Monday, July 02, 2012

Paul Krugman Continues to Pounce on What He Calls Europe’s Great Economic Illusion: Are Inflation and Monetary Devaluation the Houdini of the Future?

Paul Krugman's most recent piece at the New York Times is Europe’s Great Illusion, writing inter alia in the aftermath of the recent -- in our eyes "relatively successful" -- Eurozone summit meeting:
"Over the past few months I’ve read a number of optimistic assessments of the prospects for Europe. Oddly, however, none of these assessments argue that Europe’s German-dictated formula of redemption through suffering has any chance of working. Instead, the case for optimism is that failure — in particular, a breakup of the euro — would be a disaster for everyone, including the Germans, and that in the end this prospect will induce European leaders to do whatever it takes to save the situation."
We agree with Paul Krugman on much of his basic macroeconomics, but are recently somewhat more concerned about why he continues to pounce on the economy of Europe rather than on the economic situation in the United States.

We presume that the reason is because the USA and the EU are the biggest bilateral trading and investment partners in the world (with China soon overtaking) whose fortunes are inextricably entwined.

The transatlantic economy has traditionally been the world's motor, as can be seen from these figures from the European Commission, the executive body of the European Union (EU):
"Trade in goods
  • EU good exports to the US in 2010: €242.1 billion
  • EU goods imports from the US in 2010: €169.5 billion
Trade in services
  • EU services exports to the US 2010: €125.2 billion
  • EU services imports from the US in 2010: €131.0 billion
Foreign Direct Investment
  • EU investment flows to the US in 2009: €79.2 billion
  • US investment flows to the EU in 2009: €97.3 billion
  • Investment stocks inward in 2009: €1044 billion
  • Investment stocks outward in 2009: €1134 billion
More statistics on USA"
What would be useful to see from Krugman is an analysis of the people and institutions to whom the money of the debt crisis is OWED and why (or not) they should be saved from their bad investments viz. loans and why money speculators, banks looking for absurd returns from sovereign nations -- and failing, hedge funds, and their ilk, etc. should be rewarded for what is nothing other than monetary gambling. That is a far more important question than all this theoretical economic bantering.

Hat tip to CaryGEE.

Tiger Woods Passes Jack Nicklaus in All-Time PGA Wins with 74th Victory at AT&T National

Tiger Woods won again, for the 3rd time in seven starts this year, and 74th time on the PGA tour, passing Jack Nicklaus in the all-time PGA tour win list, as Farrell Evans reports for ESPN at

Tiger Woods triumphs again at AT&T National for 74th PGA Tour win.

With the win, Tiger passed Jack Nicklaus in the all-time PGA wins list.

Hey, Tiger is getting "better" again.
You can tell by the visibly much softer touch on putting and chipping,
which are what makes championships -- the short game has to be there.

More importantly for his long term health and golf, he appears to have regained his easy-going competitive "edge" while also recovering his "youthful" friendliness, cheery attitude and good spirits, a development which forecasts problems for his competitors in coming tournaments. Either you battle the golf course or the world, not both.

The younger generation of golfers is good and getting better all the time, but Woods is still in a class by himself -- when he has his act together, which has not been the case in recent years -- but that is a part of life.

None of us are demigods and we all have to go through various development periods as humans, and make mistakes. No one gets through without them.

His 3rd win this year is more than any other golf professional in 2012.

Woods still trails Sam Snead's 82 leading PGA tour wins, but that record may fall before Woods hits age 40. He will turn 37 on December 30, 2012.

If someone like the present writer can win a club golf championship at age 61 3/4, then Tiger still has a lot of wins left in his now 36-year old physique. In fact, if, as it appears, Tiger has matured emotionally through his personal problems, he will be more formidable than ever on the golf course.

So what do we know about golf to justify writing these things?
Check out SportPundit.

Or take a look at this candid driving range drive
of the present writer on Vimeo.

Sorry for the non-golf attire, shirt and suspenders, but it was very windy,
so I left my golf shirt in the clubhouse. No need to change for 20 balls. I will try to get a better video soon, when my game is in shape.

In any case, that was only my 3rd or 4th time out on the range at all this year, and I have not played a round of golf since last September.

So it looks like time to start again.
Hey, I'll be 66 in December
and still knock some drives beyond 300 yards.

2012 looks like a good golf year,
not just for Tiger.

A Fair and Balanced View of Modern American Immigration Paints a Different Picture than What One Often Reads or Hears in Mainstream Media

At the Wall Street Journal Online, Walter Russell Mead in his article, America's New Tiger Immigrants: Asians in the U.S. reports that the common view of a massive wave of recent illegal Hispanic immigration to the United States is not accurate. He writes:
"Since 2008, more newcomers to the U.S. have been Asian than Hispanic (in 2010, it was 36% of the total, versus 31%). Today's typical immigrant is not only more likely to speak English and have a college education, but also to have come to the U.S. legally, with a job already in place."
Obviously, there are and will be negative exceptions that must be dealt with, but on the whole, writes Mead, James Clarke Chace professor of foreign affairs and humanities at Bard College:
"The world's best, the world's hardest-working and the world's most ambitious are still coming our way."
Hat tip to CaryGEE.

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