C’mon, M’Honey, URINE THE MONEY! (you’ve got a lot of what it takes to get along.)
The REAL Trump pee-tape was a urine sampling pyramid scheme.
“Whatever happened to Trump neckties?” asks Zane Anthony, Kathryn Sanders and David A. Fahrenthold at the Washington Post, “They’re over. So is most of Trump’s merchandising empire.” Among the products that Trump lent his name to, for a fee, was a vitamin supplement, supposedly custom formulated based on the results of a urine test:
“Take a snapshot of the most critical metabolic markers in your body’s natural waste fluids,” said the website for the Trump Network, a vitamin company that sent its customers urine-sample kits with the Trump logo on them. The tests would be used to determine what vitamins the customer needed, according to archived versions of the Trump Network website.
As usual, the authors of this article miss the point of the enterprise, despite the Washington Post Wonkblog having covered it two years earlier. The overpriced vitamin supplements and quack urine tests were only window dressing. The real “product” the Trump Network sold was the “opportunity” to get rich quick by selling pseudo-scientific piss takes.
YouTube videos of Trump doing his urine test pitch have surprisingly few views, considering the man is “President of the United States” and his performance selling a get-rich-quick scam is, word-for-word and gesture-for-gesture, all he is and all he has ever been: pure flim-flam and puffery.
Representative BOLLING: I would like to begin by asking Mr. Minsky a question due to my own ignorance. This is my weakest area. I don’t claim to be an economist, just a political economist. I need to know some things. In your statement, next to the last page — the second sentence in the first full paragraph — there are few words and a lot said. I want to be sure I understand it.
To decrease the emphasis on debt, the full employment rather than economic growth should become the proximate objective of policy;
Now, I would like you to explain that to me. I don’t understand exactly what you mean.
Mr. MINSKY: I don’t believe it is an accident that we have had increased instability and increased inflation since the emphasis shifted toward economic growth during the Kennedy-Johnson administration.
Everything that you do to encourage investment encourages debt financing. This increases instability. The simple example is that during the 10 years it takes to put a nuclear power plant on stream the workers producing that nuclear power plant are receiving income, spending that income on consumer goods, and not producing any consumer goods in exchange. So every time you increase the ratio of investment expenditures to consumer goods expenditures in the economy, prices rise.
Any time a higher proportion of a wage bill is used to pay for people who are earning investment income compared to the wage bill that is used in the production of consumer goods, consumer goods prices will increase. This, in turn, means that the wages of workers will go up. This is a very simple idea.
It takes 10 years before you get a kilowatt out of a nuclear power plant. People all the way back to the producers of input into that complicated thing meanwhile are spending. Every time you build a plant that does not quickly pay off you are producing inflation in the country.
Every time England goes out and builds a Concorde you produce inflation. Any banker and businessman knows that for every investment project worth doing there are thousands that are not. Everything you do to increase growth by way of increasing investment, offer incentives to undertake things that are not worth doing in a pure private account, you produce inflation.
Perhaps Minsky’s “very simple idea” was a bit too simple. What if economic policy was used to encourage investment and debt financing but suppress the wages of workers? Voila! Perpetual, non-inflationary growth! A non-accelerating inflation rate of unemployment! Instead of letting the instability and inflation infect the whole economy, why not target it on those dumb fucks who have no political traction anyway? If the rabble become restive, they can always be placated by chauvinist circuses and slick get-rich-quick scams.
So much winning! As John Kenneth Galbraith observed, “Weeks, months or years may elapse between the commission of the crime and its discovery. (This is a period, incidentally, when the embezzler has his gain and the man who has been embezzled, oddly enough, feels no loss. There is a net increase in psychic wealth.)”
Well, who’d thunk there might be two pee tapes? Starting to look like it:
“James Comey’s book describes a President Trump “obsessed” with allegations compiled in a dossier by British agent Christopher Steele that he was secretly recorded in Moscow in 2013 paying prostitutes to urinate on a bed that President Obama had slept in. I used to doubt that this episode really happened. I now believe it probably did. I am obviously far from certain, but since Steele’s dossier came out, an accumulation of evidence has tipped the balance from unlikely to likely. Let’s review what we’ve learned since the allegation first surfaced.
1. Christopher Steele is credible. Steele isn’t just some gumshoe. He’s an experienced intelligence collector whose work has been valued by the British and American governments. His sources seem to be serious, too, including “a former top-level Russian intelligence officer still active inside the Kremlin,” a “member of the staff at the hotel,” a “female staffer at the hotel when Trump had stayed there,” and “a close associate of Trump who had organized and managed his recent trips to Moscow.”
Steele himself has said that probably not every fact compiled in his dossier is true. The dossier was not intended as solid intelligence, but as a collection of leads. Still, the fact that Russia almost certainly murdered some of the sources for his reporting in the immediate wake of the dossier’s publication further attests to their credibility….
5. Trump is comfortable with gross sexual behavior and can be blackmailed. We know more about Trump’s sex life now than we did in November 2016. He has had a lot of affairs. He has gone to great lengths to keep them quiet — which is to say, he can be blackmailed. And he is not averse to a sexually unconventional milieu. Corn and Isikoff have added some important reporting about a Las Vegas nightclub where Trump joined some of the entourage he had met with in Moscow:
The Act was no ordinary nightclub. Since March, it had been the target of undercover surveillance by the Nevada Gaming Control Board and investigators for the club’s landlord—the Palazzo, which was owned by GOP megadonor Sheldon Adelson—after complaints about its obscene performances. The club featured seminude women performing simulated sex acts of bestiality and grotesque sadomasochism—skits that a few months later would prompt a Nevada state judge to issue an injunction barring any more of its “lewd” and “offensive” performances. Among the club’s regular acts cited by the judge was one called “Hot for Teacher,” in which naked college girls simulate urinating on a professor. In another act, two women disrobe and then “one female stands over the other female and simulates urinating while the other female catches the urine in two wine glasses.” (The Act shut down after the judge’s ruling. There is no public record of which skits were performed the night Trump was present.)
Again, none of this is proof. All of it is at least somewhat suggestive.”
As noted, none of this is actual proof. But, damn!
like the congressman i don’t quite understand. two thoughts:
1) since not every investment is in the same stage at the same time (building up vs paying off) it seems to me likely that at any slice of time you have some investments paying off while others are still building up.
2) related. the workers involved in the building up are creating value.. not only the value of the investment-when-realized. but also (grammatical slip here… but you’ll get the idea) those workers are buying goods and services, causing other workers to produce those goods and services. not sure this creates inflation but just the normal course of business activity.
explain what i’m not getting?
this is not the first theory of the cause of inflation that i have heard. Paul Samuelson (the real samuelson) said that inflation was created by workers demanding higher wages than justified by their production. he seems to have imagined a lot of workers sitting around the employment office waiting for some beleaguered employer to give in and offer them a job at more than they were worth.
I wasn’t convinced then. I am not convinced now. But then there hasn’t been much inflation to speak of since then.
Personally I think what causes inflation is people getting rich off of predatory business models and then buying up land and houses and driving the prices of those things too high for ordinary people to own their own home or farm. Meanwhile the victims of predatory business models lose their money from low wages, mortgage abuse, shoddy products, and creative marketing. or maybe this is not measured as inflation in the economy.
do you still get inflation?
“explain what i’m not getting?”
What you are not getting is this is more of an allusion to Minsky’s theory of instability and doesn’t pretend to be a comprehensive summary of it. If you find his argument intriguing but not persuasive, the follow up would be to read Minsky. My interpretation of Minsky is likely to be different that yours. A fun place to start would be Minsky’s discussion of the puzzle of Donald Trump’s success in the 1980s as a real estate mogul. “The Bubble in the Price of Baseball Cards” J.W. Mason posted a blog commentary on that paper, “Brazil in drag” two years ago,
And you haven’t even mentioned currency devaluation yet, especially when foreign imports are subject to preferential free trade terms!
yes, Trump success is a puzzle. but i have been taken once or twice myself so i suppose a sucker is born every day.
as for reading the rest, i thank you. sadly i will probably not get around to it. heavy demands on my time.
“What if economic policy was used to encourage investment and debt financing but suppress the wages of workers?” Definition for a CDA and naked CDS? No Labor involved and profits to be made.
I have a Rookie Card for Ernie Banks which is rated PSA 4.5 Vg to Excellent. The value is somewhere north of $500. You can buy Ernie Banks PSA 7 or 8 baseball cards with a value of $2500 to $3000 which are near Mint.I also own a marked up Cubs Program with players on it such as Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, Erne Banks, Roger Hornsby as a coach, etc. Really no value to it other than seeing a pack of cigs were 25 cents, hot dogs were far less costly then, etc. Have the signed shirt too (Cubs fan).
Trump was running a Ponzi scheme with his Real Estate. As long a values were high and kept appreciating he could get loans on it as long as money was abundant and looking for a place to invest. It sounds as familiar as the run up to the 2008 collapse. Greenspan said no to increasing interest rates for Treasuries in the US. So the money went to the next best place, mortgages, a safe and secure place as long as values were realistic. Banks, investment firms (GS), and home investors/owners were playing a similar Ponzi game. Housing prices were never going to decrease until money became to plentiful and the bottom dropped out of the economy when one company was called on to anti-up and another company could not pay the CDS insurance it had signed up to pay. No reserves and “0-percent” loans.
Trump had his own little Ponzi scheme going with his real estate. Buy and keep borrowing against the appreciation.
The reads you recommended to Coberly, not long, and interesting. CDS and naked CDS profits do not involve Labor. “The bank always gets paid (Mr. Potter)” whether it comes from the investor or Main Street.