Posts filed under “Really, really bad calls”

Gasoline Tax, Unchanged Since 1993, is Due for an Increase

Roads are crumbling, bridges are collapsing, and what was once considered one of the greatest achievements of any government anywhere has fallen into embarrassing disrepair. I am of course discussing our nation’s infrastructure. Last year, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the U.S. infrastructure a D+.

When it comes to the most basic functions of government we barely get a passing grade.

How did this happen? Credit a combination of benign neglect and anti-tax ideology run amok.

The Revenue Act of 1932 created the U.S.’s federal gasoline tax, charging 1 cent a gallon. Three decades later, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956.That created one of the world’s great transportation networks, the interstate highway system, at an inflation-adjusted cost of about a half-trillion dollars. ( See the History of the Interstate Highway Systemfor more details.)  Continues here

Category: Energy, Really, really bad calls, Taxes and Policy

4th Anniversary of Gulf Oil Spill

BP and the Government Decided to Temporarily Hide the Oil by Sinking It with Toxic Chemicals … The Gulf Ecosystem Is Now Paying the Price   As we noted at the time, and on the first (and here), second and third anniversaries of BP’s Gulf oil spill, BP and the government made the spill much…Read More

Category: Energy, Really, really bad calls, Think Tank

On Tax Day, Taxpayers Pick up $8 Billion Tab for Walmart and the Walton Family Report Provides State-by-State Estimates of Revenue Losses WASHINGTON — Walmart and the Waltons—America’s largest employer and richest family—received tax breaks and subsidies worth an estimated $7.8 billion in 2013, according to a report released today by Americans for Tax Fairness….Read More

Category: Really, really bad calls, Taxes and Policy, Wages & Income

Annualized Returns & the Average Investor

annualreturns

Source: JP Morgan Guide to Markets 2Q|2014

 

Have a look at the chart above. It is from the quarterly chart book from JPM (which I have been referencing for years).

Average annual returns for individuals over the past 20 years? 2.3%. That fails to even keep up with inflation. REITs, commodities, equities and even bonds all wildly outperform the average retail investor.

The bottom half of this graphic shows what happens when investors are left to their own devices: They engage in emotional decision-making (AKA Fear & Greed), they “performance chase,” they fail to have any form of risk management in place, pay high fees, and exhibit an almost willful lack of discipline.

 

Continues here

 

 

 

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Category: Investing, Really, really bad calls

How Much Is NSA Spying Costing In Lost Productivity?

Spy Agencies Are Spying On All Of Us, Taking Screenshots of Our Webchats, Creating Vulnerabilities On Our Computers and the Internet, and Intentionally Disrupting Some of Our Functionalities … NSA spying is costing the U.S. tech industry tens of billions of dollars. And see this and this. It also undermines trust in U.S. companies, fellow…Read More

Category: Really, really bad calls, Think Tank, War/Defense

HFT: Fragility, Bubbles & Mayhem

Ian Fraser: “Not only is HFT legalized front-running. It is also a socially worthless activity that amplifies market movements, increases market fragility, inflates asset price bubbles, and naturally worsens market crashes. And as we saw with the ‘Flash Crash‘ of May 2010, it can also fuel market mayhem.” -Q-Finance Discuss . . .

Category: Really, really bad calls, Regulation, Trading

Mass Surveillance Is ALWAYS About Crushing Dissent

500 Years of History – and 40 Years of Warnings by Top U.S. Officials – Confirms that Government Spying On One’s Own People Is Always About Grabbing Power and Stifling Criticism Given all of the hooey coming from the spymasters and their shills in the mainstream press, here’s a very brief reminder of what mass…Read More

Category: Really, really bad calls, War/Defense

60 Minutes: Is the U.S. stock market rigged?

Steve Kroft reports on a new book from Michael Lewis that reveals how some high-speed traders work the stock market to their advantage

Is the U.S. stock market rigged?

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Category: Really, really bad calls, Regulation, Trading, Video

Military Waste and Fraud Are the Main Cause of Our Problems

“$8.5 TRILLION In Taxpayer Money Doled Out By Congress To The Pentagon Since 1996 … Has NEVER Been Accounted For” We’ve repeatedly documented that military waste and fraud are the core problems with the U.S. economy. For example, we’ve noted that we wouldn’t be in this crisis of hitting the debt ceiling in the first…Read More

Category: Politics, Really, really bad calls, Think Tank, War/Defense

Intelligence Agencies Have Gone Rogue, With No Oversight

“Do You Think That Because I’m Chairman of The Intelligence Committee That I Just Say “I Want It”, and They Give It To Me? They Control It. All Of It. ALL of It. ALL THE TIME. I Only Get – and My Committee Only Gets – What They WANT To Give Me.” -Jay Rockefeller, Chairman,…Read More

Category: Really, really bad calls, Think Tank, War/Defense