Sunday, April 19, 2020

Scratch a cynic

and you'll find a disappointed idealist.

George Carlin
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That quote resonates with me because I had a conversation with my mother last week about idealism.  I would consider myself an reformed idealist because i realize we can no longer fix our political and economic systems given the divided state of our nation and I guess that makes me cynic.
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Economic backdrop:

I know everyone is grasping at straws for comparisons of the current economic collapse.  They don't exist.  Consider this chart from Bloomberg - as GDP (a measure of economic activity) shrinks while spending explodes this year, the deficit to GDP in the US is expected to soar to 18% (and I think it could be higher).

Consider some of the countries with the WORST deficits to GDP (bonus points if you can find a common theme)....

Syria - 8.7%
Egypt - 10.8%
Cuba - 11%
Iraq - 11%
Afghanistan - 14%
Libya - 18%
Venezuela - 38%

Seriously, that is some high quality company to keep for the US.
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Obviously, there are a number of differences between the Japanese economy and the US economy (#1 vs #3, service component, etc, etc) but since 2000 I've told anyone who will listen that the US is on a path to becoming an economy similar to Japan's by 2030-2040.

Since so many people are obsessed with stock charts - take a look at Japan.

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Basically, flat for 33 years. Yeah!
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I won't get into the debate about Re-Opening America because it has become a political hot potato, but it is interesting to see early reports back from countries that opened back up where infection rates are soaring again (Singapore, Japan, Korea) and in Germany the message of "open for business" seems to be misconstrued as "back to normal".  A lot of people in Germany this weekend noted that lack of social distancing means they may have to revert back to lock down mode.  This will be the story of Texas and Florida around Memorial Day.

Something was also have to watch is some data out of South Korea where some 2.1% of cases were people who previously tested positive but were cleared.  These recovered patients then relapsed and are now testing positive again.  That could be worrisome if it becomes widespread.
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Daily Dose of Humor:

via @junejuly12
This morning some guy assumed I would move my cart so he could go against the directional arrows in a narrow grocery store aisle.


He was wrong.

via @snarkymommy78
I just used TWO paper towels to clean up a spill like some kind of pre-quarantine person

via @mommajessiec
By the age of 35 you should have at least one couch solely for laundry.

Cheers!

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