Guest Post: Penis Length, LIBOR & Soviet Growth

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by John Aziz of Azizonomics

Penis Length, LIBOR & Soviet Growth

Healthy markets require solid data based on reality.

It is hard enough to determine what, when and how to invest even with solid data. We live in an unpredictable and chaotic world, and the last thing that investors need is misinformation and distortions. That is why the LIBOR manipulation scandal is so infuriating; as banks skewed the figures, they skewed entire marketplaces. The level of economic distortion is incalculable — as LIBOR is used to price hundreds of trillions of assets, the effects cascaded across the entire financial system and the wider world. An unquantifiable number of good trades were made bad, and vice verse. Yet in truth we should not expect anything else from a self-reported system like LIBOR. Without real checks and balances to make sure that the data is sturdy, data should be treated as completely unreliable.

Unsurprisingly, it is emerging that many more self-reported figures may have been skewed by self-reporting bullshittery.

The Telegraph noted:

The Libor scandal could be repeated in a number of other “self-certifying” markets where prices are determined, he said


“Self-certification is clearly open to abuse, so this could occur elsewhere,” he said.


A Financial Services Authority inquiry into Libor should be extended to other self-certifying markets, he said. The Treasury said last night that the review, led by Martin Wheatley, was free to examine markets other than Libor.


An expansion of the FSA review could take in a number of other interest-rate-related data as well as some complex financial instruments measuring the difference between banks’ borrowing costs and that of the US government.[i.e. the Ted spread]. Some markets in gold and oil are also based on self-certification.

This all reminds me of this:

When humans have an incentive to exaggerate or lie — either to bolster their ego by lying about penis size, or to cream an easy profit by rigging rates — it seems they have a propensity to do so.

Hopefully there will be one beneficial side-effect of the LIBOR rigging — self-reporting will die. It seems inevitable that market participants will pay a premium for solid, independent data. But sadly, any auditor can be bribed. And in a generation’s time, the LIBOR-rigging scandal of 2008 (and probably much earlier) may just be an antique detail known to only a savvy few. Scepticism, caution and portfolio robustification will always remain essential tools for savvy investors who don’t want to lose their shirt and shoes.

It was scepticism that was the difference between economists who refused to buy into the notion of Soviet prosperity in spite of impressive (and entirely self-reported) figures emerging from the Soviet Union, and those Western economists like Paul Samuelson (perhaps spurred on by ideological fervour) who predicted again and again in textbooks spanning thirty years that the USSR would overtake the USA in GDP:

Alex Tabarrok notes:

In the 1961 edition of his famous textbook of economic principles, Paul Samuelson wrote that GNP in the Soviet Union was about half that in the United States but the Soviet Union was growing faster.  As a result, one could comfortably forecast that Soviet GNP would exceed that of the United States by as early as 1984 or perhaps by as late as 1997 and in any event Soviet GNP would greatly catch-up to U.S. GNP.  A poor forecast — but it gets worse because in subsequent editions Samuelson presented the same analysis again and again except the overtaking time was always pushed further into the future so by 1980 the dates were 2002 to 2012.  In subsequent editions, Samuelson provided no acknowledgment of his past failure to predict and little commentary beyond remarks about “bad weather” in the Soviet Union.

The reason for his prediction? Apparently, bad data.

“No incentive to amend data to show strong Russian proletarian outperforms weak American capitalist, Comrade!”

Matthew Ashton writes:

To his credit Samuelson was always fairly open about it when his predictions failed to come true, stating that he was using the best data available at the time and he changed his mind as the evidence changed. I’d argue that in some cases, especially concerning evidence coming out of the Soviet Union, he possibly should have been a bit more sceptical as to its accuracy, however almost everyone in economics is guilty of that.

While Western markets have been rigged, one can only wonder how bad the state of misreporting, fraud and delusion is in the various economies where central planning plays an even larger role than here in the West.

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vast-dom's picture

greeks have the biggest penises and the smallest GDP. they go hand in hand. surgery ain't exactly cheap, but bragging rights...priceless!

falak pema's picture

depends on hand gender! Venus and Mars. Who holds it?

Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

The Berlin Wall collapsed because of Bob's penis.

FEDbuster's picture

I am going to have the BLS measure my penis.  They won't know where the base line is and the measurement will be revised upward 5% after a month.

Doña K's picture

BTW: The guys that get most of the girls are not the ones who brag about their penis but the ones tha just stand by the bar licking their eyebrows.

Incidentally, a guy on the boardwalk wearing a speedo was not getting any looks by the girls even though he was good looking and he complained to his friend who was sunbathing at the end of the beach. His friend told him to put a potato in his speedo and see what happens. On his next walk up and down the beach he only got some girls laughing about him. So he told his friend about the laughing. His friend took a look at him and said: "You supposed to put the potato in the front.

The lesson here is you must be smart also to get the girls.

AmCockerSpaniel's picture

Invest a very little in dance lessons. Very big rate of returns, and no BSing required. This, and a Triumph motorcycle, worked very well for me in the 60's. Just standing around and waiting for the women to make the first move does not work. Oh; As for penis length, anything close to normal. As time goes by, the ladys will school you on many things (they know what they like). Lessen to them. Even on how to dress. If it worked for me, most of you should do supper well in these times.

otto skorzeny's picture

greeks have the biggest penises-you can tell by how much other greek men's anuses have been stretched out

Zeilschip's picture

Maybe that is because of DA?

EllaDara's picture

Greeks have huge penises because Merkel is trying to squeeze out our last euros. 

Peter Pan's picture

If Greeks had penises as big as they thought they would have screwed the creditors by now by defaulting. Or perhaps they do have the biggest penises but have no balls.

kita27's picture

What!? The blacks and latino's have bigger penises than us?    


GeneMarchbanks's picture

Aziz your world must be crashing down hard when you have to find solace in relativism:

While Western markets have been rigged, one can only wonder how bad the state of misreporting, fraud and delusion is in the various economies where central planning plays an even larger role than here in the West.

Even larger role? Get real, man.

Aziz's picture

I've always been extremely sceptical of the data coming out of China, and I've always actually been quite bearish about their long-term growth prospects.

My criticisms of the USA for being dependent on Chinese goods and components were always criticisms of the USA and US government for getting into a dependency relationship with a communist dictatorship, not praise for China. Authoritarianism is bad economics policy, period whether it's practiced in America or China. 

VonManstein's picture

"quite bearish about their long-term growth prospects"

how so? Why? please inform us..

they have lots of people, lots of machines, lots of money and lots of gold... They also work damn hard and want better lives for themselves.

VonManstein's picture

oh and they are stockpiling anything of value. they arer forward thinking unlike our pathetic rulers..

So aziz, please tell us why you are so bearish.. or are you just repeating the quasi mainstream, " they are dependant on US consumers" anti china line

Aziz's picture

They're not dependent on US consumers. I personally hate that line. 

They have everything you state, but they also have an authoritarian economic planning regime, and the misallocation of capital based on economic planning is always and has always been problematic.

Long term prosperity requires a free market. You can do certain things in a command economy, but facilitating long-term self-perpetuating prosperity is not one of them.

VonManstein's picture

even if they remain authoritarian, slaves served the British Empire quite well for a few hundred years. So the only bearishness should be in the short term.

They have indeed been spending money and the "misallocation" of capital in china is in property, building the so called ghost cities and infastructure for them to function. I do not see this as wasted money. Perhaps they are planning for the future? And expect people to inhabit these cities. China has a long way to go no doubt but getting rid of worthless paper dollars and swapping them for citites, trains, aiports and gold and oil is not something i consider a misallocation.

What else are they suppose to do with all those USD reserves? i think its another of chinas smart moves, which they seem to be making more and more of.

Short term bear long term they are king.

Aziz's picture

"What else are they suppose to do with all those USD reserves?"

In a free market, the wider society determines how to allocate capital based on market preferences. In China, central planners decide how to allocate capital. The point is, if they want a free and prosperous society, it's not for the technocrats and bureaucrats to decide.

Long term, the US decline points to them becoming a superpower, but with enough central planning you can screw anything up. One thing I have grabbed onto as bullish for China is they have a relatively low government-as-a-percentage-of-GDP ratio — lower than the USA. So MAYBE they are learning. MAYBE the Confucians/Taoists (Confucianism is relatively libertarian) are holding back the Maoist central planners (I guess Bo Xilai's deposition suggests so).

VonManstein's picture

so my initial question. Why are yoiu long term bearish?

Aziz's picture

1/ With enough central planning you can screw anything up. 

2/ Even if China does well long-term lots of foreign investors will still end up getting scalped.

VonManstein's picture

"1/ With enough central planning you can screw anything up. " again. china's central planners build cities, airports, factories. they invest heavily in engineering and technoligy. They make huge purchases of gold and stock pile oil. and copper. and rare earth metals. Chinas central planners are forming agreements and bi passing dollar all over the globe. Chinas central planners are doing the logical things in all respects. They are pretty on the ball if we are honest about this.

We are in a global debt crisis, we are the aproaching the end of an age and the end of the current order that has ruled for hundreds of years. China will suffer, for a short period of time. but china is well positioned to weather this storm. They have all the resources. Lets just be clear about this. CHINAS CENTRAL PLANNERS ARE NOTHING LIKE OURS

and your second point basically says "maybe i am not long term bear after all"

You are wrong Aziz.. and use far too many "ifs" and "buts"

only thing that derails the china story long term is Nuclear WW3 launched by US/UK (we shouldnt rule this out)

Aziz's picture

"Chinas central planners are doing the logical things in all respects. They are pretty on the ball if we are honest about this."

I think we can agree that they are doing much, much better than our central planners. I don't think we can really guarantee that they will continue to do the right thing into the future. Without a responsive market feedback mechanism, you are always guessing. ONLY the market mechanism which allocates capital, labour and resources based on reality and society's true preferences is proven to create long-term stability and prosperity. Sometimes planners get things right; very often the next generation of planners gets things very wrong.

There is a lot of potential in China, there always was. Deng Xiaoping's market reforms have allowed some of this potential to be released, and at the same time the West has gone politically and culturally and economically backward.

"only thing that derails the china story long term is Nuclear WW3 launched by US/UK (we shouldnt rule this out)"

I think there are plenty of scenarios short of nuclear war that can derail the "china story". I believe history is mostly shaped by black swans, not Hegelian dialectics. West is going full steam ahead to try and derail China. Maybe the West will succeed in sabotaging Chinese power, or maybe China will screw itself up, or maybe China will improve and succeed. I don't know yet. Neither (in all honesty) do you.  

VonManstein's picture

i never claimed to know anything, you did. I was questioning your bearishness. bears assume they know something and are thus bearish. I was pointing out based on recent events there is no reason to be bearish and asked for your reasoning.

If there is no WW3 to smash them. If there is no proxy wars to destabilse them. china and russia are going to be #winning

Peter Pan's picture

The leading nation of tomorrow will not necessarily be China or the USA but the nation which can survive a chaotic event and then regroup and get on with life.

Dr. Sandi's picture

Shit. That's North Korea.

vast-dom's picture

china data is nonsense. just look at their concrete cement usage and energy imports and that tells the real story. also their RE ghost cities. 


in terms of their purchasing power, well, that's a whole different story. watch them buy up the planet and their currency appreciate in next 5 years while the West crashes and resets. 

verum quod lies's picture

Be skeptical of more than just economic data coming out of there, for example:


Sisyphus's picture

East Asian?

What about the schlong of West Asians or North Asians or South Asians?

Russians? With only 40% in Europe, would that be an Asian schlong or Caucasian schlong?

Who the dry fuck does such studies?

LetThemEatRand's picture

I believe this particular study was funded by the Wang Institute.  And I'm pretty sure that a certain Dr. Krugman checked all the data himself.

knukles's picture

Proof positive the man's a twat when he makes his name up from anagrams of words like that.






BTW, another anagram of his name is Small Black Penis


tom's picture

Well, the theory of the Caucasian race was that it included everybody with straight hair and bridged noses, ie Europe, north Africa, west Asia, most of the Indian subcontinent, and the Persiatic bits of central Asia. South Indians were considered Australoid race. Siberians and the east Turkic central Asians were considered Mongoloid race.

DNA research has long since invalidated the theory, but why would that stop government statisticians from applying it.

RafterManFMJ's picture

Who does the studies? No idea, but I can bet your tax dollars paid for them.

Peter Pan's picture

Is dick size so relevant when the world is suffering from economic dicktheria?

midgetrannyporn's picture

no stats on joo banker penis length?

Winston Churchill's picture

Not applicable.

At a potential  banker's Bris ,the wrong part is thrown away.

knukles's picture

I can vouch for that truth.

In golf, putts inside my foreskin are good.

Dr. Sandi's picture

Your putz is supposed to be inside your foreskin.

Quinvarius's picture

The information was requested, but they refuse to be audited.  I understand Bob Pisani was secretly shown some random Jewish penises at a hidden location in London for an upcoming CNBC special titled "Jewish Penis is everything the Jewish people claim it is".  But the information was discredited because the penis Bob Pisani joyfully held up to camera was black. 

knukles's picture

And when challenged he explained that they were really Jewish peni because Moshe and Ruth one night were watching some anthropology program on BBC2 about African male enhancement methods.  It explained that some of the Wangbangodo Fuazzywuzzies in Africa extended their penises by hanging about 20 stone of rocks on the end for several months which, of course, should have a noticeable effect.
Ruth turned to Moshe and suggested that he try that as they were getting on in age and might have but a brief time to yet enjoy their remaining time together.  So Moshe went out to the garage and scrounged up about 40 lb. of scrap which he tied to the end of his penis and shortly thereafter, being elderly, they both forgot about it.
Several weeks later, Ruth remembered her glorious idea and asked Moshe what the results looked like to which he replied;

"Well, it ain't got a bit longer lass, but sure has turned black."

Thus, Pisani redeemed not only himself, but the credibility of CNBS and the entire NWO MSM, the results of which immediately thereafter ran as a momentous cover on the Economist.

Hulk's picture

No enhancements were actually used, the long penis evolved in order to get past all that Booty...

OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

I always wondered why it's the man's size that people talk about...and not the woman's too. I recall an experiment with a  lovely Singaporean Chinese woman who could only fit 1/2 way. Does that make me King Kong?

It's been 1:20 seconds and I needed my next thought about sex...thanks>

Snakeeyes's picture

But Bernanke has the biggest penis in the world, yet it is flacid. Much like John C. Holmes.

Tom Green Swedish's picture

How Rome Crumbled.


1.Concern with displaying affluence instead of building wealth.
2.Obsession with sex and perversions of sex.
3.Art becomes freakish and sensationalistic instead of creative and original.
4.Widening disparity between very rich and very poor.
5.Increased demand to live off the state


I do not see any similarities between Rome and the USA.


On a side note:

Dagong rates China Triple A while S&P rates China AA-

Dagong rates USA A (Same as Spain).


j.tennquist's picture

Plus a currency that lost its base value and was printed in overabundance and spread thinly all over the "Roman" world.  When your soldiers aren't paid they lose allegiance, when the rulers cannot depend on the soldiers to insulate them from the unwashed masses, the end is near.  

I don't see any similarities between Rome and the US, or even China.  Nope, not even China.


Taint Boil's picture



Those charts suck  ........ It is hard to figure out. Maybe someone was stroking the numbers a bit.

FieldingMellish's picture

It will lead to a sticky situation that will explode in their face, usually too soon.

TahoeBilly2012's picture

Are you calling me a liar?

monad's picture

My Dick

The moon is bigger over America, bitchez. Long, short, its not the meat, its the motion.