Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday musings

Well it looks as the sky is starting to fall and all the people in charge can only say "not my fault" as economy after economy is reeling.
Greece has now technically defaulted on its financial obligations.
Italy is "too big to fall" but is next in line.
And then there is the biggest elephant in the room - America.
Real growth is forecast to be a measly 2.5%, unemployment to remain at 8.25% for the balance of the year. The recession lingers and refuses to go away. The Republican party is being held hostage to the Tea Party activists in blocking all attempts to raise the debt ceiling in order to avoid defaulting on its debts.
It appears many new Republican representatives signed pledges during the election campaign that vowed to reduce taxes but not raise taxes if needed. So instead of agreeing to reduce expenditures (mainly in areas where the politically weak are large - such as medicare and medicaid) and raise new taxes on the wealthiest,they insist on cutting programs-period.
I wonder if all the money being spent on Irag and Afghanistan and a poorly run TSA (Transportation Agency in charge of airport security and the like) were applied to the economy, what results would happen?
There are a lot of people who are happy with the mess in the States but they really have no idea of the storm that will result as a result od an American default. It will make the last recession look puny in comparison.
Every country in the world will suffer - period.
Inflation will roar back, the cost of borrowing will soar, unemployment will rise, savings will be devastated as all currency traders will flee the safety of investing in the greenback to other currencies and precious minerals.
The next few weeks will see if the Americans can stop at this brink and restore some sanity to their fiscal world and indirectly help that of the world.
Hugo Chavez has cancer and is returning to Cuba for chemo treatments. Some blogs quote unnamed sources as saying that the cancer is spreading and may not respond to treatment. Developments in that country will bear watching if his condition worsens because as in the case of many strong populist leaders, Chavez has no apparent second in command in place to assume control of the country.
The brother of Karzhi in Afghanistan is assassinated and that shows how weak security in the country is. With the Canadians out of the field and gradual international troop reductions on the horizon, all the blood,lives and money spent to defeat the Taliban will have been in vain.
A tragedy of no small proportions.
The visit of the Royal couple to Canada (and a side trip to California as well) is over and I am amused to see how the exhausted  reporters are slowly starting to recover from their brush with royalty. Someone forgot to tell them that the rest of the country was not as enthralled as them. The Royals are nice kids but really, the idea of a king and queen are so irrelevant, and costly for the taxpayer, so just let them fade away -please?
Casey Anthony of the infamous kid killing case in America is now a free woman - biggest story in the American media for the year - and why?
There is a huge story occurring that has barely caused a ripple in the world press. This is the staggering drought and resultant starvation in the Horn of Africa. Have you read anything of it at all? Of the suffering and the incredible death toll with no relief in sight? Or sadly have you read more of the media frenzy over the fallout of the phone hacking case of certain British tabloids?
I ask yet again, where the hell is the focus of the media and who is directing it to ignore real world problems?
How is your summer going any way?
Here we have had a glorious week or so of hot sunny weather with more to come. The memories of rain, rain and more rain have dimmed and the prospect of another cold and gloomy winter are far away for now.
The garden is a riot of  colour and brimming with produce. The yard and flowers are neat and bursting with colour and variety.
We decided to visit a small town in our area that has a mini replica of the Eiffel Tower. It was a nice trip and it was enjoyable to be out of the city for a  while.
I must say that I am pleased to see that I was able to post a picture here.
Next month we are off to the wondrous city of Vancouver for a few days of vacation and now that I know that photo posting is possible, I look forward to the sharing of some of those with you.
Well that is it for another week,
so take care out there,
flatlander 52

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