's taken everything?"

"Dreams Come Due, Government and Economics as if Freedom Mattered", ISBN: 0-671-61159-3, by John Galt

The book is dated, but many of the things it talks about are still valid today.


Sat, 12/17/2011 - 08:54 | 1989648 SamAdams1234
SamAdams1234's picture

I know... the 11th commandment: THOU SHALL NOT DIP INTO PRINCIPAL.

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 22:30 | 1989151 buyingsterling
buyingsterling's picture

1945-1971 - a blissful 26 year period? Or the final stretch required to bury the dollar, which de-pegged in forex from gold in 1971? Lots of government intervention in those years is what did it,  along with a growing money supply we added on the great society and Vietnam. Federal intrusion in the money supply is what makes possible both the welfare and warfare states - both in full bloom by 1971. If you can't print money, you can't afford an empire or a welfare state.

Capital controls are one thing, but most of the rest of the government's invervention distorts decisions and mis-allocates capital.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 00:26 | 1989413 adhoc99
adhoc99's picture

Well, this is one of the dumbest things I've ever read. You have no evidence to back your assertion that it was government intervention in the form of capital controls and protectionism that fueled growth in the 50s and 60s. And what is your evidence that the standard of living was so much higher in 1970 vs. 1950, or that economic development today lags vs. your golden era? I have plenty of evidence that our standard of living is higher now vs. 20 or 30 years ago. Look at the car you own - how does it compare to a 1970 or 1980 model? Did auto consumers of the 1970s benefit from protectionism? To tend to more mundane things - look at the beer selection at your local grocery store? How does it compare to the selection in 1980? Is your life better now for the existence of eBay, Amazon.com, Google, even ZeroHedge? Were these things creating in your glorified Emerging Economies? Are you really dumb enough to believe that (supposed) 10% growth on $3,000 of income is better than 2% growth on $40 k of income? Do you really believe that Scandanavia, Austria, or Canada can really be called a country alongside the U.S.? The problem with this crap is that you get some great posts and some thoughtful comments, and then you get  this kind of sophomoric, idiotic BS, complete with a tittering cheering section. So much waste of potential.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 03:07 | 1989555 Teamtc321
Teamtc321's picture

In 77' a new chevy silverado retailed for 6750.00 and they run oh about 50.000.00 today.  

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 03:28 | 1989562 fourchan
fourchan's picture

Shit's Fucked.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 03:39 | 1989565 Hi Ho Silver
Hi Ho Silver's picture

Yeah, but you can get that '77 chevy silverado for $850 on craigslist.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 04:20 | 1989575 Teamtc321
Teamtc321's picture

Wow, thank's for the tip. How does that rail feel on your pic? Hi ho silver bullet's away...........

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 10:51 | 1989732 BeerBrewer09
BeerBrewer09's picture

Yeah, but you can get today's Silverado for 0% for 72 months or 0% for 60 months and not make a payment for the the first 4 months. YEEEHAWWW

Sun, 12/18/2011 - 03:18 | 1990929 adhoc99
adhoc99's picture

GDP per capita was about $9200 in 1977, so the silverado was about 74% of per capita income then. MSRP of silverado today is $32 k, vs. per capita income of $47 k today, for a ratio of less then 70%. Even if you adjust for wealth skewing/distribution, I'm sure the ratios are comparable at worst. And, I doubt your 77 Silverado had air conditioning or power windows, let alone air bags or anti-lock breaks and other modern amenities you take for granted. But I suppose I'll get trashed on here for looking up facts, being able to do math and drawing reasonable comparisons. It's like an Animal Farm around here.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 03:08 | 1989556 jonjon831983
jonjon831983's picture

Guessing post WW2 one of the only remaining systems that remained "intact" was the US based Capitalism... everything else was destroyed (aka blown up and killed) and in shambles.  Growth is probably easy where there is virtually no competition.

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 13:19 | 1989883 G-R-U-N-T
G-R-U-N-T's picture

I agree with much of what you say sqz...My son who is highly skilled in IT and whom has been all over the world is off to Uruguay in the next couple of weeks to market their emerging market. One of his clients is from there and says there is tremendous IT opportunity. Also, it is one of the least corrupt in S.A...

We get beaten to death by politicians, an ignorant populace, whom haven't a clue of what it takes to create genuine wealth and as we get squeezed the more the idea of migrating is seen as a viable option.



Fri, 12/16/2011 - 19:09 | 1988718 YBNguy
YBNguy's picture

The comment vote-down bandit is at it again...

Sat, 12/17/2011 - 02:18 | 1989520 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Yessss!  Bwahahahaha!  (What?  At least I didn't try ta kill ya!) :>D

Fri, 12/16/2011 - 16:47 | 1988104 Yardfarmer
Yardfarmer's picture

not that it really makes any difference, but your savior will only serve to split the moron republican vote and assure the pseudo pickaninny marionette another term unless they invade Iran, call the whole thing and declare martial law as they seem to be preparing to do. the idea of participating in yet another sham election should be the occasion of immense misgiving at the very least. but any acknowledgment of inevitable would only leave the screen heads, internet voyeurs and keyboard jockeys nothing to contemplate but their own feckless and ineffectual impotence. go absorb yourself in yet another useless celluloid phantasy and await the arrival of "the One". you could be waiting a long time but you would still be in possession of your precious illusions. you just got fleeced.

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