|Mexcan Sage, Salvia leucantha|
It’s very hard for me to attribute this to something benign, like total economic illiteracy or gross inattention to their responsibilities as pension trustees. I can’t imagine that anyone who can read and do basic arithmetic ever thought that draining off the “excess earnings” in the good years could result in anything other than exactly what it has wrought: a pension fund so disastrously underfunded that it may not be salvageable. No, wait, that’s too kind: they were also draining off … what should we call them? “excess non-earnings”? in years when the economy was melting down, the Dow Jones was trading for less than a Mickey Mantle rookie card and the region’s chief industry was teetering on the brink of extinction. What could they possibly have been thinking?Megan read precisely what they were thinking and refused to believe it.
“People were having a hard time, living hand-to-mouth, and we thought we would give them some extra,” Ms. Bassett said.Ms. Bassett cared. That's all that mattered. Ms. Bassett, like so many progressives, felt certain that the excess money she was handing out would be replaced somehow. "How" didn't matter when she saw "need." That "how" hasn't turned up for any of the other cities or counties or nations where this same sort of thinking has predominated didn't matter either and that's the point Megan is missing.
The government is too big.Which is beside the point.
OK, what would you cut?
Well, we're going to have to cut entitlements because that's where most of the money is being spent.
You'll never cut entitlements. They're too politically popular. In fact, here's a list of Republicans who vote for entitlements all the time.
"Dude, it's right here. I swim in it. I dive in it. One of our sons surfs in it."I was blessed enough to be given proof. It's more than metaphysical.
"It's all explainable through science. You are only imagining it."
Although several residents said streetlights are needed in the east-side area, one man suggested keeping them in place could prove challenging.Confronted by this situation, my thought would be to pull all repair crews and occupy and control the area first. If you're so short of money that you can't do all basic repairs or pay full pensions for retirees, it makes no sense at all to fix things only to have them wrecked by the residents. That's like setting fire to what little money you have.
“You know, it’s a start. ... But then again ... if you get some young guys that are selling drugs out here who don’t want streetlights, they’ll shoot them out,” said David Adkins, 47, who lives on Tacoma, which is part of the east-side project area.
|Given their budget situation, a Starter Army is probably all they can afford. Still, they could do worse. When it came to pacifying barbarian lands, these guys were pros.|
Japan currently tops the list of 47 countries and territories investing in Viet Nam’s real estate. According to statistics from the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Viet Nam attracted a total of US$12.63 billion of FDI in the first eight months of this year, a rise of 19.5 per cent over the same period last year.Assorted businesses in Thailand.
Incoming non-portfolio investment reached Bt278.6 billion in the first half of this year, with Japanese projects accounting for 54 per cent of all foreign-owned projects and 66 per cent of foreign direct investment (FDI).Despite having a trade deficit, they're on a record pace for investment outflows.
“In fact, Japanese FDI recorded its biggest monthly outflows from Japan ever in July (JPY3734bn or USD37bn)”.They're bringing their money to the US as well.
“If Japanese firms keep investing outside Japan at the current pace, FDI outflows this year could exceed the previous record amount in 2008 (JPY13.2trn)”.
“While FDI is expected to remain elevated, the Japanese trade deficit is estimated to have widened in August”.
Softbank Corp. (TYO: 9984), the Japanese mobile network operator, is in the process of completing its acquisition of Sprint Nextel Corporation (NYSE: S). Earlier this week, Dish Network Corp. (Nasdaq: DISH) dropped out of the fight for the third-biggest U.S. wireless carrier and Softbank now hopes the deal will clear its final hurdles by the beginning of July. Once completed, it’ll mark the largest Japanese acquisition of a U.S. company in more than 30 years.This would make perfect sense and be a sign of stability if Japan was experiencing tremendous growth and was seeing wild inflation in asset prices at home, but they're not. They've had deflation for quite some time now and their economy has been stagnant for nearly 20 years. To me, this looks like the smart money is getting out while it still can.
|Focus on Christ's love and God's forgiveness. Got it. Will do, sir.|
|Secretary Botox. Our point man on Syria. We're screwed.|
My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation.Snarking aside, that editorial was about a thousand times more coherent than anything coming out of Laurel and Hardy. When I read it, I thought I could see Russia's motivation in supporting Assad. The last thing they want are more weapons in the hands of Islamofascists, finding their way into Chechnya and Russia.
|When they got older, international relations seemed so easy in the Ivy League faculty lounges.|
|A cool, murky day added to the mystery and romance of the pools.|
|It's as if they were showing themselves off, hoping you'd select one of them to take home.|
We're spending a long weekend up in Cambria. We have rented a perfectly lovely house that has excellent ocean views. Well, except for the fact that the ocean views they showed on the Internet had the numerous telephone wires Photoshopped out. Still, it's a beautiful place.
I would include photos, but there is no Internet service. Thanks to AT&T, there are so many locks on the Internet access that it has been impossible to get on.
Flipping through the DirecTV channels last night, we found nothing but porn and horror movies. Aside: what is wrong with you people? How in the world can there be enough demand to support 34 porn channels? And how many disembowelments do you need to see?
Meanwhile, the sports channels have all been disabled. That means we won't be able to watch any of the World Cup qualifiers this weekend. At least, until they can manage to get the Internet working.
That means we are just going to have to go out and hike in Big Sur. I feel so incredibly put out.
Seriously, though, I hope you have an equally enjoyable weekend. I'll try to share some photos later.
Japan’s public pension fund, the world’s largest, said it has been selling domestic government bonds as the number of people eligible for retirement payments increases.
“Payouts are getting bigger than insurance revenue, so we need to sell Japanese government bonds to raise cash,” said Takahiro Mitani, president of the Government Pension Investment Fund, which oversees 113.6 trillion yen ($1.45 trillion). “To boost returns, we may have to consider investing in new assets beyond conventional ones,” he said in an interview in Tokyo yesterday.
After the 1992 riots, city government made it a priority to bring full-service grocery stores back to South and East L.A. neighborhoods, and though there were some successes, most of the stores that did open closed soon after. Now, there are 60 full-service grocery stores in South L.A. serving an average population of 22,156 residents per-store, compared to 57 stores in West L.A. that serve only 11,150 residents on average.Which is answered in the next two sentences.
While the disparity in access to healthy food is undeniable, the potential solutions are more debatable – how can the city, and the residents of South and East L.A., attract grocery store chains?
Why can't a Whole Foods or Trader Joe's turn a profit in traditionally underserved areas? If they build the markets, will the customers come?The analysis of the situation always assumes that the residents want to have a healthy diet, but don't have access to it. That seems to defy business logic. The numbers above show that if there was really a demand for the product, the stores would open. Grocery store chains are pretty sophisticated operations and they don't leave much on the table when it comes to making profit.
|Image from this post which itself has a related story.|
I am blogging from my Galaxy S3 while parked outside a person's house where my wife is inside bringing Communion to the homebound. I spent the morning watching English Premier League soccer and wasn't quite sure what I would post to the blog today, but God provides.
One of the things that always struck me about Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II was how they gave their bodies completely to Christ. They did not end there ministries until they were physically unable to go on. It was a fantastic example to the rest of us of how to completely devote ourselves to God.
At our parish we have a very elderly priest named Father John. He is old and infirm he struggles to walk and most of the time he is in great pain. He said Mass this morning for the first time in probably two months. There were other priests who could have said Mass in his place, but he chose to do so. I don't know what his motivation was, whether it was something he loves to do and wanted to do again or whether it was an act of devotion. Whatever his reason, it was tremendously inspiring and moving.
His homily was given in a clear, ringing voice and spoke of humility. He spoke with humor and feeling. It was great.
You don't always need to look to famous nuns or popes for inspiration. Sometimes a simple parish priest will do.