So You Think We’re In a Recession as of Beginning August (Part II)

Follow up to “So you think we’re in a recession as of beginning August”…and rejoinder to those who believe we’ve already been in recession for a while.

 Figure 1: Lewis-Mertens-Stock Weekly Economic Index (blue), OECD Weekly Tracker (tan), Baumeister-Leiva-Leon-Sims Weekly Economic Conditions Index for US (green). Source: NY Fed via FRED, OECD, WECI.

The WEI reading for the week ending 8/6 of 3.2 is interpretable as a y/y quarter growth of 3.2% if the 3.2 reading were to persist for an entire quarter. The OECD Weekly Tracker reading of 1.9 is interpretable as a y/y growth rate of 1.9% for year ending 8/6. The Baumeister et al. reading of 2.1% for the week ending 6/25 is interpreted as a 2.1% growth rate in excess of long term trend growth rate. Average growth of US GDP over the 2000-19 period is about 2%.

 Figure 2: Lewis-Mertens-Stock Weekly Economic Index (blue), OECD Weekly Tracker (tan), Baumeister-Leiva-Leon-Sims Weekly Economic Conditions Index for US plus 2% trend (green). Source: NY Fed via FRED, OECD, WECI, and author’s calculations.

The summary is that the WEI (10 components) indicates continued strong growth through 8/6. The OECD Weekly Tracker, based on Google Trends and machine learning, suggests a slowdown in May-July 2022 (but no negative readings). Baumeister et al. WECI (based on 25 indicators) after adding in a trend shows a similar pattern to the WEI (comparison is shown in appendix to Baumeister et al.)

How did these series interpret the developments during the last recession (Unadjusted WECI shown below).

 Figure 3: Lewis-Mertens-Stock Weekly Economic Index (blue), OECD Weekly Tracker (tan), Baumeister-Leiva-Leon-Sims Weekly Economic Conditions Index for US (green). NBER defined recession dates shaded gray. Source: NY Fed via FRED, OECD, WECI, NBER.

The foregoing suggests that as of 8/6, the US is not in a contracting state, as summarized by various underlying macro indicators.

203 thoughts on “So You Think We’re In a Recession as of Beginning August (Part II)

  1. pgl

    “The WEI reading for the week ending 8/6 of 3.2 is interpretable as a y/y quarter growth of 3.2% if the 3.2 reading were to persist for an entire quarter. The OECD Weekly Tracker reading of 1.9 is interpretable as a y/y growth rate of 1.9% for year ending 8/6. The Baumeister et al. reading of 2.1% for the week ending 6/25 is interpreted as a 2.1% growth rate in excess of long term trend growth rate. Average growth of US GDP over the 2000-19 period is about 2%.”

    Not only might we avoid a recession this year, real GDP growth might just match long-term growth rate. Good news for everyone except of course those RECESSION CHEERLEADERS.

    1. rsm

      《Good news for everyone except of course those RECESSION CHEERLEADERS.》

      Why is economic activity good? What if economic activity causes depression, suicide, overdoses, and mass shootings? What if we’re just happier when we aren’t being forced to think about money?

      1. Macroduck

        What if hiccups caused hurricanes? What if laughter tasted like arthritis? What if cows dispensed algebra?

      2. AndrewG

        “What if economic activity causes depression, suicide, overdoses, and mass shootings?”

        What if Donald Trump is a great businessman and a champion of democracy?

  2. Gregory Bott

    Yeah, it looks like between the backend of the port clog, Russian fear pricing and a questionable downturn in Auto production(considering I toured through 2 Honda plants in May/June, they had the pieces after a quick chip crunch in February/March they couldn’t figure out why they weren’t working by May). By June, the Biden Administration was also asking.

    I think there are 2 reasons that go into that. One, shows a structural change in the Administration’s view of Covid. The peak is over and with more contagious versions simply a fact of life, auto firms need to raise infection caps. 2nd, the plant fire in Taiwan was seen with suspension and distrust. Part of Pelosi’s tour over there was to calm nerves as production ramps back up. The auto deramp is a key piece behind structural declines in index’s like the Philly Fed. Its completely nonrecessionary though. Its a choice. Above population rate auto production would completely turn that around.

    2ndly, the port clogs and shipping crisis kept a lot of product not getting sold and caused a rise in prices that priced out consumers. This was a temp. blip. Indeed, prices fell in July because producers had goods to move. That should mean a acceleration of inventory growth in the 3rd quarter.

    My 2 key recession indicators are real corporate profits and credit conditions. This is a supply based economy now. Its about moving volumes of goods via the globalist dollar standard. The late 90’s was a great example how this protects against inflation but also the fickle nature of business. When real profits stop growing they lay off instead of trying to raise prices. Its why people were concerned in November 2019(a month before the dawn of Covid the next month) due to flat corporate profits. The other is credit contractions like 2007-8. People want to spend, but they can’t. This undermines the economy as usually high debt servicing by financial companies who can’t handle the weight, causing them to collapse and the market loses confidence starting runs, counterparty liquidations and all the goody stuff a credit contraction is.

    1. Barkley Rosser

      According to an article in The Economist from about three weeks ago, we are now in an oversupply situation with chips, although i have not seen this reported elsewhere. Not sure what is going on, although if it has not in fact happened yet, we may well see an overshoot on the supply side of chips soon. That should help out with the auto situation at least.

      1. Moses Herzog

        Rosser says: ” Not sure what is going on,” Yup, that pretty much summarizes it.

        Barkley thinks we have a chip oversupply in August 2022. Oh, and the Head of the Central Bank in Russia is losing her job. Only she’s not, and the fact that Barkley made 3 separate postings saying she was losing her job, “it’s not fake news”. Because Rosser has a magical trait none of the rest of us normal human beings have. The ability to lie about an objective fact, then tell us it wasn’t “fake news”. See?? Understand how that works now?? NO?? You think a lie is a lie and fake news is fake news?? Take it up with occult magician and tarot card reader Barkley Rosser.

        1. Barkley Rosser


          The article on the supposed chip oversupply is for real. It is in the July 16 The Economist, pp. 59-61, “When the chips are way down.” Subtitle is “Surging supply and softening demand are bringing the pandemic’s superstar industry back to earth.”

          Here are some scattered quotes.

          “Now it seems that, far from being banished, the chip cycle may instead have speeded up. Chips of all sorts are looking wobbly.”

          “As the turbocharged boom risks turning into a supersize bust, the share prices of the world’s chipmakers have slumped by about a third this year.”

          “Start with supply. One way that firms have been adding capacity is by installing new kit in existing fabs (as chip factories are known)…It takes about a year or so for such investments to to translate into new output, so late 2022 could see a production glut.”

          “There was always the risk that demand might have faded by then [when longer term investments kick in 2025]. But the hunger for chips has waned faster than expected.”

          “The downward pressure on prices may be compounded by another powerful force. Political considerations….State largesse could lead to more overcapacity.”

          So, Moses, this article is for real. Given that it seems to go against what I have continued to see from other sources, this leads me to state what I did, that I am “not sure what is going on.” We should only talk about things here that are clearly and definitely known rather than things that appear to be uncertain?

          Do you know what is going on with this matter, Moses? Is The Economist article a pile of hooey? Or is what it claims just so well known that I am just an out of it fool not to have realized that it is correct already? Offhand, I do not see what you are making a fuss here out of. We are not supposed to bring up information that seems to go against widely prevailing stories that are out there, such as that we have an ongoing chip shortage that is aggravating inflation in various sectors, especially automobiles, where, it seems that prices are still sharply rising? Do YOU know what is going on with this matter? The Economist is generally one of the more reliable sources out there.

          As for the central bank rumor, I forecast you would make a fuss about this, and here you go, lying POS. I remind you and anybody else reading this that in my first post on this I NOTED IT MIGHT BE A RUMOR. But it is not fake news that the matter was all over Russian internet with much discussion, until it was rather forcefully taken down with the strong claim the whole ting was due to “foreign agents.” I think this is an interesting story, even if you do not, and it really did happen. That this matter was all over Russian internet is not “fake news,” although some may not find it of interest.

          I would strongly suggest you top lying about what I say here, you worthless a-hole. You really are sick.

          1. Moses Herzog

            @ Barkley Junior
            Well for starters, as relates to your “chip shortage” nonsense, may I suggest that a man with a PhD, with students who misguidedly ever signed up for his class, possibly a very few watching, might not use a data point, or magazine article, over a month old. Articles discussing inflation and shortages in the current summer 2022 context that are a month old, you might as well be seeing what kind of civil war data there is related to computer chips. Here, try this one on for size, and see if your students come to respect anything you have to say on this matter going forward:

            You are the same as your buddy Kopits, you state things as objective fact in the first 5 sentences of your comment, then end it with “Oh this could be a rumor”. Because I know how you operate on this blog and anywhere you go. You state farcical things, and the 1 in 200 times it hits you go “Oh see, I predicted that, see I talked about it” and when they don’t hit, 199 times out of 200 you go “Oh, but I said it was a rumor”. Nobody here believes or believed that garbage that Nabiullina was leaving that job. So here’s my idea for you, if it’s just a really unbelievable rumor, that you could only hook an idiot like Kopits on your bad fish bait, then STFU.

          2. Barkley Rosser


            I suspect that nobody else here is as outraged as you are that I introduce ideas here that I am not sure about their veracity regarding. We should not talk about this Economst story because it may prove not to be correct? I put it out here for people to think about precisely because it seemed to go against lots of other reporting, while indeed The Economist is a highly credible source.

            I note that later in this thread pgl has linked to a story making the same point about an impending oversupply of chips. What is your problem with this, Moses?

            Look, I get it that you are frustrated and miserable because you have no wife or paetner or girlfriend or children, and apparently no job or career either. So you take it out by going after me with any and every half-baked charge you can come up with. Sorry you are so pathetic.

          3. Moses Herzog

            @ Barkley Junior
            This blindly lashing out at someone, who you indeed know only what of my personal background I care to share of my own volition, is very entertaining. This doesn’t seem to fit with your comment theme in the same thread below that you so much like making friends with people who tell you you are wrong about anything. [ actually it seemed mostly another sad attempt by you at namedropping ]

            I don’t share everything about myself here on the blog or the internet for multiple reasons. for example, I like to remain truly anonymous. But your friend in New York has given himself away, by being kind enough to share things on the blog. His personal ID is safe with me, but I only share so much as to not get into the same situation as he. I think Menzie has most of the checkboxes of success clicked off, beautiful career-oriented wife, great job, respect from his colleagues~~yet even Professor Chinn is target for unfair derision here by many commenters. You assume a lot about me, maybe because of my self-deprecating humor?? Maybe because you feel empty inside, you need others to feel empty inside as well?? The fact that the simple act of telling you that you are blatantly wrong about “subject X’ is taken so personal by you, it says a lot about your nature, and why you are so easy to “read” and so easy to upset.

            You weren’t discussing an “impending oversupply” of computer chips, you said, and I quote verbatim “we are now in an oversupply situation with chips,”. Anyone is welcome to scroll up and see it, about 30 inches above what I am typing now, about 4 comments up. So, again, you are using pgl’s comment to become your own, when they are very different, and move the goalposts. I am sorry if you are getting older and can’t remember what you said the very same day you said it. I am sorry you got carried away trying to be “the first to report” the termination of the Head of Russia’s Central Bank, when no one in their right mind thought she was “being fired”. But portraying or depicting my life in supposed ruins, isn’t going to change the fact you embarrassed YOURSELF spreading falsehoods, and no one else did this, but YOU.

          4. Barkley Rosser

            Look, Moses, you cannot figure out which is worse, that I started my comments about the Russian central bank president by reporting she was terminated or that I did not just double down on that and noted at the end of the comment that it might be a rumor. You have somehow declared that there is something wrong about me hedging statements I make here with how they might not be right.

            Same goes for my comments about not knowing what the situation is regarding the chip situation, which I still do not know what it is. You certainly have not contributed to clarifying what the situation is, since for you the only point in commenting on this is to try to score yet more silly points against me in order to provide some kind of meaning to your pathetic existence.

            The person with a vacuum in your soul is you. I get along with huge numbers of people, and it is public information who I am.

            You are obsessed with going after me constantly with lies and misrepresentations with no excuse or provocation. It is totally sick.

            You also have a weird hatred of a whole bunch of women, most of them somewhat older and powerful. It is also totally sick. Everybody here is aware of it, and nobody, not even your few good buddies, defend you on it. For example, when you decided that somehow Nancy Pelosi was responsible for monetary policies by Jay Powell you disapprove of, did Macroduck come rushing in to agree with you? No.

            The question is why all this sick hatred nobody else here has any sympathy for or agreement with?

            So, you think that if you were to give us the slightest hint about anything in your current life mean people here will track you down and what? Knock on your door and leave dog poop outside? Go after you on the internet without provocation and post lies about you like you like to do? Sure, takes one to know one. Somehow contact your boss and tell them that you are the seriously messed up “Moses Herzog” who posts hateful garbage about women on the blog, Econbrowser? Really? Yeah, you deserve to tremble in your shoes in terror.

            Just to note how vacuous this is, you have given us some information about your current life, unless you are lying, such as that you live in Oklahoma. You have also gone on and on and on about certain aspects of your past life, your truck driving, your teaching of English in China, where that was and for now long, and your one girlfriend there whose parents did not like you (I do not blame them, if a daughter of mine showed up with a loser scumbag like you, I would also disapprove).

            But somehow the current field that you might be employed in? Dead silence. Oh, if we were to learn that in fact you are a sanitation worker, wow, we will track you down and leave dog poop on your door? And as for your “social life,” well, you once claimed to live with “other people,” but that any of them might have any sort of relationship with you rather than some semi-proximity in living quarters, well, if we knew any of that, well, sure enough, we would be exposing you to all sorts of no good hounding somehow all over the internet.

            Sorry, none of this has a shred of credibility other than as evidence that along with your sickness regarding women you are also an over the top paranoid.

            Look, if your current life is vacuous and its only meaning is to post massively here about all sorts of things, including your obsessions with constantly attacking certain people, well, that is too bad. But, I think that if there is anything in your life, frankly, you could easily give some hints about it without giving away your precious privacy. But you do not, so the evidence sure looks like what it is.

          5. Moses Herzog

            @ Barkley Rosser
            Have you thought about yoga for mental health, more fiber in your diet for constipation, and possibly some vitamin E for loss of memory??

            You’ll let us know how bad the “current” computer chip “oversupply” gets, yes??~~and when Nabiullin has actually officially “been fired” as head of the Russian Central Bank?? “Any day now” she’ll be gone, correct?? We’re counting on you for your deep observations grandpa. : )

          6. Barkley Rosser


            As I said, it is somewhat unclear what the situation really is, but here is yet another source that has at least some producers talking about current oversupply, not just possibly impending oversupply.

            You could easily indicate in general terms what you do and what your status is without any danger of giving away your precious privacy, “Moses Herzog.” Like “I am married and work in retail” or “I have a girlfriend and work in finance” or “I am single but have a child and work for local government” or more likely “I am currently alone and am working at a series of part time jobs in no particular industry.”

          7. Barkley Rosser


            BTW, you do not need to tell us about your life vis a vis spouses or partners or whatever. Hardly anybody here does that, and it is really irrelevant. But lots of people do indicate roughly what they do at work and sometimes even reference it in their comments, such as your pal Macroduck, who periodically mentions that he works in finance and relates knowledge or ideas from that in making his generally intelligent and well-informed comments. His comments are sufficiently vague that I doubt even expert hunter you is able to figure out his p place of employment, much less his identity, from those remarks (although he may have privately informed you of his identity).

            I have no idea if you have ferreted out the real identity of pgl or not, but if you have, I note that he has said quite a lot on a number of occasions about some pretty specific cases he has worked on, so you may have been able to do it, with all the free time you seem to have apparently lacking a full time job. But it is quite easy to make a general indication of at least the field one works in, without giving away all kinds of specifics that would allow some lunatic to track down where exactly you live and work so they can deposit dog poop there.

            Near as I can tell, the only people here saying anything about what their spouses do or have done have been Menzie and me, both of whom have successful academic wives. I should probably not say it, but I happen to know that this holds for Jim Hamilton as well, whose wife I actually know, but will not say her name, also a distinguished professor of economics.

      1. pgl

        “Sen. Rand Paul on Tuesday largely blamed NATO for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
        In a fierce exchange with Blinken, he said Russia attacked because Ukraine was “part of Russia…part of the Soviet Union.”

        Wait, wait – is JohnH actually the junior Senator from Kentucky!

      1. AndrewG


        Another word for that is “authoritarianism.” Complete collapse of the rule of law – for the ruling elites and their friends, anyway.

  3. pgl

    How pathetic can the press get?

    Biden front-runner for ‘Lie of the Year’ award as many in media look the other way

    “I just want to say a number: zero. Today, we received news that our economy had zero inflation in the month of July. Zero percent. Here’s what that means: While the price of some things go up — went up last month, the price of other things went down by the same amount. The result? Zero inflation last month.”

    Oh no says Joe Concha. It is not honest to talk about month to month changes when one can use the year to year change to make a different statement. If I ran the Hill I would not have even run this POS garbage.

    1. AndrewG

      The Hill is stuck in 2006. Low-numeracy BS takes are OK so long as they balance the outlet’s negative reporting on each party.

  4. Moses Herzog

    @ Professor Chinn
    You know I like to pester you with different questions. You don’t answer them all but are more than fair in answering many of my queries, and the ones you don’t answer, you’re probably pressing me to get rid of my lazy bones and look stuff up on my own. But here, I have a question I can’t “research”~~that’s your personal opinion on something. You’ve shown an interest in politics, I was curious if you had read Cathy Kramer’s book “The Politics of Resentment” and if you had what you generally thought of it, and was the book “fair or unfair” in some of the contentions??

    If you hadn’t read it, something tells me you might enjoy it, or at least find it made your eyebrow curve upwards a little bit. As a footnote Will Bunch’s most recent book looks like a good one, but I’m more curious your thoughts on Cathy Kramer’s most recent.

    1. Rick Stryker


      Not sure why you are asking Menzie for an opinion on something outside of economics. Like most academics, he has little interest in or knowledge of most areas outside his narrow field of academic specialization.

      For an academic work, Cramer’s book is unusually clear and well-written. But it’s also fairly shallow, not telling readers anything they wouldn’t already know if they’d spent just a little time outside of elitist circles. Very stable genius Donald Trump understood the phenomenon she writes about far earlier than she was ever aware of it and far more deeply than she ever will, and he leveraged his understanding into the presidency.

      1. Macroduck

        Two! Two! Two lies in one!

        Listen for this putz, condemning his intellectual betters. What knowledge of Professor China’s interests outside of his “narrow” field of academic specialization could Ricky possibly have? And we already know Ricky has a chip on his shoulder about academic vs non-academic economists. Somebody got their little feelings hurt?

        So, instead of following Stevie’s lead by making unfounded assertions, I will demostrate that Stevie is a big day liar. Menzie’s “narrow” field of specialization includes:

        Capital controls/Financial openness/Emerging market financial architecture
        The dgitali divide
        Exchange rate models
        Monetary policy
        Oil prices and inflation
        Productivity and demand shocks
        Predictive content of commodity futures
        Global imbalances
        Interest rate determination
        Debt and economic performance
        Deterministic, stochastic, and segmented trends in aggregate output (couldn’t summarize this one)
        Financial integration between the various Chinas
        China’s external trade
        Currency crisis
        Fiscal multipliers

        Whew! Sorry, out of breath… (pant, wheeze) I can go on. Google scholar has more. Menzie’s departmental publications list has more. The White House has more.

        And that doesn’t include what I assume to be a strong interest in vocal composition and performance.

        Ricky is a liar. A spiteful little liar. Why, Ricky? Why do you lie?

        1. Rick Stryker


          Little Freudian slip that showed your true feelings. Menzie’s name is Professor Chinn, not “Professor China” as you called him.

          You could have saved a lot of typing if you just wrote “international macro” as the field of specialization rather than that long list. That’s the narrow field of specialization I was referring to. That’s a sub-field of macro. I hope you realize that there are many other areas of specialization in economics.

          Seems that it is you who are in a snit. I asked you to explain your qualifications and you went silent all of a sudden.

          1. Macroduck

            Ricky, you of all people shouldn’t drag Freud into this. Just look at the slew of neuroses you suffer! Your need to denigrate your betters, lashing out, preening and posing – it’s all so textbook.

            Speaking of which, your claim that “international macro” is a narrow field means either you don’t have the degree in economics you claim to have or that you have a serious case of career envy. The list of topics which you yourself recognize as falling under that label is evidence of its breadth. What sad reason do you have for needing our host to be “narrow”? And you do know trade falls under micro, right? So maybe you meant international finance?

            Seriously, this all started with you butting in when Moses made a point to Menzie, you claiming Menzie was the wrong guy to ask – too narrow. You then launched into paragraphs of pretense – “See? Ricky knows stuff! Ask Ricky!” And this isn’t the first time you’ve pulled the “my CV can beat up your CV” stuff. Sad, needy little man.

            By the way, “China” is what my hyper-active auto-correct does with “Chinn”.

          2. Macroduck

            Couple more things. Turning my pen-name into a comment on the size of my junk is icky – you who adopted a porn actor’s screen name, for goodness sake. Seek help.

            And I NEVER go silent. Who you trying to kid?

          3. Rick Stryker


            You misunderstand. Calling someone a d!*k is slang for “rude, offensive jerk” and so Macrod!*k is a seriously rude, offensive jerk. From your comments, I think you’ve earned the moniker.

            It’s true–you never shut up, unless questioned about your qualifications to comment in the first place.

      2. Moses Herzog

        @ Stryker
        If you read the blog regular you’d see Menzie gives hints here and there of his interests. He knows history, he knows politics, He likes music and art (OK a little high brow for my taste, but what do you expect from a guy who’s biggest laughs in his university years was watching “Beavis and Butthead”??) Menzie has shown knowledgable interest in health issues and medicine (I suspect he has a better than average knowledge than the average American because at least one, , maybe more, of his siblings is a doctor. He mentioned learning to shoot a gun with his Dad (I suspect that puts him in the minority of that experience with his Economics colleagues). My Dad never showed me how to use a gun or fish [ insert canned sitcom laughter here ] None of us here on the blog “know” Menzie in the true sense. I only know what he has been nice enough to share on the blog. But I suspect getting a PhD, going to at least 4 Universities (I think at least 2 of which respected in Liberal Arts) traveling in Europe for lecturing duties, probably having that intense Asian upbringing focusing on excelling at school, and a natural curiosity about life, has given Menzie more than what he needs to claim he has a broad based education in life.

        I don’t even know why I am making this comment, because I think the best thing to do in these situations is just to ignore people who are just insulting for the “sheer thrill” of handing out insults, or just the sole intention of trying to make the target feel bad, when they have nothing to feel bad about.

        1. Rick Stryker


          You wonder why are you making this comment? I’m also Professor of Free Market Psychology at Wossamotta U so let me give you a professional opinion.

          You’re upset that I made what you suspect is a pejorative remark about Menzie because I don’t know him like you do. I don’t know his birthday or his favorite color like you do. I haven’t hung out in front of the econ building hoping to catch a glimpse of him. I haven’t driven down his street, back and forth, like apparently you have. I haven’t said to him, “Hey Menzie, I read this great book. Have you read it? What do you think about it?” I haven’t experienced the pain of his silence when he doesn’t answer.

          Your obsession explains why you go after Barkley so much. You worry that Menzie likes him better because he’s a bonafide academic. You’ve named yourself Moses Herzog because you are dissatisfied with yourself. You can’t be what you think you need to be for Menzie. You know Barkley is better than you and that Menzie takes Barkley much more seriously than you. And you lash out.

          I’m afraid that’s all the time we have today. Let’s take this up more at our next session.

          1. Moses Herzog

            I just wanna say after my little joke there (And I know Menzie hated putting that meme link up but he was very tolerant and humored me) is that this accusation that the reason I strongly dislike Barkley Rosser is because Menzie respects Professor Rosser more than me. Now, indeed it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Menzie respected Professor Rosser more than me, in fact I nearly assume that. It’s very natural since they teach subjects very closely related, have personally interacted, and Barkley has a PhD, which far outranks my Bachelors, that Menzie would respect him more and relate to him more. That doesn’t bother me, it’s quite natural. How can I exhibit that doesn’t bother me?? Because Menzie has had many professors on this blog, who he has a very solid collegial relationship/friendship with and these people don’t make me angry in the least, in fact some of them I rather enjoy reading and feel are good people. Four off the top of my head (I could think of more if I just sat down and wrote them in a notepad) Hiro Ito, Jeffrey Frankel, Jeffry Frieden, and Ashoka Mody. I also think what that Italian guy writes and says is very interesting, I’m sorry I forgot his name, but he works in a private company and sells some kine of private “proprietary” type forecasting Thingy-muh-jigger. I think his work is very fascinating, even if I don’t grasp it all. I have zero problems with any of these folks who I think I could say have a good relationship with Menzie.

            And I know why Rick Stryker said this. The same reason Rick Stryker says 90% of the things he said on this blog. To annoy people and get under their skin. Well, “How to annoy Moses Herzog?? Oh I know, tell him he’s envious of Barkley Rosser, that should get him ‘worked up’ real good”. And it was a nice try, you know, it was a nice try, but I’m afraid all Stryker got this time was, in basketball parlance, an airball.

            The reason I strongly dislike Barkley Rosser is legion. But the main things?? Attitude towards other people. HUGE ego and/or overinflated sense of self importance, and he says really stupid stupid stuff in an attempt to show he is “special” and in this overly hard trying to appear “special” says farcically stupid things, on the one in one-thousand chance he can claim he was the “only one” who said it later. And it’s a common theme. He’s trying way too hard~~and in the process sounding even more dumb. Then when you have the unmitigated gall to “call him out” Barkley acts like a 6 year old and starts casting aspersions.

            Lastly, am I guilty of greatly admiring Menzie, the same way I admire many economists, such as Paul Krugman, and a shockingly long list of other economists?? Admiring Professor Chinn and a few other economists to a point of near hero-worship?? YES, GUILTY AS CHARGED

          2. Rick Stryker


            I can see we got somewhere in our last session. It’s a great first step for you to acknowledge that you hero-worship Menzie. Now let’s dig a little deeper.

            Notice how you say “Now, indeed it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Menzie respected Professor Rosser more than me” and “in fact I nearly assume that.” You can’t bring yourself to admit that Menzie likes Barkley more. It wouldn’t surprise you, you say. You “nearly” assume that, you say. And then you say to your therapist “And it was a nice try, you know, it was a nice try.” Notice the repetition, as if you are trying to convince your skeptical self.

            Here’s what I want you to do. Close your eyes and just say it. “Menzie respects Barkley more than me.” “Menzie likes Barkley more than me.” “Menzie invited Barkley to his birthday party but not me.” Do you see the rage filling up inside of you?

            That rage causes you to see a Barkley that Menzie and the other commenters don’t see. You see a self-important egomaniac. Menzie sees a fellow successful academic, someone who has enjoyed two ample academic incomes in low-cost Harrisonburg, Va and therefore has lived and does live very well. He enjoys respect and accomplishment. Menzie and the other commenters see Barkley as someone who has earned the right to speak authoritatively. You want Menzie to pay attention to you, to take you seriously, to listen to you. You want Menzie to see Barkley through your jealous eyes though. So, every time Barkley comments you feel you have to tear him down and expose his fraud.

            Digging a little deeper, we have to ask, “Where does your desire to win Menzie’s approval come from?” And why did you name yourself “Moses Herzog?” As a psychoanalyst, I am almost required to point at that it all goes back to your mother. Your mother had high expectations for you, expectations you couldn’t fulfill. You comment as Moses Herzog because your every comment, like Moses’ letters in Bellow’s novel, is a confessional note expressing your own disappointment about how you have let your mother down. And let Menzie down too. If only Menzie would take you seriously, you would be redeemed. But then that awful Barkley gets in the way, hogging all the attention.

            Well, that’s all the time we have for today. Very good work. Let’s keep it up.

          3. Barkley Rosser


            I am afraid that Menzie did not invite me to his birthday party either, sob!

            However, this past spring I did invite him to give a zoom seminar at JMU, which he graciously did. Not only that, but I specifically invited Moses to participate. But he declined, citing fear that somehow or other his important secret real identity might get discovered. But I bet the real reason was that he was otherwise occupied either because he was on a date with his girlfriend or because he was too busy working at his very important but very secret job.

          4. Rick Stryker


            Well, a zoom seminar is even better than a birthday party!

            I imagine that Moses was being honest about his reasons for not attending. He really does want to stay anonymous, and, given the extent to which he researches other commenters, is well aware of the potential for discovery. His screen name suggests you may be right about his reasons for wanting to remain anonymous.

            He claims to have discovered pg13s secret identity. I would expect he is hard at work researching me too. I hope it doesn’t turn into one of those “What About Bob?” situations. Therapy works best when there is a separation between the therapist and the patient.

    2. Rick Stryker

      Cramer’s book reminds me of a very long National Geographic article in which the author goes into the field to find out why the natives irrationally vote for people like Walker and Trump, allegedly against their own self-interest. She has to go on field trips because she doesn’t know the people who live and work all around her and has never really talked to them. That’s academic research!

      Elitists were just fine with lockdown under Covid. It was great to zoom from home as long as somebody delivered the Amazon packages, somebody kept working at the meat packing plants, somebody drove the trucks to deliver the food to grocery stores, somebody worked at the grocery stores, somebody delivered the gas to the gas stations, etc., etc. They never noticed who those somebodys where until they started challenging the political power of the elites by voting for people like Walker and Trump. Now the academic arm of the elites do field trips to understand how their power is being threatened but they don’t really understand or care about the people, as long as they keep doing the menial, hard, and dangerous jobs quietly and without complaint.

      1. Moses Herzog

        I actually watched this film right after it came out. I remember enjoying it, but I guess I will have to revisit the material, rewatch it. I seem to barely remember a couple anti-PC jokes but I can’t say I remember it as being terribly political. I may have even recommended Menzie to watch it, but that’s faint in my memory cuz for me that’s a wayz back. But I do remember some “dark humor” which I enjoyed.

        1. Rick Stryker


          It’s pretty political actually. In one of my favorite scenes, the liberal elitist couple, posing as shopkeepers, get the drop on the hunted deplorables who have taken refuge in the General Store. They have a little argument about gun control first and then the liberal elitist couple attacks. Right before one of the shopkeepers finishes off a downed deplorable, he says “For the record as#ho!e, climate change, it is real.” Then the heroine deplorable, Crystal, soon shows up and takes care of business in the store.

          1. Moses Herzog

            It’s mostly just a B-movie. A well done B-movie, but still a B-movie. It’s not that different from a Tarantino film. Yeah some clever stuff, but when you fully digest it it’s mostly just a kind of reverence and affection for pop culture.

  5. ltr

    August 14, 2022

    Chinese mainland records 684 new confirmed COVID-19 cases

    The Chinese mainland recorded 684 confirmed COVID-19 cases on Saturday, with 623 attributed to local transmissions and 61 from overseas, data from the National Health Commission showed on Sunday.

    A total of 1,920 asymptomatic cases were also recorded on Saturday, and 9,719 asymptomatic patients remain under medical observation.

    The cumulative number of confirmed cases on the Chinese mainland is 234,901, with the death toll from COVID-19 standing at 5,226.

    Chinese mainland new locally transmitted cases

    Chinese mainland new imported cases

    Chinese mainland new asymptomatic cases

  6. Not Trampis

    gosh Menzie,

    you are a slow learner, full employment is always an indicator of a recession.

      1. pgl

        H1 — the period of the Kopits recession. Or was that your suppression since you are now denying you ever said we were in a recession. Babble on!

    1. Moses Herzog

      I think we’re going to have to contact consultant IDon’tCountBrownPeeps’DeathsKopits and ask him what the penalty should be for white-on-white crime. Does this mean Boebert has to forfeit her Nazi membership card?? Or would Steve Bannon tell us that’s way too harsh??

  7. Macroduck

    The three short-term economy trackers featured here all rely on labor-market data to assess the health of the economy. The disconnect between the labor market and GDP is one reason GDP data for Q1 and Q2 are in doubt. (The disconnect between GDP and GDI in recent quarters is another.) That leads me to wonder what these measures would look like ex-labor. I can’t find ex-labor aggregations for any of these indicies, but I can grub some of the components.

    We have, of course, been regaled with verhicle miles traveled, which is the most important measure of economic activity ever devised – miles are down. TSA travel miles are steady and have been for some time – perhaps a reflection of supply constraints. Hotel occupancy healthy. Rail traffic down slightly from year-ago, but “does not provide definitive evidence regarding the state of the overall economy” according to the Association of America Railroads. Weekly retail sales up, though slowing vs end July. Credit grow strong but slowing. Demand for trucks soft. So mixed. Big surprise.

    How ’bout GDNow? The latest estimate for Q3 is a 2.5% annualized rate of real GDP growth, up from 1.4% in the August 4 estimate. That’s despite inventories and residential investment expected to be drags on growth again. GDPNow does not depend on labor market data.

    If anyone knows of ex-labor aggregations of short-term economy trackers, please link.

    1. Moses Herzog

      @ Macroduck
      I just noticed Menzie put the “bleach” demarcation. OMG, that cracked me up. It seems I’m easily humored today for being sans alcohol.

      Tonto says “Ex-labor aggregate data??~~you have me stumped Kemosabe”

      “activity trackers”?? The data from space satellites on the amount of lights on?? I think the data is out there, but I’m at a loss to find it at the moment.

    2. Moses Herzog

      One of the tings I am reading in the first pages of this book, is that another freshman member of Congress, a woman who had been a member of the CIA, made a special/unusual call to Ocasio-Cortez and told her not to walk to work and to “dress down” (You know how AOC usually dresses?? he asked panting like a dog) where she was less recognizable. This was the day before on January 5th. And I am reading these type things over and over in the intro to this book. So most of them knew what was going to happen. This is the thing that has kind of annoyed me about this, is still many of them to this day, act like they were “surprised” and it’s bullsh** , most of them knew they were in for a long day. And you had journalists like Lisa Desjardins, risking their lives to let people know what was going on, and no one ever called the National Guard in. That was a major failure, and one, gain, no one wants to talk about. Who of the Democrats could have called in National Guard members?? And if “only trump” could call in the National Guard, why haven’t we heard journalists press him on this or answer the question?? This was a crime and I’m getting tired of leaders finding more and more excuses on why donald trump is not in jail right now. If they don’t prosecute donald trump and put him in federal prison— America is no longer “a country of laws”. We become more like Britain, and more like a joke.

      1. Barkley Rosser


        According to Trump as well as such sycophants on Fox News like Sean Hannity, it is all the fault of the woman you have reconfirmed you still hate, even though you praised her troublemaking trip to Taiwan, Nancy Pelosi. Supposedly she has not only the authority to call in the National Guard but the responsibility to do so, and that Trump supposedly made an authorization several days before Jan. 6 that would have allowed to do so.

        So, according to this crowd, what the J6 committee should be investigating is why Pelosi did not call in the National Guard, not anything about anything Trump did or did not do on that day.

        1. Moses Herzog

          I never “praised” Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan. I dare say, it is one of the few topics I remained neutral on.

          In this specific instance I am not blaming Pelosi, but I am genuinely asking the question, and hoping to “light a fire” under ANY journalist’s ass (do journalists exist anymore) to ask a question I have heard minute minute few, if ANY “news people” ask. 18+ months we’ve had to have this question ASKED AND ANSWERED still, nothing~~~

          Could anyone else other than donald trump have “called in” the National Guard earlier to the Capitol, Jan 5-6. If so, WHO??. and If Pelosi couldn’t and if “no one else” could have, why are we not putting the Orange Abomination in prison NOW???

          No one has ever stated, to my knowledge, who are the different actor/participants other than trump who had the authority, and could have called in the National Guard earlier, that is what I am asking.

          1. Barkley Rosser


            It is obviously a pile of horse manure, but I am simply noting that this is TRump’s line, picked up and repeated in many places by many of his followers, including GOP members of Congress, that he supposedly authorized use of National Guard several days before Jan. 6 by Nancy Pelosi, and so it is her fault that it was not called in. A bunch of these people are quite self-righteous in their demand that the J6 committee investigate her failure to call it in. According to them, this is the great crime that happened on 1/6/21.


      Inventory is overflowing. How will it decline again???? Residential investment is a far smaller component to GDP than when the Boomers were peaking. Data been a mess since 2020. A lot of sacred cows failing.

    1. Barkley Rosser

      Probably his best novel.

      Reportedly in India during the celebrations of the 75th anniversary of Indian independence, the current government has been trying to remove memory and recognition of the tole of Mohandas Gandhi in it, wanting to replace him with various figures associated with the Hindutva RSS movement at the heart of the ruling BJP, Gandhi having been assassinated by an RSS fanatic because he was too tolerant of Muslims.

    2. AndrewG

      I’m a little surprised you’re a champion of free speech, ltr. Or more accurately, confused.

    3. ltr

      April 19, 1981

      By Clark Blaise

      By Salman Rushdie

      The ”midnight’s children” of the title are the 1,001 children born in the first hour of Indian independence, Aug. 15, 1947. Two of these babies are born in the same Bombay nursing home on the very stroke of midnight: a boy born to wealth and a boy born to the streets. And, of course, a nursemaid switches babies: a street singer cuckolded by a departing Englishman is given the aristocratic Muslim infant and names him Shiva; a wealthy Kashmiri-descended family, the Aziz/Sinais, is given the ”cucumber-nosed” English-Hindu and names him Saleem. Shiva and Saleem (the narrator) are destined to be mortal enemies from the stroke of midnight….

  8. ltr

    Just to protect their Traitor in Chief from responsibility, this pathetic excuse for a Senator wants to legalize selling national security secrets to people like –…
    Just to protect their Traitor in Chief from responsibility, this pathetic excuse for a Senator wants to legalize selling national security secrets to people like –…
    Just to protect their Traitor in Chief from responsibility, this pathetic excuse for a Senator wants to legalize selling national security secrets to people like –…

    [ Distressing, the evident need to vilify and demean the President of China. An entire people evidently need to be vilified and demeaned, however much they accomplish. ]

    1. Moses Herzog

      And after all the humanitarian work Xi Jinping has done in Xinjiang, Separating nuclear families from each other and making mortal threats if they request to go back to their families…… Oh, the world is so unfair……. They’re doing the same thing to Putin after he’s offered young Russian men free travel and food in the tropical areas of Ukraine and the chance to smell charred cadavers at every destination. Some westerners have no shame attacking these guiding light leaders.

    2. JohnH

      Definition of McCarthyism
      : a mid-20th century political attitude characterized chiefly by opposition to elements held to be subversive and by the use of tactics involving personal attacks on individuals by means of widely publicized indiscriminate allegations especially on the basis of unsubstantiated charges

      broadly : defamation of character or reputation through such tactics

      It’s pretty clear that McCarthyism is not limited to the mid-20th century, but alive and well today among boosters of the US foreign policy agenda. Twenty years ago, some referred to it as the War on Dissent.

      1. pgl

        The junior Senator from Wisconsin back then was a nutcase. You are a lot like him. News flash troll – your boy Putin invaded Ukraine and has been committing war crimes. Which of course you must support. Does Putin send you film of his soldiers raping Ukrainian girls for your sick pleasure?

        1. Barkley Rosser


          No no no. JohnH happens to have in his pocket a list of 44 names of people who have made “personal attacks” on valiant and honest people who have defended the glorious denazification efforts being made by the very wise and honorable V.V. Putin, how dare they!!!!!!

          1. JohnH

            Rosser is totally unhinged…and if I did have 44 names, they would be deemed unfit to print or air on mainstream platforms.

            Biden, however, does have that power, and actually tried to establish an Office of Disinformation. After that got shot down…at least so far as we know. (It could still have been implemented as a covert operation, for all we know.)

            But it seems that Biden’s buddy Zelensky has taken it over. It is called the “Center for Countering Disinformation,” an organization supported by the State Department.” At best this evokes shades of Orwell; at worst, Joe McCarthy, Rosser’s role model.

            And, guess what? Zelensky has a list…and is using it to target Schumer’s opposition.

            “Diane Sare was singled out by the Schumer-funded, State Department-supported Center for Countering Disinformation as an “information terrorist” who should be prosecuted as a “war criminal” because of her public stance challenging the narrative about the Ukraine conflict.

            That’s right — Chuck Schumer helped create the organizational structures which have attacked the reputation of a challenger for his Senate seat, threatening her with political violence and more for the “crime” of challenging Schumer on the issue of Ukraine.”

          2. pgl

            Diane Sare, a LaRouche candidate is JohnH’s new political star? Oh wait – JohnH works for the junior Senator from Kentucky. Seriously?

      2. JohnH

        “The junior Senator from Wisconsin back then was a nutcase.” Indeed, but his anti-Soviet jihad succeeded in cowing most Americans into a fear of saying anything that might have been construed as nonconforming opinion. Today’s anti-Russian jihadists have an easier time of it. And the suppression of non-conforming opinion is a lot easier. Alternative viewpoints are simply not fit to be printed or aired…and wannabe Joe McCarthys like pgl and Rosser patrol blogs to drown out non-conforming opinion.

        1. pgl

          To even suggest that either Barkley or I are wannabe McCarthys just shown what a weenie little liar you are. You really should consider growing up. BTW – Putin suppresses anything except his sick party line that you celebrate with kind of utter BS.

        2. Barkley Rosser


          Since you want to throw around charges of “McCarthyiism” against anybody disagreeing with you, maybe we need to talk about what it was in more detail, and I have had personal connections with it in several ways I doubt you have. So, I shall do the dirty work.

          First of all, there really was a problem of Soviet spies in the US, who had a pretty easy run during WW II when were allied with the USSR. Exposing these did not involve McCarthy. So Nixon exposed Alger Hiss, whom some still defend, but after declassification of the Venona transcripts it became clear he really was a Soviet agent.

          The same declassification also affected views of the Rosenbergs, whose younger son, Mike Meeropol, I know personally. He got a PhD in econ from UW-Madison when I did (did you know that, Menzie?). He and his brother had to admit that indeed their dad was an “atom spy” for the Soviets, although debate continues to now about just how important he was. But their mother, Ethel, was innocent, with her brother lying about her in court to save his wife (“you do not sleep with your sister he later said when admitting what he had done). What was “McCarthyitte” about what happened to them, with their trial and execution coming during his period of intense activity in the early 50s, was their execution, especially hers. Much more serious atom spy Klaus Fuchs was merely jailed and then later traded. But Mike and his brother are completely justified in their ongoing campaign to clear their mother’s name, and I gather that even people at the FBI now admit that she was wrongfully convicted and executed.

          Needless to say, nobody pushing the Putin line on Ukraine is getting executed.

          But what was most of McCarthyism about? It was mostly about accusing people of being either “Communists” or “comsymps.” As it was, as long as nobody was actually a spy, there should have been no persecution of anybody for belonging to a party or holding views, but in fact for a period of time it was outright illegal to belong to the party. The matter of the Hollywood Ten has come down to us as embarrassing. Some of them were Party members, but so what? None of them were spies. (Ronald Reagan was a major informer on that case). But that case also predated McCarthy’s main activities, and it and Nixon on Hiss all came out of HUAC in the House, not McCarthy later in the Senate.

          Anyway, when people were accused, they generally at least lost their jobs, like those in the Hollywood Ten, and sometimes suffered other difficulties. This was simply unjustified for anybody who was not a spy, and the vast majority were not.

          On top of that, McCarthy specialized in just plain outright lying about people, falsely accusing them of either being Communists or being involved with them. This got very widespread and led to many people losing jobs or otherwise suffering without any justification. I personally know some people to whom this happened, some of them quite conservative anti-Communists even.

          Oh, my wisecrack about you having a list of 44 names is a reference to the most notorious of these cases. This was the speech that got McCarthy famous and going on his witch hunts. He gave a speech in West Virginia in which he claimed to have a list of 44 people in his pocket in the State Department who were Soviet agents. He had no such list in his pocket, and at most about two people besides Hiss were found to be such. So part of McCarthyism is not just causing people to lose their jobs, but to do so on the basis of false accusations.

          Is any of this going on right now in regard to people like you defending Putin’s horrible and indefensible invasion of Ukraine? Not that I am aware of. Has anybody lost their job? Have you? Oh, I have called you “immoral,” you poor thing. But that is not remotely McCarthyism, and you are immoral in fact.

          Now there are some people arguably suffering wrongly in this. I am thinking of ethnic Russians, many of them artistic or cultural figures, who have suffered and lost their positions, because of Putin’s invasion. This has happened to some even who have publicly criticized the invasion, such as opera star Anna Netrebko, but, hey, they are Russian so no good, cannot be allowed. Curiously this has not extended to sports figures (too important, must not fire them).

          However, this does not look like McCarthyism either. What it looks like is the anti-German hysteria that swept both the US and UK during WW I, which led to lots of things and people and organizations with German names Anglicizing them to avoid ethnic prejudice and discrimination.

          Anyway, you are totally full of scheiss with your accusations of McCathyism, just more manifestation of your blazing immorality.

          1. Barkley Rosser

            Oh, regarding Anna Netrebko, she is actually an ethnic Moldovan. But she became a big star in Russian opera, with Putin actually a big fan of hers. Arguably the top soprano in the world right now, she is currently in a limbo, unable to perform in Russia because she has criticized the war, and unable to perform in the West because she is supposedly Russian.

      1. ltr

        My understanding is that what — really likes about East Indians is their submissiveness to China on land disputes

        [ Racism repeated over and over, evidently beyond all self-control. ]

    3. Moses Herzog

      I have more good news for ltr: The independent nation of Taiwan recently invited more American guests to Taiwan. This was AFTER China’s toy soldiers baby crying and incursion over Taiwan air-space. Those Americans who visited Taiwan and President Tsai Ing-wen included Democrat Senator Ed Markey, John Garamendi (D., Calif.), Alan Lo- wenthal (D., Calif.), Don Beyer (D., Virginia) and Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R., American Samoa).

      See, even one lone Republican found the balls to show up. AMAZING.

    4. Barkley Rosser


      You clearly super botched this accusation. What on earth does a senator wanting to legalize selling national security secrets have to do with Xi Jinping? You regularly make accusations against commenters here that are overdone, but this one is just completely off the wall.

      1. ltr

        Just wow. Just to protect their Traitor in Chief from responsibility, this pathetic excuse for a Senator wants to legalize selling national security secrets to people like — …

        [ Precisely an attack on the President of another people, that was properly criticized. The thoroughly benign President of a thoroughly benign people should not be disdainfully portrayed as a national security secret-buying enemy. ]

        1. Barkley Rosser


          You still do not get this was about Trump and not Xi? I thought you were more intelligent than that. This was already pointed out to you above. You just completely messed this up and have badly damaged your credibility. When you want to whine about what somebody has written, please read carefully what it is before you fly off the handle thinking that something about Trump is actually about Xi. You look very foolish on this one, very foolish, especially now that you doubled down on it.

  9. Moses Herzog

    What a fraud:

    I was reading that Rachel Maddow had been very complimentary to Tucker Carlson recently. Is there anyone left in this nation that still has sanity?? I’ll never be able to watch Maddow again. Anyone with praise for that man, I have zero time for. Maddow is “dead to me” now. SICK. These people are mentally sick

    1. pgl

      “Now, whatever your views are on Donald Trump, there is no denying that the unprecedented raid on his Palm Beach home earlier this week has set our country on a dangerous new course, and there’s no turning back. The FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago changed the country that we grew up in,” Gabbard said Friday in an appearance on Tucker Carlson Tonight.

      Donald Trump being allowed in the White House had already changed the country sending it on a dangerous new course. Has she been asleep for the last 6 years?

    2. AndrewG

      Not Maddow, but many people farther left are actually pro-authoritarianism. Die-hard Sanders supporters openly called primary and caucus elections they lost “rigged” and were the most enthusiastic chanters of “lock her hup”. Read about the 2016 Nevada caucus – it was disgraceful (and Sanders’ response wasn’t “These people don’t speak for me” but “We demand respect,” out-Trumping Trump.). Sanders himself was pro Ortega – at least back when he was a *left-wing* dictator. At one point before he was in Congress, Sanders called for nationalizing the television industry. These people are nuts and cannot be trusted with power.

      1. Moses Herzog

        Interesting that Sanders did win Nevada in 2020 though. I guess the dozens of Nevada election officials released from the hospital back in 2016 are ok now, and Barbara Boxer recovered from her head injuries from the poster board.. It was a scary moment though when that guy with the spear and horned fur hat showed up. I thought the Star of David armbands Bernie’s goons were wearing was taking it too far though.

        “In the middle of last week, Reid made a phone call, first reported by The New York Times’ Amy Chozick, to D. Taylor, the head of the parent of the Culinary Workers Union local in Las Vegas. Before that call, the union, facing difficult contract negotiations and seeing no advantage in enmeshing itself in a bloody internecine fight, had declared it was more Swiss than Hispanic. With the culinary union not endorsing and unwilling to even engage in the caucuses, employee turnout at six casino sites on the Las Vegas Strip was forecast at a combined 100 or so. That is, insignificant.

        Taylor has ‘been extremely cooperative,’ Reid told Chozick. ‘Probably 100 organizers will be at the caucus sites and in hotels to make sure people know what they’re doing.’

        But Reid did not stop there. He also called casino executives, Democratic insiders confirm, with a simple message: ‘Let your people go.’

        That is, he wanted to ensure the workers would be allowed time off from work to caucus. No one said no to Prince Harry.”

        Well folks, there you have it, Bernie trying to manipulate the election system, once again. What a power broker of violence that Bernie guy is.

        1. AndrewG

          In 2016, the Bernie people sent out the wrong information to Clinton supporters (telling them to vote at the wrong time), were punished for it, and cried “rigged.” Lee Atwater stuff, but dumb. Sanders could have disowned the clowns, but says instead “we demand respect.” Trump couldn’t have said it better.

          You can carry water for him all you want, won’t change who he is.

          1. Moses Herzog

            No links to this claim?? I wanna see the specific link that says Bernie’s staff sent those texts/info. It’s laughable, because they wouldn’t be sourcing their info from Bernie staff if they were Hillary supporters. Andrew, are you waiting on MAGA staff to tell you when/where to vote in 2024?? The claim itself is laughable, which is why I wanna see your source. And let’s try to be a little better than Barkley Rosser’s “my fingers are too elderly to do links”, ok??

          2. Moses Herzog

            This is actually going to be entertaining either way, because I am well aware Hillary supporters are low IQ, but to get another data point on how dumb they are in sourcing when/where to vote in a public state wide caucus/election should be highly entertaining. I suppose next Andrew’s going to tell me Hillary lost Indiana. Michigan, Wisconsin, and Ohio because Brad Parscale sent Hillary voters an e-mail telling them their polling place was Anchorage Alaska and to show up mid-July 2017??

            Hillary voters do that?? OK, yeah, it’s conceivable, based on average intelligence level.

    3. Barkley Rosser


      Oh great, you have put yet another prominent woman on your hate list. Maddow can join Pelosi and Hillary and Harris and Warren (or is she off your list now?), along with several others, these shameful hussies!

      Regarding Tucker Carlson, who has indeed become seriously loathsome, I do not think I was aware of him back then, but I have seen reports that he used to have much more moderate views than he does now. People change over time. He is hardly the only person who was once somewhat reasonable and capable of being fun to interact with at one point who subsequently changed and stopped being so. There are several prominent GOP politicians who have moved from more moderate or centrist views to being seriously drooling Trumpisti, see Lindsey Graham and Elise Stefanik as examples.

      In any case, I gather Maddow has mostly referred to how he was when she knew him when they worked together in the past, and she may well still respect his ability to influence people on TV, even if she disapproves of what he says or how he is influencing them. You seem to be really going off the wall again here, Moses.

      1. pgl

        Tucker Carlson back in his bow tie days was still a disgusting racist. Maddow may have a good show but her tolerance for Carlson is very strange at best.

      2. Barkley Rosser

        I am going to add to this a further point. It is possible to seriously disagree with people and still be friendly with them or even friends with them. We get that you seem to disapprove of this, Moses. You made a total fool of yourself some time ago really getting on the case of Jim Hamilton because he participated in a conference at the highly prestigious Hoover Institution, which is indeed dominated by conservatives, although does have some non-conservatives there. But lots of us in academia try to be open-minded and treat those we disagree with with some respect and have civil discussions in a variety of venues.

        I have been doing this all my career. Not only have I spoken at a wide variety of venues, I have run the seminar series at JM for well over 30 years, and not only have I had a bunch of Nobel Prize winners in, as well as some non-Nobel Prize winners like Menzie Chinn, I have had speakers with a wide array of views, ranging from radical libertarians to far left Trotskyists. indeed, I have gone out of may way to try each semester to make sure that I have people representing a variety of views, not just to have people in who agree with me so I can act as some petty third rate propagandist.

        I have also maintained friendships with people with whom I strongly disagree. I recently put up a post on Econospeak that garnered no comments (not sure if people were simply non-plussed or shocked) about the death of Patrick J. Michaels, a prominent “climate skeptic,” although as I noted in the post his views were actually very complicated as well as very well informed and sophisticated. He was prominent in media in a way I was unhappy about, actually influencing policy in an unfortunate way partly because he was both well-informed as well as sharply articulate to the point that many climatologists would not appear with him no TV because they were unable to defeat him in debates.

        Anyway, I knew him from way back in the `1970s when we worked together on climate projects at Wisconsin, and we were friends, even as we disagreed sharply on various policy issues, and I debated with him vigorously over many decades.

        So, it may even be that Rachel Maddow still has a certain friendly attitude towards Tucker Carlson, even as his public views have become increasingly awful.

        1. Moses Herzog

          Hey Barkley…… if you wanna exchange saliva with Tucker Carlson and massage his feet right before he makes a Nazi comment or jokes about rape, I can’t stop you. Seems like a strange way to prove your supposed “feminist” bonafides, but I can’t stop you. Maybe you even think Tucker Carlson is one of those “very fine people on both sides”. If you think engagement with these type people is helpful to society, you go ahead.

          Your record of being “friendly” to those who dare tell you that you are wrong I think is well-known on this site. So I’m sure regular readers are getting some belly chuckles out of your newfound “Kumbaya” attitude

          1. Barkley Rosser


            I am friendly with people who many disagree with me. I am a lot less friendly with people who repeatedly lie about me and go after me without provocation all the time. That is you, you pathetic worthless a-hole. Most of these people I am talking about happen to be serious academics who have published serious ideas and behave in a civil manner, even if I disagree with them.

            You have published nothing and are not a serious anything other than a creepy pathetic jerk.

            BTW, I have no interest in having anything to do with Tucker Carlson, but I do understand that Rachel Maddow probably sees a side of him that none of us do.

  10. genauer


    I havent been here in the blog for a long time. I seem to remember that about 8 – 10 years ago Prof. Hamilton argued about replacing th oil price with the Copper price in the FRB/US model. But I cant find it anymore. Can anybody help me with that?

      1. pgl

        FRED does produce the actual price per metric ton for finished copper, which is around $9000 – the equivalent of just over $4/pound. If you go back 20 years ago, it was less than $1/pound.

  11. ltr

    August 7, 2022

    Diplomats from 30 Islamic countries visit Xinjiang

    Diplomats from 30 Islamic countries visited northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region from August 1 to 4, at the invitation of the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

    The diplomats from the countries including Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Yemen and Pakistan visited the regional capital city of Urumqi, Kashgar Prefecture and Aksu Prefecture, learning about the region’s economic and social development.

    They witnessed Xinjiang’s achievements in social stability, economic development, the improvement of people’s livelihoods, religious harmony and cultural prosperity, expressing their hopes that exchanges and cooperation with the region would be deepened.

    “The fruit here is so sweet, just like the life of the people here,” said Hassane Rabehi, Algerian ambassador to China, adding that during this visit, he got to know the real situation of Xinjiang, where the rights of people of all ethnic groups are well protected.

    Hassane Rabehi said that Algeria hopes to conduct more cooperation with Xinjiang on infrastructure construction, modern agricultural development, education and scientific research.

    Abdulrahman Ahmad H. Alharbi, ambassador of Saudi Arabia to China, said that Xinjiang’s achievements are remarkable and its ties with the world are growing closer.

    According to the ambassador, Saudi Arabia is willing to continue to strengthen cooperation with Xinjiang, make good use of the advantages of both sides, and invest more in technology, knowledge and other fields.

    Bruneian ambassador to China Pehin Dato Rahmani said that after years of effort, Xinjiang has made remarkable achievements in development. People of all ethnic groups here are living together in harmony and enjoying the freedom of religious belief. People’s livelihoods have also been improved….

    1. Barkley Rosser

      Of course Saudi Arabia’s human rights record includes having large numbers of dissidents imprisoned. One of the failures of Biden’s “fist bump” visit was that he failed to get a single one of these people out of jail, including some Americans. In any case, praise by an ambassador from a nation run by a guy who has people chopped up into little pieces when they criticize him is not exactly something to brag about.

  12. ltr

    Separating nuclear families from each other and making mortal threats if they request to go back to their families……

    [ A false assertion, meant to defame an entire people. A false assertion meant to foster prejudice. ]

    1. Macroduck

      Saying that a true statement is false is lying. ltr has, once again, lied. China does divide the families of minorities. There is no question that family separation is the result of mass incarceration. Simply no question.

      And while I don’t actually expect you to stop lying, since that is what you are paid to do, could you at least post your lies in response to the comment you are lying about? I had to spend several seconds finding the comment you were lying about. That’s time I’ll never get back.

  13. pgl

    Federal law enforcement, the statement said, seized “declassified” documents. The former president started pushing the same line via his Twitter-like social media platform. By Friday night, a Trump representative was on Fox News reading a newly released statement, claiming that Trump, while in office, had a “standing order“ about declassifying sensitive materials that he brought with him to the White House residence. Over the weekend, many of the Republican’s followers embraced the new script — conveniently tossing aside competing talking points from days earlier — without pausing to appreciate just how patently absurd it was. Right off the bat, let’s start with the most obvious problem: Trump doesn’t appear to have done what he now claims he did. NBC News reported: This need not be complicated: If Trump, while in office, had declassified the materials in question, there’d be some kind of record of it. There’s a process — a necessary one to protect our national security interests — involving multiple departments and agencies. The former president and his team aren’t pointing to documentation from the National Security Council or the White House counsel’s office; they’re simply asserting that materials were declassified, as if we’re supposed to take their word for it. What’s more, as The New York Times reported, there’s a disconnect between the claim and the controversy, since the relevant criminal statutes operate separately from the executive branch’s system of classifying documents. Finally, it would be ideal if we could all just be grown-ups about this. In the midst of a burgeoning scandal involving a former president keeping highly classified materials in his glorified country club, his operatives came up with a post-hoc rationalization they would’ve presented days — and months — earlier if it were legitimate.

    Rachel Maddows is saying what every person who gets this issue has been saying. Now her good buddy Tucker Carlson will likely make claims that Trump is being honest and that this is no big deal. Will Rachel just nod and accept the latest BS from her BFF?

    1. pgl

      “It is precisely because the Chinese economy is performing so poorly that export growth and the trade surplus are so high. China’s trade performance is a symptom of the problem, and not a locus of strength in an otherwise weak economy.”

      Huh – just the other day Fox and Friends chief economist Princeton Steve declared over and over that a rise in the US trade deficit meant we were definitely in a RECESSION, Basic macroeconomics never was his forte.

    2. Barkley Rosser

      Turkey’s lira is currently in a massive free fall, with Turkish inflation over 80%. Maybe putting a portion of a sovereign wealth fund in Indian rupees and Chinese rmb might be a wise diversification move. But putting much of anything in the Turkish lira right now looks to be something pretty insane.

      Of course, in “The Importance of Being Ernest,” Oscar Wilde had a character warn not to let young ladies read about the fall of the rupee because it was too shocking, :-).

      1. pgl

        Turkey is fighting inflation with easy monetary policy as if their Central Bank was run by Stephen Moore, Judy Shelton, and Princeton Steve. Yea when one only pretends to understand macroeconomics, this is the disaster one should expect.

  14. Ivan

    The month before we had creation of over half a million jobs and an unemployment rate the lowest since 1969. Anybody silly enough to suggest that we are in a recession?

    1. pgl

      Well we do have Princeton Steve worried that the NY State manufacturing sector (value added = $60 billion) might slip a bit dragging down a national economy with value added = $20,000 billion. I guess one can flunk preK arithmetic and still be a consultant.

    1. Moses Herzog

      “We caution to not take too much away from this report as it likely paints an excessively downbeat picture of manufacturing. We look for a soft economic rebound in the second half of 2022 to keep manufacturing growing in a low gear,” said Oren Klachkin, economist at Oxford Economics.

          1. Steven Kopits

            It’s hard to argue that a country losing mobility is producing more or prospering. I therefore consider VMT to be a pretty good gauge of the economy’s health, although it is a substantially lagging indicator in terms of publication timing. I thought Menzie’s original analytics on VMT was brilliant. You could see all the stresses right there and pretty clearly distinguish oil shock recessions from non-oil shock recessions. So, yes, I like VMT, I like oil consumption (particularly gasoline and road diesel); and I like IUCs. They are not everything to watch, but oil consumptions and IUCs, in particular, are high frequency, reliable indicators which give you a sense of where the economy is heading.

          2. pgl

            Steven Kopits
            August 16, 2022 at 5:15 am
            It’s hard to argue that a country losing mobility is producing more or prospering.

            Gee Stevie – I have not own a car since 2008. Ever heard of public transportation. After all here in NYC we have the new invention called the subway. And really good bagels.

        1. Baffling

          So you are going to go down with the recession ship, steven. You are going to have to explain to your clients next year how you got the recession call wrong. What is going to be your excuse, considering we increased hiring half a million people a month during your “recession “?

          1. Steven Kopits

            So far I haven’t made an H2 recession call. I have said we’re seeing a hard reset, which we are and will, and that such resets normally feature during recessions. I did make a call on Q2, which was basically looking at the IHS and AF numbers and concluding that Q2 was likely negative, therefore H1 would be negative and qualify as an H1 recession by the most commonly used standard.

            If you don’t think H2 will be in recession, then you’re forced to explain H1 as an anomaly of some sort. That would most likely be the roll-off of the stimulus, ie, contractionary fiscal policy. But Menzie won’t touch that.

            Meanwhile, I think Europe is or shortly will be in recession; China looks like it’s having some sort of recessionary event (which may mean low growth in China). This is an interesting story, again a function of US stimulus — a big chunk of which ended up as Chinese manufacturing exports — and rock-bottom interest rates, which no doubt added fuel to real estate speculation there. So a good bit of China’s downturn (however that comes to be appreciated) will be due to US fiscal and monetary policy.

            Further, China is now fully exposed to oil shock dynamics for the first time in its history, and that too is or will or was taking down China. Soft oil prices, for example, are credited to weak demand from China.

          2. baffling

            Steven, I am focusing on your H1 call. one problem at a time here. The evidence indicates it will NOT be in a recession. you are going to have to explain to your potential clients how you got that call wrong. especially when people, of significant economic standing, have been warning that conditions from H1 probably will not result in a recession. your response will be that everybody else is wrong, and Steven is right, that H1 is a recession. that is imposing alot of authority on your part.

            “qualify as an H1 recession by the most commonly used standard.”
            that is not correct. and many people, on this blog and elsewhere, have attempted to correct that misunderstanding. and yet you want to perpetuate it, mostly to save your skin from a wrong call. Steven, you do not get to define a recession for your own benefit.

          3. Macroduck

            I have identified Stevie’s “hard reset” as an expression meant to provide deniability. Well, here you have it, in all its obfuscatory glory. “Hard reset” is the crouton on Stevie’s word salad.

          4. pgl

            “So far I haven’t made an H2 recession call. I have said we’re seeing a hard reset”

            Steve blatantly LIES about what he has said in the past. He said over and over that we were already in a recession (we are not) and things are getting worse. The man has no integrity. None at all.

        2. Moses Herzog

          How you like $80 as a “support level” for oil with oil demand in China caving and the chance of Iran oil going out on world markets?? I think Biden is on his way to your very best low inflation fantasies Mr. Kopits. Feeling good today??

          1. Macroduck

            Iran is saying a deal on it’s nuclear program is within reach, remaining differences easily surmountable.

            WTI down near 3% today, down 24% from three months ago.

            All Biden’s fault.

        3. pgl

          A data point? Check this out old incompetent liar!

          NY’s GSP is $1.7 trillion. Pull out your Excel files and then us what percentage of US GDP is that?

          Now manufacturing is not exactly NY’s leading sector. $61 billion a year is not chump change but again – what percentage of US GDP does that represent?

          Come on dude – I’m sure you can use Excel to figure that out eventually.

          Even if manufacturing fell in NY by 10%, growth in other sector or in other states could more than make up $6 billion.

          A data point – yea right.

    2. pgl

      “The New York Fed’s Empire State business conditions index, a gauge of manufacturing activity in the state, plummeted 42.4 points to negative 31.3 in August, the regional Fed bank said Monday.”

      I guess you miss NYC bagels as the ones down the street from me are AWESOME. BUT NY State is not the nation. If you think otherwise – then what can I say new? You are dumber than a rock? Now I have said that but the rocks have complained as they do not want to be associated with your babble.

    3. Macroduck

      Here’s the thing…

      Grabbing whatever data point supports your view may be what consultants do, but it isn’t what honest analysts do. For instance, if you were to graph the Empire State index, and toss in the Philly Fed index for good measure, against the Weekly Economic Index, you’d get something like this:

      As you’ll notice, (or won’t, depending on the strength of your need to deny reality), the Weekly Index doesn’t generate negative readings during periods of growth. The Empire State and Philly Fed index do. The Weekly Index is still positive, and we already knew that from Menzie’s post.

      That’s how you go from a data point to a conclusion. Through comparison and evaluation. Trying sometime.

      1. pgl

        It is worse than that. Stevie sees imports growing faster than exports grew and declares the rising trade deficit as being recessionary. I get he never understood the open economy macroeconomics but DAMN! Cause and effect? HELLO?


      No auto production, no auto parts being moved. This index was done right after the 4th. Come back in a couple of months.

  15. pgl

    Trump thinks he is above the law but the legal system is beholden to Truth Social:

    Donald Trump has demanded the return of some documents seized by the US justice department in an FBI search of his Mar-a-Lago property in Florida last week – apparently under the impression that posts on his Truth Social platform carry legal weight. In a post on Sunday, the former president wrote: “By copy of this Truth, I respectfully request that these documents be immediately returned to the location from which they were taken. Thank you!” It is generally held that social media posts are not legal documents.

    But this is Trump’s social media so we must all bow down!

    1. Moses Herzog

      Speaking of legal issues, go down towards the bottom of the link to hear Lauren Boebert’s neighbors calling 911 emergency about her husband, drunk and running over their mailbox with his vehicle, traveling 50 mph in a residential area where children were playing. C-L-A-S-S-Y

      This is why I only get drunk sitting next to my computer monitor or in the backyard in my “One Piece Thermo-Molded Country Plastic Chair”. Uncle Moses has done many dumb things in his life. But you will never read about Uncle Moses killing a child with a vehicle. I can be as sloshed as it gets and I am not signing up for that duty.

      1. pgl

        If you or me were driving drunk and threatening our neighbors, the 911 operator would have immediately sent the police who would have put us in jail. But because he is the husband of a MAGA Congressman, law enforcement did nothing. In the meantime Lindsey “rule of law” Graham refuses to testify in Georgia as apparently a Senator from South Carolina has the right to rig an election in another state.

        1. Moses Herzog

          He’s a lawyer, if Graham committed a crime (by all appearances he did commit a crime), it would not be surprising at all if he “pulls a MAGA” and pleads The Fifth. So get ready for it.

    2. Anonymous

      a diverse perspective:

      Seizing Trump’s passport is a big deal because it shows the warrant (why we haven’t seen the affidavit and DOJ is fighting to keep it hidden is troubling most like what one would expect in Nicaragua or Venezuela) was over broad and unlawful. FBI outright stole whatever it wanted, like Nazi goons. Will be curious if recording devices were planted.

      1. Macroduck

        Maw, git the bug spray! We got one of them pests that smells the place up by talking! It talks about warrants like it’s a lawyer, but it ain’t. It talks like it knows stuff but it don’t. It squawks like a Boebert and then it shrieks like a Hawley and it blusters like a Jones – Alex, that is, the one what perjured his self.

        Hurry up, Maw. It’s fixin’ to spew more noxious stuff!

      2. pgl

        A stooopid perspective. Law enforcement routinely takes the passports of mob bosses. And no prosecutor wants the affidavit released during the early stages of a criminal investigation. Now when they finally indict Trump, his defense lawyers can get it on discovery.

        I presume you are advocating Trump be indicted. Otherwise you are just full of malarky.

      3. baffling

        an affidavit is normally not released to the public during an investigation. that is not unusual at all. what would be unusual is to release the affidavit.

        trump is under investigation for handling of top secret nuclear documents. and fools like anonymous want those documents released to the public? I thought republicans were in favor of national security. if trump is innocent, he has nothing to hide.

      4. Barkley Rosser


        “Nazi goons”? You did not pick up on that he has TWO active passports? Just which nation is that second one for?

        You claim that the “FBI outright stole whatever it waned.” Excuse me, Trump does not and did not own a single one of these items they retrieved. They are all owned by the US government to be housed at the National Archives. The latter entity has been trying to legally obtain them since way last year, with Trump resisting and lying about what he has all this time. No other former president has ever done this at all, despite Trump claiming Obama did. Oh, and it was Trump himself who signed a law making what he has been doing into a felony, apparently with the intent of using the law to try to “lock her up” Hillary because of doing with her emails what her three predecessors also all did.

        Just who is the “Nazi goon” in all this? And it is coming out that some of the national security stuff he was sitting on in his poorly secured basement involves “sources and methods” of intel as well as possibly a payroll list of US spies abroad. This is really crown jewel stuff a lot of foreigners would love to get their hands on. The man is a traitor.

        1. 2slugbaits

          Barkley Rosser You did not pick up on that he has TWO active passports? Just which nation is that second one for?

          The US government issues passports in three different colors. Most ordinary citizens get the blue passport. DoD personnel are issued a red passport that restricts the movements of the bearer; however, they may also have their own personal blue passport, but the red one is issued in order to conduct official overseas business. The third passport is a black one that is issued to foreign service diplomats and to the President. The President’s black passport is non-expiring. So it seems that the two passports taken (and later returned) were Trump’s blue passport and his black passport.

          1. Barkley Rosser

            Yeah, 2slug. That is probably it. The second one is probably his black presidential one, not one from another country. Obviously I am being a Nazi goon here. We need Putin to come in and denazigy me. JohnH would probably eagerly help out, or at least “Anonymous,” :-).

  16. pgl

    Allen Weisselberg, former CFO of the Trump Organization, is closing in on a plea deal with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, according to a report. Weisselberg was indicted last year in a tax scheme by the DA’s office during its sprawling criminal inquiry into the Trump Organization. A plea deal could avert a trial that would likely garner widespread publicity.

    Rats leaving the ship!

  17. Macroduck

    Big trouble in China – (where’s Kurt Russell when you need him?):

    Leads to rate cut:

    China’s housing prices continue to fall:

    China’s youth unemloyment rate has hit a recod high:

    The PBOC rate cut is aimed at stimulating credit growth, which is very weak:

    Rates may not be the medicine for what ails China, what with all those mortgages that may never lead to home ownership.

    So yeah, recession in early August, but not in the U.S. How could so many MBA consultants, vastly experienced non-academic economsts and followers of the teachings of Peter Navarro and Larry Kudlow mistake the U.S. for China.? One could begin to doubt their understanding.

    1. Macroduck

      The dollar index is climbing again. WTI posted its lowest close since early February. PPI fell 0.5% in last week’s report. A week ago, a 75 basis point Fed hike was priced at 68% odds, while today a 50 bp hike is priced at 61%. Smaller inward shifts for subsequent Fed meetings. This isn’t all because of China – the Empire State index was not a pretty sight today – but the dollar index and WTI appear to be.

      Just for a day or two, the smart people here need to ignore the brain-dead political zombies and consultant know-it-alls and do a serious assessment of the global economic outlook. The U.S. ain’t in recession, so let’s ignore that stupid idea. A recession is already a risk for nandext year, maybe Q4, and we will feel greater effects from rate hikes with time. Europe has serious problems. China is beginning to look like a swirling vortex of economic disaster. Food supply issues caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are being compounded by drought in much of Europe, much of China, much of the U.S. and Canadian west, Mexico, East Africa… Latin America is in winter now, but last Summer’s harvest was weak in several countries due to drought.

      Let’s just ignore the cow-pie brains for a couple of days and have a serious chat. Like our hosts seem to want to do when unpestered.

      1. Moses Herzog

        Wonder of BlueStatesResidentKopits noticed that WTI crude is at $86.90 this morning. And falling. If the Fed Res keeps their rate moves under 50bps on the next meeting, Kopits isn’t going to get his recession call correct, his ’23 inflation call correct, or even his oil price call correct. I wanna know who hires a consultant who is 0 for 3 on his predictions about the broader economy??

  18. Moses Herzog

    @ Menzie
    Sometimes I like to save thoughts for the following thread, but this one I kind feel like busting out. Have you read Mike Bird’s (of “The Economist”) graphs and thoughts on China’s Housing Starts and Housing completions?? They are some really mind-boggling numbers,

    1. Moses Herzog

      I kept wondering what the hell Jamie Dimon had been so negative about lately, is this has what has got him in a tizzy?? When I read Dimon was making negative noises it kinda made me sit up in my chair, he’s usually the butterflies and rainbows guy.

  19. Macroduck

    Speaking of the teetering bulk that is China’s economy, a few days back, Beike Research Institute released a report which warned that China’s property market is in for more losses. Something about 50 million empty residential units, weak demographics and the like:

    China Daily published a story on the report, but then pulled the story:

    Beike Research Institute has now “apologized” for the report, saying it might not be accurate:

    In other words, the truth was too dangerous, so it was erased. Does this remind readers of anything China-related they see in comments here?

    China is big. Big is dangerous. We need honesty about China’s economy.

    1. Moses Herzog

      Great Minds think a like??

      I’m actually a slow reader (you’re shocked??) and spent a decent amount of this afternoon letting this one seep into my brain

      I been listening to guys like Jim Chanos bad mouth China markets for what seems like an eternity (similar to John Cochrane and his 30 year long inflation call). Mostly it struck me is self-serving and talking their own investment book. But this article by Michael Pettis, I think this has real legs and I’m wondering how long Beijing can keep the puppet show going. Pettis will have a “Part 2” on this and I will be checking that Carnegie site and Pettis’ Twitter feed regular.

      1. Macroduck

        Makes my skin crawl.

        Money, real economic production, trust, liquidity facilities and, as Pettis make very clear, a resolution system that imposes losses on some (politically important) group or groups are all required in order for this to work out. Looks impossible, even without foot-dragging, and look at all that foot-dragging!

        1. Macroduck

          China’s system of buyer financing of construction differs from systems of credit market or bank-financed construction in one important regard – the possibility of due diligence in lending. OK, two regards. The second is that financial firms have clout that individuals don’t. Both differences mean it’s better to borrow from a middle-class sap than a politically connected bank.

          1. Moses Herzog

            @ Macroduck
            It’s actually very similar to “crowdfunding” for construction if you stop and think about it, only crowdfunding probably has stricter rules on proof of payment. The irony being most of the homebuyers have the mortgage paid (to the construction company, probably mostly by the bank) months (years??) before they can even enter (live in) the home. Because much of the time—the home (usually a decent sized building apartment) is not even built yet when they have already paid.

            I’ll tell you what you really have to understand to “get” all of this—???—-China is a “top down” culture. Everything gets back to “top down”, so the people in power tell the homebuyers “You want a home?? If you want a home, this is how this is going to play out. Don’t like the construction companies’ and bankers’ rules?? Go fly a kite”. That’s what ALL of it amounts to. It’s legal extortion of new homebuyers. Not all of the homebuyers are “innocent” but still, it’s “legal extortion” of the homebuyers.

  20. dd

    Do a lot of travel between Illinois and the South. The trucks are wall to wall in both directions. The consumerism is fine both north and south. Is housing slowing? Sort of but not really. In the South trying to get a deck built is 5 months out and not because of lumber; but demand. I think the things are adjusting to a new normal and a new dominant generation. Boomers with money are on the decline; their kids and grandkids moving forward; as it should be. Are there challenges? Yeah, but the next generation is up to the task and like prior generations wants to make things better; except for those who can’t deal with all the change; but it won’t stop advancement.

    1. Moses Herzog

      I have mixed feelings about the younger generation. Whether that is my own biases showing through I don’t know. But one thing I will give the younger generation for is a better attitude on global warming and moderating climate change. But then that part of it has always been that way right?? Because younger people have a long time frame on the Earth. So is that just a natural kind of selfishness that always changes as we get older?? But I TRY to extend my thoughts and give younger people the benefit of the doubt because it’s just true as you get older you get more cranky about how things are going. I don’t want to turn into a “Karen”, or whatever the male version of the “Karen” is. “Hank” on “King of the Hill”?? I don’t know.

      1. dd

        Oh Moses it’s not about selfishness or self-interest. It’s about vision and future and the hope for a better world and the amazingness of the unknown that may be known to your children or your children’s children. Don’t you remember that? It’s an amazing future of unknowns and I’d like to think my ancestors will know things I could only imagine.

        1. Moses Herzog

          @ dd
          I’m not against any of that, I’m just not sure how realistic that is. You know there was a Senator in Wyoming who got shellacked today (Tuesday night) just for telling the truth?? Let’s see if we can just get the correct societal response for verbalizing the truth before we start imagining Tinkerbell, stardust, rainbows, butterflies, Harry Potter, and Mary Poppins. Let’s just get the proper reaction from American citizens for stating the truth, then we can move onward and upward to Bob Ross baby talk.

  21. rjs

    the Empire State Manufacturing Survey from the New York Fed, which covers New York and northern New Jersey, reported their headline general business conditions index fell from +11.0 in July to -31.3 in August, the second largest drop on record… “The new orders index dropped thirty-six points to -29.6, and the shipments index plummeted nearly fifty points to -24.1, indicating a sharp decline in both orders and shipments. “

    1. pgl

      Me thinks Stevie already brought this up. But thanks for the link without Stevie’s stupid hyperbole.

      1. rjs

        no, Gregory, the auto driven illusion went in the other direction…the Fed reported auto & parts production up 6.6% because some vehicle manufacturers canceled their normal July retooling shutdown after vehicle assemblies had been constrained by the persistent shortages of semiconductors and other parts over the prior months….the seasonal adjustment factor for auto assemblies added about 25% to the actual, unadjusted July figure..

        1. GREGORY BOTT

          Nope. Auto is more than parts production. It’s also delivered contracts which accounted for the decline. I think we are seeing how flaw it is. Maybe terminate this index. It doesn’t seem to work.

  22. pgl

    Forecasting developments in the semiconductor sector is a lot like forecasting exchange rates:

    Even in an industry famous for its roller-coaster cycles, chipmakers are bracing for a particularly severe shift in coming months, when a record-setting sales surge is threatening to give way to the worst decline in a decade or more. The semiconductor market enjoyed a massive run-up in orders during the pandemic, sending sales and stock prices to new highs and triggering a global scramble to find enough supplies. There was hope in some circles that the boom could be sustained for several more years without a painful pullback, but chipmakers are now facing a familiar problem: growing inventory and shrinking demand.

    1. Barkley Rosser


      Yes, I reported on an article in The Economist from a month ago on this way above at the beginning of this thread, which led Moses Herzog to denounce me for spreading “fake news.” You had better be careful here with this stuff.

  23. pgl

    In the past 9 weeks, oil prices (WTI) have fallen from over $120 a barrel to less than $90 a barrel. Here is where I need everyone else’s help. I thought I heard Fox and Friends chief economist tell us that the run up in oil prices would cause a RECESSION. But now I’m hearing this vaunted economic consulting firm tell us that falling oil prices mean we are in a RECESSION. Could someone PLEASE explain for us the nature of the Princeton Steve macroeconometric model?

    1. AS

      It does not seem like we are currently in a recession. Today some additional good news was reported. The Industrial Production index showed a July m/m increase of 0.6% and a Y/Y increase of 3.9%. A probit model using the Y/Y change in FRED series, INDPRO, shows a probability of current recession at about 16% with a threshold value of 20%.
      We may also see another negative month of CPI All inflation due to the decline of oil and gasoline prices for August. Food and core inflation will most likely be positive.

      Maybe Steven has been talking to Jamie Diamon who warns “something worse than a recession could be coming”. Someone always has to ruin the party.

      1. Macroduck

        Sports? Yahoo is so weird.

        Jamie D.:
        Economy is in good shape.
        20-30% chance mild recession
        20-30% chance deep recession
        20-30% chance something worse (creature from the black lagoon?)

        Jaime D. is pretty weird, too.

        1. Moses Herzog

          I like to ask the sharper commenters here “random” questions sometimes (especially when I feel ignored by Menzie/ joke). Uhm, can we take this as any kind of sign (however small) that Liz Cheney might perform well in a national race??? (i.e. presidential race)

          Copied from “538”
          “One stark data point in Wyoming: Cheney is winning Teton County, one of two counties in the state won by President Biden, with about 80 percent of the vote. It means many Democratic voters there crossed over to support her today.”

  24. pgl

    Trump’s whining is getting himself deeper down the rabbit hole:

    Trump calls for release of unredacted affidavit after Mar-a-Lago search

    It ain’t gonna to happen. Why? New court filings by DOJ opposing this absurd request from the mob boss in Chief make clear they are pursuing criminal charges for Donald the Traitor Trump. Trump would be well advised to hire a competent defense attorney assuming any one want to represent this criminal. So far Team Trump’s lawyers are nothing more than incompetent clowns.

  25. pgl

    Longtime Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg could be compelled to testify against the company after agreeing to plead guilty to more than a dozen tax-fraud counts, according to two people familiar with the matter.

    Each of these tax frauds were done for the benefit of Donald Trump at Trump’s direction. It strikes me as rather obvious that Trump committed all sorts of tax frauds. Lock him up!

    1. pgl

      Russian state gas company Gazprom said today that European gas prices could spike by 60% to more than US$4,000 per 1,000 cubic metres this winter, as the company’s own export and production continue to fall amid western sanctions.

      And Bruce Hall is stupid enough to think this is going to raise natural gas prices here? Excuse me Bruce but the reasons that natural gas prices here are much lower than they are in Europe has been well discussed here. We are exporting natural gas in liquified form to Europe. Something called transportation costs. I guess this stuff went over your feeble little brain. DUH!

    2. pgl

      Henry Hub Natural Gas Spot Price

      There is another FRED graph showing these prices in the EU.

      We have often asked Bruce Hall to actually check reliable sources of information but for some reason this poor little boy just cannot do it. If he had he might have noticed that EU prices have shot up to four times US prices. And yet our favorite Village Idiot asks a question that must mean there is a world market driving prices in both reasons. Never mind post after post indicating why this is not the case.

      Seriously Bruce – did you ever learn to READ?

  26. pgl

    Matt Vespa decides to use the right wing rag known as Town Hall to rehash this discredited LIE:

    Barack Obama Has Missing Records. When Will the FBI Ransack His House?

    After a bunch of blah, blah, blah here comes Vespa’s “case”:

    “The Obama library has been constructed. It’s operational and open to the public, but maybe we should check if he doesn’t have records tucked away at his Martha’s Vineyard estate.” More blah, blah ending with:

    Obama’s residences should be raided when the GOP regains executive control. We just must ensure that the Presidential Records Act is being honored. It’s patriotism. That’s what some people are telling me.

    What a load of BS. One would even expect CoRev to do better than this disjointed tantrum.

  27. pgl

    I generally loathe Charles Krauthammer but this line is classic:

    Trump’s hypersensitivity and unedited, untempered Pavlovian responses are, shall we say, unusual in both ferocity and predictability. This is beyond narcissism. I used to think Trump was an 11-year-old, an undeveloped schoolyard bully. I was off by about 10 years. His needs are more primitive, an infantile hunger for approval and praise, a craving that can never be satisfied. He lives in a cocoon of solipsism where the world outside himself has value — indeed exists — only insofar as it sustains and inflates him.

    Of course, I know of a few 1 year olds who would be insulted by the comparison of them with Trump.

      1. NotNotNotEconned

        I can’t wait for the “two” commenters above to fall into an uncovered manhole shaft.

  28. ltr

    Separating nuclear families from each other and making mortal threats if they request to go back to their families……

    [ This is false. False and malicious prejudice. The need in such prejudiced malicious falseness is evidently to defame and harm an entire people. ]

  29. ltr

    —– does divide the families of minorities….

    [ This is maliciously false. This is definitive prejudice. The evident intent is to ruin and entire people. ]

    1. Macroduck

      The only maliciousness is that China’s government engages in slavery:

      A giant file dump from Xinjiang internment camps provided fresh evidence this spring:

      The UN reports Uyghur workers being “subjected to exploitative working and abusive living conditions that may constitute arbitrary detention, human trafficking, forced labour and enslavement by the use of forced labour.”

      But this isn’t new. The world has known about China’s treatment of Uyghurs for a long time. ltr is paid by her ideological masters to lie about China’s human rights record, but that doesn’t change the facts.

  30. ltr

    July 25, 2022

    A herdsman starts new life at relocation site in SW China’s Tibet

    LHASA — With an average altitude of over 5,000 meters, Tsonyi County is China’s highest county located in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region. The county started the relocation of its second batch of residents on Tuesday, as part of the region’s plan to improve people’s living conditions and protect the fragile local ecosystem.

    On July 19, Shera Gyataso, along with more than 300 residents, left his hometown in Doima Township of Tsonyi, moving nearly 1,000 km southward to their new home Singpori, with an altitude of 3,600 meters and 10 km from the airport of the regional capital Lhasa.

    After 14 hours, 18 buses arrived at Singpori.

    In Singpori, Shera Gyataso and his family have been allocated a house and an apartment totaling over 120 square meters equipped with flush toilets and gas stoves.

    There are a newly-built hospital, a kindergarten, a primary school, a market and a recreation center in the community.

    Shera Gyataso’s son will be admitted into the kindergarten free of charge in Singpori next year thanks to the relocation.

  31. ltr

    August 7, 2022

    Relocation helps mountain villagers in NW China avoid geological disasters

    LANZHOU — After moving into his new house, Liu Changhai said he no longer fears rainy days and enjoys the fresh air after the rains.

    Liu’s family of five now live in a 96-square-meter urban house equipped with a small courtyard, flush toilet, and gas stove in Lanzhou New Area in the provincial capital Lanzhou, northwest China’s Gansu Province, a national-level development zone.

    “Rainy days were my nightmares. I used to dream of moving out of the mountain someday,” said Liu, adding that some houses in his village were slipping downwards, and some even fell along with landslides from cliffs.

    Rains battered his hometown, mountainous Zhenzhuangmo Village in Zhouqu County of Gansu, more frequently around 2008. At first, his family had to repair their old house almost every year. Liu started building a new home in the village by 2020, spending over 200,000 yuan (about 29,570 U.S. dollars) with savings earned from manual labor as a migrant worker.

    The family moved in around the Spring Festival of 2021, but Liu returned to work in Chengdu, the capital of southwest China’s Sichuan Province, for work soon. About a week after Liu arrived in Chengdu, his township officials called him, saying an overnight storm had cracked his new house.

    In 2021, a risk-aversion project initiated by the provincial government relocated villagers living in disaster-stricken regions to the Lanzhou New Area. Residing in a village assessed as inhabitable by experts, Liu and other villagers whose houses had perished in natural disasters applied for relocation soon after they heard about the project.

    The project offers a subsidy of 100,000 yuan per household in Zhouqu County. Liu only paid 44,000 yuan for the real estate. Currently, more than 5,000 people from over 1,200 households have resettled in the area, according to the authorities of Zhouqu County.

    “A direct bus transport service to downtown Lanzhou is available here. Children can go to school more conveniently,” said Liu, adding that there are more job opportunities and free vocational training.

    This year, Liu works at a construction site nearby, no longer outside the province, and his wife has found a job at a local greenhouse. The couple’s monthly income exceeds 7,000 yuan….

  32. dd

    Oh Moses it’s not about selfishness or self-interest. It’s about vision and future and the hope to understand the mega-universes beyond our galaxy and the amazingness of the unknown that may be known to your children or your children’s children. Don’t you remember that? It’s an amazing future of unknowns and I’d like to think my ancestors will know things I could only imagine.

  33. ltr

    Speaking of human rights crimes committed…
    Speaking of human rights crimes committed…
    Speaking of human rights crimes committed…

    [ This is of course completely false, false in just the way that accusations made against the Jews of Spain during the Inquisition were false. Spain has often apologized for the Inquisition and the experience ought to be learned from. ]

    1. ltr

      July 22, 2022

      Xinjiang region sees booming tourism with more domestic, foreign visitors, a strong response to smears: regional spokesperson
      By Liu Xin

      The booming of tourism in China’s Xinjiang region with more domestic and Chinese tourists showed that more people are seeing through the lies and the tricks by anti-China forces from the US and the West, Xu Guixiang, spokesperson of the Xinjiang regional government, said in a press conference on Friday.

      Recently, Xinjiang has become a hot tourist destination. In June, the region marked 23 million trips, an increase of 66 percent from May, and tourism revenue reached 17.4 billion yuan ($ 2.5 billion), an increase of 89 percent from the previous month, according to data released on Friday.

      The booming of tourism in the region benefits from the social stability, effective prevention measures and multiple preferential policies , Elijan Anayat, spokesperson of the Xinjiang regional government, said at the conference.

      Images of the traffic congestion along the Duku highway have gone viral on China’s social media with many joking about the great number of people that swarmed into the region to enjoy the gorgeous, magnificent landscapes along the highways….

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