When Liars Tell the Truth

by David Glenn Cox

When

our media tells the truth, they still lie. They won’t tell you that the

ship is sinking, instead they will tell you that the ship is taking on

less water than it was. They will assure you that all will be fine if

you’ll just trust them.

Bloomberg- “Fed Beige Book Says Economy Making ‘Modest’ Gains

“All

12 district banks reported a weak or declining commercial real estate

market, the central bank said today in its Beige Book business survey,

published two weeks before officials meet to set monetary policy. The

banks observed little or no price pressures, while demand for bank

loans was weak or declining and many districts reported a further

erosion of credit quality.”

Does that sound like “modest”

gains to you? That further erosion of credit quality, that’s you

they’re talking about. It means that you can no longer pay your bills

on time.



“The survey indicates that the economy, while gaining

momentum, has yet to overcome weaknesses in banking and employment.

Unemployment rose last month in 23 U.S. states, the Labor Department

said today, while earlier reports showed declines in wholesale prices

and lower-than-forecast housing starts, giving central bankers more

reason to hold the main interest rate at a record low to stoke a

recovery.”

Using the phrase “Unemployment rose last month in

23 U.S. states,” is nothing but another way of parsing the truth. Which

23 states? Which would be more reflective of real unemployment in the

United States: Utah, North Dakota and Wyoming? Or Florida, Illinois and

California? A 1% rise in these latter three states would be almost more

people than the entire population of the other three.

“Today’s

report cited continued ‘weak or mixed’ labor markets. Unemployment rose

to a 26-year high of 9.8 percent in September and is forecast by

economists to hit 10 percent by the end of the year.

“Reports

of gains in economic activity generally outnumber declines, but

virtually every reference to improvement was qualified as either ‘small

or scattered,’ the Fed said today.”

Like an Almond Joy candy

bar, they cover the nuts with chocolate. Small, scattered generally

means no less than the drought’s not over but I found a guy who spilled

a glass of water! It’s whipped cream topping on a disaster.

“Dallas

Fed President Richard Fisher said, ‘bad numbers are getting less

worse.’ Growth next year will be a ‘tough slog’ and ‘significantly

below potential,’ he said in an interview with The Toronto-based BNN

television network.

“Defaults on commercial real estate loans

totaled $110 billion, or 6 percent of all such loans, in the second

quarter, about 11 times the level in the fourth quarter of 2006.

Defaults may rise to $170 billion by the fourth quarter of 2010,

according to Foresight Analytics LLC, a real-estate market consulting

firm.”

“Economy Making ‘Modest’ Gains.” Really?

Here in

Gwinnett County, Georgia, north of Atlanta, the county faces a one

billion-dollar budget shortfall. They’ve begun laying off 600 full time

employees and estimates are that as many as 20% of all businesses in

the county have already closed their doors. Shopping centers are

abandoned, some only half completed, but that is small potatoes.

In

California, Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzeneger forced through the

legislature the most draconian budget cuts in the state’s history.

Forty days into the fiscal year, the new budget is already in the red,

and the deficit is growing faster than the state can make cuts.

“NEW

YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Despite concerted government-led and

lender-supported efforts to prevent foreclosures, the number of filings

hit a record high in the third quarter, according to a report issued

Thursday.

“‘They were the worst three months of all time,’ said

Rick Sharga, spokesman for RealtyTrac, an online marketer of foreclosed

homes.”

In those three months, 937,840 homeowners received a

notice of foreclosure. If we assume four members to a household, that’s

3.75 million Americans losing their homes in the last ninety days and

they will spend the winter God only knows where. It all rolls uphill;

these empty houses will mean defaults on their property taxes so your

county won’t be able to pay its employees either. The eventual new

purchaser will buy the home for much less and pay much less in property

taxes. But the counties have budgeted at the old higher tax rate.

They’ve borrowed money on anticipated revenues and now the revenues

aren’t there.

Unemployed workers pay no taxes; failed businesses

pay no taxes. So the criticism of Obama expanding the budget deficit

becomes academic. I, too, borrowed money when my business began to

fail. It’s human nature when you fall to try and catch yourself, and it

matters very little whether you owe a dollar or a million dollars if

you ain’t got a dollar in the first place!

New York Times- “Federal Deficit Hits All-Time High of $1.42 Trillion

“As a percentage of U.S. economic output, it’s the biggest deficit since World War II.”

More

parsing of the truth, during WWII the United States had the largest

industrial capacity in the world. We were running factories twenty-four

hours a day turning out aircraft, tanks, ships, guns and bullets. As

well as food, bandages, medicine, iron and steel. Mines worked in three

shifts turning out coal and raw materials, railroads were weighted down

with tonnage and had to devise a priority system to ease the

congestion.

Workers were working overtime in union shops. With

restrictions on most consumer goods, the workers put their money in the

bank for after the war. To compare that economy to this feeble economy

is like comparing Mr. Olympia to Pee Wee Herman. Mr. Olympia could lift

the weight, but can Pee Wee?

It’s jobs, jobs, jobs, and that’s

the simple truth. The banking bailout was feeding the tiger when what

was needed was strangling of the tiger. Leaving the banks in charge of

the mortgage rescue was sheer insanity. The banks have new money; the

home foreclosures are tax write offs for the bank. Their interest is in

the wellbeing of the bank, not the people. That’s the government’s job.

You want some truth? OK, here goes:

Millions of Americans face a

long cold winter with nowhere to live and without jobs. They are

veterans, and women and children of all ages who will shiver in the

cold and some won’t live to see the spring. Meanwhile, our government

plays in the margins and ignores them, when they should be this

nation’s priority. There are millions that would gladly trade places

with the balloon boy because at night they dream of flying away to

dodge the horrible reality that faces them each and every morning.

“But

while they prate of economic laws, men and women are starving. We must

lay hold of the fact that economic laws are not made by nature. They

are made by human beings.” Franklin Deleno Roosevelt

Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.